Staff Management Policy
The purpose of this policy is to establish parameters for Alphacrucis University College (AC) staff management.
Staff Induction and Orientation
The relevant supervisor is responsible to ensure that each new employee undergoes the AC Induction and Orientation Program. The objectives of staff induction and orientation are to:
- welcome and introduce the staff member to the culture, ethos, community and organisational structure of AC;
- clarify the staff member’s role, responsibilities and legal requirements;
- ensure that the staff member is familiar with where to find relevant AC policies and procedures and other important information;
- ensure that the staff member receives a copy of any government legislation relevant to the employee’s job. In particular those regarding responsibilities under the National Code and the ESOS Act 2000 concerning overseas students.
At the start of employment, new permanent staff members may be placed on a probationary period. Where applicable, details about the probation, including the length of the probation, will be set out in the staff member’s Contract of Employment.
Staff Workload Management
When allocating workload, the following principles apply for all staff members:
- it is the responsibility of AC to allocate workloads in a fair and equitable manner;
- it is the responsibility of supervisors to allocate and monitor workloads;
- for academic staff, workloads will be allocated according to the AC Academic Staff Workload Calculator;
- AC has a duty to protect the health and welfare of staff in relation to the performance of their duties;
- AC recognises the importance of a balance between working and personal life and therefore will not make workload demands of staff that are inconsistent with this principle;
- workload allocations shall take into consideration a staff member's plans in regards to entitled leave.
- no staff member should be coerced, either directly or indirectly, whether by supervisors, management or other staff, to undertake excessive workloads;
- when creating and implementing new initiatives, consideration must be given to the impact on workload;
- a supervisor who becomes aware of unreasonably high workloads across her/his area of responsibility must notify her/his manager of the situation in writing;
- upon being informed that an area's workloads are unreasonably high, a manager must proceed to address the issues;
- staff members are encouraged to raise workload issues with their supervisor if they are concerned about their workload.
Academic Staff Workload
Academic work involves both self-directed and assigned activities and therefore, a balance of self-directed and assigned activities must be achieved. In addition to the principles that apply to all staff, the following principles apply to academic staff:
- the amount and/or intensity of assigned activities should not disable a reasonable balance between self-directed and assigned activities;
- allocation of workload must consider the staff member’s level of appointment;
- allocation of workload must consider the needs of particular academic staff to establish a research profile;
- allocation of workload must consider the administrative responsibilities associated with the position;
- workload will be allocated in line with the AC Workload Calculator for academic staff;
- no staff member shall be required to teach on weekends or public holidays without their agreement. Where teaching is agreed to on weekends or public holidays, the staff member shall take time off in lieu at a time agreed by the staff member and their supervisor.
Employee Records Management
Upon commencement of employment with AC, an electronic employee file will be created for every staff member. Any documents relating to the employment of a staff member must be forwarded to the Human Resources (HR) Department for maintaining a complete and accurate record relating to an individual’s employment.
AC is committed to ensuring that the privacy of the information contained in employee records is protected. Employee information may only be used for the purpose of employment. Providing employee information to another person or organisation without the employee’s authorisation is prohibited, except where required by Australian law.
Staff members have a right to access to information held on their file subject to the requirement that an employee is not permitted to request to see another employee's records, unless authorised by the HR Management.
Annual Performance Appraisal
All staff employed by AC are expected to undergo a formal appraisal of their performance annually. The HR Department will establish an annual cycle of faculty and non-faculty reviews. This should not prohibit or discourage supervisors from discussing a staff member’s job performance on an informal basis, whenever the need arises.
Before commencement of employment, the staff member and supervisor shall agree upon and sign a position description, a copy of which shall be lodged in the staff member's file. Whenever necessary, staff members may be required to transfer to alternative duties. During holiday periods, for example, it may be necessary for a staff member to take over duties normally performed by colleagues. This flexibility is essential for operational efficiency.
Existing positions will be reviewed by the supervisor in consultation with the staff member whenever there are changes to the position or associated responsibilities.
A staff member or supervisor may request a review of a position description for review of its classification level. The outcome may include:
- a position may remain at the same classification despite changes to the position;
- should a position be reclassified at a higher level, the new classification and remuneration will be effective from the date that the review outcome is decided;
- should a position be reclassified at a lower level, the position holder (where there is one) will have their current level maintained until such time as they vacate the position. When vacated, the position will be advertised at the reclassified level.
A staff member may appeal the position classification review outcome under the staff grievance resolution procedures.
Working from home
AC is committed to providing a safe and healthy place of work for all employees and this applies to employees who work from home. AC recognises that promoting flexible working arrangements can be beneficial for both the organisation and the employee.
When assessing requests, relevant factors that should be addressed include:
- the effect on the workplace, operations, other employees and the business should the request be approved;
- the home based work area complies with applicable Workplace Health and Safety requirements;
- the ability of the employee to meet the requirements of the work being done;
- the practicality, costs or otherwise of the arrangements that may need to be put in place to accommodate the employee’s request;
- the employee’s track record and ability of the requesting employee to self manage their work and performance;
- the ability of the manager to remotely manage the employee working from home;
- awareness of AC’s privacy and confidentiality policies;
- other matters based on individual circumstances and AC operational requirements.
To minimise the disruption to other office-based staff, thought should be given to the level of the employee’s contactability and appropriate technological equipment to facilitate productive work. Working from home is conditional on the employee’s agreement to be contactable during normal office hours and to return to work if requested to do so. AC considers the use of email, web-based communication platforms (eg Microsoft Teams, Slack, etc.) and phone calls as a suitable medium for consulting with staff who are working from home.
Employees requesting home working arrangements will also ensure that their home office work environment meets appropriate WHS ergonomic standards by the completion of the WHS – Working from home checklist form available from the staff intranet. Employees will be responsible for the health and safety of any visitors, children or family members who may engage with any AC property or equipment supplied to the employee for home working, and for taking precautions to ensure these parties do not become aware of any confidential information. The employee may be expected to allow representatives, or other approved parties, to access the employee’s work from home location as necessary to monitor and review their work arrangements.
Appropriate accountability measures should be formalised prior to the commencement of any work from home agreement. Working from home is not an appropriate substitute for dependent care which is covered by other types of leave entitlements.
The employee is required to notify the supervisor of actual and potential changes to the employee’s address, occupancy, communications structures.
Provision of AC Property and Equipment
The employee and supervisor will determine the property and equipment required for the employee to work from home, which is to be logged in the Working from Home Checklist. The employee is responsible for covering costs to ensure the remote working location is safe and meets the requirements outlined in the Working from Home Checklist. This includes costs associated with the use of AC property and/or equipment, including consumables such as paper, cartridges and toner and ongoing costs for telephone and internet usage.
All AC property and equipment must be returned to AC immediately upon request and, in any event, immediately following the termination of employment on any grounds. Failure to return property and/or equipment within seven days may result in the cost of the items being deducted from any pay due to the employee.
The employee is responsible for any damage to equipment or property which the Employer provides for work purposes which goes beyond ordinary wear and tear and to any damage to the employee’s home which may result from the installation or removal of AC equipment or property. Where any damage to AC property or equipment is as a result of the employee’s negligence or lack of care due to voluntary and private use of AC property (whether approved use or not), AC reserves the right to insist on the employee paying for the cost of repair or make a deduction for the cost of the damage to the Company property.
Academic staff member work arrangements are to be made in discussion with their supervisor such that the supervisor is aware of the staff member’s whereabouts. Academic staff members are also expected to be aware that their absence from their office or campus has an impact on organisational culture and accessibility to colleagues and students. As such, it is expected that academic staff and supervisors negotiate arrangements that:
- ensure balance between periods of presence and absence on campus;
- establish means of communication/access between the staff member and stakeholders when the staff member is working off campus.
Supervisors are expected to monitor the staff member’s deliverables and ability to work independently in the early stages of any off-campus work arrangements and, if necessary, alter these arrangements if the staff member’s performance as a result of off-campus work arrangements is unsatisfactory.
Working from home arrangements:
- must be formally requested, agreed and managed in accordance with this policy;
- may not always be possible due to operational or other limitations. Managers and employees need to be open to discussing and considering a range of flexible work options;
- is by prior arrangement. Events like public transport strikes, car failures and sick children are not working from home, but may be addressed by the various leave entitlement policies AC has in place.
The frequency of working from home reviews are left to the discretion of the manager, however, it is anticipated that at a minimum one review per staff performance appraisal period should be undertaken.
Responsible for implementation
Vice President Operations
Staff Management Procedure
Staff Induction and Orientation Procedures
The supervisor of a new AC staff member ensures that the new staff member undergoes the AC Staff Induction and Orientation Program which includes all relevant information to the role and working at AC.The new employee will also be given appropriate instruction, training and supervision for the job that they are expected to perform.
Annual Performance Appraisal Procedure
A staff member should complete the Academic Performance Appraisal Form or Administrative Performance Appraisal form (as appropriate) in preparation for their appraisal meeting. Faculty should also prepare a Workload Calculator for the forthcoming year. These documents serve as the basis for discussing performance, setting objectives for the next year and planning personal and professional development.
Each staff member is to have a nominated supervisor who is primarily responsible for assessment of their performance. Each staff member is to participate in a meeting with the nominated supervisor at which a performance appraisal report shall be completed. The supervisor may select another AC staff member to participate in this meeting, either at their own initiative or at the request of the staff member whose performance is being assessed.
Once the performance appraisal has been undertaken, these appraisal documents will be filed in the Employee record file and referenced in subsequent Performance Appraisals.
Review of Position Descriptions
A position will not normally be considered for reclassification within 12 months of its last review, unless a significant workplace or position change has taken place, the staff member has vacated the position, or personal/health circumstance arise which prevent the staff member from carrying out the normal duties outlined in the position description. In these cases, AC may request documentation to support the request, such as a medical report detailing the diagnosis and prognosis.
If a staff member wishes to request a review of their position classification the staff member shall make the request with their supervisor. If the supervisor supports the staff member's wishes then the supervisor shall coordinate the process with the HR Officer.
The outcome of a review shall be documented and filed with the HR Officer.
Working from home procedure
Two forms are required for all work from home arrangements (both forms available from the Staff Intranet). Once they have been filled in, they should be retained and may not need to be filled in again on subsequent requests:
- employee completes: a WHS – Working from home checklist form to ensure AC is fulfilling its WHS obligations towards the employee;
- supervisor completes: a suitability checklist to ensure both the employee and the work to be done are suited to working from home.
For all working from home arrangements, the following procedure should be followed:
- Employees seeking a work from home arrangement should discuss their intention with their supervisor and obtain an “in principle” agreement.
- The employee should complete the WHS – Working from home checklist self-assessment and submit it to the WHS committee for approval.
- The supervisor should complete the suitability checklist and make a decision as to the suitability of a work from home arrangement.
These forms should be reviewed periodically and, if circumstances have changed, should be resubmitted. It should be emphasised that it is the employee's responsibility to resubmit the WHS - Working from home checklist to the WHS committee as soon as their home circumstances have changed.
Procedure for follow up:
- Approval must be written. The date for the post three month trial review should be agreed upon at this time;
- Declined applications will include the reasons for rejecting the working from home application in a written response.