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Recruitment of Staff procedure

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Section 1 - Preamble

(1) This Procedure was approved by the Vice-Chancellor on 12 August 2014 and incorporates all amendments to 9 July 2017.

(2) This Procedure is pursuant to the Employment of Staff policy and includes the following schedules:

  1. Schedule A: National Police Record Check Guide
  2. Schedule B: Composition of Selection Committees.
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Section 2 - Purpose

(3) This Procedure details the process of recruiting and employing staff at the University, ensuring a fair approach to the recruitment, assessment and selection process.

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Section 3 - Scope

(4) This Procedure applies to the recruitment of all Professional and Academic staff employed by the University on continuing or fixed-term contracts, traineeships and apprenticeships. It does not apply to casual staff, who are covered under the Casual Staff Employment procedure.

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Section 4 - Policy

(5) Refer to the Employment of Staff policy.

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Section 5 - Procedure

(6) The Head of the Organisational Area in which the position is located will:

  1. ensure that the vacant or new position is required to be filled and that it complies with the requirements of the Workforce Design and Planning policy.
  2. review the position description, or create a new one for a new or substantially altered position, in accordance with the Job Design and Evaluation procedure.
  3. determine whether a Fit and Proper Person Declaration, National Police Record Check, Working with Children Check and/or a medical check is required as part of the selection criteria, and if so, ensure that the requirements are included in the position description. Applicants will be required to provide their consent to these checks being undertaken as a condition of their application (see Pre-employment requirements below and Schedule A: National Police Record Check Guide).
  4. determine if it is advantageous for shortlisted applicants to conduct skill or psychometric testing as part of the assessment process.
  5. determine if applicants will be required to provide other information other than addressing the selection criteria and supplying updated current curriculum vitae.
  6. determine the appropriate remuneration range and other total rewards and benefits available for the position, and obtain pre-approval if required, in accordance with the Remuneration procedure.

Initiating the recruitment process

(7) The Head of the Organisational Area or nominee will initiate the recruitment process by submitting a job opening through DeakinPeople. This may require:

  1. evidence that approval has been given for the position to the advertised on an internal-only basis, where applicable (see clause 19 of this Procedure)
  2. evidence that an advertising exemption has been granted (see clause 27 of this Procedure)
  3. evidence that an expression of interest (EOI) process has been undertaken where the Deakin University Enterprise Agreement 2017 requires it.

(8) If the Head of the Organisational Area or nominee is recruiting for a position which involves Australian Aid-funded research projects, then they should contact the Recruitment team for advice in complying with the specific recruitment requirements in the Child Protection in Australian Aid-Funded Research procedure.

Chair positions

(9) Where the position to be filled is a Chair position that has not been established previously, the relevant Faculty Board will make a recommendation to the Vice-Chancellor.

(10) The Vice-Chancellor will consider the recommendation and the position description and then advise the Executive Director, Human Resources (or nominee) of their decision.

(11) Where a Faculty wishes to establish a named Chair position, the Vice-Chancellor will make a recommendation to University Council for their approval.

Advertising

(12) All Academic and Professional staff positions that are continuing or fixed-term for more than six months will be advertised externally unless an exemption is granted (see clause 27 of this Procedure).

(13) All senior manager positions will be advertised, unless an exemption is granted by the Vice-Chancellor (see clause 27d of this Procedure).

(14) Prior to advertising a Professional staff flexi-span position, the University will invite EOI from Professional casual staff in the immediate work area for the position. If a flexi-span position cannot be filled by an existing casual staff member through the EOI process, the position can then be advertised externally. 

(15) Where a Teaching Scholar position is advertised, the position will first be advertised as an EOI to casual Academic staff in that work area. If the Teaching Scholar position cannot be filled by an existing casual Academic staff member through the EOI process, the position can then be advertised externally. 

(16) The Faculty or Portfolio in which the vacancy is located is responsible for the costs of advertising. The Human Resources Division (HRD) will organise all advertising on behalf of the Faculty or Portfolio.

(17) All advertised vacancies, will be advertised on the Work at Deakin website.

(18) Faculties or Portfolios are encouraged to advertise for a minimum of two weeks, however for senior positions and positions advertised internationally, a four-week period is recommended.

Internal-only advertising

(19) The Head of the Organisational Area can approve internal-only advertising for all positions of six months or less.

(20) Where the Head of the Organisational Area wishes to consider internal applicants only for Academic positions of greater than six months (other than those listed in clause 21) or for continuing Professional staff positions, they must obtain approval from the Executive Director, Human Resources or nominee.

(21) The positions Deputy Dean, Associate Dean, Deputy Head of School/Department, Associate Head of School/Department and Course Director are internal appointments and therefore these positions will not be advertised externally. The Faculty Executive Dean may call for EOI before making a recommendation to the Vice-Chancellor.

External advertising

(22) In consultation with HRD, the Head of the Organisational Area will determine the range of websites and publications to be used for advertising the vacancy.

(23) Where the Head of the Organisational Area wishes to advertise a position at below Level C or below HEW 8 in the print media an approval must be sought from the Executive Director, Human Resources or nominee.

Advertising content

(24) Advertisements may include statements around supporting gender balance, disability employment opportunities and the attraction of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander applicants where appropriate. The content of advertisements is subject to the approval of the Executive Director, Human Resources or nominee.

(25) Advertising content will include information regarding the normal hours to be worked across the fortnight and/or across the year, including reference to part-time employment, annualised hours or flexi-span, where applicable.

(26) Where the position is fixed-term, advertising content will include information regarding the contractual period of employment.

Exemption from advertising

(27) Where the Head of an Organisational Area wishes to directly appoint an individual to a position, an exemption from the requirement to advertise may be granted by:

  1. the Executive Director, Human Resources or nominee for all Professional staff positions
  2. the relevant Pro Vice-Chancellor or Faculty Executive Dean for teaching and research Academic positions
  3. the Deputy Vice-Chancellor Research for research-only Academic positions
  4. the Vice-Chancellor for Academic Level E positions and senior manager positions.

Specialist recruitment agencies

(28) If a Faculty or Portfolio has advertised internally and externally and has been unable to fill a position, they may, at their own expense, recruit through a specialist recruitment agency in accordance with the Guidelines for using recruitment agencies or executive search firms. The use of such specialist recruitment agencies is only available after attempts have been made to fill the position in accordance with this procedure and following consultation with the HRD Recruitment team.

(29) Where a position is at HEW 10 and above or Level D and above the Faculty or Portfolio may, following consultation with the Recruitment and Employment team use one of Deakin's preferred Executive Search Firm suppliers.

(30) Where a position is below a HEW 10 or below Level D the Faculty or Portfolio must use an agency from Deakin's Preferred Suppliers List.

(31) If a Faculty or Portfolio wishes to use alternative suppliers, the Head of the Organisational Area will consult the Team Leader, Recruitment to determine if that agency should be added to the supplier list and that their proposed advertising and selection arrangements comply with the University’s selection processes. Additional suppliers will only be approved for use if it is deemed that the current preferred panel of suppliers is unable to provide candidates to the University. The Team Leader, Recruitment will be responsible for negotiating fees and finalising contractual terms of business for any current, additional or alternative suppliers.

Receipt of applications

(32) Applications for advertised vacancies are submitted online. The Shortlisting Committee and Selection Committee members can access and shortlist applications via DeakinPeople.

(33) Where an applicant can demonstrate extenuating circumstances that have resulted in their inability to submit an application by the closing date, HRD will consult with the Chair of the Selection Committee who will determine whether the late application will be accepted.

Selection

Selection committee

(34) A Selection Committee will be convened for all advertised continuing or fixed-term positions.

(35) The Selection Committee will be convened in accordance with Schedule B: Composition of Selection Committees. The Chair of the Selection Committee may add additional members as required.

(36) If the supervisor of the position for which the Selection Committee is recruiting, does not Chair the Selection Committee, the supervisor must advise their Head of Organisational Area in writing of their reason for not undertaking this role.

(37) All Selection Committee members (including the supervisor if they are not on the Selection Committee) must declare to the other Selection Committee members if they have any connection (familiar or otherwise) with any of the applicants or have any other potential conflict of interest. The Chair of the Selection Committee will refer to the Conflict of Interest procedure in determining how to proceed.

(38) Selection Committee membership will achieve reasonable gender balance, where possible.

Selection process

(39) The Shortlisting Committee (see Schedule B: Composition of Selection Committees), and other members of the Selection Committee at the discretion of the Chair, will assess applications in relation to the position description, selection criteria, and for Academic positions, Gender Equity in Research policy (see Schedule C: Principles for Assessing Achievement Relative to Opportunity), and create a short list of applicants suitable for interviewing.

(40) For Level E positions the Chair of the Selection Committee will report to the full Selection Committee on the strategies used to source and attract female applicants consistent with the Faculty or Portfolio’s Gender Equity Plan, the shortlisting process and the reasons why the shortlisted applications were selected for interview.

(41) The Chair of the Selection Committee will inform the HRD of the shortlisted applicants via DeakinPeople. The Faculty or Portfolio that holds the vacancy will be responsible for organising the interviews, with the exception of senior positions, which are managed by HRD.

(42) The Selection Committee will interview and assess the shortlisted applicants in a fair and objective manner against the position description, and where appropriate, Principles for Assessing Achievement Relative to Opportunity. Only applicants who have addressed the selection criteria may be considered for interview and appointment.

(43) Selection committees are encouraged to consider using additional assessment activities or tools to assist in applicant assessment, such as ability tests, hypothetical problem-solving scenarios, case studies, presentations and psychometric testing. (See Psychometric and Skill Assessments website.)

(44) Where psychometric tests are required, the HRD will make the arrangements at the request of the Chair of the Selection Committee. The Faculty or Portfolio advertising the position is responsible for the costs of the tests, which will be conducted by qualified providers.

(45) The Chair of the Selection Committee is responsible for asking each shortlisted applicant whether they have any connections (familiar or otherwise) with any staff from within the Faculty or Portfolio where the position for which they are applying is situated.

(46) The Selection Committee will select one or more preferred candidate(s) suitable for appointment. If none of the short listed candidates are suitable for appointment, the Head of the Organisational Area may decide to revisit the pool of original applications, re-advertise the position or seek to fill the vacancy in a different way. The appointment of a candidate is subject to satisfactory completion of the pre-employment requirements.

(47) The Chair of the Selection Committee is responsible for retaining copies of any interview questions and notes taken as part of the selection process for a two year period following completion of the selection process.

Reference checks

(48) The Chair of the Selection Committee or nominee will seek a minimum of two verbal references from people nominated by the preferred candidate/s, after interview and prior to recommending appointment. (See 'Checking references' on the Interviewing candidates website.) One of the two references must be from a recent direct supervisor.

(49) The Chair of the Selection Committee or nominee must document who the reference check was undertaken with; their position; their relationship to the candidate and the content of the reference discussion.

Selection decision

(50) Subject to pre-employment requirements, the Selection Committee will finalise its selection of a candidate for appointment, or decide not to make an appointment.

(51) Where the Selection Committee is not unanimous in its selection of a candidate for appointment, the Chair of the Selection Committee has the final decision in determining whether or not to make an appointment.

(52) The Chair of the Selection Committee will make a recommendation via DeakinPeople.

(53) If satisfied that the selected candidate meets the essential requirements of the position description, the relevant supervisor will approve the appointment and advise HRD via DeakinPeople.

(54) Further approval of the appointment may be required, in accordance with the Employment of Staff policy.

(55) The Chair of the Selection Committee is responsible for contacting all unsuccessful interviewed candidates. The Faculty or Portfolio will advise all the applicants not shortlisted for interview, that they have been unsuccessful via DeakinPeople.

Executive positions

(56) If satisfied that the preferred candidate meets the essential requirements of the role, the Vice-Chancellor will make a recommendation to Council to approve the Executive appointment.

Employment offers

Verbal offers

(57) Once a selection decision has been made, the Chair of the Selection Committee may make a verbal offer of employment to the preferred candidate. They must advise the preferred candidate that the offer is subject to final approval by the University (see clauses 50-54 of this Procedure).

Written offers

(58) HRD will issue a written employment offer to the preferred candidate following receipt of approval of the appointment via DeakinPeople.

(59) The preferred applicant will be advised in the letter of offer that employment is conditional on the satisfactory completion of pre-employment requirements, and Deakin reserves the right to withdraw the offer of employment if Deakin receives information of any relevant criminal convictions, or knowledge that the applicant has been investigated for any other behaviour that would be incompatible with the position, or which may adversely affect Deakin's reputation if subsequently disclosed, conflict of interest or contrary medical information, or to take other action in the event of the candidate's failure to disclose such information prior to appointment.

(60) HRD will include or request the following with the written offer/contract:

  1. request for documentary evidence of Department of Immigration and Border Protection approval to undertake employment in Australia (where applicable)
  2. request for evidence of qualifications in the form of original documents
  3. request for documentary evidence of right to work status (including a request for original marriage certificate or statutory declaration in relation to a change of name from that recorded at birth)
  4. tax file number declaration form (or tax file number application form where applicable)
  5. application for membership of applicable superannuation scheme(s)
  6. staff member details
  7. request for any additional documentation required from the appointee
  8. copy of the Position Description
  9. copy of the University Code of Conduct
  10. Fair Work Australia Information Statement
  11. any other job-specific information relevant to the candidate's employment.

Pre-employment requirements

Fit and Proper Person declaration

(61) A person holding a position in the Executive, a Head of School (or equivalent), or Executive Director of a Division (or equivalent) must verify that they are a 'fit and proper person'. For such positions, the selection criteria of the position description will include the requirement to complete a Fit and Proper Person declaration available on the Employment and recruitment forms website.

(62) Where a Fit and Proper Person declaration has been prescribed as a requirement in the selection criteria in the position description, the Chair of the Selection Committee will advise the HRD of the preferred candidate(s) so that the declaration form can be included with the employment offer.

(63) Following completion of the declaration, the University may wish to validate the information through appropriate probity checks (e.g. National Police Record Check, Insolvency and Trustee Services Australia) as determined by the Executive Director, Human Resources or nominee.

National Police Record Check

(64) Where a National Police Record Check has been prescribed as a requirement in the selection criteria, the Chair of the Selection Committee will advise HRD of the preferred candidate(s) so that the check can be arranged.

(65) HRD will arrange a National Police Record Check. The Faculty or Portfolio advertising the position is responsible for the cost of the check.

(66) HRD will advise the Chair of the Selection Committee of the outcome when received.

(67) The appointment may proceed contingent upon the outcome of the National Police Record Check. Refer to Schedule A: National Police Record Check Guide for further information.

Medical check

(68) Where a medical check has been prescribed as a requirement in the selection criteria, the Chair of the Selection Committee will advise HRD of the preferred candidate(s) so that the check(s) can be arranged.

(69) HRD will request the preferred candidate(s) arrange a medical check within a specified timeframe, with a medical practitioner of their choice or one nominated by the University, at the discretion of the HRD will provide position details to the medical practitioner to enable the medical practitioner to assess the candidate's medical fitness to undertake the duties of the position.

(70) HRD will advise the Chair of the Selection Committee of the outcome of the medical check.

(71) HRD will collect the payment receipt from the preferred candidate(s) and forward it to the Faculty or Portfolio, who will arrange to reimburse the candidate.

Working with Children Check (WWCC)

(72) Where a position requires a WWCC (as determined by the Head of the Organisational Area in clause 6c), the preferred candidate must pass a WWCC even if the candidate has undergone a National Police Record Check. Information on positions required to undergo a WWCC is available at the Victorian Government Working with Children website and in the WWCC Guidelines.

(73) Where a WWCC has been prescribed as a requirement of the position, the Chair of the Selection Committee or their nominee in the relevant Faculty or Portfolio will advise the preferred candidate of the University process for providing evidence of their WWCC to their Faculty or Portfolio.

(74) The Faculty or Portfolio advertising the position is responsible for sighting and recording the details of the WWCC into DeakinPeople.

(75) The Faculty or Portfolio is responsible for ongoing monitoring and compliance in relation to the preferred candidate’s WWCC status.

(76) The appointment may proceed contingent upon the outcome of the WWCC, however, until the provision of the WWCC (or evidence of application for the WWCC where lawful) to the Faculty or Portfolio, the Faculty or Portfolio may be required to allocate alternate duties in accordance with the WWCC Guidelines.

Probation period

(77) In consultation with HRD, the Head of the Organisational Area (or nominee) will determine the probation period to be served by the appointee. This will be specified in the written offer. See Probation (Academic Staff) procedure and the Probation (Professional Staff) procedure.

Remuneration

(78) Employment offers are made in accordance with the Remuneration procedure.

(79) For senior manager positions, negotiations for the total remuneration package may occur between the preferred candidate and the Head of the Organisational Area or the Executive Director, Human Resources; these are subject to approval as set out in the Remuneration procedure.

Appointment by secondment

(80) The Faculty or Portfolio, the preferred applicant and the releasing area may reach a mutual agreement for appointment by secondment.

(81) Secondments are usually fixed-term for up to 12 months, at the end of which the appointee returns to their original position. Secondments beyond 12 months are subject to negotiation (see the Secondments, Transfers, and Job Rotation Guidelines for further information).

Rejection of employment offer

(82) If a selected candidate rejects the employment offer, the Selection Committee may extend the offer to the next preferred candidate (if appropriate), re-advertise the position, or make no appointment.

Acceptance of employment offer and confirmation of employment

(83) Employment will be confirmed when HRD has received the following documentation from the recommended appointee:

  1. signed acceptance of the employment offer;
  2. satisfactory completion of pre-employment requirements is provided (including right to work evidence, where applicable); is provided
  3. staff member details;
  4. any other documentation required in individual cases.

(84) The appointee must provide HRD with evidence of their qualifications in the form of original or certified documents within seven days of commencement at Deakin.

Relocation expenses

(85) Appointees may be eligible to receive reasonable support towards relocation expenses as prescribed in the Business Expenses Reimbursement procedure.

Re-employment of previous staff members

(86) Re-employment of previous staff, following resignation or redundancy, is based on the merit-based selection process described above, provided that re-employment with Deakin is not in breach of any legislation regarding taxation or superannuation.

(87) Staff whose employment at Deakin has ceased due to redundancy (whether voluntary or otherwise) will not be re-employed by Deakin within 12 months of their cessation date.

Reporting

(88) The Vice-Chancellor will report all Academic Level E and senior staff appointments to Council at the earliest opportunity.

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Section 6 - Definitions

(89) For the purpose of this Procedure:

  1. Academic staff: staff who are engaged to undertake teaching, research and scholarship and/or related academic duties
  2. Executive: staff members who report directly to the Vice-Chancellor, other than staff whose functions support administrative and related functions of the Office of the Vice-Chancellor's
  3. Head of Organisational Area: means the Vice-Chancellor, a member of the Executive, an Executive Dean, a Pro Vice-Chancellor, an Executive Director, a Director (including a Director of an Institute), University Librarian and University Solicitor
  4. Principles for Assessing Achievement Relative to Opportunity: provides a method for making merit based assessments while taking into account how circumstances can affect the productivity and the opportunities available (see Principles for Assessing Achievement Relative to Opportunity).
  5. Professional staff: staff of the University who provide administrative, technical or other academic support services
  6. Senior managers: Pro Vice-Chancellors, Head of Schools, Directors of Divisions, Directors of Institutes, Heads of Units, the University Librarian, the University Solicitor, Executive Directors, Faculty General Managers and other senior positions as determined by the Vice-Chancellor. (Refer Delegation of Authority policy and procedure).