The boss of the Australian Bureau of Statistics has begun the search for answers after his public servants rejected the wage deal they had been offered.
Nearly 2550 ABS employees cast votes with 1449 voting against the offer, Chief Statistician David Kalisch announced on Monday morning.
Workers at the National Disability Insurance Agency and the Australian Institute of Family Studies also voted no to enterprise bargaining deals in ballot results announced on Monday.
At the ABS, "82.57 per cent voted in the ballot and of those who voted, 56.85 per cent voted against," Mr Kalisch wrote to his workforce.
"I would like to understand the reasons for this very close outcome and have asked the Human Resources Branch to put processes in place to gather this information.
ABS workers had been offered a 3 per cent pay rise in year one of the deal with 2 per cent and one per cent in years two and three respectively.
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The wage offer was conditional on workplace rights and conditions being "streamlined".
In an official statement, issued later on Monday through a spokesman, the Bureau said it was now prepared to go back to he negotiating table.
"Following staff voting not to accept the proposed Australian Bureau of Statistics Enterprise Agreement 2015 in a ballot, the ABS says it is ready to recommence bargaining," the spokesman said."Australian Statistician David W. Kalisch says he looks forward to receiving staff feedback as the next step in the process."The ABS workforce will be surveyed before negotiations resume in the new year."
Community and Public Sector Union national secretary Nadine Flood was prepared to offer Mr Kalisch her view on why ABS workers rejected the deal.
"Workers were pushed very hard to vote up these agreements just before Christmas, but that hasn't stopped these working mums and dads voting in large numbers to reject the loss of rights in the government's Scrooge-like public sector bargaining policy.
"This continuing run of no-votes by staff, despite having waited 18 months for a fair deal, shows that public sector bargaining remains a mess of the government's own making.
"There's a clear path to resolving this by recognising the productivities staff are delivering, maintaining rights and conditions while modestly improving the pay offer to recognise that staff have been hit with an 18-month wage freeze."
The votes at the Australian Institute of Family Studies and the National Disability Insurance Agency were also decisive with 87 per cent and 59 per cent respectively rejecting the deals.
The results follow a landslide no-vote at the Tax Office, decisive rejections of deals at Environment and Employment and a knife-edge 62-vote defeat of an EB proposal in a ballot of 4400 Agriculture Department public servants.
But public service authorities point out that employees of 28 agencies or departments have now voted to support agreements.
These include the Department of Veterans' Affairs, the Australian Trade Commission, the Workplace Gender Equality Agency and Safe Work Australia, the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade, the Department of Finance, the Australian Financial Security Authority and meat inspectors in the Department of Agriculture.