Today’s Program
Introduction / Legislative Framework
for Decision Making
Effective Staff Selection
Peter Hibbins, Senior Chairperson MPB
David Lawry, DEECD Representative
The Merit Protection Boards
Peter Hibbins
Today’s Team
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Website Contents
Public Sector Standards
Good Practice Checklist
Equal Opportunity resources
DEECD contact list
HRWeb A-Z Topic Index
Purpose of the Program
Encourage consistent and fair recruitment and
selection practices
Support sound decision making by applying the
principles of merit and equity to all personnel matters
Provide information about the Merit Protection Board
Reduce the likelihood of grievances
About the MPB
Hear reviews and appeals of decisions made for
Teaching Service members under the Education and Training Reform
Act 2006
Public servants in DEECD under direct delegation of the
(Public Administration (Review of Actions) Regulations 2005)
Conduct training in the principles of merit and
Advise the Minister about principles of merit and
equity to be applied in the teaching service
The MPB is independent and has a key
responsibility in assisting DEECD meet its
legislative requirements in relation to the
management of its employees
Reviews and Appeals of
Selection Decisions
Ongoing VPS v Ongoing VPS
Merit Protection Board
Fixed Term VPS v Fixed Term VPS
Ongoing Teaching Service v Ongoing TS
Other VPS v Other VPS
A person who is outside
of the Department:
Eg: Private Sector
Complaint to the Department
Fair Work Australia
State Services Authority
Equal Opportunity and Human Rights
Reviews and Appeals of
Leave (LSL / LWOP), Higher Duties, Positions of Responsibility, Time fraction changes,
Translation from fixed-term to ongoing employment, non-renewal of Principal class
contracts, leading teacher tenure, declaration of excess, referrals to vacancies, allotments,
salary discrepancies, management of complaints, management of harassment and bullying
Ongoing Employee* (teacher, principal,
education support, VPS, allied health,
Fixed Term Employee* (teacher, principal,
education support, VPS, allied health,
Casual Relief Teacher or other casual
Merit Protection Board
Chairpersons nominated by the Minister
Secretary’s Nominees
VPS staff member nominated by the Senior
Senior Chairperson selects a person from
each pool to constitute a Board of three (3) to hear
each grievance.
Senior Chairperson is a full time member of
the MPB
Legislative Framework for
Decision Making
Public Administration
Act 2004
Equal Opportunity Act
Education and Training
Reform Act 2006
Procedural Fairness: “A Fair Go
All Round”
Conciliation and Arbitration Act 1904
This Act introduced the rule of law in industrial relations for the
whole nation
Australia established a national workplace relations tribunal
Now called Fair Work Australia
A “fair go all round”
Decision makers must act fairly and without bias
Public Administration Act 2004
Applies to all state government employees
Act establishes for government employees:
Fair and reasonable treatment
Merit in employment
Reasonable avenue of redress
Equal employment opportunity principles
Protection of human rights
Fair & Reasonable Treatment*
* Public Sector Employment Principles Standard (No 1) 2006
Decision making processes are to be fair, accessible,
and applied consistently in comparable circumstances
Decision making criteria are to be relevant, objective
and readily available to the people subject to the
Decisions and actions are to be free of bias and
unlawful discrimination
Documentation is to be sufficiently clear and
comprehensive to render decisions transparent and
capable of effective review
Merit in Employment*
* Public Sector Employment Principles Standard (No 1) 2006
Employment decisions are to be based on the
proper assessment of individuals’ work related
qualities, abilities and potential against the genuine
requirements of the employment opportunity
Decisions to appoint new employees or promote
existing employees are to be based on competitive
selection. Processes are to be open and designed
to identify a suitable field of qualified candidates
Victorian Equal Opportunity
Act 2010
Promotes recognition and acceptance of everyone’s
right to equality of opportunity
Eliminates sexual harassment
Provides redress for people who have been
discriminated against or sexually harassed
Vicarious Liability / Prohibition of
Authorising or Assisting
In order to avoid liability, employers must take
reasonable precautions to prevent employees or
agents from discriminating against or sexually
harassing others
A person must not request, instruct, induce,
encourage, authorise or assist another person to
discriminate or sexually harass
Before you “GOOGLE” an applicant consider:
 privacy
 gossip,
hearsay and confidentiality
 possible
 relevance
of the information to the selection
Cyber-vetting can be a two way street
Effective Staff Selection
Getting Started
a specific job role in the context of the workplace
structure, unit priorities and VPS Work Level Standards for the
classification level
can we get the best person for the job?
Can we afford the position?
Does it fit the leadership profile?
is the position:
Ongoing / Fixed term/Higher Duties?
and revise the position description and ensure that the
key selection criteria are relevant
appropriate advertising in order to attract the broadest field
of suitable applicants
Getting Started continued...
Applicants should submit their applications online
however applicants without access to the internet may
submit hard copies
Vacancies of 6 months or less may be filled through a
process determined by individual managers, e.g. internal
All other positions must be advertised as follows:
ongoing and fixed term more than 12 months via and Careers with
Victorian Government (
fixed term of more than 6 months and up to 12 months,
Selection Panel
Including panels for internal advertisements
The Manager is responsible for the
selection process and must establish a
selection panel appropriate to the vacancy
Minimum of three persons
One Merit Protection Board trained
Gender representation
Selection Panel Administration
It is strongly recommended that the panel meet
prior to reading any applications
Adequate notes of the panel meetings and key
decisions must be kept
Incomplete or late applications must be managed
Applicants without access to the internet must be
allowed to submit written applications
Panel Chairperson’s Role
Coordinates the Selection Process
Ensures agreed selection strategies are clear
and followed
Indentifies any applicants who are unplaced or
who are redeployees
Prepare list of all applicants for selection panel
Attends MPB hearing with Manager
Panel Members must….
Observe confidentiality throughout and following
the process
Declare any conflict of interest, potential bias or
prior knowledge of any applicants in relation to
the selection criteria
Understand the requirements of the role
Fairly assess and rank applicants against the
key selection criteria
Keep notes of all their decisions
Managing Prior Knowledge
Prior knowledge of an applicant relevant to the
selection criteria should be used but must be
Before applications are read, the chairperson
must record panel members’ prior knowledge
of any applicants
Any potential conflict of interest or bias issues
should be resolved. Notes to be taken of this
Staff with Priority Status
Excess employees may apply for, or be referred
to vacancies
These employees must be considered in
isolation from and not in competition with other
Considered in isolation means all other
employment action for that position ceases
Selection Panel Strategy
Develop an understanding of the selection
Decide how to manage any panel member’s
prior knowledge of applicants
Agree on selection techniques:
a. shortlisting processes
b. interview process
c. use of referees
d. method for rating applicants
Manage internal applications
Shortlisting applications
Identifies those who best meet criteria
All applications should be read and ranked
against selection criteria by all panel
Only nominated referees may be used to
shortlist (questions must be based on
selection criteria)
Check for qualifications - (e.g.Social Worker)
Briefly document the reason(s) for not
shortlisting applicants preferably against
each criteria
Before the Interview
Prior to the interview, advise shortlisted
applicants of:
venue, date and time
the members of the selection panel
the selection strategies to be used
set up the space appropriately
The Interview
Questions must relate to the selection criteria
Questions should be consistent (but not
necessarily identical) for all applicants
Supplementary questions must relate only to the
selection criteria
Questions must not be discriminatory or too
Note: Interview complements the written application,
detailed referee checks and prior knowledge
Referee Checks
o Referee checks provide information to expand,
confirm or vary the panel’s assessment of an
o The panel may choose to contact non-nominated
referees but must inform applicant
o Questions to referees must relate to the selection
criteria and responses recorded
o Referees should be advised that their comments
will be treated confidentially
Referee Checks continued…
o Oral referee checks are preferable to written
o Negotiate a suitable time and provide selection
criteria in advance to referees
o Questions to referees must be determined by
the selection panel
o Any information provided by referees must be
Assessing and Ranking the
Interviewed Applicants
The panels task is to determine which
candidates best meet the Selection Criteria
This is a subjective value judgement
Only the selection criteria can be used in
making this decision
 The panel may recommend a “no
 The panel may conduct a second interview
Assessing and Ranking the
Interviewed Applicants
o Unsuitable applicants should not be ranked
o Complete an Individual Selection Report form
for each shortlisted applicant
o Completed panel report goes to the General
Manager who will either accept or reject the
Notification to Applicant
o After the recommendation is approved by the General
Manager, the Chairperson of the panel must confirm with
the successful applicant their willingness to accept the
o DEECD advises all applicants for statewide advertised
positions of the outcome and the right to a review, if
o At this stage applicants may request a copy of their
Individual Selection Report
o A formal appointment cannot be made until the review
period is concluded and the MPB advises that no
application for a review has been lodged
Selection Documentation
o Prepare the written VPS Selection Report
(including Individual Selection Report for
each shortlisted applicant) using the
proformas available on HRWeb
o Selection documentation must be securely
retained as per disposal schedule*
Public Records Office Standard 07/01(Currently 2 years)
o All applicants should have the opportunity for
detailed feedback on their application and
o Detailed feedback should only be provided (if
requested) once the outcome of any review is
o Panels should agree on:
the information to be provided
who will provide the feedback
The Merit Protection Boards
To advise the Minister about principles of merit
and equity to be applied in the teaching service
To hear reviews and appeals of decisions made
under the Education and Training Reform Act
2006 (except Division 9A & 10 – Unsatisfactory
Performance / Misconduct)
To hear reviews and appeals of decisions
concerning public servants in DEECD (under
direct delegation of the Secretary)
(Public Administration (Review of Actions) Regulations 2005)
Review of Action Board
Senior Chairperson
Secretary’s Nominee
Public Servant nominated by the Senior
The Senior Chairperson is a full time
member of the MPB
Types of Grievances
Selection grievances
Applications for selection grievances must be lodged
within 10 working days of notification of decision
Personal grievances, including discrimination
and sexual harassment
Applications for personal grievances must be lodged
within 28 days of notification of decision
Grounds for a Selection
the employee was qualified to apply for the position
the employee applied for the position (or would have
applied for the position if it had been advertised in
accordance with Departmental policies or procedures)
a selection decision was made;
the person selected was an employee of the
Department, an employee of another VPS agency
(provided the non-selection would represent a
promotion for that person), or an unplaced staff
Grounds for a Selection Grievance
Error of law, or
Significant deficiency in the selection process.
Outcomes of Selection
o The Senior Chairperson may recommend:
to confirm the validity of the selection decision;
to vary, reverse or revoke the selection decision;
to request that a selection decision be reconsidered;
to request that the position be re-advertised
Note: the preferred applicant should not commence in
the position until the appeal process is completed.
Grounds for Personal
o The action is unfair
o Inconsistent with the Public Administration Act
2004, including the Public Sector Employment
Personal Grievances to the
MPB include:
breaches of Departmental guidelines, policies or
identification as unplaced staff or redeployment or
retrenchment of staff
leave & salary entitlements,
performance assessment,
criminal records checks, victimisation & bullying,
harassment, including sexual harassment, and
disciplinary matters.
Outcomes of Personal
The Senior Chairperson may recommend to the
Secretary one or more of the following:
• To confirm the validity of the action (or decision);
• To vary, reverse or revoke the action (or decision);
• To request that an action or decision be reconsidered;
• To change Departmental processes; or
• That any other action be taken.
The Secretary will generally abide by the recommendation of the VPS
Review of Action Board however he or she is not obliged to do so.
Hearing Process for Personal &
Selection Grievances
Prior to the Hearing
Response from decision maker
Copy provided to appellant
Hearing date set
If the matter is conciliated or settled beforehand, the
hearing will be cancelled
The Hearing
The Decision Maker explains the basis for the decision*
The Applicant presents their case* – (30 minutes allowed)
Right of reply from decision maker
Questions from the Board
Summing up by applicant
Parties leave
Consideration by Board
Decision and Recommendation
* The decision maker and the applicant may be represented by an
advocate at the hearing
The Hearing
The VPS Review of Action Board must
ensure that hearings are conducted in
accordance with the principles of natural
justice which provide for both sides to
have the opportunity to present their case
before an independent body, and to hear
and comment on the other party’s version
of the events
The Recommendation
The decision of a VPS Review
of Action Board is put as a
Secretary, who will confirm or
overturn the findings of the
Victorian Equal Opportunity Act (2010)
A person must not victimise another person by
subjecting (or threatening to subject) the other
person to a detriment (broadly defined) because he
or she has or intends to:
make a complaint
be a witness
Compliance letter from the Senior Chairperson
Evaluation sheet
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Merit Protection Boards: 9651 0290
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