The Department of Planning and Environment (DPE) is committed to adopting innovative and flexible ways of working to help employees strike the right balance between a rewarding career and everything else that life has to offer.
Most DPE employees work an average of 35 hours per week, over a 4-week period. Many employees work on a ‘flexitime’ system, depending on the nature of the work they perform. This means that, by working extra hours on one day, they can take time off on other days.
Two staff members can share a position, either temporarily or permanently. For example, they can take turns to work 2 or 3 days each week. A job-sharing arrangement is possible if:
- both employees agree to the arrangement
- the arrangement is fair and equitable to them
- the arrangement is in the best interests of DPE and does not detract from standards of customer service.
Family and community service leave
Paid leave may be granted to an employee:
- to care for family members
- to arrange or attend the funeral of a close family member
- where conditions such as fire, flood or snow threaten life or property or prevent the employee from getting to work.
Caring for sick dependants
If an employee's dependants are sick, they may be able to care for them by:
- taking family and community service leave
- taking sick leave
- taking unpaid leave (with their manager's permission) as set out in the appropriate award
- negotiating with their supervisor to work from home, where circumstances allow.
Leave without pay
Ongoing employees can take leave without pay, subject to approval, for such things as:
- pressing family issues, such as child care and compassionate needs
- travel, in conjunction with other paid leave
- career breaks
- other situations on a case-by-case basis, provided the employee intends to resume duty when the leave expires.
In approving requests for leave without pay, we aim to balance the wishes of the employee with the needs of DPE.
Working from home
Staff may be allowed to work from home, depending on the kind of work they do and as long as they are contactable at all times. However, home-based work cannot be a routine arrangement. Employees are more likely to get permission to work from home:
- if family members are sick
- where a project must be completed urgently and working from home is the best way to achieve this
- for managing emergency situations at night or on weekends
- where the work is suitable to be done at home.