These principles are linked to the values and code of conduct for all Victorian public sector employees.

Principle 1: comply with public sector values

Our guidance and policies align with the:

Principle 2: protect the public interest

Public sector employees are obliged to promote and protect the public interest of the Victorian community.

Principle 3: comply with the employment principles and standards

Public sector employers are bound by the public sector employment principles in the Public Administration Act.

We’ve issued 6 standards that define the essential parts of these principles:

  • fair and reasonable treatment
  • merit in employment
  • equal employment opportunity
  • human rights
  • reasonable avenue of redress; and
  • career public sector.

Principle 4: consider equal opportunity and human rights

Don’t exclude a candidate from being hired if your reason isn’t based on the inherent requirements of a role.

Public sector employers must consider whether an adverse conduct record would impact the preferred candidate’s ability to fulfill the inherent requirements of the position. Assessments must be aligned with the candidate’s rights under relevant legislation:

Principle 5: apply natural justice

If you find any concerns when screening, the candidate has a right to natural justice and procedural fairness.

This means:

  • discuss any findings with them and give them a way to respond
  • only those who know need to have access to the relevant information
  • assess the risk to your organisation in relation to the role they’ve applied for

This also means don’t rule them out of the role before you:

  • validate a possible misconduct declaration
  • assess if the concerns are relevant
  • assess the risk to your organisation in relation to the role they’ve applied for

Principle 6: take a risk-based approach

Assess the level of pre-employment screening you need to do based on a role’s responsibilities and level of risk.

Principle 7: be consistent with other policies and processes

This sets a minimum standard for pre-employment screening. Make sure it’s consistent with:

  • government or employer directives
  • requirements for specific workforces, including those in higher-risk roles
  • relevant legislation and regulations

If your organisation already has a screening policy, make sure it meets the minimum standards in this policy.

If your policy is more comprehensive or your declaration has different questions, incorporate these standards into yours. Don’t replace or duplicate those processes.