Policies and procedures

Policy No.
Human Resources
Authoring Organisational Unit
Employee Relations and Management Services
Date Approved
19/12/2018 Revised 07/12/2018
Next Review Date
Approving Body
Executive Group

The University of Western Australia

Save this template to the preferred folder on your network drive. 

Note: You must save the template each time you want to write a policy to ensure that you are using the most recent version of the template.

You can use the show/hide button on your toolbar (this looks like a paragraph mark) to hide or show instructions in the template.  If clicking on this button does not work, please go to Tools - Options - View - and un-tick “hidden text” before trying again.

Note: Please do not type or paste over instructions.

(A comprehensive set of instructions is also provided on the Template and Instructions page of the University Policies website.)

To include text in the template, except in the Definitions section, place your cursor at the end of the relevant section heading provided or at the end of the relevant instructions and press “Enter” before beginning to type or pasting in text.  To include text in the definitions section place your cursor immediately under the heading before beginning to type.

Note: If you are pasting in text you must save it as plain text first so that you do not import any additional styles into the policy document.

Formatting styles are embedded in this template and can be found in a drop-down menu on your toolbar.  Note: Please do not add to or alter the styles.  It is recommended that styles be applied once text is finalised.  Apply a style by highlighting the text and clicking on the appropriate style from the drop-down list.

If you require a numbered heading style within the policy text, please use Heading 4 from the drop-down styles list.  This will automatically apply a number to the heading and each time you use the Heading 4 style the next sequential number will be applied automatically. 

Styles 1.1 (Style 1), 1.1.1 (Style 2), and (Style 3) are available for the body of the text.  To reduce complexity, it is recommended that numbering below the level of be avoided.  Bullet points can be used for lists if required.  The list bullet style is available from the styles drop-down list.

Note: If you press “Enter” after a heading provided in the template or after a set of instructions the Normal, Policy style will automatically be applied.

Note: Please do not use tabs in your document.  

University Policy on: Managing Misconduct

Overtype “Policy Name” with the name of the policy.  This must convey specifically, accurately and succinctly what the policy addresses eg Award of Honours, Study Leave.

1. Purpose

a) The purpose of this policy is to —

i. express Misconduct and Serious Misconduct as defined in the University Enterprise Agreements;

ii. express how the University will address alleged misconduct or alleged serious misconduct by Employees;

iii. express the expectations of Employees and the University during a workplace Misconduct process or Serious Misconduct process; and

iv. express how the University will take Disciplinary Action against Misconduct or Serious Misconduct.

b) This policy expresses:

i. Misconduct definition                                                                     section 2

ii. Serious Misconduct definition                                                      section 3

iii. addressing Misconduct and Serious Misconduct                      section 6

iv. Disciplinary Action practice                                                           section 7


This must be in Normal, Policy style.

Provide a brief summary of the reasons for the policy and issues it addresses.  This section is designed to stand alone.  The aim is to provide the reader with enough information to make a decision about whether or not this is the policy they are looking for.  It must not be longer than 200 words. 

Example 1

This policy defines the nature and purpose of study leave provisions for academic staff and sets out eligibility criteria and other conditions that apply.

Example 2

This policy seeks to rationalise the award of honours across the University by addressing such issues as: entry standards, course content and structure, supervision, assessment, examination, grades, classifications, benchmarking and the maintenance and provision of documentation relating to these matters.  It is based on resolutions of the Academic Board flowing from the 1999 report of the Honours Working Party.

2. Misconduct

a) Misconduct means conduct that  includes, but is not limited to —

i. negligence in the performance of an Employee’s duties;

ii. misbehaviour;

iii. refusal to carry out a lawful and/or reasonable instruction; or

iv. a breach of the University’s Code of Ethics and Code of Conduct.


3. Serious Misconduct

a) Serious Misconduct means conduct that  includes, but is not limited to —

i. wilful or deliberate behaviour that is inconsistent with the continuation of the Employee’s employment; 

ii. conduct that causes imminent, and serious risk to —

A. the health or safety of a person, animal or environment; or

B. the reputation, viability or profitability of the University except where an Employee was validly exercising their intellectual freedom rights as described under the Agreement; or

iii. repeated acts of misconduct.      


4. Scope

4.1. Institutional Scope

a) This policy applies to the entire University.

4.2. Individual Scope

a) This policy applies to all Employees except —

i. Employees engaged on a casual basis; and

ii. Employees who are on probation and have not completed 6 months of service.


5. Management of Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct

a) The confidentiality of all parties involved in the management of Misconduct and Serious Misconduct processes must be respected and all information gathered is confidential.

b) At any time during a Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct process an Employee may be suspended with or without pay or directed to perform suitable alternative duties. 


6. Addressing Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct

6.1. Allegations of Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct

a) The University will provide the Employee with —

i. a letter of allegations; and

ii. a reasonable opportunity to provide a written response to the letter of allegations.

6.2. Admission of allegations of Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct

a) Where an Employee admits to an allegation in part or in full, the matter will be referred to the Decision Maker to determine what disciplinary action, if any, is to be taken.

b) Decision Maker means, in the case of —

i. an Employee engaged under current University of Western Australia Academic Employees Agreement 2017, the Vice Chancellor or Senior Deputy Vice Chancellor or their nominee; and

ii. all other Employees, the Director, Human Resources.

6.3. Failure to Respond to Allegations of Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct

a) Where an Employee fails to respond to the letter of allegations within the time provided, the University will determine whether any Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct occurred based on the material available to it.

b) If it is determined that Misconduct  and/or Serious Misconduct occurred, the University will —

i. inform the Employee of the decision and any recommendations; and

ii. provide the Employee with a reasonable period of time to provide a written response setting out any mitigating circumstances.

c) The matter will then be referred to the Decision Maker to determine what, if any,  disciplinary action is to be taken.

6.4. Investigation of Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct

a) Where the Employee denies the allegation(s) the Decision Maker will commission an investigation.

b) The investigation process will be determined by Employee Relations and will provide fairness to all parties.

6.5. Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct Investigation Report

a) At the conclusion of the investigation a written report will be provided to the Employee. The Employee will have 5 working days to submit a written response to the report.


7. Disciplinary Action

a) If the Decision Maker is satisfied that an Employee has engaged in Misconduct and/or Serious Misconduct they may take such disciplinary action as is considered appropriate in the circumstances.

b) Disciplinary action may include —

i. counselling;

ii. formal written warning, censure or reprimand;

iii. attendance at training;

iv. withholding an increment;

v. reducing salary by one or more increment;

vi. suspending the employee for a period with or without pay;

vii. demotion to a lower classification or level;

viii. transfer to an alternative position; and/or

ix. termination of employment.

c) The University will notify the Employee in writing of any disciplinary action to be taken.

7.1. Termination of Employment

a) If disciplinary action is termination of employment, the Employee will be entitled  to make a submission to an independent reviewer within 5 working days setting out why their employment should not be terminated.

b) The independent reviewer will provide an opinion of whether the proposed termination is reasonable in all the circumstances. The independent reviewer will not re-investigate the allegation or provide new findings of fact in that matter.

c) The independent reviewer will provide a copy of their opinion to the University and the Employee.  

d) The Decision Maker will consider the independent reviewer’s opinion and provide the Employee with notification in writing of the final outcome.


8. Breach of Policy

a) Failure to comply with this policy may be considered a breach of the Code of Ethics and Code of Conduct and may result in disciplinary action.


Policy or Procedure?

Policies are statements of the principles1 which govern decision-making.

Procedures are the functional steps used to implement policies.

1 Principles in this context are to be understood as being both broad and detailed.

The policy statement makes clear the intent of the policy.  It must be written in clear, precise and direct language.  Short sentences are preferable.  Any specialist words or acronyms must be defined at the beginning of the statement.  (A guide to writing styles will be available soon.)

If the policy includes procedural elements you will need to identify these as Procedures by including this word above the relevant text.  The procedures style from the styles drop-down list must be applied to the whole of the procedures text, including the word Procedures.  Note: Administrative procedures can be approved by the relevant Director.

9. Definitions

Decision Maker is defined in section 6.2.

Employee means a person employed by the University under a contract of employment.

Misconduct is defined in section 2.

Serious Misconduct is defined in section 3.

University means The University of Western Australia as defined in The University of Western Australia Act 1911 (WA).

Place your cursor immediately under the definitions heading to get the definitions style.

Provide links to any forms associated with the policy (eg Approved Leave form) and/or to information on on-line submission.

Note: Forms are a means through which policy is processed, not made.  Forms must reflect policy and must not be used to create policy.

9.1. Policy No


This is the TRIM record number.  Note: This is not the TRIM file number.  If this is a new policy, apply for the policy number (contact after the policy has been approved by the relevant position or body and before it is submitted for storing in TRIM.


9.2. Content Approver


Include the name of the body or position with responsibility for approving the policy.  This must be one of the following:


Academic Board/Council


Senior Deputy Vice-Chancellor

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Education)

Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Research and Innovation)

Registrar and Executive Director (Academic Services) Executive Director (Finance and Resources)


9.3. Date original policy approved

7 December 2018

Insert date of approval of original policy.  If this information cannot readily be ascertained insert “as per file”.


9.4. Date this version of policy approved

7 December 2018

When the policy document has been approved by the relevant body or position insert date of approval.


9.5. Date policy to be reviewed

6 December 2021

If the proposing body has not determined a date for review of the policy, a default date of ten years from the date of the latest revision approval will apply.  Enter the appropriate date.

If the document contains procedures, include the date that these were last updated.  Procedures are approved by the relevant Director.


9.6. TRIM File No


Insert the appropriate TRIM file number.  All policies must have a TRIM file for storing information relating to policy development and other related information.  Note this is not the policy number.  Apply for a TRIM file number at http:/


9.7. Contact position

Manager Employee Relations

State the name of the position that is to be contacted for any queries regarding the policy, eg University Secretary.  Note: As this will link through to the University’s Contact Directory, the position name must be given exactly as it appears in that directory.



10. Legislative Controls

·         Age Discrimination Act 2004 (Cth)

·         Australian Human Rights Commission Act 1986 (Cth)

·         Corruption and Crime Commission Act 2003 (WA)

·         Criminal Code and Compilation Act 1913 (WA)

·         Disability Discrimination Act 1992 (Cth)

·         Disability Standards for Education 2005 (Cth)

·         Equal Opportunity Act 1984 (WA)

·         Fair Work Act 2009 (Cth)

·         Occupational Safety and Health Act 1984 (WA)

·         Racial Discrimination Act 1975 (Cth)

·         Sex Discrimination Act 1984 (Cth)

11. Industrial Instruments

·         The University of Western Australia Professional and General Employees Agreement 2017

·         The University of Western Australia Academic Employees Agreement 2017

·         The University of Western Australia Child Care Employees’ Collective Agreement 2015

·         The University of Western Australia ELICOS Teachers Agreement 2015

12. Associated Documents

·         The University of Western Australia Professional and General Employees Agreement 2017

·         The University of Western Australia Academic Employees Agreement 2017

·         The University of Western Australia ELICOS Teachers Agreement 2015

·         The University of Western Australia Child Care Employees Collective Agreement 2015


Provide details of, and, if appropriate, web links to, other policies, legislation or committee resolutions that relate to the subject of the policy, if known, eg Statute(s), University General Rule(s).  If unsure what these might be, try one or more of the following:

Conduct a search on TRIM.

Make an enquiry to Archives and Records.

Seek help from staff in the relevant section. 

If related policies are stored in University Policy format on the University Policies site, please provide the relevant policy number(s). 



Switch off the instructions by clicking the hide/show button on your toolbar.

Check the content of the document for clarity and accuracy.

Submit the document to the relevant position or body for approval.

When the document is approved -

if the policy does not already have a University Policy number, apply for one by completing the form at (Control and click to follow the link.)

include the University Policy number in the relevant table box in the template; and

complete the relevant approval date and any other table boxes at the end of the template that have not yet been completed.

Save the document in Filtered HTML format to a convenient location on your network drive (Go to File – Save As and select Web Page, Filtered from the drop-down list under the filename box.)

Apply the style-checker as follows:

Go to the following URL (Control and click to follow the link.)

Browse to find the policy document you have saved in Filtered HTML.

Hit “Submit” to bring up the preview of the converted document.

Check for errata and mis-processed characters.

Once the document is correct, click on “Download Document” to download the document to the preferred folder on your network drive.

Appropriate Director emails ( the policy to University Records for storing in TRIM and publishing on the University Policies website.