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Space Management and Allocation Policy

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Section 1 - Purpose / Objectives

(1) This policy outlines the principles and procedures that are to be used in the allocation and management of University space.


(2) The University's space is a valuable resource. It is essential for the University's economic sustainability that space is effectively managed to ensure that utilisation is maximized. It is also important that the allocation of space is aligned with and assists the achievement of evolving University priorities.

(3) This policy has been developed to provide clear and transparent methodologies for the allocation and management of University space.

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Section 2 - Scope / Application

(4) This policy is binding on all Victoria University staff.

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Section 3 - Definitions

(5) TEFMA = Tertiary Education Facilities Management Association.

(6) Usable Floor Area = In the context of this policy, UFA is the total occupied internal floor area including circulation and ancilliary areas and excluding only service areas such as lift wells, stairs, toilets and plantrooms.

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Section 4 - Policy Statement

(7) The following principles provide the framework for decision making on the allocation and management of University space.

(8) Alignment of space allocation with the University's strategic planning objectives.

(9) All space is owned by the University. No allocation of space is permanent and all allocations are subject to review and rescission.

(10) Allocation of space can only be made by the Vice-Chancellor, the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Capital and Management Services) or the Director, Facilities. The Infrastructure Committee provides recommendations to the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Capital and Management Services) on space allocations. Significant changes of space allocation that involve:

  1. relocation of University activities across campuses; or
  2. reallocations of space within campuses:
    1. involving more than one faculty or department, and
    2. more than 250 sqm of space
  3. are subject to the approval of the Vice-Chancellor.

(11) The efficient use of existing space will take precedence over the provision of new space.

(12) Space will be allocated in a consistent and equitable manner. Space Allocation Guidelines, relevant Codes and benchmark comparison data will be used as a basis for determining space allocations.

(13) Periodic re-allocations may be made to ensure the alignment of the provision of space with evolving University priorities.

(14) The provision of high quality space to deliver teaching, learning and research outcomes is to be a priority outcome.

(15) Space utilisation and sharing of space are to be maximized.

(16) No organisational unit may enter into a lease or licence of space. All property leases and licences are to be negotiated by the Facilities Department and leases or licences of significant areas of space are to be reviewed by the Infrastructure Committee and approved by the appropriately delegated officer.

(17) Space may be leased to external organisations but University requirements for space will take precedence. In considering requests for space from external organisations, relevant factors to be considered include the quantum and value of the space, the benefits to flow to the University and the length of time involved.

(18) In planning for current needs, flexibility must be maintained in order that future needs can be easily met.

(19) Control of vacated space will revert from the relevant organisational unit to the Facilities Department to manage on behalf of the University.

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Section 5 - Procedures

Space Allocation Procedures

(20) The Infrastructure Committee is part of the University's management advisory committee structure and is responsible for advising the Deputy Vice-Chancellor (Capital and Management Services) in relation to the allocation of University space greater than 50 square metres in area or involving project costs of more than $50,000 (ex GST). Below these limits, space allocations can be made by Director, Facilities or nominee.

(21) All requests for an allocation of space must be submitted using either of the templates provided in the documents attached under the ‘Supporting Documents and Information’tab. Allocation requests may be made at any time, however organisational units are encouraged to align space allocation requests with the University's annual planning and budget cycle in order to maximise alignment with strategic, functional and operational plans.

(22) In addition to considering space allocation requests, the Infrastructure Committee may also initiate allocations which it considers to be necessary to meet strategic requirements or improve efficiencies.

Space Management Procedures

(23) Managers of organisational units are responsible for the optimal use of all space under their control. Organisational units must advise the Director, Facilities if spare capacity develops within an allocation. Allocated space must be used for its stated purpose. Changes of use or occupancy within an organisational units space allocation must be approved by the Director, Facilities or appointee. Organisational units may not re-allocate space nor physically alter space. Requests for alterations must be made to the Facilities Department and all approved alterations will be project managed by the Facilities Department.

(24) The Facilities Department will maintain plan and database records of all space allocations. Twice yearly space usage audits and reporting will be undertaken by the Facilities Department in order to monitor and benchmark utilisation rates. Based upon the results of these audits and reports, the Facilities Department will effect changes to improve the utilisation of space and may set utilisation improvement targets for organisational units. Poorly utilised space may be resumed and re-allocated.

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Section 6 - Guidelines


(25) The following principles are to be applied when making space allocation and management decisions:

(26) Permanent working space will be provided for all full time teaching and general staff;

(27) New and refurbished office space will be configured in a flexible manner rather than in the traditional single enclosed office format;

(28) Space will be allocated according to a needs basis rather than on a seniority basis;

(29) Staff are not permitted to have more than one dedicated office however, access to a hot desk at the secondary campus/site will be available if such access is determined necessary by the relevant Dean or Director. Principal officers may have access to a secondary office if they have a requirement to regularly work at more than one campus;

(30) Postgraduate research students are entitled to shared office space. Coursework postgraduate students and honours degree students will not normally be provided with office space;

(31) The specific functional needs of any specialist duties, equipment requirements etc will be taken into account;

(32) The Director Facilities, as delegated, may choose to retrospectively apply the space allocation guidelines.

(33) Allocated space must be used for its intended purpose.

Office Space

(34) The office and general administration areas of organisational units are required to total between 10 sqm and 15 sqm (Usable Floor Area) per EFT staff member. Within that global entitlement, the following space allocation guidelines may be used but the list is not prescriptive, rather, organisational unit managers are to plan their office and administration needs within the overall 15 sqm limit.

Occupant Indicative Space Allocation
Principal Officer eg. DVC, PVC 20-25 sqm
Faculty/Department Senior Officer Typically reporting directly to a Principal Officer eg. Executive Dean, Institute or Corporate area Director, Executive Director 16-20 sqm
Senior Staff Typically reporting to an Executive Dean or Director eg. Head of School, Deputy Dean, General Manager, Associate Director 10-14 sqm
Other Staff 6-10 sqm
Casual/sessional staff 6 sqm
Post graduate research students 4 sqm shared workstation

(35) The Facilities Department will monitor organisational unit space occupancy against the 15 sqm (UFA) limit. Any excess space will be resumed and re-allocated by the Facilities Department.

(36) Managers of organisational units are responsible for ensuring that accommodation arrangements for new staff have been finalised prior to the commencement of the recruitment process. Similarly, adjunct appointments, consultancies etc that require office space are not to be made until space availability has been confirmed.

Teaching Space

(37) The allocation of space for teaching and learning purposes varies with the nature of the academic field. The TEFMA Space Planning Guidelines will be used as a guideline in making space allocations for teaching purposes.

(38) All general purpose and specialist teaching space is University owned. The Facilities Department is responsible for the timetabling of teaching space. All teaching delivery is to be administered through the Syllabus Plus timetabling system. Organisational units are responsible for maintaining the accuracy of the data recorded on Syllabus Plus. A financial penalty may be applied to organisational units which consistently fail to maintain accurate and up to date data on Syllabus Plus or who regularly occupy space without that space being allocated to them on the Syllabus Plus timetabling system.

Miscellaneous Space

Meeting and Consultation Rooms

(39) These will be provided to meet the needs of organisational units but must be provided within the 15 sqm (UFA) per EFT staff member limit.

(40) All meeting rooms are to be available for use by other organisational units.

(41) Depending on requirements, flexible plan office areas are to include a mixture of quiet spaces and consultation spaces in addition to meeting rooms.

Staff Rooms

(42) The provision of dedicated staff lunch rooms is not supported. Staff are encouraged to use the campus cafeteria and other communal facilities.


(43) The use of on-campus storage space is to be minimized. However, spare space may be allocated by the Facilities Department for temporary storage. Organisational units are to develop procedures in accordance with the University's Record Keeping Guidelines to identify records etc that are required to be stored and to systematically dispose of surplus material. Off campus storage facilities should be used to store necessary material.

Contingency Space

(44) Contingency space is unallocated space under the control of the Facilities Department. Contingency space is to be fitted out in an open plan format and be available for temporary uses such as for project teams or to facilitate decanting due to refurbishment works. Where practicable, up to 100 sqm of contingency space should be available at each campus.


(45) In order to assist in the planning of future space requirements, organisational units are to submit annual reports to the Infrastructure Committee through the Director, Facilities which provide indicative forecasts of known future space requirements for the upcoming three year period.