Navy and creating One Defence

Published on CMDR Adam Allica (author), Mrs Lauren Larking (photographer)

Topic(s): First Principles Review of Defence

The team from the First Principles Review Implementation Office, at Russell Offices in Canberra. (photo: Lauren Larking)
The team from the First Principles Review Implementation Office, at Russell Offices in Canberra.

The Defence reform program ‘Creating One Defence’ is well underway and Navy is actively engaged in the transformation which will bolster Navy’s focus on the ability to fight and win at sea.
The program is broken into five work streams to deliver 75 recommendations of the First Principles Review of Defence, which were announced in April.
Chief of Navy, Vice Admiral Tim Barrett, has appointed Head Navy Capability, Rear Admiral Jonathan Mead, as the responsible officer for Navy’s contribution to the implementation of One Defence recommendations.
“Navy has many well-established reform and continuous improvement programs, such as Rizzo Reform Program, that are already aligned with the recommendations and positions Navy well for further reform,” Vice Admiral Barrett said.
“Other processes, strategies and programs may need to change or be adjusted with the new direction for the Department, but I remain confident that those changes will have positive outcomes for Navy people in meeting our mission.”
The recommendations have been grouped to deliver on the following:

  • Establish a strong, strategic centre to strengthen accountability and top level decision-making.  For Navy this means we are able to achieve our mission through a more coherent Defence organizational framework that ensures appropriate consideration of issues and prioritization of resources. Navy Strategic Centre Stream Lead is Commodore Peter Laver (Chief of Staff - Navy Strategic Command).
  • Establish a single end-to-end capability development function within the Department to maximise the efficient, effective and professional delivery of military capability. For Navy this means the delivery of advanced capability on time and on budget in direct support of Chief of Navy’s strategic plan - Plan Pelorus. The Government's recent announcement to advance the Offshore Patrol Vessel and Future Frigate programs is a clear example of confidence in this transformation. Navy Capability Development Stream Lead is Rear Admiral Mead (Head of Navy Capability).
  • Fully implement an enterprise approach to the delivery of corporate and military enabling services to maximise their effectiveness and efficiency. For Navy this means being clear about requirements for enabling services with due regard for capability impacts, and accountability to ensure they are delivered to agreed levels. Navy Enablers & Information Management Stream Lead is Commodore Laver and for Estate matters is Mr Andy McKinnon (Director Navy Infrastructure Programs).
  • Ensure committed people with the right skills are in appropriate jobs to create the One Defence workforce.  For Navy this means reconciliation of our workforce demands and supply, prioritisation of Navy's uniformed and civilian workforce aligned with capability, and improved joint workforce management. Workforce Stream Lead is Commodore Michele Miller (Director General Navy People).
  • Consolidate Geospatial information functions into the Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation allowing improved resourcing and connectivity.  For Navy this means transition of elements of the Hydro/METOC group into the Australian Geospatial-Intelligence Organisation, delivered through Geospatial Stream Lead, Commodore Brett Brace (Director General Navy Hydrography and METOC) with implementation now incorporated as part of the Strategic Centre Workstream.
  • A unified leadership team willing to drive change and a behavioural shift with every individual having a responsibility to exhibit the expected behaviours to deliver improved organisational outcomes. For Navy this means communicating One Defence behaviours through the lens of extant Navy Signature Behaviours and other Navy cultural initiatives. Behaviours Stream Lead is Commander Nick Watson (Acting Program Director New Generation Navy).

Rear Admiral Mead said while many Navy people may not notice direct changes to their work in the short term, the reforms will help deliver current and future capability across Defence.
“Incrementally, these changes will bring the three services even closer together through changes to accountabilities, structures, systems and processes. This will ultimately adjust behavioural mindsets across the Defence enterprise and ensure the output of Navy’s workforce contributes directly to protecting Australia and our national interests.  
“Each of Navy’s stream leads and respective project teams are working hard to establish where and how the recommendations will impact Navy business and contribute to finding ways that we can adapt to deliver better outcomes for Navy, Defence and the Australian people,” Rear Admiral Mead said.
Over the coming months, a series of information sessions are being delivered across the country for Navy personnel to gain a greater insight into the Creating One Defence reform program. All Navy personnel are encouraged to attend a session.
For more information about the review visit