Develop Workplace Policy and Procedures for Sustainability

Contents 

Introduction.

Organisation.

Sources and Methods.

Stakeholder Management

Stakeholder Identification.

Stakeholder Engagement

Stakeholder Needs.

Stakeholder Conflict Resolution.

Recommendations for Sustainability Policy.

Final List of Recommendations.

Sustainability Policy.

Policy Statement

Scope of this Policy.

Objectives.

Energy, Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Ozone.

Environment and Sustainability Context

Implementation Strategy.

References.

Introduction to Sustainable Development Policy 

In recent years it has become quite clear that humans are living beyond the balance of ecosystems and are consuming natural resources at a rate that cannot be maintained (McManners, 2016). Sustainability in respect of an organization is about reducing waste, water, energy and pollution, and switching to renewable energy sources. In addition to the private sector, all government departments also aiming to reduce their carbon footprint, improve sustainability, and decrease waste (Marchese, et al., 2018). With the increasing awareness and popularity of green and sustainable practices, several organizations have put together sustainable policies to implement sustainable practices. The key attribute of sustainable policy is to enhance human development programs and social capacity without affecting the future ability to avail and developing resources (Sroufe & Joseph, 2017). The sustainable policy considers best practices for ecological sustainability, financial sustainability, and social sustainability of an organization.

This paper presents a sustainability policy of Services Australia to address the organizational inefficiencies and opportunities for improvement in sustainability practices. In addition to this, the paper also mentions the development process of sustainability policy, along with a communication plan and an implementation plan for the said policy.

Organisation: Services Australia

Services Australia, formerly the Department of Human Services is an Australian government agency accountable for providing a wide range of welfare services such as health and child support payments to Australian citizens. Headed by Ms. Rebecca Skinner as CRO, Services Australia delivers its services through brands and government programs like Hearing Australia, the PBS, Medicare, and Centrelink (Australian Government, n.d.). As mentioned in the Administrative Arrangements Order of 29 May 2019, administration of Hearing Australia – Australian Hearing Services Act 1991, Medicare – Human Services (Medicare) act 1973 and Centrelink – Human Services (Centrelink) act 1997, comes under the purview of Services Australia. In addition to this, the agency also operates numerous face to face services centres throughout Australia.

Sources and Methods of Services Australia

To develop a sustainability policy for Services Australia, this paper utilizes several academic sources including books, journal articles, and government reports. Moreover, the paper also uses the annual reports and other publications of the agency to develop a sustainability policy for the same (McManners, 2016). The said is develop by step-by-step listing technique and is aligned with the strategic goals of the agency

Stakeholder Management of Services Australia

van Niekerk (2019) mentioned that the implementation of environmental policy often fails due to the lack of stakeholders' acceptance. Sustainability/environmental policies are typical, multi-scale, and uncertain and affect multiple agencies and actors. This necessitates the stakeholder participation in embedding sustainable process into decision making. To facilitate implementation, the stakeholder management of Service Australia's is conducted.

Stakeholder Identification

Relevant stakeholders for the given policy development are mentioned below.

  • Politicians
  • Bureaucrats from other departments
  • Civil society organizations
  • Local community
  • Legislature
  • Companies and businesses

Stakeholder Engagement

To ensure stakeholder engagement in policy development, this report uses stakeholder analysis to determine the current level of engagement and uses appropriate strategies to engage them in policy development (Epstein et al., 2017). To analyse the current engagement of stakeholders, the power-interest grid is used in this report.

High power, high interest – such stakeholders include those with high power and high interest in the success of a project such as politicians and investors. Such stakeholders need to be managed closely

High power, low interest - Stakeholder with high power and low interest needs to be kept satisfied. These stakeholders include the legislature.

Low power, high interest –These stakeholders are kept informed as they are highly interested in the development and implementation of the policy (Lehtinen, Aaltonen & Rajala, 2019).

Low power, low interest –Policy developers just keep these stakeholders informed.

According to their respective interest and power level, policy development utilizes communication strategies to involve them in policy development.

Stakeholder Needs

Politicians – Compliance with respective government policies, planning instructions, legislation, and minimising the environmental impact of agency operations.

Bureaucrats from other departments–Development and implementation of sound sustainability policy.

Civil society organizations – Promoting sustainability by implementing actions and responsibilities for department officials (Bourne, 2016).

Local community – Improvement in their surrounding environment.

Legislature – Adherence with legislation, and meeting the required obligations for Australian sustainability and environmental reporting.

Companies and businesses – Effective management of resources, improving product utilisation, and financial performance (Wicks, Elmore & Jonas, 2019).

Stakeholder Conflict Resolution

Because of the presence of numerous stakeholders with their own needs and expectations, the development project will inevitably encounter a different point of view and dissenting stakeholders. The project will consider the opinion of stakeholders according to their level of priority and will form a communication plan to facilitate resolution (Harrison, Barney, Freeman & Philips, 2019).

Recommendations for Sustainability Policy

  1. Ensure landfill waste receptacles and facilities are established in all buildings sites at accessible and convenient locations

This will allow the agency to improve its waste management practices and to make it in accordance with sustainability principles (Dovers & Hussey, 2013). However, the agency will have to bear significant costs to establish such systems in all buildings.

  1. Making sure that recycling receptacles and facilities are established and maintained

Recycling practices will also facilitate waste management and will allow the agency to reduce pollution and facilitate sustainable development. One of the disadvantages associated with such a project is the high cost.

  1. New constructions and refurbishments to meet minimum energy performance

This will improve the energy efficiency of the agency. Its disadvantage includes wastage because of low energy consumption.

  1. Undertaking a tenancy lighting assessment

It will provide energy efficiency certificates to the buildings and significantly improve visual conditions for employees. However, good design includes utilisation of the correct product for each application (Price, Pitt & Tucker, 2011).

  1. Provisions for accredited renewable energy in electricity contracts

Its advantage includes a reduction in the consumption of fossil fuels which will mitigate the impact of greenhouse gas emission in the atmosphere. On the other hand, its disadvantage includes higher upfront cost and geographic limitations.

  1. Regular maintenance and servicing for data centre

Will improve the effective operations of the data centre.

  1. Compliance with Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act

Facilitates the protection of matters of national environmental significance and ecological sustainability. However, the compliance process is very complicated.

  1. Compliance with Energy Efficiency in Government Operations Act

Less consumption of electricity and eliminating energy waste. But it required significant changes in the current administrative structure of the agency (The & Corbitt, 2015).

Final List of Recommendations

  1. New constructions and refurbishments to meet minimum energy performance

This will improve the energy efficiency of the agency and will take around 12 months to be implemented. New construction will cost around $3 million and will facilitate continuous improvements in resource efficiency.

  1. Ensure landfill waste receptacles and facilities are established in all buildings sites at accessible and convenient locations are recommended as it will improve waste management of the agency and will help to reduce pollution. However, Services Australia should start with a couple of facilities to assess the effect of such facilities.
  2. Compliance with Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act

The environment protection and biodiversity conservation act will establish a strong framework for the conservation of biodiversity and protection of the environment within the agency. It also ensures compliance with WHS and equity and diversity policy. It will take significantly to ensure compliance because of the auditing process and a wide variety of principles (Price, Pitt & Tucker, 2011).

  1. Compliance with Energy Efficiency in Government Operations Act

Facilitates overall reduction in energy consumption of government buildings and makes the procurement and management approach more consistent and transparent. The policy established a framework for realising sustainability outcomes through government operations efficiencies.

Sustainability Policy

This document presents the Environment Sustainability Policy for Services Australia. The practices and principles outlined in this policy aim to act as a facilitator of the agency’s sustainability initiative including improvement of environmental performance and the management and control of sustainable risks.

According to the Australian National Audit Office, in the public sector, energy, paper, water, treatment of waste, office equipment, and property activities necessitate continuing environmental management. The risk assessment of agency supports several policy obligations and legal requirements (Nicolle, 2016).

Policy Statement

The given environmental sustainability policy is all-inclusive development to enhance the sustainable performance of the agency and mitigates the high-risk environmental aspects associated with agency operations. The policy aims to facilitate a high level of stakeholder engagement in sustainable practices, to reduce pollution, and to implement a systematic environmental management approach. The policy introduces sustainability and environmental context and outlines policy and legislative obligations for department officials. 

Scope of this Policy

The sustainable policy addresses the environmental aspects of sustainable development in respect of Services Australia. Moreover, the said policy does not include provisions for health and safety as those are covered in the occupational health and safety program of the agency.

Objectives of Sustainability Policy

The objectives of this policy are to enhance the environmental performance of the Services Australia’s departments through:

  • Promotion of sustainable practices and minimisation of negative environmental impacts by implementing actions and responsibilities for department officials (Figueira et al., 2018).
  • Compliance with respective government regulation, guidelines, and by meeting the responsibilities made prerequisite by Australian government sustainable and environmental reporting.
  • Implementation of environmental standards, practices, and principles for ozone-depleting substances, supplier and material selection, greenhouse gas emissions, material waste, and waste treatment.

Energy, Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Ozone

Suppliers, Products, and Materials Used

Catering to consumer demand for services and goods needs the abstraction of raw materials from the milieu. As the department is a key consumer of resources, the claim of environmental standards in procurement for sustainable services and products will facilitate the enhancement of environmental performance in supply chains (So, Lee & Chow, 2019).

Legislative and Policy Authority

  • Product stewardship act
  • Energy efficiency in government operations policy
  • Australian government ICT sustainability plan
  • National environmental protection measures
  • State government environmental protection legislation and regulations such as protection of environment operations act

Department Officials – Responsibilities and Actions

This section mentions the essential activities for department administrators to ensure compliance with government policy and legislation.

  1. Department officials are directly responsible for managing and establishing stationery contracts
  • Compliance with abovementioned legislation, policies, and regulations
  • Procurement of recyclable office copy paper
  • Procure products which reduce or eliminate environmentally sensitive material such as cadmium, lead, and mercury
  • Application of procedures to properly manage resource demand and consumption thus increasing the product efficiency and utilization
  • Procurement of products with durability and design features that reduce their environmental impact.

Environment and Sustainability Context

Energy Use

The demand for environmental and energy and their effects are closely related to one another. The usage of transmission and fuels affects the overall environment on regional, local, and global levels. Clayton & Radcliffe (2018) mentioned that in Australia, there will be greater emphasis on energy efficiency as with increasing demand for energy.

Legislative and Policy Authority

This part mentions the key government policies and legislation that are relevant for greenhouse gas emission, energy use, and ozone depletion.

  • Building energy efficiency disclosure act 2010
  • Energy efficiency in government operations policy
  • Australian government data centre strategy and data centre optimisation policy
  • Building energy efficiency disclosure act (Howes et al., 2017)
  • Ozone protection and synthetic greenhouse gas management act

Department Officials – Responsibilities and Actions

This section mentions the required actions for department officials to ensure compliance with government policy and legislation.

  1. Department officials are directly responsible for building maintenance and management
  • Compliance with abovementioned regulations, policies, and legislation
  • Providing for major greenhouse initiatives and energy efficiency through annual budgeting processes and business planning.
  • Ensure testing and assessment with the National Australian Built Environmental Rating System.
  • Where possible, replace the air conditioning system which contains refrigerants to be phased out under the Montreal Protocol for Ozone Depleting Substances.
  • Making effective use of blinds and curtains to optimize the heating system and air conditioner efficiency.

Implementation Strategy

The sustainability implementation plan describes further details regarding the way sustainability policy is to be implemented, integrated, managed, and reported.

Objective:

· Reducing energy use

· Reducing electricity use by 3% per annum (FY20/21)

· Reducing gas use by 5% (FY20/21)

Action Required

Associated Target

Resource

Timeline

Accountability

Installing solar panel

Elimination or at least reducing emissions from electricity

Installing solar panels

2.5 years

Director, Building

Using efficient lights

Up to 13% reduction in emissions

Changing lights to energy-efficient standard to reduce energy consumption

1-2 years

Director, Building

Switch off ideal appliances

Appliances can account for 12% of electricity. Switching off ideal appliances will save 45kg of greenhouse gases (Dovers & Hussey, 2016)

Educating staff members regarding their responsibility of switching off ideal appliances

1 year

Staff members

Sharing information on energy and savings with staff members

Teaching staff members on energy savings and to show them their responsibilities

Presentation for dispersing information and educating staff members(Meuleman & Niestroy, 2019)

1 year

Staff members

Objective:

· Reducing landfill waste

· Increasing recycling and reuse

· Reducing the use of harmful or toxic products and materials

· Reducing water use by 3% (FY20/21)

Action Required

Associated Target

Resource

Timeline

Accountability

Recycling all material possible

Recycling containers and paper to reduce waste to landfill by 25%

Paperless workflow software

Review paper purchase during printing contract (Nye & Mulvaney, 2016)

1 year

All staff

Procuring recycled products

Using sustainable paper products

Purchasing second-hand items

Post-consumer recycled fibre

Products with virgin fibre

Recycled time building

Furniture made from recycled timbers

1year

All staff

Implementing the framework principles in 3 key consumable material contracts

 

Reviewing the consumable contract and discerning 3 contracts with considerable social and environmental opportunities

2 years

CFO,

Director Building

Best practice recycling in refurbishment and construction

60% recycling of waste from other minor work projects and refurbishments

Renewal contracts and scope for construction to include best practice recycling targets (Lee & Hageman, 2018)

1 year

Director Building

Water audits

Increasing water efficiency

Implement high priority actions from water audits

2 years

Director

Building

Training Provided To Staff Members

To effectively implement sustainability policy, management needs to provide adequate training to staff members to support the indicated changes.

  • Staff members should be able to use Lynx system
  • Staff members should be able to utilize video conference equipment

Communication with Staff via Presentation

Developing a “no plastic bag” policy to mitigate the impact on the environment and survey single-use plastic to develop a baseline and monitor progress against the baseline. Moreover, staff members should be motivated to use less plastic and other non-recyclable materials.

Monitoring Strategy

Description of objective

Responsible person

Metric

Baseline

Target

Data collection method

Reducing energy use

CFO

Reducing electricity use by 0.16%/month

187380MWH for electricity and 3278GJ for gas used in previous years

Reducing electricity use by 3%

Monty reports on gas and electricity usage

Engaging and inspiring

HR

Providing training and workshops

 

Engaging staff members in supporting sustainability targets

Monthly tests

Record keeping

IT manager

All relevant files need to be recorded in a file or computer

Only some files were recorded

To have a proper record in folders or computers

Monthly reports

The sustainability policy of Services Australia mentioned above, describes organizational inefficiencies and opportunities for improvement in sustainability practices. In addition to this, the policy also describes the development process of sustainability policy, along with the communication plan and an implementation plan for Services Australia.

References for Sustainable Development Policy 

Australian Government. (n.d.). Services Australia. Retrieved from https://www.servicesaustralia.gov.au/

Bourne, L. (2016). Stakeholder relationship management: a maturity model for organisational implementation. CRC Press.

Clayton, T., & Radcliffe, N. (2018). Sustainability: a systems approach. Routledge.

Dovers, S., & Hussey, K. (2016). Environment and sustainability: a policy handbook. Federation Press.

Epstein, E., Freeman, R. E., Jensen, M. C., Laplume, A. O., Sonpar, K., Litz, R. A., ... & Tung, V. (2017). The future of stakeholder management theory: A temporal Perspective. Business Ethics Quarterly10(1), i-xiii.

Figueira, I., Domingues, A. R., Caeiro, S., Painho, M., Antunes, P., Santos, R., ... & Ramos, T. B. (2018). Sustainability policies and practices in public sector organisations: The case of the Portuguese Central Public Administration. Journal of Cleaner Production202, 616-630.

Harrison, J. S., Barney, J. B., Freeman, R. E., & Phillips, R. A. (Eds.). (2019). The Cambridge handbook of stakeholder theory. Cambridge University Press.

Howes, M., Wortley, L., Potts, R., Dedekorkut-Howes, A., Serrao-Neumann, S., Davidson, J., ... & Nunn, P. (2017). Environmental sustainability: a case of policy implementation failure?. Sustainability9(2), 165.

Lee, W. E., & Hageman, A. M. (2018). Talk the talk or walk the walk? An examination of sustainability accounting implementation. Journal of Business Ethics152(3), 725-739.

Lehtinen, J., Aaltonen, K., & Rajala, R. (2019). Stakeholder management in complex product systems: Practices and rationales for engagement and disengagement. Industrial Marketing Management79, 58-70.

Marchese, D., Reynolds, E., Bates, M. E., Morgan, H., Clark, S. S., & Linkov, I. (2018). Resilience and sustainability: Similarities and differences in environmental management applications. Science of the Total Environment613, 1275-1283.

McManners, P. J. (2016). Developing policy integrating sustainability: A case study into aviation. Environmental Science & Policy57, 86-92.

Meuleman, L., & Niestroy, I. (2019). Economics and governance for sustainability. Public Sector Economics43(4), 337-343.

Nicoll, P. (2016). Audit in a democracy: the Australian model of public sector audit and its application to emerging markets. Routledge.

Nye, M. B., & Mulvaney, K. K. (2016). Who is Next? Identifying Communities with the Potential for Increased Implementation of Sustainability Policies and Programs. Sustainability8(2), 182.

So, W. W. M., Lee, J. C. K., & Chow, C. F. (2019). Environmental Sustainability and Education for Waste Management. In Environmental Sustainability and Education for Waste Management (pp. 1-11). Springer, Singapore.

Sroufe, R., & Joseph, S. (Eds.). (2017). Strategic sustainability: the state of the art in corporate environmental management systems. Routledge.

Teh, D., & Corbitt, B. (2015). Building sustainability strategy in business. Journal of Business Strategy.

van Niekerk, M., & Getz, D. (2019). Generic Stakeholder Management Strategies.

Wicks, A. C., Elmore, F. A., & Jonas, D. A. V. I. D. (2019). Connecting stakeholder theory to the law and public policy. Cambridge Handbook of Stakeholder Theory, 97-116.

Remember, at the center of any academic work, lies clarity and evidence. Should you need further assistance, do look up to our Global Sustainability Studies Assignment Help

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