Commitment 9.3 We manage our people effectively and fairly.

Compliance Indicators

Compliance with the Commitments will be assessed against the following Compliance Indicators. All of the applicable Compliance Indicators must be met by every ACFID Member to be considered compliant with the Code. Each of the Compliance Indicators has one or more compliance Verifiers. Verifiers are the description of evidence that is required to substantiate compliance with each Compliance Indicator. Guidance is also provided. 

9.3.1 Members are fair, transparent and non-discriminatory in their management of staff and volunteers.

Verifier

Human resource policies and procedures which address:

  • Recruitment and selection
  • Remuneration and benefits
  • Equity and diversity
  • Staff learning and development
  • Performance management
  • Family and carer leave provisions.
  • Conduct in the workplace
  • Integrity (including confidentiality and conflict of interest).
  • Grievance and disciplinary procedures
  • Workplace health and safety
  • Reference checking and vetting for former misconduct of all staff and volunteers

Guidance

Human resources policies and procedures should be in-line with the values of your organisation and employment legislation. Policies should be endorsed or approved by the governing body, and easily accessible to all staff and volunteers. Some organisations may have these policies compiled in a manual or handbook, and some may have them available in a policy resource bank such as a shared file or an intranet.

There are lots of free on-line resources that can help organisations develop policies and procedures that are most appropriate to their workplace and which are consistent with legal obligations. An example of a Human Resources Toolkit is included in the Resources Section below.

It is important that your organisation’s human resources policies and procedures meet the National Employment Standards (NES) for employees in Australia. These are 10 minimum employment entitlements that have to be provided to all employees. There is a link to the NES in the Resources Section below. 

9.3.2 Members comply with human resource regulatory requirements and legislation.

Verifier

Human resource policies and procedures that are consistent with, and reflect industrial relations, legislation and relevant agreements or awards in Australia, as well as in countries of operation.

Guidance

When developing human resources policies and procedures, Members should be informed by relevant legislation, including the National Employment Standards, the Privacy Act 1988, the Fair Work Act 2009, the Racial Discrimination Act 1984, the Sex Discrimination Act 1992, the Human Rights and Equal Opportunity Commission Act 1986 and the Disability Discrimination Act 1992. There are links to these pieces of legislation in the Resources Section below. Members will also need to refer to relevant legislation in overseas countries of operation.

9.3.3 Members manage the performance and grievances of their staff and volunteers in a fair and transparent manner.

Verifier

  • Performance management, grievance and disciplinary processes that are accessible to all staff and volunteers.
  • Performance management processes for staff and volunteers that include adherence to the Member’s code of conduct and other codes and standards as relevant to their roles.
  • HR policies clearly define what constitutes staff and volunteer misconduct and outline consequences of such misconduct, including grounds for termination.

Guidance

All processes that relate to performance management, workplace grievances and disciplinary action should be clearly documented and made available to staff and volunteers upon employment and then on a continuously accessible basis. This should include expected behaviours and code of conduct, what constitutes misconduct and the consequences of misconduct. Grievance processes should also refer to the member’s Whistleblowing Policy and procedures.

Some organisations may include HR policies and processes in an employee handbook, or may have them available in an accessible policy platform such as a shared drive or  intranet. It is essential that the organisation’s Code of Conduct is readily accessible to staff and volunteers at all times.

Processes should include or ensure:

  • staff have clear work objectives and performance standards
  • the organisation’s code of conduct is included in employment documentation
  • staff know whom they report to and what management support they will receive
  • staff know what constitutes misconduct and the consequences of misconduct, and
  • that there is a clear and known mechanism for reviewing staff performance.

Good Practice Indicators

The following Good Practice Indicators describe a higher standard of practice than that set out in the Compliance Indicators. Members do not need to meet the Good Practice Indicators to be considered compliant with the Code. Rather, they provide a clear pathway for Members to strengthen and improve practice over time.

  • A dedicated governing body member or staff person for human resource management is appointed. 
  • Organisation complies with the National Standards for Volunteer Involvement. 
  • Merit-based and transparent processes for filling vacancies are in place.

GUIDANCE AND RESOURCES 

Good Practice Guidance

Here are some practical suggestions for your organisation to further deepen and improve practice over time. 

Organisational

  • Embed human rights principles in the vision, purpose and values of your organisational charter, related objectives in your strategic plan and your human resources policies
  • Continuously promote your organisation’s values to your governing body, staff and volunteers
  • Provide a work environment that fosters fairness, equity, and respect for social and cultural diversity, and one that is free from discrimination, harassment and vilification
  • Conduct recruitment and selection processes that promote equity and diversity
  • Establish clear reporting and investigation procedures for sexual harassment, exploitation and abuse to report suspected or known instances of abuse to relevant authorities
  • Build alliances with other organisations to share past performance information about applicants, with their consent and in accordance with data protection laws
  • Provide training to senior management and all staff and volunteers on ‘unconscious bias’
  • Train managers and staff on human rights in the workplace
  • Actively address barriers to hiring and progression in employment to promote diversity and equity
  • Promote practices to build trust between managers, staff and volunteers
  • Ensure that staff and volunteers are aware of their rights and their responsibilities
  • Ensure confidentiality in your complaints and grievances processes
  • Undertake regular staff satisfaction surveys
  • Regularly review employment legislation in all countries where you work

Gender equity and disability

  • Gender equity and disability inclusion have been highlighted as areas of particular focus for the aid and development sector. Policies and guidelines can address inequities faced by women and people with a disability, aiming to achieve fairness and justice and to reduce barriers to participation in and receiving the benefits of employment. Examples of strategies that can promote equity and inclusion include:
    • Provide flexible work hours for carers of children
    • Consider subsidising child care costs
    • Providing all necessary support and services to staff, board members and volunteers with a disability
    • Making a statement of commitment to achieving gender balance in delegations, boards and other decision-making bodies
    • Setting targets for gender balance

Performance Management

Develop performance management processes which ensure that:

  • staff and volunteers have clear and documented work objectives and key performance indicators;
  • performance standards and the organisation’s Code of Conduct is included in employment documentation;
  • staff and volunteers are regularly familiarised with expected staff behaviours and the organisation’s Code of Conduct;
  • staff and volunteer know what constitutes misconduct and the consequences of misconduct;
  • staff and volunteers know whom they report to and what management support they will receive;
  • there is a clear and known mechanism for regularly reviewing staff and volunteer performance; 
  • supervision and performance appraisals include adherence to the organisation’s Code of Conduct and other codes and standards as relevant to their roles;
  • performance appraisals for Senior Management include adherence to creating and maintaining an environment which promotes the implementation of the organisation’s Code of Conduct;
  • allegations of misconduct processes follow standard investigation operating procedures or equivalent;
  • substantiated misconduct by staff or volunteers results in disciplinary action or contractual consequences; and 
  • allegations of serious misconduct, whether substantiated or not, are reported to the organisation’s Board.

Workplace Grievance Procedures

Grievance procedures should:

  • reflect a survivor- and victim-centred approach that is grounded in respect for human rights, as well as respect, confidentiality, safety, and non-discrimination
  • encourage grievances to be initially dealt with by the immediate supervisor of the employee who raised it
  • provide a mechanism for employees to raise a formal grievance if they wish
  • outline when a grievance hearing should be held
  • ensure that review of a grievance is conducted fairly and impartially, with the employee given the opportunity to voice his or her concerns
  • ensure that feedback on the outcome of the grievance is given to the employee
  • include a right of appeal