Governance

Policies and procedures

Policy No.
UP07/198
Function
Human Resources
Authoring Organisational Unit
Human Resources - Central Unit
Date Approved
25/09/2012 Revised 25/09/2014
Next Review Date
26/09/2016
Approving Body
Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor And Registrar

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The University of Western Australia

University Policy on: Transfers and Secondments (including Staff Exchanges)

Purpose of the policy and summary of issues it addresses:

The purpose of this policy is to detail the circumstances and requirements for secondments and staff exchange programs, transfers and alternative placements. This policy may apply for internal arrangements within a work area such as Higher Duties for periods up to three months and Acting Arrangements for periods greater than six months.

Definitions:

"Approved Delegate" means a position granted authority to act on behalf of the Vice Chancellor with varied levels of authority in line with the University's Delegations.

"Employee" means a person employed by the University.

"External Organisation" means a corporate, public or community sector organisation which the University recognises will provide a development opportunity for an employee (while enhancing organisational relationships).
"Relinquishing Work Area" means the work area within the University releasing an employee for secondment or transfer.

"Receiving Work Area" means the work area within the University the employee is to be seconded or transferred to.

"Secondment" means a temporary (fixed term) arrangement between two work areas of the University or between the University and an external organisation.

"Supervisor" means the person who is responsible for the day to day supervision of the employee.

"Transfer" means a permanent transfer of an employee to a different substantive role within the University.

Policy statement:

This policy outlines professional opportunities for employees to;

  • undertake secondments on a temporary basis to another position within the University or with an external organisation;
  • transfer on a permanent basis to another position within the University (Professional & General Staff);
  • participate in a program of staff exchange with an external organisation; or
  • accept an alternative placement, initiated by the University, to resolve particular situations which may arise from time to time (Professional & General Staff).

Other University policies include provisions regarding;


  • professional/career development - refer UWA Policies : Mobility Policy and Acting Arrangements; and
  • employees experiencing illness, risks or hazards during pregnancy - refer UWA Policy:

This policy does not include transfers arising from -

Any employee who is transferred or seconded to another work area for longer than one month, must advise Information Services of their move and change of access using the Service Desk.

1 Secondments


1.1.1 While the University recognises that secondments offer developmental opportunities for employees, and provide organisational benefits including the exchange of information and ideas, this policy does not provide an entitlement to secondment.

1.1.2 Secondments are on a fixed term basis, and at the end of the secondment period, the employee will resume their substantive position, or transfer to the new position on a permanent basis (except for employees at Level 10 Grade 3 and above who would transfer to a fixed term appointment).

1.1.3 Periods beyond the initial term of the secondment must be mutually agreed between the employee and the supervisor from the relinquishing work area. Consideration is to be given to the requirements of the relinquishing work area while also considering developmental opportunities for the employee.

1.1.4 Any vacancy created by the secondment of an employee can only be filled for the term of the secondment. A person who is appointed to temporarily replace a seconded employee, must be advised that the seconded employee has the right of return to their position.

1.1.5 Employees seconded to a position within the University, who have retained the right to return to a position elsewhere (either at the University or an external organisation), will not be eligible for any severance provisions - refer Professional and General Staff Agreement 2014, Schedule F).

Arrangements such as right to return to previous positions are to be included in the letters of appointment and acknowledged by the employees.

1.1.6 Employees are to be made aware that any annual recreation leave entitlements which accrue during the term of the secondment, are to be cleared during the period of secondment.

1.1.7 The possibility of transferring annual leave loading and long service leave balances which accrue during the period of secondment, are to be negotiated and recorded between the two work areas, or relinquishing work area and the external organisation before the secondment is formalised.

1.2 Secondments Within The University (Staff Internal Secondments - Fixed Term Appointments)

1.2.1 Before submitting an application or expression of interest for a secondment, employees are required to seek agreement from their supervisor for release for the fixed term period.

1.2.2 If a current employee of the University is the successful applicant, the supervisor within the receiving work area will contact the supervisor within the relinquishing work area to inform them of the offer. A mutually convenient date of commencement is to be negotiated between the two work areas.

1.2.3 When an employee takes up a secondment at a lower level to their substantive position, the University superannuation contributions will be based on the lower level salary.

1.3 Minimum Period of Notice

The minimum period of notice is one month, but a lesser or greater period of notice may be negotiated if mutually agreed between the employee and the approved delegates of the relinquishing and receiving work areas.

1.4 Transfer of Leave Entitlements

Any annual recreation leave which accrues and is not cleared during the secondment is to be transferred back to the relinquishing work area, calculated at the hourly rate applicable on the first work day back in the relinquishing (originating) work area. When the employee accesses this leave at a later date it will be paid at the current hourly rate and not at the rate while on secondment.

- The relinquishing and receiving areas must complete the Staff Internal Secondment Form.

- Upon request from the relinquishing work area, HR Services will advise both work areas of the amount and value of annual recreation leave accruals (including on-costs). The value of the accruals will be calculated at the hourly rate applicable on the first work day back in the relinquishing (originating) work area. The relinquishing work area will then arrange the internal transfer of funds through Financial Services.

1.5 Secondment to an External Organisation

Secondment to an external organisation will be on a without pay basis. Provisions of the UWA Policy: Leave Without Pay will apply, including varied provisions for secondment to take up an appointment with an international scheme of assistance for developing countries (e.g. UNESCO, WHO) to which Australia is a party.

2 Transfers

2.1 A transfer will occur when an employee has successfully applied for a position within another work area of the University on a permanent basis, with no return to the existing role.

2.2 Release

On acceptance of the new position, the employee will be confirming that they have relinquished their existing substantive position. Any break of two weeks or less between appointments does not constitute a break in service with the University.


Human Resources (HR Services) are to be informed of the transfer and the receiving work area will organise a new contract to be generated through e-Recruitment.

2.3 Minimum Period of Notice

The minimum period of notice is one month, but a lesser or greater period of notice may be negotiated if mutually agreed between the employee and the approved delegates of the relinquishing and receiving work areas.

2.4 Transfer of Leave Entitlements

2.4.1 Transfer of funds for leave is limited to annual recreation leave, annual leave loading and long service leave.


2.4.2 When an employee transfers from one work area to another, funds for annual recreation leave, annual leave loading and long service leave (including pro-rata long service leave) accruals, together with on-costs, are to be transferred from the relinquishing work area to the receiving work area.


Following advice of the transfer, HR Services will advise both work areas of the amount and value of leave accruals (including on-costs). The value of the accruals will be calculated at the hourly rate applicable on the employee's final work day in the relinquishing work area. The receiving work area will then arrange the internal transfer of funds through Financial Services.

3 Staff Exchanges and Placements with Other Organisations

3.1 An Approved Delegate may approve an employee's involvement in a Staff Exchange program, when it can be established that the exchange will be beneficial to the University, the organisation concerned and the individual/s involved. Recommendations must be submitted to the Delegate by the Head of School or administrative area.

3.2 Exchanges or placements would generally be arranged for periods up to six months, depending on the circumstances, and can be terminated only if both parties agree.

3.3 Employees participating in an approved exchange or placement programme, will be regarded as being on duty at the University with all existing and accruing rights preserved.

3.4 Reciprocal arrangements may be negotiated where requested in any particular case, but reciprocity need not be simultaneous nor in the same employment field. Funding details must be negotiated prior to the commencement of the exchange or placement.

3.5 Entitlements

The University will ensure that, in respect of its own staff:

  • Salary and allowance payments continue uninterrupted, with any recoup being arranged by the relinquishing work area directly with the other organisation. Any recoup should be calculated to include on-costs.
  • Leave and other entitlements continue to accrue in accordance with normal conditions of service. Specific agreement on leave arrangements should be reached with the other organisation before the exchange takes effect.

3.6 Exchange or Placement Agreement

3.6.1 The University will agree to employ the staff member from the external organisation in conformity with any agreement arranged between the University and the other organisation.

3.6.2 Any exchange or placement agreement between the University and another organisation will identify the officer to whom the exchange or placement staff member will be responsible.

3.7 Disciplinary Action

If disciplinary action is required during the period of the exchange or placement, it will be initiated by the organisation to which the exchange or placement staff member is attached, and administered in consultation with the employing organisation.

4 Alternative Placement or Transfer (Professional and General Staff)

4.1 Situations arise where it is desirable for an employee to be transferred to an alternative position. These situations include (but are not limited to);

  • when an employee is physically incapable of performing work in their current position but is capable of performing other work;
  • when an employee is undertaking a University organised, formal rehabilitation programme following a work-related injury as approved by the Director, Human Resources; and
  • where the working environment has become unproductive through no fault of either party because of irreconcilable differences.

4.2 This provision does not include situations arising from misconduct, unsatisfactory performance, or redeployment and does not infer an entitlement for transfer at the request of the employee.

4.3 The Alternative Placement

4.3.1 After consultation with the employee concerned, the supervisor of their position and the Head of School or Dean of the work area where the placement is sought, recommendation to transfer should be sought from the Director, Human Resources.

4.3.2 When authority is granted for alternative placement, the employee shall be placed in the first suitable vacancy. A suitable vacancy is one which makes an appropriate match between the employee, the job and the work environment.

4.4 Entitlements

4.4.1 Where the transfer is to a position at the same classification, the equivalent salary and classification will apply.

4.4.2 Where the transfer is to a position at a lower classification, existing salary may be maintained for a period as agreed at the time of transfer. It should be noted that cases of redeployment will be dealt with in accordance with Clause 11- "Income Maintenance" of the Professional and General Staff Agreement 2014.

Related forms:

Staff Internal Secondment Form.

TRIM File No:

F45476

Contact position:

HR Services - Recruitment

Related Policies or legislation:

Professional and General Staff Agreement

Academic Staff Agreement

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