Uni Adelaide alternative to forced redundancies

Management proposes cutting conditions to protect 200 FTE jobs

What this is about: The university expects to be down $220m on 2019 revenues this year and next. Acting VC Mike Brooks tells staff that with savings and borrowings it can cover 2020 but he expects an unfunded $60m next.

One way of meeting this would be cutting 400 FTE positions, however he points to temporary reductions in staff conditions that could reduce the job loss by half.

What staff could give up: Professor Brooks signals: savings from halting annual leave loadings paid at end of employment and due for staff this December, * a 3.5 per cent pay cut from fourth quarter to July 2 next year, (super and the first $30 000 in income exempt) * deferring the 1.5 per cent pay rise due in March to next July and *staff buying 15 days leave to be taken this year and next.

What manage would commit: This would still leave $30m to save, including through staff cuts. However, Professor Brooks adds the university would commitment to, “realise these reductions without resorting to forced redundancies and significant restructuring of the university, instead utilising natural staff turnover, voluntary redundancies and early retirement programmes.”

What’s next: The university is talking about these savings with the National Tertiary Education Union and if there is an agreement, a proposal to vary the university’s enterprise agreement would be put to a staff vote.

Sounds familiar:  This is in-line with the job-protection framework created by the NTEU and four vice chancellors.  While the model is rejected by around half the country’s universities it, or local variations, are already approved by staff on campuses including, Monash U, UWA, Uni Tas, La Trobe U and Western Sydney U.