Teleworking Policy

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Section 1 - Preamble

(1) This Policy was approved by the Vice-Chancellor on 27 November 2013.

Section 2 - Purpose

(2) To establish the University as a leader in the provision of supportive and flexible teleworking environments that enhance productivity, wellbeing and the advancement of the University and its learning environment.

(3) The Teleworking Procedure outlines the steps required to comply with this Policy.

Section 3 - Scope

(4) This Policy applies to all University staff whose work utilises information and communications technology allowing for work to be conducted in environs other than their primary workplace.

Section 4 - Policy

(5) Teleworking includes flexible work arrangements available to staff whose duties are suitable for such arrangements and may include one or more days per week away from the usual workplace.

(6) Not all work is conducive or practical for the purposes of teleworking and authorisation to undertake teleworking shall be based on an analysis of viable Teleworking Assessment Criteria listed on the Teleworking website. Teleworking may be conducted on an ad hoc or regular basis. A staff member may telework on occasion, with the prior approval of their manager, for an agreed period of time. Where a staff member is to telework for more than one day per week and/or more than four days per month, a Teleworking Agreement is required as well as the approval of the manager.

Teleworking Agreement

(7) A teleworking arrangement is voluntary and should not affect the work arrangements of staff choosing not to engage. It will be undertaken by agreement between staff and their managers. Any agreement undertaken under this Policy may also be terminated by either the staff member or their manager by negotiation. Managers are encouraged to consider all reasonable requests by staff to telework on a regular basis and to create a teleworking supportive environment. (Refer Telework Agreement for Approved Deakin Locations and/or the Telework Agreement for Non Deakin or Homebased Locations)

(8) The arrangement should benefit staff and not adversely impact the efficient running of the University.

(9) This Policy does not negate the current terms of a staff member's contract of employment. Teleworking arrangements do not relieve staff of their obligation to comply with University legislation, policies and procedures. The Teleworking Agreement does not change an individual's terms and conditions or imply entitlements beyond those contained in the Deakin University Enterprise Agreement or Senior Staff Performance Contracts (SSPCs).

Approval

(10) Approval of a Teleworking Agreement is at the discretion of the staff member's manager and the decision to approve the agreement shall be based on the nature of the work being performed and other business considerations.

(11) In accordance with the Teleworking Procedure, the approval of a teleworking arrangement shall be based on the evaluation of the duties to determine the suitability of telework. Staff or their managers may propose a teleworking arrangement. A Teleworking Agreement must be based on sound documentation and approved in accordance with the Teleworking Procedure.

(12) The manager will communicate appropriate performance expectations during teleworking periods, in accordance with the individual's Performance Planning and Review (PPR) plan.

(13) Any teleworking agreement shall, in accordance with the Teleworking Procedure, be regularly reviewed on a needs basis and as part of the manager and staff member's PPR discussions.

The teleworkplace

(14) A teleworkplace and the available ICT equipment must provide sufficient privacy and security for the staff member's work.

(15) For the purposes of a Teleworking Agreement, the University may under certain circumstances make equipment available for loan. Any equipment and software provided by the University at the teleworkplace shall be used solely by the teleworker and for the purposes of conducting Deakin business.

(16) The Teleworking Agreement will include regularly scheduled hours of work including specific core hours. The teleworker may be required to attend their usual workplace or another Deakin workplace where telecommunication is not practicable for a meeting or event and provided that the University has provided reasonable notice, during the teleworking agreed hours of work.

The home-based or non-University managed teleworkplace

(17) Teleworking is frequently part of home-based work and as such this Policy is applicable. Staff wishing to avail themselves of flexible working arrangements must also consult the Guidelines for Making and Dealing with Requests for Flexible Working Arrangements and the Flexible Work Arrangements Procedure and discuss it with their manager. Teleworking is not intended as a provision for child care or other health care and shall not be approved for such.

(18) Where the telework place is a staff member's residence or other non-University managed teleworkplace, it is the responsibility of the teleworker to fully cooperate with their manager to ensure their working arrangements and environment are compliant with the University's Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) requirements available on the Teleworking website. Managers are responsible for ensuring that a teleworking staff member has completed an OHS assessment and reviewing the assessment with the staff member.

(19) Home office furniture and equipment will be provided by the teleworker and must meet the University's OHS requirements. The expenses associated with home-based teleworking such as the broadband connection will be met by the teleworker.

(20) Work-related (in person) meetings, whether with colleagues, clients, suppliers or any other person may not be conducted at a staff member's residence.

Section 5 - Procedure

(21) Refer to the Teleworking Procedure.

Section 6 - Definitions

(22) For the purpose of this Policy:

  1. Telework: is working from an approved location other than your usual workplace utilising information and communications technology (ICT) to stay connected to your colleagues and your work.
  2. Teleworking Agreement: an agreement made between a staff member and management to undertake an agreed schedule of teleworking. Where the teleworking is ad hoc no formal Teleworking Agreement is required.
  3. Teleworkplace: any site where telework is undertaken.
  4. Usual workplace: the traditional workplace and setting usually provided by the University at its premises.