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Public administration Public administration in Austria

Public administration in Austria is carried out on three levels: the Federal level, the level of the nine Länder (i. e. Regions), and that of the 2,100 municipalities. In addition, social insurance funds, statutory representative bodies (called “Chambers”, e. g. the Chamber of Labour and the Chamber of Commerce), and other legal entities involved in providing public services are sometimes included in the definition of the public sector.

Public administration staffing levels

Federation

134,569

Regions

143,205

Municipalities

74,652

Total

352,426


By delivering a wide range of services to the people of Austria, public servants provide important impulses for the country's society and economy.

A large proportion of them work in well-known occupations, e.g. as teachers, police officers, soldiers or tax inspectors; others deliver services such as welfare benefits, infrastructure maintenance and improvement, food and medicine safety, environmental protection, and public health. 

In addition to these, more than 5,900 civil servants (FTE) still work for agencies and other institutions that no longer form part of the Federal Civil Service, e. g. Statistics Austria, the Austrian Federal Museums, the Public Employment Service, public universities and the Probation Service; another 11,700 or so work in the successor companies of the Austrian Post Office.

 Occupational groups in the Federal Civil Service

 There are seven different occupational groups within the Federal Civil Service, including the five listed below, as well as nurses and school inspectors. While there are clear job profiles for most of these occupations, members of the administrative service can be involved in a wide range of different activities, which is why they are to be found in practically all parts of the Federal Civil Service. In addition to administrative officers, this group includes experts such as lawyers, engineers, economists, psychologists and business administration specialists, to name just a few.

Retirements

 The actual retirement age of Federal civil servants has risen by 0.2 % (to 61.9) compared to the year before, continuing the trend of the recent years. At 2,998, the number of annual retirements in the Federal Civil Service rose by 18 % (+467 new retirements) in 2017. In 2016, due to a backlog caused by restricted access led to a strong raise in retirements. These effects were neutralized in the current year. Even though early retirements are still responsible for the most of the raise in total, the share in total remained nearly the same. Given the age structure of the Federal Civil Service, the number of retirements can be expected to rise further over the next few years.

Age structure of the Federal Civil Service

In 2017 the average age of staff members was 46.0 years (2016: 46.1). The continuous long-term rise in average age is mainly due to a restrictive recruitment policy. The last year’s slight decline is especially due to recruitment in Law-enforcement. Staff today tend to be more highly qualified, and therefore older, upon recruitment and to retire at a later age than they did some years ago.

Part-time employment in the Federal Civil Service

2017 the proportion of part-time staff was 17.7 %. Among permanent civil servants and those on private-law em­ployment contracts alike, women made more use of this opportunity than men.