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COVID-19 staff check-in survey

Image: working from home

Survey overview

Federation University is committed to the ongoing safety and welfare of our workforce during the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic.

Our first COVID-19 staff check-in survey was launched in May 2020. This feedback informed the development of a comprehensive suite of health and wellbeing initiatives to support managers and staff in adapting to new ways of working.

The November 2020 survey is now closed.  This survey allowed staff to provide feedback about how the University has supported their health and wellbeing over the past six months, and what we can do to continue to care for staff into 2021.

The November survey, open to all Federation University staff, will be benchmarked against our May 2020 results.

As we become more familiar with new ways of working and connecting, open and honest feedback will inform how we continue to evolve as a University community to ensure that the health and wellbeing of our staff remains a priority.

We look forward to sharing the results of the second COVID-19 staff check-in survey with you.

Survey draw

For those staff who also entered the draw for the chance to win a $50.00 gift voucher, I am pleased to announce the following winners.

Congratulations to:
  • Anne Churchill, School of Health, Berwick Campus;
  • Bernadette Willans, Teaching Quality and Innovation, Brisbane Campus;
  • Paula Di Maria, Graduate Research School, Gippsland Campus;
  • Tanveer Choudhury, School of Engineering, IT and Physical Sciences, Gippsland Campus;
  • Emma Foster, University Registrar's Directorate, Mt Helen Campus;
  • Sean Thangaswami, Information Technology Services, Mt Helen Campus;
  • David Scannell, Federation TAFE, SMB Campus; and
  • Francesca Suffield, Federation TAFE, Wimmera Campus.

We hope you will use your voucher to support a local business, with something that enhances your health and wellbeing.  Enjoy!

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

How long will the check-in survey take me to complete?

The survey will take you around 5 to 10 minutes to complete.

How long will the check-in survey be open?

The survey will be open from Wednesday, 18 November 2020 (7:00 am) and close Sunday, 29 November 2020 (11:45 pm).

Who should complete the check-in survey?

All staff members are invited to complete the survey across the higher education and TAFE sectors. This includes all continuing, fixed-term, casual and sessional staff.

How do I get access to the check-in survey?

Every staff member will receive an email with a link to the live online survey on the launch date, or you can access the survey using the staff check-in survey link.

How do I participate?

Simply use the staff check-in survey link on your PC or mobile phone to begin completing the check-in survey.

Is this check-in survey confidential?

Yes, the survey is anonymous and confidential. It is administered by Voice Project. All answers go directly to Voice Project, who will analyse the results for us.

Individual ratings will be aggregated, and free text comments will be collated by staff classification (e.g. academic, general/professional or TAFE teaching staff).

Voice Project consultants are bound by the code of ethics of the Australian Psychological Society, and the Psychology Board of Australia.

Who will see my responses?

All answers go directly to the Voice Project team, who will analyse the results for us. Federation staff members cannot be identified by their responses.

Information is collected at the high level and will only be analysed for groups with 10 or more responses. Information is not combined in a way that could identify individuals.

What is the purpose of the text comments provided by staff?

The purpose of the comments section is to understand what is working well and what we can do further to continue to support your health and wellbeing.

The level of detail provided in your text comments is up to you. It will not be identifiable from the demographics being collected.
In providing your feedback, please do not mention names or provide any information that would enable individuals, including yourself, to be identified.

Is the survey compulsory?

No, the check-in survey is not compulsory. However, we strongly encourage you to participate, so that we may get a high response rate. This will make sure that we are acting on collective feedback, and that any actions taken reflect the views of all staff.

What can I expect to happen following the survey?

The survey will provide insight into ensuring the health and wellbeing of our staff remains a priority during this pandemic and will highlight suggestions on ways we can improve. Survey outcomes will also be benchmarked against the May 2020 results. There will be further communication post the survey period.

About the survey

This is a pulse survey sponsored by the Director, Human Resources. We are working with the VOICE Project to ascertain the health and wellbeing of our staff during this COVID-19 pandemic period. This is not a staff engagement survey.

May 2020 check-in survey

Survey overview

As part of our commitment to the ongoing safety and welfare of our workforce, Federation University launched the COVID-19 staff check-in survey on Thursday, 30 April 2020 through our independent third party provider, the VOICE project.

This was an opportunity to understand how staff are coping and adjusting to new ways of working and connecting, as well as the cumulative impact on their health and wellbeing, as we continue to adapt to changes necessitated by COVID-19.

Thank you to everyone who participated.  The response was extremely pleasing, with a total of 1,033 staff (53%) completing the questionnaire, and 681 staff (35%) answering the qualitative questions on how to continue supporting staff moving forward.

Key findings: Wellbeing and organisational performance results

The following is an overview of the high-level findings:


Overall, the survey results indicate that 78% of respondents are feeling good and have a moderate to a high sense of safety at this time.  93% of respondents indicated they feel safe carrying out their roles and 74% felt they were coping well with the disruption due to COVID-19.

Organisational performance (progress)

Staff perceptions of the university’s performance were also moderate to highly favourable (79%).  80% of respondents believe workplace changes associated with COVID-19 have been managed well and 85% are confident that the university will be able to continue supporting students. 70% of respondents perceive the future of the university as positive.

Respondents also rated the following COVID-19 adaptive practices as moderately to highly favourable:

  • Staff communication (81%) in particular communication regarding changes in how staff are to work and operate during COVID-19 (90%)
  • Access to resources (83%) ranging from job information (87%), equipment (83%) and technology to work from home (87%)
  • Health and safety (85%) with 88% of respondents indicating they know where to get help if feeling emotionally unwell or unsafe and 87% being aware of the processes to follow should they become unwell
  • Supervision (85%) specifically related to communication and support received from line managers/supervisors during this period
  • Co-worker collaboration (84%) related to communication (90%) and working together effectively (88%) during the disruption caused by COVID-19
  • Involvement (79%) overall respondents felt encouraged to give feedback about things that concern them (80%) and empowered to make decisions needed to do their jobs well (79%)
  • Work/life balance (75%) while the university has flexible work arrangements to meet staff needs (82%), balancing family responsibilities with work expectations (75%) and having manageable workloads (69%) were seen as more of a challenge.


In summary, Federation University has successfully responded to the COVID-19 pandemic by proactively supporting the health and safety of staff, while managing university operations through adaptive and innovative initiatives and processes.  Staff have clearly indicated that they recognise and acknowledge what has been put in place to support their productivity and wellbeing.

Emerging is an ongoing need to remain attentive and continue with current communication, resourcing and management practices to maintain staff wellbeing.  This is especially important as concerns around return to campus, job security and changing workloads are likely to increase stress levels.

Priority areas for ongoing focus and/or improvement include:

  • Work/life balance – continue to look for ways to support staff to manage their mental health, workloads and balance their family and carer responsibilities with work expectations
  • Work processes – greater clarity around health and safety guidelines and processes for how staff and students will transition back to campus including the way work will be delivered from an IT systems and workload management perspective
  • Involvement – continue to look for ways to include and empower managers and staff to make decisions needed to effectively manage their work areas and perform their jobs well.

Survey draw

For those staff who also entered the draw for the chance to win a $50.00 gift voucher, I am pleased to announce the following winners.

Congratulations to:
  • Robyn Lampard, Academic Services and Support, Berwick Campus;
  • Naomi Cunningham, Teaching Quality, Brisbane Campus;
  • Liana Brennan, Student Experience, Gippsland Campus;
  • Steve Burgiel, Information Technology Services, Gippsland Campus;
  • Alexandra Price, Marketing, Mt Helen Campus;
  • Ean Ooi, School of Engineering, Information Technology and Physical Sciences, Mt Helen Campus;
  • Stephen Clarke, Federation TAFE, SMB Campus; and
  • Emily Innes, Federation TAFE, Corrections, Wimmera Campus.

We hope you will use your voucher to support a local business, with something that enhances your health and wellbeing.  Enjoy!


If you have questions about the staff check-in survey, please contact Shelley Nash by email ( or phone +61 3 5327 9514.