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Public servants to have wings clipped

By S4anta 17 March 2008 25

In a move that is sure to have many a perk-conscience public servant quivering much akin to a Dolhpin on a John West cannery tour, Finance Minister Lindsay Tanner sees savings of up to $15 million from Departmental travel costs by insisting Public servants give the budget airlines a burl, and using video conferencing where possible. This however was a decision thrown out by the former Howard Government, and has been embraced by St Kev the Immaculate and his cost conscience cabinet. However, the SMH had a spray about the dirty tactics being used by airlines such as Tiger, ane xample being lost cost airfare however if your carry on luggage is over 10kg’s, prepare to pay $10-15 per kg over. Thats even before you look at the double booking, old aircraft and staff not neccesarilly knowing which domestic airport they are currently taxi’ing into, or where they are going.
Video conferencing will be canvassed as a possibnle idea, providing confiedntaility can be assured, so good luck with one lads. No more hanging out in an office using your eyeball there me thinks.

“We want to get a focus on the issue of cost management and look at the most efficient ways of doing things,” the minister’s spokesman said.

They will also be looking at forcing the use of frquent flying points, which for a long time has been seen as a perk of the executives, whom bank roll those for the travels to see grand kids and elderly parents interstate during their dotage. As for the good folk working for the various State Governments and the odd-State office that isn’t a backwater for the methadone monkeys and random sheltered workshop look-alikes, looks like you’ll be travelling to see the big boys in Canberra from here, for at least a few years.

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Public servants to have wings clipped
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Thumper 8:16 am 19 Mar 08

It’s all just Rudd spin. Every incoming government says the same thing and after about six months it all quietly slips back to whatever the Departmental heads want.

As the Byrds sang, ‘everything turns, turns, turns….’

JC 4:53 am 19 Mar 08

Shauno, remember we are talking government employees here not private workers. Some of the things you have mentioned, such as going a day early or coming back a day or two later are not on with most departments, why? Because of public perception they are getting something for nothing. Most private companies wouldn’t blink an eyelid provided the employee covered the costs of the extra day’s and don’t claim expenses, but nop not government imagine the uproar in the big house. It is the same with FF points too.

As for class of travel yes most departments have that in the negotiated agreements, but much of the rules related to travel are non negotiable and are locked in human resource manuals.

shauno 10:42 pm 18 Mar 08

“Shauno, if you haven’t negotiated a better deal with your employer, or some rest time, then that’s your problem. Just because you have to do it doesn’t mean it’s par for the course.”

Different situation in the big world of oil and gas exploration you can negotiate all you want with salary and bonus but when it comes to flights its to tough luck. Its generally across the major companies only upper management and were talking nearing the 1 million salary mark in some companies where they fly business. Its because they have to fly countless people around the world every day its a significant business cost.

If we want rest time we just fly back to work earlier and stay over in Paris or somewhere and fly in a day or so to work. But it eats into our break time and a lot of the time at the end of my break things catch up on me and I don’t organise it. But you get use to it.

el 6:42 pm 18 Mar 08

$200/hr for video-conferencing doesn’t sound right.

At all.

Our vidcon runs essentially for free (aside from the initial cost of the equipment and a small amount of network bandwidth) and simply runs by IP. Works fine.

JC 6:35 pm 18 Mar 08

Ingeegoodbee, the story you say about Qantas travel is kind of correct. One problem with Virgin Blue and indeed now Tiger and Jetstar is they are not hosted in traditional CRS system (where travel agenets such as Qantas business make bookings). If they are not in the system then the agent cannot see the rates and make bookings without going to the internet. As we know when you book on the net they expect payment upfront, unlike in a CRS where you can make a booking and give the client x number of days before the booking must be confirmed and payed for.

It really is a tricky situation, the departments and the pubes just cannot win. This issue is really blown out of all proportion and is not much more than pollies strutting their stuff. I would very happy to fly Jetstar or tiger when I see our pollies flying them too? How likley do you think that is?

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