Open Letter to School Staff (re: Novopay)

I got an email at work today. It was from Acting Secretary of Education Peter Hughes. It goes as follows:

OPEN LETTER TO  SCHOOL STAFF(No actual names there, so not really that personalised).

4 June 2013 (Current!)

I am writing to let you know that the Minister responsible for Novopay, Hon Steven Joyce, has today released the report of the Ministerial Inquiry into Novopay (Starting off with a statement of fact… good one! I am in dispute of the Hon title).

I want to let you know that as Chief Executive of the Ministry of Education, I accept in full all of the findings and recommendations of the Inquiry as they relate to the Ministry (Boffins believed Talent2 sales pitch and subsequent Talent2 cover-up sales pitches. Over-belief then passed on to ministers as advice to GO GO GO!).  I am acting on the issues identified in the report (Good).

I want to personally apologise to you for the stress, anxiety and inconvenience caused by the transition to Novopay. So many of you have gone the extra mile to help resolve the problems and I am hugely grateful for your professionalism and all the effort involved (Um… thanks? Personally I just didn’t get some days pay, more days pay and no superannuation for the first quarter of this year. Technically I never did anything).

In particular, I want to acknowledge those of you with payroll responsibilities. Thank you for your commitment and perseverance.  I am very grateful (I’m don’t have anything else to add here. Payroll people have been, to quote John Campbell here, marvelous over the last 10 months).

My focus since coming to the Ministry has been to work hard to fix the issues around Novopay, and this remains a top personal priority for me. I want to see the current backlog of issues cleared as soon as possible, as well as deliver further improvements to the system’s usability and stability.  We will work hard to get this right for you and your colleagues (Maybe you could fix some of the other issues. Just sayin’).


Best wishes and thank you.

Peter Hughes

Acting Secretary for Education

So that’s that. An apology. From a bureaucrat. No apology from Craig Foss, Hekia Parata, Stephen Joyce or the original team from the Labour Party who first dipped their toes into the poison pool of Novopay.

Nothing. Zip.

After all, they were only taking advice. They could only act on the advice they were given.

For goodness sake. Grow some cajones. Man up. Yes you can only go on the advice your officials give you but really. I mean, REALLY!!!?!

To sign of on something before it was given a proper trial is incompetent at best, negligent at worst. It is lazy politicking to blame your officials.

Ministers from both Labour and National were hypnotised by the former actor who runs Talent2 into buying a dog. Coupled to that was the decision to run with something that had HARDLY BEEN TESTED.

You made that decision. You. Not your boffins. You.

That is all.

Mr B.


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