Thousands of public servants working for two major Commonwealth employers have been given some good news.
Thousands of Australian Tax Office workers have won a battle which means they cannot be kicked out the door in less than 4.5 months.
And about 200 Department of Communications staff, all them classified at APS level, were told on Thursday they would not have to survive a spill and fill process to keep their jobs.
The Communications Department will instead trim its executive level staff as it continues towards its goal of reducing 500 employees to 440 or less.
In a message to staff on Thursday, the department's secretary Drew Clarke said all executive level one and two employees were potentially excess to requirements.
Mr Clarke said he knew the note would be understandably unsettling.
The enterprise agreement requires all workers in an overstaffed pay classification to be informed they might not be required.
It is believed part of the reason for telling the executives they were potentially excess to requirements is to allow access to the redeployment register.
There are enough jobs for existing APS level employees at the department, largely because of natural attrition and staff movements at these levels.
Community and Public Sector Union deputy president Alistair Waters said movements within the public service had reduced the number of forced redundancies first expected from about 125 to less than 50.
"We have been able to work with the department although there's still some work to be done," Mr Waters said.
APS level staff will still need to complete "individual capability assessments" to help Communications with its restructure.
But they have avoided being called "potentially excess to requirement", which would have forced them to fight it out with colleagues to stay employed at the organisation.
Meanwhile, 3000 Australian Tax Office facing possible forced redundancy have had a victory.
The ATO appears to have backed down on its efforts to reduce by one month consultation for staff made involuntarily redundant.
The Tax Office will no longer make workers involuntarily redundant within 3.5 months. As reported earlier this week, the union said the employees' enterprise agreement stated it could not be forced in less than 4.5 months.
An ATO spokeswoman said the agency and union had come to an agreed understanding of the enterprise agreement clause dealing with redundancy provisions, which means all six steps set out in the clause, including a one-month consultation period, should be followed.
"However, we have agreed that where our staff confirm their intent to proceed with a voluntary redundancy through the expression of interest round, they can be made an offer without waiting a month," the spokeswoman said.
The ATO will reduce staffing by 4700 by 2017-18.
A total of 2100 cuts will come in 2014-15 plus another 900 are working their way through the system.
Mr Waters said it was a significant victory. "I'd say we've been racking up a series of wins," he said, referring to the help the CPSU gave dumped AusAID graduates with finding other jobs.