Mobile Communications

Approval Date
1 October 2019
Approved By
Chief Executive
Next Review
1 September 2022
Chief Information Officer
Baldrige Criteria

Payment of personal communications costs

Costs on Mobiles:

  • Costs occurring on your mobile account will be summarised into a personalised statement monthly for payment at customer services.
  • You are required to pay for all roaming costs related to personal trips
  • Payment for other incurred costs is at the discretion of your formal leader/ budget holder.

Costs on Business lines:

  • Costs incurred on your computer phone for personal use (Skype for business or Teams) should be recorded by the call maker and made aware to ISS, so on receipt of the months invoice the true cost can be assessed, and passed on to the person.
  • Payment for incurred costs is at the discretion of your formal leader/ budget holder.

Payment Procedure:

  • Payment for personal calls must be made prior to both the due date of account and Finance - Accounts Payable monthly close off.
  • The amount of reimbursement must have GST added as the Polytechnic 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 be made by cash and EFTPOS only
  • A copy of the reimbursement receipt should be attached to the original invoice and forwarded to the appropriate 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


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


Unsolicited Electronic Messages Act 2007, and all subsequent amendments.


Mobile Phones/Devices

     Where eligible, a mobile phone/device will be provided by Otago Polytechnic Ltd. Staff that are eligible for provision of an organisationally provided mobile phone/device should satisfy some or all the following criteria:

1.1      Required to be contactable at all hours

1.2      Role requires you are mobile across campus and must be contactable during business hours

1.3      Require a mobile device for health and wellbeing reasons

1.4      A formal leader where staff rely on contacting you in a timely manner

1.5      Customer engagement outside of business hours or internationally.

   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.  These costs are updated and published regularly in the Otago Polytechnic Ltd service knowledgebase - search ‘mobile’.

     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.

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

     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 and by the staff member’s Formal Leader.

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.

     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.

9      It is recognised that from time to time staff 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 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 the reasonableness, reasonable use will be determined on a case by case basis by the staff member’s formal leader having regard to the individual staff member’s circumstances.

9.3      Costs on your mobile phone/device account will be summarised to you on a monthly statement, for personal payment.

10   The decision on the type of mobile phone/device and specification levels 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 supported mobile hardware will become the benchmark cost for staff 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 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 person ceases employment at which time the following cost depreciation table applies. 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. Note also where mobile phone/device is independently owned all support (i.e. Vodafone support), repair and replacement is at the owners’ 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 policies. This includes mobile txt donation services.

12   Where staff are 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 expecting to travel overseas for business must visit our mobile carrier’s website to ascertain mobile costs and requirements prior to travelling.

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

14   Email to 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 mobile phone/device users 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 to section 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, 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 are allocated a Teams account on commencement of employment irrespective of what campus they work at or are remote. In addition to this, all staff 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 mobile calls to non-Vodafone mobiles.

21   Staff 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 facilitates and should be used as a preference to be 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’.


Approved by:
Phil Ker
Chief Executive