We are a flexible workplace. To manage the commitments of work and life we offer a range of flexible work arrangements for staff.

Work arrangements

There are times when flexible work arrangements can assist staff to achieve a balance between work and family responsibilities.

UON flexible work arrangements can include:

You can vary your starting, lunch break and finishing times to suit family or other commitments, subject to operational requirements.

You can organise a roster system such as a 19 day month or nine day fortnight. This means you work additional time each day to have a day off either once a month or each fortnight. Due to operational requirements not all areas may be able to offer roster arrangements.

Some staff may require flexibility in their patterns of work. This could include working split shifts, job sharing or working more hours over fewer days.

You can work additional hours one day to make up for shortened hours on another. To help with calculating your flextime, see our flextime calculator (XLS, 218KB). Due to operational requirements not all areas may be able to offer flextime.

Time off in lieu is available for professional staff and teachers only. Time off in lieu may be built up for additional hours worked. It may be used as an alternative to paying you overtime. Time in lieu needs to be used within three months of when it is worked. You cannot accrue more time in lieu that your normal weekly hours of work. Time off in lieu is managed locally  between you and your manager, balances are not shown in HRonline.

Staff may be able to work from home on a regular or one off basis. If you are establishing a regular work from home arrangement please see the working from home procedure. This procedure includes a working from home proposal (PDF, 63KB) that needs to be completed.

Requesting a flexible work arrangement

The University's Enterprise Agreements include a number of mechanisms to assist staff achieve such a balance.

In consultation with Human Resource Services, a supervisor must genuinely consider an application for flexible working arrangements.  Decisions concerning leave and flexible working arrangements should take into account the needs of the staff member and the operational requirements of the area.

In some cases the staff member may need to work with supervisors to identify an alternate flexible work arrangement that is different from the initial request but will still meet the needs of both the staff member and the area. For this reason it would be beneficial to discuss your ideas with your supervisor in a meeting before making a formal request.

The University support staff who are returning to work after a period of parental leave.

A staff member must contact their supervisor no less than four weeks prior to their intended return to work date to discuss their needs. If a staff member is intending to return to work on a part time basis they must apply under the Return to Work clause of their respective Enterprise Agreement. This return to work period should be for a minimum of 3 months and a maximum of 12 months.

Details are outlined in the Parental Leave Booklet.

One of those mechanisms - requests for flexible working arrangements in accordance with the National Employment Standards (NES), which are part of the Fair Work Act, 2009.  See:

  • Academic Staff Enterprise Agreement 2014- clause 38
  • Teachers Enterprise Agreement 2014- clause 46
  • Professional Staff Enterprise Agreement 2014- clause 56

All of which are in the same terms and simply provide a brief summary of the NES. 

Requests for flexible working arrangement may be made by:

  • fixed term and continuing staff members who have worked for the University for at least twelve months on a full or part-time basis
  • casual staff who have been regularly and systematically employed for the previous 12 months and who are likely to continue working regularly with the University.

Under the NES only certain groups of staff members are eligible to request flexible working arrangements.  Staff members may make a request if they:

  • are the parent, or have responsibility for the care, of a child who is school-age or younger;
  • are a carer (under the Carer Recognition Act 2010);
  • have a disability;
  • are 55 or older;
  • are experiencing family or domestic violence; or
  • provide care or support to a member of their household or immediate family who requires care and support because of family or domestic violence.

Staff members who are thinking about making a request under the NES are encouraged to discuss with their supervisors in the first instance.  A request by a staff member must:

  • be made in writing
  • set out the details of the change sought, and
  • set out the reasons for the requested change.

It would also be helpful if the request could include the date the staff member would like the arrangement to commence.

A staff member experiencing domestic violence may apply to their HR Business Partner to implement or change a flexible work arrangement if they do not feel comfortable approaching their supervisor.

Within 21 days of your making the request the University must give you a written response advising whether the request is granted or refused and, if it is refused, the reasons why.  Under the Act, the University may only refuse a request on what are referred to in the Act as "reasonable business grounds".

The period approved will not normally exceed twelve (12) months without review.

For more information, see the Fact Sheet published by the Fair Work Ombudsman.

If a staff member wishes to work a flexible work arrangement but their personal circumstances do not fall within any of the categories listed in the Request for flexible working arrangements under the National Employment Standards, a request may be made under the flexible 'work arrangements – other' category. This provides staff members with an alternative in managing work and personal responsibilities.

Staff members who are thinking about making a request under this arrangement are encouraged to discuss with their supervisors in the first instance.  A request by a staff member must:

  • be made in writing
  • set out the details of the change sought, and
  • set out the reasons for the requested change.

It would also be helpful if the request could include the date the staff member would like the arrangement to commence.

The period approved will not normally exceed twelve (12) months without review.