Human Resources

Workplace Diversity Strategy procedures

Further information

Diversity Job Bank

The University is committed to developing strategies that will maximise opportunities for all Western Australians to access and actively participate in employment.

Our Workforce Diversity Strategy (WDS) is based on a ‘growth’, rather than a ‘deficit’, model. It focuses on capturing a greater range of skills rather than redressing disadvantage and complements and promotes a key goal in the UWA Strategic Plan:

‘to attract, develop and retain staff of the highest quality, and to provide a working environment which will enable the staff to maximise their contribution to the achievement of the university’s mission and goals’

The WDS is a vehicle for identifying employment priorities and maximising performance by tapping the diversity in our community.

The strategy aims to increase workforce participation in three priority areas:

  • Indigenous Australians
  • people with a disability or medical condition
  • people from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds
  1. Using the Diversity Job Bank
  2. Existing professional and general staff positions
  3. Pro-active employment initiatives
  4. Roles and responsibilities
  5. Definitions

Using the Diversity Job Bank

The aims of the Diversity Job Bank (DJB) are to:

  • provide a mechanism for accessing a much wider range of talents and skills
  • ensure UWA attracts quality staff with a view to developing and promoting them through the organisation
  • promote UWA as an equal opportunity employer and a champion of diversity among both industry and the community sector

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Existing professional and general staff positions

For vacant positions, managers may advertise externally and with the DJB, or alternatively just with the DJB for ongoing/fixed-term contacts.

There are two exceptions:

  • where there is a redeployee
  • where an existing member of staff has, through Equity and Diversity, expressed a desire to be considered for such positions, on the basis that he/she seeks such a transfer for reasons including: difficult work environment, desire to move laterally in order to broaden skills base

The process to be followed when recruiting general staff is:

  • Develop and/or review selection documentation for the position you wish to advertise. You may wish to seek assistance from Equity and Diversity and Classifications, Employee Relations.
  • Lodge the vacancy with Equity and Diversity and negotiate appropriate timeframes with respect to advertisement through the DJB.
  • There is flexibility around specifying timeframes for the recruitment of staff through the DJB, although it is recommended that a minimum of at least seven working days be provided to enable prospective applicants to apply for the position.
  • After receiving the applications from Equity and Diversity, the organisational unit applies the usual merit selection procedure.
  • Once a selection decision has been made, the organisational unit is required to inform the successful candidate, the Diversity Officer and the relevant HR Services team of the outcome and forward all documentation to HR Services.
  • The organisational unit will be expected to prepare an orientation program, in conjunction with Equity and Diversity, for the new staff member recruited through the DJB.
  • The Diversity Officer will discuss any issues or factors that need to be taken into consideration prior to the commencement of the staff member.
  • Should a suitable applicant not present through the above process, the area should advise Equity and Diversity in writing outlining their rationale. They should then proceed to advertise through the generic process following the procedure outlined in the Human Resources Policies and Procedures.
  • All areas are encouraged to extend their commitment to the strategy and offer positions to be filled through the DJB in a merit selection process.

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Pro-active employment initiatives

There may be a situation where you may not have a position currently available but are committed to workforce diversity and wish to actively participate in this initiative.

There is a range of special employment development and training initiatives available that can be modified to suit the needs and requirements of the work area.

These include

  • Business Administration Traineeships
  • Information Technology Traineeships
  • National Indigenous Cadetship Program
  • Employing Indigenous Australians – STEP Program

The programs may have a range of employer subsidies (both cash and other support).

Contact Equity and Diversity for further information in relation to these and other employment development options available to assist in the recruitment and development of staff from the identified priority areas.

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Roles and responsibilities

Each placement through the DJB is a unique partnership arrangement between Equity and Diversity and the recruiting area. To achieve the best outcome for both the employee and the organisational unit, it is important that the roles of Equity and Diversity and the manager/supervisor are clearly delineated.

Equity and Diversity

  • Assist a potential work area wishing to offer a position to review their criteria, and support the selection panel, for example cross-cultural considerations.
  • Prepare, in consultation with Employment Service Providers, a suitable list of candidates for consideration by the selection panel.
  • Provide regular non-technical support to the successful applicant and supervisor for a period of 6 months with ongoing follow-up sessions. This could take the form of meeting other DJB recruits, mentoring, scoping developmental needs and addressing issues arising from interaction with other staff.
  • To provide management support to the supervisor in relation to workplace issues that may arise.

Manager/supervisor

  • Develop the selection documentation appropriately to ensure criteria are inclusive and do not contain any inherent bias.
  • Forward the selection documentation to Equity and Diversity / Classifications for advertisement through appropriate recruitment channels.
  • Conduct the selection, recruitment and appointment process as per the guidelines outlined in the Human Resources Policy and Procedures.
  • Provide direction for, support and manage, in consultation with the Diversity Officer, the successful DJB applicant in accordance with relevant procedures, policies, practices and guidelines.
  • Develop and/or extend one’s own skills in relation to managing diversity.

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Definitions

Indigenous Australians: A person of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander descent who identifies as being of Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander origin and who is accepted as such by the community with which the person associates.

People with Disabilities: The term disability shall have the same meaning as the term ‘disability’ outlined in the Disability Discrimination Act (1992) and as per the UWA Policy and Procedures: staff with disabilities.

People from Culturally Diverse Backgrounds: Persons born overseas who have arrived in Australia under the migrant or humanitarian visa category within the last seven years.

Diversity Job Bank: The Diversity Job Bank (DJB) is a key component to implementing the ‘Workforce Diversity Strategy’. It is a database that is linked to a wide range of employment service providers who work with people from each of the three priority areas.

General advertisement: An advertisement placed in the print media (for example, The West Australian) and the UWA job site.

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