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For the record: your employee’s personal information.

For the record: your employee’s personal information. (Last Updated On: July 29, 2016)

As an employer you will need to request personal information from a potential or current employee. The information gathered must always be compliant with relevant legislation such as the Privacy Act 1998 and must be used for legitimate reasons only.

What is workplace privacy?

Employers will have access to personal information about employees. This information may be sensitive and employees may wish to keep it private. This means employers will need to think about the way in which they collect, use and disclose information they obtain from employees.

What personal information can you collect?

Personal information you may need to request from your employees includes information relating to:

  • terms and conditions of employment
  • personal and emergency contact details
  • performance or conduct information
  • hours of employment and salary
  • membership of a professional or trade association
  • leave entitlements
  • taxation, banking or superannuation information

What about email and the internet?

Employee use of internet and email can raise issues about workplace privacy. Password access and login codes may give employees the impression that their email and web browsing activities during work hours are private.

Clear workplace policies can help to ensure employees understand the expectations and responsibilities that apply to email and internet use.

What should employers do?

Employers need to inform employees when personal information is being collected. In doing so, the employer can tell the employee why they are collecting the information and who they may pass the information to.

It is also appropriate to allow employees to access personal information about themselves and to have that information corrected or verified if it is incorrect, out of date or incomplete.

It is good practice for employers to have a privacy policy in place detailing what information is collected, the use of this information and who within your business is responsible for it. This policy may be included in employee handbooks so they are aware that personal information may be collected.

Employsure is Australia’s leading workplace relations specialist and can advise on anything relating to employee management and workplace privacy policies. If you are unsure about meeting your obligations, call us today on 1300 651 415.

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