Mobile Communications

Approval Date
28 July 2022
Approved By
Chief Executive
Next Review
30 July 2024
Chief Information Officer
Baldrige Criteria

To provide policy and procedures outlining the accepted business and private use of Otago Polytechnic Limited (Ltd) Communications equipment.  Failure to comply with this policy may be a breach of Otago Polytechnic Ltd’s Code of Conduct.


Unsolicited Electronic Messages Act 2007, and all subsequent amendments.


Mobile Phones/Devices

1. Where required, a mobile phone/device will be provided by Otago Polytechnic Ltd. Staff members that are required to receive an organisationally provided mobile device should satisfy some or all the following criteria:

  • Required to be contactable at all hours.
  • Role requires the staff member to be mobile across campus and must be contactable during business hours.
  • Require a mobile device for health and wellbeing reasons.
  • A Formal Leader where staff members rely on contacting them in a timely manner
  • Customer engagement outside of business hours or internationally.

2. Where a mobile phone/device is provided Otago Polytechnic Ltd will not pay for home landline rentals or calls.

3. The relevant college/department/school or business unit will fund all costs associated with the use of the mobile phone/device including purchase, monthly plan, call, text, and data costs where these costs are related to work activity. These costs are updated and published regularly in the Otago Polytechnic Ltd service knowledgebase - search ‘mobile’.

4. Password/pin security must be enabled on the mobile phone/device to secure the device and data stored on the device. The user is responsible for the care and safekeeping of the mobile phone/device and for all calls and activities made from it.

5. Devices must be set up to use the Otago Polytechnic Ltd OP-Mobile or the Eduroam wireless network when within range rather than the cellular data.

6. All mobile phone/device purchases and voice/data contracts must be made through the preferred supplier. Exceptions must be agreed by the Chief Information Officer.

7. Mobile phone numbers will be published in Otago Polytechnic Ltd directories unless there are specific security/privacy reasons why they should not be. Exceptions will be approved by the staff member’s Formal Leader.

8. Prior to making an International call the staff member should consider if this is the most effective method of communication or whether other internet-based calling/video systems or similar should be used such as Microsoft Teams.

9. It is recognised that from time-to-time staff member(s) will need to make private local and national calls to landlines and other mobile phones/devices. It is expected that these calls will be as brief as practicable, and that staff member should use their discretion.

9.1 Subject to the calls being of a reasonable number and duration calls are permitted with no charge being passed on to the staff member.

9.2 If the issue arises as to reasonableness, reasonable use will be determined on a case-by-case basis by the staff member’s Formal Leader having regard to the staff member’s circumstances.

9.3 Costs on the staff member’s mobile phone/device account will be summarised and sent to the staff member on a monthly statement, for personal payment.

10. The decision on the default type of mobile phone/device and specification for the organisation will be made by the Chief Information Officer based on the mobile hardware refresh cycles and fit for purpose technology requirements.

10.1 The organisationally chosen default supported mobile hardware will become the benchmark cost for staff member’s mobile phones/ devices, this will also set the maximum amount payable by Otago Polytechnic Ltd for mobile phones/devices. The current benchmark hardware will be updated and published regularly in Otago Polytechnic Ltd service knowledgebase - search ‘mobile’.

10.2 Staff members can contribute personal funds to make up the cost difference between the benchmark cost and the total value should they choose to buy a higher cost mobile phone/device. If this occurs the mobile phone/device remains the property of Otago Polytechnic Ltd until it is either retired, after four (4) years in service, or the staff member ceases employment at which time the Mobile Phone Depreciation Table applies (refer to Guidelines). By contributing to the total cost of a mobile phone/device the staff member is agreeing to these conditions.

10.3 The staff member can purchase their own mobile phone/device outright if it is compatible with the Otago Polytechnic Ltd’s mobile networks. Eligibility for connection to contract still applies as per Clause 1 along with all other aspects of this policy excluding section 10. Note also where mobile phone/device is independently owned all support (i.e., Vodafone support), repair and replacement is at the staff members’ cost.


11. No staff member is to use an Otago Polytechnic Ltd mobile phone/device for the purpose of illegal transactions, harassment, or obscene behaviour, in accordance with other Otago Polytechnic Ltd policies. This includes mobile txt donation services.

12. Where the staff member is on overseas travel they may, with their Formal Leader’s approval, use a workplace mobile phone/device being careful to utilise the best rates for roaming. All staff members expecting to travel overseas for business must visit the Otago Polytechnic Ltd mobile carrier’s website to ascertain mobile costs and requirements prior to travelling.

13. Mobile phones/devices in vehicles - refer to Driving and Vehicle Safety policy.

14. Email to Short Message Service (SMS): Otago Polytechnic Ltd provides an organisational approach to the sending and receiving of SMS messages using Microsoft Dynamics CRM or This system is for business use and must not be used for personal messaging under any circumstances.

15. All Otago Polytechnic Ltd staff members using mobile phone/device agree to operate within the limits set in the monthly plan allocations. This can change from time to time, the latest information is available from Otago Polytechnic Ltd service knowledgebase - search ‘mobile’. 


16. If an Otago Polytechnic Ltd owned mobile phone/device is damaged, lost, or stolen, it must be reported immediately to Information Support Services (ISS). The staff member’s Formal Leader will determine if the repair/replacement costs will be met by the mobile phone/device staff member or by Otago Polytechnic Ltd.

17. ISS can arrange for repair or replacement of the staff member’s mobile phone/device and have low-cost contracts in place to reduce retail prices for repairs.

18. In the case where the staff member has contributed to the overall cost of the device, refer sub-clause 10.2, the staff member is required to cover fully any repair or replacement costs to ensure they remain contactable with a fully functional mobile phone/device.

Computer Voice and Video

Teams, Sessional Initiation Protocol (SIP) Phones, Unified Communications: Teams is the preferred platform for calls. This along with the term SIP, are all interchangeable for the purposes of this policy.

19. All Otago Polytechnic Ltd staff members are allocated a Team’s account on commencement of employment irrespective of what campus they work at or are remote. In addition to this all staff members are provided with a headset to use with their computer.

20. Teams allows free national calling, and free calling to Vodafone mobiles. Costs will be incurred and charged for international, and mobiles calls to non-Vodafone mobiles. You can however “call” internationally free through the creation of a meeting rather than dialling a number.

21. Staff members may make personal calls using Teams provided they do not incur a cost to Otago Polytechnic Ltd, and that the length of call does not impede work time.

22. Teams as well as providing voice calling capability also provides video conferencing facilities and should be used as a preference to travelling or making national or international phone calls to non-Vodaphone mobiles, where applicable.

23. Teams is the only supported unified conferencing solution offered by Otago Polytechnic Ltd. This detail can be found in the Otago Polytechnic Ltd service knowledgebase - search ‘supported systems’.



Payment of personal communications costs

 Costs on Mobiles:

  • Costs occurring on the staff member's mobile account will be summarised into a personalised statement monthly for payment at Registry.
  • Staff members are required to pay for all roaming costs related to personal trips
  • Payment for other incurred costs is at the discretion of the staff member’s Formal Leader/Budget Holder.

 Costs on Business lines:

  • Costs incurred on the staff member’s computer phone for personal use (Teams) will be passed on to the staff member.
  • Payment for incurred costs is at the discretion of the staff member's Formal Leader/Budget Holder.

 Payment Procedure:

  • Payment for personal calls must be made prior to both the due date of the account and Financial Services - Accounts Payable monthly close off.
  • The amount of reimbursement must have Goods and Services Tax (GST) added as Otago Polytechnic Ltd is unable to include personal calls in its GST input tax claim.
  • Payment can be made at the Forth Street or Cromwell Campus Customer Services desk.
  • Payment can only be made by EFTPOS only
  • A copy of the reimbursement receipt should be attached to the original invoice and forwarded to the college/department/school administrator for processing. 

Mobile Phone Depreciation Table 

End of Year 1

Benchmark cost less 25% payable by staff member

End of Year 2

Benchmark cost less 50% payable by staff member

End of Year 3

Benchmark cost less 75% payable by staff member

End of Year 4

Written off $0 Payable


megan gibbons signature

Approved by:
Dr. Megan Gibbons
Chief Executive
28 July 2022

Policy Version: V3: Previously Coded: MP0311