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Background Checks and Conditions of Employment Procedure

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Section 1 - Purpose and Scope

(1) The University of Queensland (UQ) has a duty to ensure the safety and security of the UQ community and to ensure public confidence in the integrity of UQ’s business operations and functions. To achieve this, UQ may require occupants of certain positions to undergo specific background checks and/or to satisfy initial and/or ongoing conditions of employment.

(2) This Procedure outlines the background checks and conditions of employment that UQ may require.

(3) All staff undertaking recruitment, selection and appointment activities at UQ must comply with the provisions of this Procedure.

(4) This Procedure must be read in conjunction with the Recruitment, Selection and Appointment Policy and Recruitment, Selection and Appointment Procedure, and other relevant UQ policies and procedures.

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Section 2 - Process and Key Controls

(5) Background checks and conditions of employment for a position must:

  1. be determined by the Chief Human Resources Officer prior to commencing recruitment;
  2. be specified in the position description, in the position advertisement, communicated to applicants throughout the recruitment and selection process, and included in the Offer of Appointment; and
  3. include the timeframe for fulfilling these requirements.

(6) Human Resources Division must ensure that background checks are only undertaken for the preferred candidate/s prior to an Offer of Appointment.

(7) The Hiring Manager must consult Human Resources Division before requesting or undertaking a criminal history or financial background check on a preferred candidate.

(8) An Offer of Appointment will be made on the condition that the required background checks and conditions of employment are satisfactorily completed.

(9) Authorised Officers may withhold or withdraw an Offer of Appointment if:

  1. the preferred candidate/s does not obtain and/or satisfy any background checks or conditions of employment; and/or
  2. the results of a background check are determined to disqualify the preferred candidate/s from being appointed.

(10) Authorised Officers may terminate an appointment if the staff member does not meet the required conditions of employment.

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Section 3 - Key Requirements

Background Checks and Conditions of Employment

(11) Background checks and conditions of employment at UQ include:

  1. identity verification, including photo identification;
  2. right to work verification;
  3. criminal history checks;
  4. Working with Children (Blue Card);
  5. health screening and ongoing health surveillance;
  6. occupational immunisation or disease screening requirements;
  7. vaccine preventable disease (VPD) screening;
  8. fit and proper person checks (biosafety, medicines and poisons etc);
  9. radiation licence safety check;
  10. financial background checks;
  11. qualifications and Professional Registration verification;
  12. sanctioned countries check;
  13. confirmation of Aboriginality and/or Torres Strait Islander Status; and
  14. other checks and/or declarations relevant to the role.

(12) Authorised Officers and Hiring Managers are to consult Human Resources Division if they are uncertain which background checks or conditions are required for a particular role prior to commencing recruitment.

Identity Verification

(13) Preferred applicants for all positions at UQ are required to provide photo identification to verify their identity prior to or at commencement.

Right to Work Verification 

(14) Preferred applicants will be required to verify they have the right to work in Australia.

Sanctioned Countries Check 

(15) Australian sanction laws implement United Nations Security Council (UNSC) sanctions regimes and Australian autonomous sanctions regimes. 

Criminal History Checks

(16) Certain positions may be required by law, by UQ, or another organisation with which the position will interact, to satisfy a criminal history check. This will typically be a national or international criminal history check.

Working with Children Check (Blue card)

(17) Working with Children Checks will be conducted in accordance requirements specified in the Working with Children Policy and the Screening and Blue Card Management Procedure.

(18) The 'No Card, No Start' law under the Working with Children (Risk Management and Screening) Act 2000 and Regulations must be complied with at all times.

Pre-employment Medicals and ongoing Health Surveillance

(19) Pre-employment medicals may be required for positions identified as posing a potential significant health risk to the incumbent. These may include, but are not limited to, allergens, hazardous substances, infectious substances and noise. Pre-placement medicals consider only the candidate’s capacity to perform the inherent requirements of the job.

(20) Preferred applicants who require pre-employment heath checks and staff who require ongoing health surveillance during employment with UQ, are to be referred to the Occupational Health Nurse Advisor (

(21) The Health, Safety and Wellness Division can advise on the types of pre-employment health checks, screening and ongoing monitoring required for roles across UQ ( Health, Safety and Wellness (HSW) policies and procedures are available in the associated information tab above and specific information on health monitoring is available on the HSW Health Monitoring webpage.

Occupational Immunisation and Disease Screening

(22) Some roles have an increased risk of exposure to vaccine preventable disease (VPD) and require evidence of occupational immunisations and/or disease screening prior to commencement of work tasks.

(23) Non-compliance with immunisation requirements, or an inability to comply due to health reasons, may impact the ability to fulfil the requirements of the position. 

(24) Information can be found at the UQ Immunisation and disease website and Table 2: Occupational Immunisation. Further advice is available by contacting the Immunisation Record Team at

Finance Checks

(25) Some roles may require an applicant to undergo financial background checks including but not limited to:

  1. banned and disqualified check by the Australian Securities and Investment Commission; and
  2. personal insolvency check by the Australian Financial Security Authority.

(26) The Hiring Manager should contact Human Resources Division and/or Finance and Business Services for further advice.

Qualifications and Professional Registration Verification

(27) The preferred applicant must, prior to or at commencement, provide certified copies of transcripts of mandatory educational qualifications and/or mandatory professional registrations.

Confirmation of Aboriginality and/or Torres Strait Islander Status

(28) The Confirmation of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander documentation forms part of this requirement for an Identified position for the employment of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander peoples. Evidence of Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander status will normally be given under the common seal of an Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander community organisation. Where exceptional circumstances apply, statutory declarations with other forms of documentation may be considered. Original or certified copies of documentation must be provided. 

Other Checks and/or Declarations Relevant to the Role

(29) Any other background checks and/or conditions of employment unique to a particular position must be identified and approved by the Authorised Officer or as determined by the Chief Human Resources Officer prior to advertising the role and following consultation with Human Resources Division.

Outcomes of Mandatory Background Checks and Conditions of Employment

(30) Authorised Officers, in conjunction with Human Resources Division, will assess and determine a preferred applicant’s suitability for employment based on background check findings.

(31) Background checks are not utilised for the purposes of disqualifying preferred applicants on the basis of prior exercise of academic freedom or freedom of speech

(32) A conditional offer of appointment may be withdrawn if the results of the background checks are not completed or disqualify the preferred applicant/s from being appointed.

(33) Where a criminal history check indicates a record of previous criminal conviction/s, the relevant Authorised Officer, on advice from the Chief Human Resources Officer or Delegate, will determine whether an offer is made to the preferred applicant. 

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Section 4 - Roles, Responsibilities and Accountabilities

Role Actions
Authorised Officer • Determine and approve required background checks and conditions of employment in consultation with the Hiring Manager and Human Resources Division.

• Ensure any background checks and conditions of employment have been communicated to all applicants at each stage of the process.

• Review and determine the outcomes of background checks.
Hiring Manager • Determine the background checks and conditions of employment for a position prior to recruiting, in consultation with Human Resources Division.
Human Resources Division • Provide advice and assistance to the Authorised Officer and Hiring Manager.

• Co-ordinate the required background and conditions of employment checks as required.
Health, Safety and Wellness Division (HSW Division) • Provide advice on the types of pre-employment appointment screening, medicals and ongoing health surveillance required for roles across UQ.

• Provide advice regarding occupational immunisation requirements. Verify and store immunisation records.

• Fit and proper person check (for HSW related licences).

• Radiation licensing safety check.
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Section 5 - Monitoring, Review and Assurance

(34) The Chief Human Resources Officer is responsible for continuous monitoring of the effectiveness, application and improvement of this Procedure.

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Section 6 - Recording and Reporting

(35) Human Resources Division will maintain records pertaining to background checks in accordance with UQ's Information Management Policy and Privacy Management Policy.

(36) All transactions, activities and approvals are recorded via UQ’s HCMS.

(37) The health surveillance and immunisation records of individuals are retained by HSW Division in the UQ Records Management System for up to 30 years.

(38) For HSW related licences (biosafety, medicines and poisons etc), the HSW Division will retain the Fit and Proper Person Check in the appropriate UQ system for the length of the licence, or unless otherwise stated in legislation or related instrument.

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Section 7 - Appendix


Term Definition
Authorised Officer The officer authorised to exercise the relevant HR power or function in accordance with the Human Resources Sub-delegations Instrument.
Fit and Proper Person Check Is used to determine a person’s honesty, integrity and reputation in order to confirm they are fit and proper for the role they are undertaking.
Offer of Appointment A letter provided to a preferred applicant of their contract and employment conditions whereby the preferred applicant is requested to accept the offer of appointment within a specified time period.