Collecting data

Why collect workforce demographic d​ata?

Collecting workforce demographic data to better understand workforce trends is part of good practice and helps:

  • public authorities (state government agencies, local governments, public universities, government trading enterprises) and public sector entities, including the non-public sector authorities of Western Australia Police and electorate offices, plan for future workforce and diversity requirements and develop workforce and EEO management plans to better meet these requirements
  • the Public Sector Commission and the DEOPE to identify key issues across the sectors and provide public authorities and government with guidance on policy and decision making processes.
  • The requirements for public authorities to provide this data to the Commission is outlined in:
  • the Equal Opportunity Act 1984
  • Commissioner's Instruction No. 6.

How ​can you collect employee diversity data?

Public authorities are strongly encouraged to maintain up-to-date employee diversity data to assist with reporting and making workforce planning decisions.

  • Employment type, age, gender and job classification levels can be sourced from your authority’s human resource records.
  • Other diversity information, such as Indigenous Australian or disability status, should be sourced from employees through a self-nomination process.
  • Diversity data may be collected from employees through questionnaires, email or web-based surveys or web kiosks. 

How ca​n you maintain your employee diversity data?

  • Requests for employee diversity information should be sought from all employees every two or three years to ensure accuracy of stored information and record any changes in diversity status.
  • New employees should be given the opportunity to provide diversity information as part of their engagement or induction package.

Do employees have to d​isclose their diversity status?

  • All employees should be given the opportunity to respond to diversity data requests. It is not compulsory for employees to disclose their diversity status. 
  • Under no circumstances should assumptions be made about the cultural background or disability status of employees on their behalf.

Improving workforce diversity data provides tips on improving data request response rates.


Page last updated 20 July 2016