The total is to be calculated from pay period figures. The length of the pay period is assumed to be a fortnight.
Full-time equivalent staff units are the on-job hours paid for (including overtime) and hours of paid leave of any type for a staff member (or contract employee where applicable) divided by the number of ordinary-time hours normally paid for a full-time staff member when on the job (or contract employee where applicable) under the relevant award or agreement for the staff member (or contract employee occupation where applicable). Hours of unpaid leave are to be excluded.
Contract staff employed through an agency are included where the contract is for the supply of labour (e.g. nursing) rather than of products (e.g. photocopier maintenance). In the former case, the contract would normally specify the amount of labour supplied and could be reported as full-time equivalent units.
Data on full-time equivalent staffing numbers by category should be consistent with data on salaries and wages by staffing category. If the full-time equivalent for contract staff is not collected then salaries for those contract staff should be included in other recurrent expenditure data items.
Where staff provide services to more than one hospital (for Public hospitals NMDS) or service unit (for Mental health establishments NMDS), full-time equivalent staff members should be apportioned between all establishments to which services are provided on the basis of hours paid for in each (salary costs should be apportioned on the same basis).
This metadata item was amended during 1996-97. Until then, both average and end of year counts of full-time equivalent staff were included, and the end of year counts used as surrogates for the average counts if the latter were unavailable. The average count is more useful for accurate analysis of staffing inputs for establishment outputs and for assessments and comparisons of labour costs.