Cardinia Shire Council – delivering outstanding service and outcomes to community


Cardinia Shire Council

Using workplace strategy to deliver outstanding service and outcomes to community


“Cardinia Shire Council is one of the 7 growth corridors of Melbourne, so there is continual pressure on our service delivery.”

Garry Mcquillan, CEO


Cardinia Shire Council logo

Local government body for Cardinia Shire

Suburban region of Melbourne, Australia
300 staff

The constituency of Cardinia Shire was expected to double over the next decade. A hugely diverse community.

Cardinia identified that their strategic and cultural objectives would be realised by developing a workstyle that supported the following attributes:

  1. Connection + Cohesion
  2. Mobile + Dynamic
  3. Operational Excellence
  4. Engagement

Cardinia were the first local government in Australia to adopt ABW in 2014.

“We looked at Activity Based Working as the platform to make the organisation more agile, being able to really respond a lot quicker to customer expectation.”

Di Ashton, Project Director ABW. Cardinia Shire Council


Cardinia identified a number of challenges that a new way of working and new work place could help them overcome:

  • Staff not connecting beyond their own teams. There were parts of the organisation that never saw each other, let along get to know or talk to each other.
  • The organisational culture not supporting trust as well as it could.
  • Flexibility, creativity and innovation were hampered by aspects of the culture.
  • Staff engagement was low – resulting in restricted level of discretionary effort and contribution beyond the boundaries of job roles.

“Everyone has very different views about how we are working, we’re a siloed organisation. We need to start looking beyond own patch and think collectively about what is best for the community.”

Spoken by a participant of Executive Workshop with Veldhoen + Company


Post-move survey results indicated a positive shift in all key attributes:

Connected & Cohesive 

  • Leaders role modelling key behaviours
  • More connection being on-site to wider organisation
  • More opportunity to do things instantaneously and make decisions quicker
  • Meeting more people across the organisation

Mobile & Dynamic 

  • Supported to be flexible and mobile through environment and flexibility agreements
  • 10 years additional growth built in to workspace

Quality Engagement 

  • Real conversations
  • Increased sense of energy
  • Building and facility improvement 
  • 68% of staff feel they are more productive
  • Reduced staff turn over from 13% to 7%

Operational Excellence 

  • Increased organisation training
  • More efficient at getting process, and focus work done
  • Paper use reduced by 70%
  • Print reduction estimated $34k per year saving 

Project gallery

Some images from our work in this space

“As a CEO, I have never doubted that this was the way of the future.”

Garry McQuillan, CEO, Cardinia Shire Council

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