Awards for public service

The Department of Premier and Cabinet is responsible for coordinating, or has significant involvement in the following awards which recognise exemplary or outstanding public service:

Public Service Medal

The Public Service Medal (PSM) is a prestigious, internationally recognised award within the Australian Honours and Awards system.

The PSM recognises outstanding service of Public Sector employees. As outlined in the guidelines, 'outstanding service' can be shown through:

  • service excellence to the public, or to external or internal clients
  • innovation in program, project or policy development
  • leadership, including a member of a team
  • the achievement of more efficient processes, improved productivity or better service delivery.

Receiving a PSM is a prestigious honour with only 100 recipients awarded nationally each year. NSW Recipients of the PSM are awarded at an investiture ceremony hosted by the Governor of NSW on behalf of the Governor General. Receiving a PSM entitles recipients to use the post nominal 'PSM' to formally acknowledge their achievement.

The PSM is awarded by the Governor-General of the Commonwealth of Australia. Nominations are invited twice yearly for announcement on Australia Day and Queen's Birthday each year. In NSW, nominations are considered by the NSW PSM Committee which recommends a list of proposed recipients to the Premier, who then sends the recommendation to the Governor of NSW. Nominations for NSW recipients are then put forward to the Governor-General, who has the authority to approve the awards.

All local, state and Commonwealth government public sector employees are eligible for the PSM. The PSM is not confined to senior officers; it is available to any public sector employee regardless of grade or age. It should be noted that long service alone is not a sufficient basis for nomination.

Secretaries and Chief Executive Officers are encouraged to consider nominating employees who deserve official recognition for their outstanding service.

Closing Dates

Nominations for the PSM must be received by the NSW Department of Premier and Cabinet by the close of business on the closing date to be considered for the upcoming announcement.

  • Australia Day Honours List (26 January) - closing date 1 August each year
  • Queen's Birthday Honours List (June) – closing date 1 February each year

If the closing date falls on a weekend, then nominations will be accepted until close of business on the Monday immediately following.

Please read the PSM Nomination Guidelines and FAQs before submitting a nomination online. The nomination form is also available as a PDF.

The NSW Service Medallion

The NSW Service Medallion is presented by the Premier and awarded to employees (both waged and salaried staff) who have completed 40 or more years of meritorious service for the New South Wales Government.

The NSW Service Medallion is commonly referred to as the 40 Year Service Medallion.

For further information please download the NSW Service Medallion Nomination Form, FAQ and Criteria and Guidelines.

Contact Community Initiatives on (02) 9228 5188 or email if you have any questions about the above awards.