Members will recall the PSA sending out a survey earlier this year seeking feedback on how well members believed the DFSI Flexible Working Hours Agreement (FWHA) (2016) had operated over the previous 2 years.
Thanks to those of you who were able to complete that survey.
Clause 7.1 of the FWHA provides that both parties will review the operations of the agreement prior to the end of the nominal term (30 June 2018).
PSA officials met with management to press for improvements to the agreement based on the data from the survey.
Based on your feedback, the PSA proposed that the Department consider additional wording in Clause 2.1.9 (the clause that relates to decisions about working hours and patterns – arrangements between management and an employee) to make it clear that management must be reasonable in its decision making and put a greater onus on managers to show that their decisions are based on legitimate operational needs.
Your union also proposed additional wording so that managers are required to notify employees where credit hours have exceeded 42 at any point during the settlement period.
The Department maintained the existing agreement already sufficiently meets the concerns raised by the PSA, and that rather than the agreement being the issue, the matters raised by the PSA can be addressed by better enforcement of the existing agreement terms.
To this end, what we were able to gain was a firm commitment from the Department to put in place training and checks for managers to ensure they are aware of their obligations in applying the terms of the agreement.
We understand this should be rolled out soon.
The PSA reminds members that it remains fundamental that variations to your working hours and patterns of work must involve consultation with you, be fair and done for legitimate operational reasons.
The PSA reminds members that you should never forfeit flex hours.
No worker should ever work for free.
In the meantime, the PSA will continue to fight for those of you experiencing any problems with your flexible working conditions at a local level.
If you need assistance with any of these flex related matters, please contact the PSA Member Support Centre on 1300 772 679.