Our objection in SITREP 41/2015 to the Department’s reference to “Rostering” within the SMART acronym for the new retained availability application led one Retained member to suggest keeping their SMART, but replacing their “Rostering” with “Retainers” so that it instead became the System to Manage Availability Retainers and Timesheets. We agreed, and during a meeting this week over the (so far successful) live launch of the timesheet component in MN3, the Department acknowledged our concerns in SITREP 41 and sensibly agreed likewise. So SMART it remains, but minus the rostering.
The Union has proposed several changes to make it easier for members to use the system, including a shift from B&W text to colour codes for different availability status and improvements in the recording of members’ qualifications. The SMART system is a direct result of the Union’s 2014 Retained Award reforms and while already well received by retained members, further improvements can be expected.
LF and LSO advertisements
Discussions with the Department confirm that work on the new LF test’s operational component is almost complete and that Senior Firefighters will soon be able to apply to undertake the revised tests on shift, and at their own station. Additional Leading Firefighter Program positions are expected to be advertised soon thereafter, and then on a steady “as needs” basis onwards. The ability to request to undertake the tests will be advertised in Commissioner’s Orders and reported in that week’s SITREP.
The latest SO and LSO positions advertised in Commissioner’s Orders 2016/01 drew questions from astute members who had read SITREP 39/2015, asking why those re-advertised officer vacancies were not open to all (for the SO vacancy) Senior Firefighters and (for the LSO vacancy) Station Officers?
The answer is that this is the first time that a position has been advertised under the new Award process, which has two stages:
a) the first calls for applications from LSOs, SOs and LFs who are already on the LF Program;
b) the second is when a position is re-advertised, when SFs with 36 months service may also apply.
Prior to Orders 2016/01, the Station Officer Tamworth position had been advertised to only Station Officers, not to Leading Firefighters or Senior Firefighters on the LF Program. If, after this latest advertisement the position remains unfilled then it will be re-advertised and open to all eligible SFs.
LFs, LSOs & Clause 28 transfer registers
Members who have, or who are about to progress to Leading Firefighter or Leading Station Officer are reminded of our recent Award reforms which now allow LFs to apply for placement on Officer Transfer Registers, and for LSO’s on Senior Officer Transfer Registers. Applications must be made within three months of progression for recognition of residential priority and/or backdating to occur. See Permanent Award subclauses 28.4.7 and 28.4.8 for further details.
For a printable copy of this SITREP, please click here.