Attraction and retention options - remote areas


Employing authorities should examine the applicability of the following initiatives, which may assist in alleviating the need for additional attraction and retention incentives.

Induction Kits-hard copy/online

Induction kits minimise the concerns associated with taking a new position in another location due to a lack of knowledge of the region or local area, the social environment and local services.

Kits should include information on the region, agency information, types of services available, local schools, maps, federal government assistance and tax rebates, child care, details of health services including specialists, local government services, community service groups, transport facilities, regional events, main industries; and major employers in the region.

Concurrent Local Advertising of Positions

Concurrent advertising of positions both in the statewide and local press may assist in the employment of a suitable local person. This approach will reduce relocation costs and assist partners of public sector employees who have recently relocated to secure employment.

Assisting Partners with Employment

When recruiting to a regional area, whether from metropolitan or other regional areas or from interstate, often it is the whole family that needs to be attracted, not just the prospective employee.

Benefits to partner

Some benefits to which the employee is entitled, for example, subsidised study may be extended to the partner.

Partners who are public sector employees - options for leave or release from their employer

In circumstances where the partner also works in the public sector, consideration should be given to assist the partner in taking extended leave or explore other release arrangements with their employer.

Other work opportunities for partners

Opportunities for employment in regional areas are often limited. Partners moving to regional areas often have increased problems when they have no links with the community.

Partners' skills could be registered, preferably prior to relocation, with organisations, which in turn, could use online and other links and networks with local public and private employers to canvas referral and employment opportunities.

Secondment as an alternative to permanent appointment to a region

Short-term measures may be considered, such as the appointment of employees from the metropolitan area for specific periods.

Job share to attract local employees

Job share is often used by part-time employees and involves 2 (or more) individuals sharing the responsibilities of a full-time position. Consideration should be given to actively encouraging such arrangements to attract local employees.

Family friendly workplaces, consistent with existing Government policy

Lack of appropriate childcare facilities can be a problem in regional areas. Employing authorities in regional areas could explore the possibility of establishing multi-organisational childcare facilities.

Taking annual leave

Leave should be planned well in advance and provide for a reasonable block of leave to allow for recuperation. The timing and duration of the leave is to be mutually agreed between the employing authority and employee.

After hours phone service or answering machine

The provision of answering machines for after hours use may significantly assist in alleviating the burden of the potential for 24/7 contact and exposure to clientele and the local community.

Similarly, support in obtaining silent numbers or no listings in telephone directories may also be beneficial.

Access to training & development programs

Regional employees should be included in city or metropolitan training programs as well as conducting training sessions in country locations with metropolitan employees included.

Employing authorities should give consideration to the regional delivery of across agency training.

Universal Access to Information Technology (IT) resources

The plethora of IT resources has the potential to markedly reduce the isolation and disenfranchisement sometimes felt by regional and remote area public sector employees and their families.

Employing authorities in regional areas should facilitate access by employees to this type of technology. A coordinated approach by employing authorities in regions may assist in the provision of such access via subsidised purchase or lease arrangements.

Allowing limited use of office phones for private calls up to a predetermined maximum, or providing an allowance for the increase in costs will also assist employees in maintaining contact with distant family.

Page last updated 4 October 2012