4 key Fair Work changes that will impact hospitality

Are you paying your hospitality workers correctly?

You may or may not have heard recently that the Fair Work Commission is in the midst of a nation-wide crackdown on various industries notorious for underpaying their employees.  Hospitality is just one of the industries in the firing line.

The Fair Work Ombudsman has already commenced legal proceedings against former operators of two food retail outlets after failing to back-pay their employees.  Barry Scott Distributors Pty Ltd which operated a fish and chip takeaway shop and a diner were found to have underpaid three employees more than $17,000.  The Commission is now seeking Court Orders for Barry Scott Distributors to pay the employees all entitlements allegedly owed, plus interest.

National Minimum Wage Order

The Fair Work Commission have now released the revised National Wage Order for 2014 and takes effect from the first full pay period from July 1st 2014.  Here is a breakdown on how four key areas of the amendments may impact your hospitality business:

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Impact on Enterprise Agreements

  • Employers should ensure the base wage paid under any Enterprise Agreement does not fall below the new applicable minimum wages from 1 July 2014.
  • The increase in the minimum wage rate may be absorbed into any existing over-award payments paid under either an award or agreement (care should be taken to check there are appropriate award over-payment set-off clauses in the relevant instrument and to ensure the over-payment is not already directed towards other purposes).

The Fair Work Information Statement

Employers have a legal obligation to give every new employee a copy of the Fair Work Information Statement before, or as soon as possible after they commence in their new job.  The Fair Work Information Statement provides new employees with information about their conditions of employment including:

  • Workplace entitlements in the National Employment Standards (NES)
  • Right to request flexible working arrangements
  • Modern awards
  • Agreement making
  • Individual flexibility arrangements
  • Freedom of association and workplace rights (general protections)
  • Termination of employment
  • Right of entry
  • The Fair Work Ombudsman and the Fair Work Commission

If you have any questions or concerns regarding the new statement amendments, contact us at info@dws.net.au or call 07 3878 9355.

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