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Gender Equality Action Plan Guidance for Tenderers - Suppliers

Understand how to complete the Gender Equality Action Plan when preparing tender responses.

Gender Equality Action Plan

A Gender Equality Action Plan helps to achieve workplace gender equality by:

  • planning for gender equality
  • implementing strategies
  • measuring change.

The Building Equality Policy requires Tenderers to complete the following steps:

  • Organisation Wide Workplace Gender Audit
  • Organisation Wide Gender Equality Action Plan
  • Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plan

There are similar obligations under the Victorian Gender Equality Act 2020External Link and the Commonwealth Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012External Link .

Step 1 – Complete Organisation Wide Workplace Gender Audit

What is a Workplace Gender Audit?

A Workplace Gender Audit is a template which uses data to provide a snapshot of gender balance within the Tenderers organisation.

The audit template uses 7 key indicators. These include data on:

  • Gender pay equity
  • Gender composition at all levels of the workforce
  • Gender composition of governing bodies
  • Sexual harassment
  • Recruitment and promotion
  • Gendered workforce segregation
  • Leave and flexibility

Collecting data to complete the Organisation Wide Workplace Gender Audit

Gather data against the 7 indicators. Data collection must be based on gender-disaggregated data. This is data that separately identifies women, men, and gender diverse people.

If some data cannot be collected, Tenderers should:

  • Note this in in their Gender Equality Action Plan
  • Include strategies to improve data quality and gaps in their Gender Equality Action Plan

How the audit results inform the Gender Equality Action Plans

The Organisation Wide Workplace Gender Audit is the basis for building the Organisation Wide Gender Equality Action Plans. It highlights what the Tenderer does well and identifies gaps and areas for improvement.

In completing the Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plan at the time of tender, Tenderers are encouraged to use the Organisation Wide Workplace Audit as a tool to forecast data.

Tender submission and templates

The Organisational Wide Workplace Gender Audit must be submitted at tender time.

Step 2 - Complete the Organisation Wide Gender Equality Action Plan

What is a Gender Equality Action Plan?

The Gender Equality Action Plan maps out how gender equality can be achieved by

  • Implementing strategies
  • Ensuring accountability
  • Measuring change

There are two Gender Equality Action Plans required to be completed:

  1. Organisation Wide Gender Equality Action Plan
  2. Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plan

Why should Gender Equality Action Plans be developed?

The Organisation Wide and Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plans provide written strategies for how organisations will create a more gender equal workplace.

Completing the Organisation Wide Gender Equality Action Plan

In completing the Gender Equality Action Plans, Tenderers must ensure they:

  • Include the results of the Organisational Wide Workplace Gender Audit within their Organisation Wide Gender Equality Plan
  • Provided a minimum of one strategy to address each mandatory action
  • Provided any relevant documents to support the strategy
  • Comply with legal obligations, under relevant industrial instruments, to consult with employees and unions about major workplace changes
  • Assign and document the role that will be accountable for implementing, monitoring, reporting, and driving progress for each mandatory action
  • Ensure clear timelines for each strategy
  • Ensure the Gender Equality Action Plan is endorsed and signed by an Authorised Officer
  • Submit the Gender Equality Action Plan as part of the Social Procurement Framework commitments

Tender Submission and Templates

The Organisation Wide Gender Equality Action Plan must be submitted at tender time.

Step 3 – Complete the Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plan

Using the indicators from the Organisational Wide Workplace Gender Audit data to inform the Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plan

A Project Specific Workplace Gender Audit is not required at tender stage. It is only undertaken by the successful contractor at practical completion.

Tenderers are encouraged to use the Organisation Wide Workplace Audit as a tool to forecast data to inform the Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plan.

Completing the Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plan

The steps in completing a Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plan are listed above in section Completing the Organisation Wide Gender Equality Action Plan.

Tender Submission and Templates

The Project Specific Gender Equality Action Plan must be submitted at tender time.

Additional information

Consultation obligations

Tenderers must comply with their legal obligations under relevant industrial instruments to consult with employees and unions about major workplace changes that are likely to have a significant effect on their employment. Many enterprise agreements have consultation mechanisms with employees and unions, such as consultative committees.

Industrial instruments - The Fair Work Act 2009 provides for various types of industrial instruments that cover employees and contain minimum terms and conditions of employment. Industrial instruments include an award, an enterprise agreement, a public sector industrial agreement, a former industrial agreement, a contract determination or a contract agreement.

Employees (and their unions) will be better placed to respond quickly and positively to proposed workplace changes where they feel they are informed and have had an opportunity to contribute to how those changes will be implemented.

Consultation obligations also arise under occupational health and safety legislation.

Other relevant Victorian and Commonwealth laws

When conducting a Workplace Gender Audit or developing a Gender Equality Action Plan, consideration must be given to the legal obligations under relevant Commonwealth and State legislation and industrial instruments.

Help and Support

For more information on responding to the Gender Equality Action Plans, contact the Gender Equality Commission.

Access the Building Equality Policy - Defined terms for more information.

Reviewed 12 May 2022

Buying for Victoria

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