Bill's Media Releases

$17 million for Centre to drive workplace productivity


The Gillard Labor Government is investing $17 million in a new independent centre dedicated to increasing workplace productivity.

Minister for Employment and Workplace Relations Bill Shorten today announced that the University of Melbourne had been chosen from a strong field to establish and run the new Centre for Workplace Leadership.

The Gillard Labor Government is committed to increasing Australia’s productivity by helping businesses improve their leadership, create high performing workplaces and improve the quality of jobs for their employees.

The University of Melbourne brings a wealth of experience to the Centre with its excellent research and training capabilities.

The Centre will partner with businesses like Cisco, Bendigo Bank, McDonalds Australia, Sussans Group, Rio Tinto, Corrs Chambers Westgarth, Santos and Federation Centres to collaborate on productivity initiatives.

These include:

·         Conducting cutting-edge research into the state of leadership and management in Australian workplaces;

·         Leading a national dialogue on workplace reform and what is required to improve management capability and workplace leadership; and

·         Leading training to build management capabilities and workplace leadership in Australian businesses.

One of the first projects would see the Centre working with CISCO to investigate how telework can enhance productivity, including how managers can respond and adapt to telework technology.

The Centre will be able to draw on the university’s established place as a thought leader and create debate about the positive impact that excellent leadership and innovative people management can have on business performance.

The Centre will work directly with businesses, especially small and medium enterprises, to help them improve their performance.

The Centre will also focus strongly on creating and making available tools and resources to help workplaces gauge their own performance and benchmark against other similar businesses.

The Centre will work with a network of university partners, including the University of Technology Sydney, as well as the Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry and the Australian Council of Trade Unions, to achieve national reach.

Total funding for the Centre includes $12 million over four years from the Australian Government and around $5 million cash and in-kind contributions from businesses and the university.

Further information about the Centre during its setup phase can be accessed at

MEDIA CONTACT: Jessica Lindell 0408 642 804