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Staff Induction Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose / Objectives

(1) This Policy gives effect to VU's (Victoria University's) Induction Framework which brings together all of the Induction activities undertaken across VU and provides the structure to ensure all new, transferring and returning academic, teaching and general VU employees, whether continuing, fixed term or casual/sessional, can effectively assimilate into their roles and become independently productive as early as possible.

(2) The Induction activities for VU have recently been extensively revised to incorporate a schedule of learning activities and resources that can be accessed to ensure a comprehensive induction and re-induction to VU.

(3) The Induction Framework has been designed to engage staff in a creative and rewarding learning community as early as possible for the benefit of students, staff and other stakeholders. It outlines the various VU Induction process components including, local workplace/Department Induction, Organisational Induction, teaching-related Induction, and research-related Induction, and assigns clear responsibilities for the provision of necessary information to enable new, transferring and returning employees to be quickly and effectively integrated into their new role. Specific components of the Induction Framework applicable to new, transferring or returning employees will depend on their employment status as a continuing, fixed term contract or sessional, academic, teaching or general staff member.

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Section 2 - Scope / Application

(4) Nil

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Section 3 - Definitions

(5) Buddy — a fellow employee assigned responsibility for assistance with on-the-job induction and orientation of new employees.

(6) Departmental Induction — the range of on-the-job activities and support provided to orientate new employees to their role, their faculty/department/school unit and VU.

(7) Duration of Induction — commences on recruitment, varies according to an individual's role and experience and may extend beyond the end of a new employee's probationary period.

(8) Induction — refers to the range of activities offered on commencement and during the probationary period to ensure new employees are provided with the information and support necessary to be successful in their role.

(9) Induction Framework — sets out the minimum requirements for VU Induction and where responsibility lies for implementing the framework.

(10) New Employee — employee commencing employment at VU for the first time.

(11) Organisational Induction —Induction workshop activities normally provided by VU's Learning and Development Unit.

(12) Probation — a period of mutual testing during which decisions are made regarding continuation of employment. This includes review processes undertaken during a defined time period as set out in an employee's contract of employment.

(13) Re-induction — individualized induction activities provided to returning employees to ensure they are provided with the information and support necessary to be successful in their role.

(14) Research Induction — additional specialist induction activities/training provided for VU Research staff.

(15) Returning Employee — (a) an employee returning to VU after a period of extended absence of normally 12 months or longer, or (b) an employee who is being re-employed after having left VU more than 12 months ago.

(16) SPDP — Staff Performance and Development Plan, developed as a result of ongoing conversations between supervisor and staff member to link annual work plans and professional development opportunities with the strategic directions of VU. The process of developing the SPDP is to ensure a collaborative approach to identifying the tasks and activities needed to maximize performance, and the provision of support, resources and training necessary to achieve this.

(17) Teaching Induction — additional specialist induction activities/training provided for VU Teaching staff.

(18) Transferring employee — an employee who is moving into a new role and/or work area within the University.

(19) VUSAL — Victoria University Standard Academic Level.

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Section 4 - Policy Statement

(20) Victoria University will provide all new, transferring and returning employees with an individualized induction to ensure they are systematically provided with all they need to know to be successful in their teaching, professional or administrative role and to be an active and engaged member of the Victoria University Community. Within the VU Induction Framework the University will provide a range of activities designed to enable staff to experience a positive and supportive working and learning environment and optimize their early integration into their role, workplace and the University. It is the responsibility of all managers and supervisors to ensure these activities are provided.

VU Induction Framework

(21) Victoria University's Induction Framework provides details of available induction programs, processes, resources, timelines and who is responsible for the various stages of inducting new, transferring and returning employees. This includes outlining which components of the framework apply to which categories of VU employees. A table of the broad content focus of the framework is available at Table 1 .

(22) The range of activities available through the Induction Framework aims to assist new and returning employees to:

  1. Become accustomed to the University and their local workplace.
  2. Understand VU and its strategic direction.
  3. Know VU values and how these translate to behaviours in the workplace.
  4. Understand their role and responsibilities within the organization.
  5. Establish networks with colleagues across the University.
  6. Successfully complete their probationary period.

Principles

(23) Victoria University's Induction Framework applies to all employees who are new to VU and those returning to work at VU after a period of extended absence, normally greater than 12 months.

(24) The content of a staff member's induction program will vary according to their employment status as continuing, contract or sessional, academic or general staff.

(25) Notwithstanding the above all new staff members will receive information on VU Values and how these translate into behaviours in the workplace.

(26) Employees moving to new positions or work areas from an existing VU position (transferring employees) should access orientation/induction activities relevant to their new role.

(27) Information for new, transferring and returning employees at VU will be provided through the Induction Web Portal which contains the latest and essential information for knowing and working at VU.

(28) There are various mandatory components of the Induction Framework according to the staff member's role and experience, and in line with other University Policies. For example, the Organisational Orientation Workshop (for all staff), and the Induction for Teaching Programs (for teaching staff).

(29) Mandatory compliance training should be completed during induction.

VU Induction Framework Stages

(30) VU Induction is a staged process which according to a staff member's role and experience may last for a few months or a few years. A Flow Chart of the process is provided within the Framework at Attachment 1 to this Policy.

(31) Given (31) above, Induction may continue beyond a staff member's probation period. Further training and development opportunities and further identification of the support needed to be successful in the employee's role will be provided through the SPDP Process and reflected in the individual's SPDP - see Table 2 .

(32) A range of informal and formal learning and development opportunities are available within and external to VU and access to these can be made available with manager approval during induction as part of a customized induction plan. PD Online and periodic VU Global Announcements provide details of available development activities.

Departmental Induction

(33) As a minimum all new, transferring and returning employees will receive a local workplace (Departmental) induction customized to their role and responsibilities which includes, but is not limited to:

  1. Access to and information on navigating VU's Induction Web Portal.
  2. Familiarization with their organizational unit's strategic plan, Making VU 2016: A Statement of Purpose and VU's Appropriate Workplace Behaviour Policy.
  3. Discussion of the role requirements including the VUSALs for academic staff.
  4. Attendance at the earliest available Organisational Orientation Workshop.
  5. Information on legislative requirements and mandatory compliance training, including, but not limited to: VU Staff Appropriate Workplace Behaviour and Values, Equity, OHS, Academic Integrity, Staff Emergency Procedures, Fraud Prevention and Whistleblower.

(34) Departmental induction includes having regular progress and performance review discussions with the employee's manager, to ensure that the employee is clear on what is expected of them and is provided with the information, resources, and support needed to be successful in their new position. This can be documented for probationary and audit purposes.

Organisational Induction

(35) Organisational Induction is undertaken in part through attendance at the Organisational Orientation Workshop.

(36) In addition the employee should use the VU Induction Web Portal and the programs, support systems, resources and networks provided through the Induction Framework to discover more about Victoria University — "the bigger picture" - and to establish networks with colleagues across the University.

Teaching and Research Induction

(37) Academic, teaching and research staff are also required to undertake specialist induction activities relevant to their role and responsibilities — refer to VU's Learning and Teaching - Professional Development of Teaching Staff Procedure, and in the case of research, refer to the Office for Research.

Responsibility for Induction

(38) All members of the University have a responsibility for ensuring that new, transferring and returning employees are provided with the information, support and networks they need to be successful in their role at Victoria University.

(39) New, transferring or returning employees are required to complete their appropriate induction activities as part of their conditions of employment. Employees are responsible for playing an active role in their own induction to ensure that they fully understand the requirements of their role and the expectations of their manager and of the University. A thorough Induction contributes to a successful probation outcome.

(40) People and Culture is responsible for developing, maintaining and reviewing the VU Induction Framework, resources, programs, procedures and policy including:

  1. The VU Induction Web Portal.
  2. Induction Handbook for New Employees.
  3. Letter of Offer outlining conditions of employment.
  4. New Starter Information Booklet.
  5. Development, maintenance and review of the Induction Policy, Framework and related programs and resources, including: Induction Planners and Checklists for Managers and employees and the Induction Declaration form.
  6. Initial welcome emails to new employees and follow up emails to monitor and evaluate induction progress and programs.
  7. Facilitation of the Organisational Orientation Workshop.
  8. Arrangements for the Organisational Orientation Workshop including invitations, pre-attendance questionnaires and post workshop evaluations.

(41) Deans, Executive Deans and Directors are responsible for ensuring that VU's Induction Framework is implemented consistently through their Faculty/Department/School/Unit and that Faculty/Department/School/Unit specific information is incorporated into the Induction Programs or resources.

(42) Managers of new and returning employees

  1. Managers who have line management or direct supervisory responsibility for new, transferring and returning employees have the greatest responsibility for ensuring that relevant components of the VU Induction Framework are implemented. Attachment 2 provides full details of Manager Responsibilities and the resources available.

(43) Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching (CILT)

  1. The Centre for Innovation in Learning and Teaching is responsible for the development and delivery of academic and teaching-related components of the Induction Framework.

(44) Offices for Research and Postgraduate Research

  1. The Office for Research and the Office for Postgraduate Research are responsible for the development and delivery of a series of research workshops and seminars as a component of VU's Induction Framework.

Policy Review

(45) The Staff Induction Policy will be reviewed annually in line with a review of the Induction Framework.

(46) The effectiveness of VU's Induction Framework will be measured through mid-way and post-induction reviews with managers and employees.

(47) Employee feedback and contributions to enhance the framework will be collected during the period of induction.

(48) Induction programs and procedures will be regularly reviewed and updated to ensure accurate and contemporary information is provided to all new, transferring and returning employees.

(49) Additional information to improve VU induction strategies will be collected via probation reviews, exit interviews and the SPDP process.

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Section 5 - Procedures

(50) Nil

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Section 6 - Guidelines

(51) Nil