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Paid Outside Work by Employees

Approval Date: July 2009
Next Review: Under Review
Review By: Finance Committee

1. Preamble

RACMA is a member-owned professional organisation and is committed to managing its brand and resources wisely and transparently.

The purpose of this policy is to ensure:

  • the Royal Australasian College of Medical Administrators (RACMA) adopts appropriate processes for the engagement of employees to assist with, or participate in projects, on behalf of RACMA;
  • there is appropriate quality assurance and recognition given to RACMA from engagement in consultancies and projects that leverage with the RACMA brand.
  • in particular that RACMA:
    • utilises appropriate criteria when determining whether paid outside work by employees is required;
    • is able to demonstrate that RACMA resources have been used efficiently;
    • ensures that conflicts of interest are identified and managed;
    • ensures appropriate risk management strategies; and
    • complies with expectations of transparency.

The key principles governing the arrangement under which employees may undertake paid outside work are:

  • Approval must be sought and gained before commencing that work;
  • Outside work that is College Practice is of a nature and standard compatible with the Objects of the College;
  • Outside work that is College Practice is of a nature and standard compatible with the professional status of the member and/or the employee;
  • Arrangements (and changes to those arrangements) under which the outside work is to be taken must be disclosed;
  • Conflicts of interest that might arise as a result of undertaking the outside work must be able to be managed to the satisfaction of the College;
  • Where the work is obtained directly or indirectly as a result of the staff member’s association with the College, adequate professional indemnity and third party insurance arrangements must be in place. The College must be adequately indemnified for any loss or damage that might arise from the undertaking of the outside work;
  • As part of the annual performance review, staff members must certify the extent of any paid time release taken to perform outside work and the nature of any outside work so undertaken and for which private remuneration was received;
  • As part of the annual audit Honorary Treasurer must certify the extent of any paid work performed on behalf of the College and the nature of any paid outside work so undertaken.

The College fully encourages and supports the engagement of employees in a range of professional development and community activities provided that the undertaking of these activities is in accordance with this procedure.

This procedure seeks to achieve a balance between providing opportunities to employees to engage in outside professional development activities for remuneration and the College’s need to minimize its exposure to legal, financial and operational risks that may arise. All Paid Outside Work (POW) gives rise to risks to the College, but these may be remote or acceptable. It is only unacceptable risks that will prevent the POW being done.

2. Scope

This procedure provides a framework for the undertaking of College Practice and Private Practice (POW) and applies to all employees of the College.

3. Definitions

Conflict of interest: The term ‘conflict of interest’ refers to a situation where a conflict arises for an individual between two competing interests. These are often, but not exclusively, interests of public duty versus private interests. This refers to a reasonably perceived, potential or actual conflict of interest. Conflicts of interest can involve financial or non-financial interests of the employee and the interests of a business partner or associate, family member, friend or person, in or has had a close personal relationship with the employee.

Conflict of commitment: This occurs when one interest of an employee, which may, or may not be a private interest or non-college interest may harm or interfere with the productivity or involvement of that employee in aspects of College responsibilities. It may concern the employee’s distribution of efforts between employment obligations to the College and to outside activities.

College Practice: Paid Outside Work means work or professional development activities that an employee of the College undertakes as an employee of the College for an external party which is outside his or her normal duties (in this regard reference should be made to the employee’s engagement profile or position description), where the College is party to the contract under which the work or professional development is undertaken, and where the College receives payment for the work undertaken by the employee. There are two kinds of College Practice, namely: employee initiated, RACMA initiated.

Delegate: Where the President is mentioned in these procedures, it also refers to a delegate nominated by the President.

External party: A company, association, person or organisation, other than RACMA and RACMA-controlled entities.

Minor miscellaneous income: Income derived from work or an activity undertaken by an employee which is connected with the work of the staff member and which might reasonably be construed as either College Practice or Private Practice. However, the work or activity either:

  • Is a ‘one-off’ activity which takes no more than one day; or
  • In any given year:
    • Involves a total of no more than 40 hours of the employee’s time; and
    • Generates remuneration for the employee of no more than $10,000.

Paid Outside work means work performed for another employer by the employee in a private capacity or as a RACMA contractor/ consultant, and may be within his or her contracted hours of employment with the College.

Private Practice: Paid Outside Work means work or professional development activities that an employee of the College undertakes in his or her private capacity for remuneration, which is outside his or her normal duties (in this regard reference should be made to the employee’s engagement profile or position description), where the College is not a party to the contract under which the work or professional development is undertaken, and where the College normally receives no payment. By way of example, this might include a consultancy or the commission of a particular piece of work.

Risk: Exposure to the possibility of something happening that will have an impact on the College’s organizational objectives. For the purposes of this procedure, “risk” includes, but is not limited to, risks to the College’s reputation, finances, delivery of quality services, people, security, organisational culture, operations and legal liability. An unacceptable risk refers to an activity that contravenes this procedure.

Royalties: Income derived by an employee of the College from his or her authorship or contribution to a written publication such as a textbook.

Employee: means a person who is employed under a contract of employment with RACMA

4. Procedure

4.1 Approval required for Paid Outside Work 

If an employee wishes to commence or continue any kind of Paid Outside Work (POW), the employee must do so in accordance with the provisions of this procedure. All employees are expected to devote their working time to the service of the College, in accordance with the terms and conditions of their appointment and their engagement profile or position description, as appropriate. Therefore, as this procedure outlines, prior approval from the President (in the case of the Chief Executive) or the Chief Executive (in the case of all other employees) is required before an employee undertakes POW.

In order to undertake any form of POW, the employee must:

  1. Inform his or her supervisor in writing of all POW that he or she intends to undertake prior to its commencement and gain their approval;
  2. Discuss any potential or actual conflicts of interest, or conflict of commitment with the supervisor;
  3. Obtain prior written approval from his or her supervisor;
  4. Obtain permission to engage in continuing POW (such as a continuing consultancy ) on an annual basis, at the same time as the employee’s performance review, including making a full disclosure of the proposed commitments for the coming year;
  5. Not use his or her College title or position, without prior approval of the President, when seeking to attract, or when performing, work for an external entity in order to avoid any implication that may arise to the effect that the employee is performing work on behalf of the College;
  6. Continue to comply with all of his or her obligations as an employee of the College, including obligations with respect to the College’s intellectual property, Conflict of Interest procedure and the confidentiality of the College’s information, and
  7. Comply with their obligations under Australian taxation law including any obligation to register for and pay Good and Services Tax (GST) and /or Pay As You Go (PAYG) tax.

If an external party requests the College to undertake work, then any work performed by an employee of the College is to be regarded as College Practice (RACMA initiated College Practice). The President/Honorary Treasurer must approve the work to be performed for the external party. The work must then be formally incorporated into an employee’s engagement profile or position description.

In the case of a part-time employee undertaking College Practice that is initiated by the employee, RACMA may wish to discuss the possibility of an increase in his/her work fraction for the period of College Practice.

Employees wishing to undertake Private Practice must, in addition to steps a) to g) above:

  • Obtain his or her own full professional indemnity insurance and any other appropriate insurance for Private Practice;
  • Not use College resources for Private Practice without obtaining written permission in advance and reimbursing the College for the use of those resources at the rate agreed;
  • Ensure that the external entity with which the employee is performing Private Practice work, understands that it is contracting with an individual and not with RACMA*;
  • Understand and agree that the College is not responsible in any way for the work conducted by the employee in Private Practice, and
  • Not use College accounts to receive or hold funds that are raised through Private Practice activities.

*When undertaking Private Practice it is the employee’s responsibility to make clear to the person or body requesting work that the employee, and not the College, will undertake the work and that the College has no responsibility or liability for work undertaken. The employee must sign a Declaration prior to undertaking private paid outside work form to this effect, have his or her external client sign that they have noted the declaration and return the signed document to the President when seeking prior approval to undertake Private Practice.

2. College Practice

Paid Outside Work can only be included as part of College Practice where the College is party to the contract under which the work is undertaken.

Prior to any contract being signed with an external party or prior to any work being performed, whichever is the earlier, approval to undertake the paid outside work must be given by the Honorary Treasurer and/or the President.

A contract approved by the Honorary Treasurer should be completed and signed by the contracting party and the President or authorised delegate, prior to the commencement of work.

If there is agreement that the employee will be paid for work completed the Honorary Treasurer will approve the payment

3. Private Practice

An employee of the College may engage in Private Practice subject to the employee’s continued compliance with this procedure. This permission will not be given where:

  1. The Private Practice might reasonably be expected to impede the reasonable operations of the College or the discharge of the employee’s work as recorded in the engagement profile or position description;
  2. The Private Practice might reasonably be expected to impede the general operations of the organizational unit, for example by disrupting training programs or unreasonably restricting access by Candidates to the employee;
  3. An unacceptable potential for or actual conflict of interest or commitment (as defined) arises;
  4. An unacceptable risk (as defined) is posed to the College;
  5. The staff member proposes to use College resources and an appropriate agreement about the use of the resources and the reimbursement to the College for those resources cannot reasonably be reached, and
  6. The work is derived from a controlled entity of the College, unless the College elects not to do this work.

This list is not exhaustive and there may be other reasons for the refusal to grant permission.

Permission to undertake Private Practice will not be unreasonably withheld.

An employee must discuss any potential or actual conflicts of interest or conflict of interest with his or her supervisor as soon as the employee becomes aware of them.

This Paid Outside Work procedure is in addition to and does not operate to detract in any way from the College’s Conflict of Interest policy.

3.1 Private Practice for Part-time Employees

Part-time employees are able to engage in Private Practice, provided that the Private Practice is not an excluded category as set out in 3 (a-f) above. While part-time employees are not required to seek permission to perform Private Practice, part-time employees are required to inform their supervisor of the nature and extent of the Private Practice and to confirm that it is acceptable as set out in 3 (a-f) above.

4. Minor Miscellaneous Income

The employee may receive minor miscellaneous income without prior permission and retain the income derived from that activity. The only exceptions are listed under point 3 a-f of these procedures.

In cases of doubt, an employee should seek specific permission from their supervisor. Conversely, the supervisor may come to the view that the aggregate amount of the employee’s minor miscellaneous income is such that a limit needs to be discussed in the interests of the organizational unit, or that the employee’s activity can no longer be properly categorized as minor miscellaneous income.

5. Insurance

Private Practice is not covered by College insurance and is always engaged in entirely at the employee’s own risk.

College insurance for professional liability, WorkCover and public risk does not cover this form of activity. The College does not take any responsibility for, warrant or indemnify in any way the activities of employees involved in Private Practice, even when College resources have been used with permission.

Employees should obtain their own legal and financial advice with respect to obtaining their own insurance to cover all Private Practice.

6. College Accounts

Employees undertaking work as part of College Practice should adhere to the following principles for the operation of consulting funds/external account for College Practice.

  • Only funds from College Practice can be held in the College’s financial system. The College’s financial system cannot be used to hold or received funds generated from Private Practice activities;
  • Funds generated from consulting activities held in the College’s financial system are presumptively owned and controlled by the College;
  • Consulting fund/external earnings accounts can only be opened on the approval of the President and are to be maintained and monitored by the Honorary Treasurer;
  • The transfer of funds from these accounts is at the sole discretion of the President and any request for the transfer of funds to another institution must be approved by that officer;
  • All expenditure from consulting funds/external earnings accounts must comply with relevant College policies and be capable of satisfying the PAYE and FBT requirements of the Australian Tax Office and meet both internal and external audit requirements; and
  • All items of equipment purchased from external earnings accounts remain the property of the College.

7. Disciplinary Issues

An employee may be subject to disciplinary action if the employee:

  • Represents (actively or passively) an external party that work is being conducted under the auspices of the College when it is not (i.e. it is Private Practice or POW that has not been approved by the College);
  • Is performing work which places the employee in a position where there is an unacceptable, actual, or potential, conflict of interest or commitment with his or her College responsibilities;
  • Competes commercially with the College in circumstances where there is actual or potential conflict of interest or commitment;
  • Undertakes Private Practice that interferes with the proper execution of the employee’s work, without prior approval alternative arrangements having been made to cover these;
  • Makes use of College resources for Private Practice, for which prior approval has not been given and/or where no appropriate arrangements for reimbursement to the College have been made;
  • Receives payment for private tuition of Candidates of the College
  • Undertakes Private Practice that was introduced through the College, and that should be contracted to the College;
  • Undertakes POW of any kind without appropriate approval;
  • Breaches any provision of this procedure, or
  • Colludes with another employee to bypass or breach the provisions contained in this procedure.

8. Grievance Procedures

Any employee who is aggrieved by the application of this procedure may utilize the College’s normal grievance processes as specified in the relevant Employment Agreement (as defined) or where applicable, the provisions of the relevant AWA.

9. Policy Variations

The Council may establish associated regulations and administrative procedures to enable appropriate administration of the procedures. The procedure will be regularly reviewed.

10. Responsibility

The Honorary Treasurer is responsible for monitoring compliance with this procedure and reporting information about the number of employees involved in Private Practice and College Practice Paid Outside Work, the value of College Practice to the College, the resource implications for the College of POW and the recouping of any resource costs.

11. Copyright and intellectual property

Works that are created in the course of College Practice with and for RACMA may be considered ‘copyright work’ under the Commonwealth Copyright Act 1968 and the respective definitions of those terms have the respective meanings ascribed to them in that Act.

Any copyright work created by an employee in the pursuance of the originator’s employment under a contract of service with the College is technically owned by the College. Specific provisions in relevant legislation provide for variations to ownership to be negotiated.

The College will respect the ‘moral rights’ (Copyright Amendment (Moral Rights) Act 2000 of employees. Such rights give authors the right to chose to be identified, or not, and object to derogatory treatment of a work, and for people not to have authorship falsely attributed.

In circumstances where intellectual property may be vested in the College or subject to joint authorship between the author and the College, matters including the proportions of ownership, rights attached to ownership and any other matters which may be relevant can be jointly decided through a written agreement between all relevant parties.

The College may require employees who participate in College funded activities to sign an agreement or give a written acknowledgement that intellectual property will vest in the College. Sometimes external parties, providing funding (eg. government funding), will require that the College representatives agree and acknowledge that intellectual property will vest in either the funder (e.g. government) or the College.

Use of College Trade Marks

Council approval for use of the College logo will be sought in all cases.

12. Related Documents

Use of the College Logo and Trade Marks
Privacy Policy
Intellectual property and copyright policies (to be developed)