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New Legislation Allows Casual Workers to Request Permanent Employment

Jun 18, 2024

  • 3min

New Legislation Allows Casual Workers to Request Permanent Employment

Industry News, Legislative Changes
As of August 26, 2024, a significant shift is underway in how businesses handle casual employees. The Fair Work Amendment (Closing Loopholes No 2) Bill introduces an ‘employee choice’ framework, shifting responsibility onto employees to notify their employers if they wish to convert from casual to permanent status.

Redefying Casual Employment

One of the cornerstone changes of the new legislation is the redefinition of casual employment, which now hinges on the practical nature of the employment relationship rather than contractual terms alone. This can be equated by considering work patterns, as well as the similarity in work between casual and permanent employees. This shift aims to clarify the status of casual employees and streamline the process for those seeking permanent roles.

Changes to Casual Conversion Responsibilities

Under the new framework, employers are no longer required to proactively initiate casual conversion assessments. Instead, employees must notify their employers if they believe they no longer qualify as casual and wish to convert to permanent status. This change is expected to reduce the administrative burden for employers, particularly in industries where casual employment is prevalent and often preferred by workers for its flexibility and higher pay rates.

Employment Requirements

  • Length of Employment: After six months (or twelve months for small businesses) of continuous service.
  • Dispute Resolution: No ongoing disputes with the employer regarding previous conversion requests.
  • Response History: No prior employer response to conversion requests within the past six months.

Upon receipt of a conversion request, employers must respond in writing within 21 days, either accepting or providing reasons for refusal. This process does not supersede any existing casual conversion procedures in modern awards or enterprise agreements, and disputes can be arbitrated by the Fair Work Commission (FWC).

high performing team - body image

Reasonable Grounds for Refusal

Despite the employee’s right to request conversion, employers retain the ability to refuse these requests under specific circumstances deemed fair and reasonable:

  1. Casual Definition: Under the new legislative framework, the employee still meets the criteria for casual work. This assessment must consider the actual work relationship, not just the terms stated in the contract. Factors like the ability to decline shifts or irregular work hours will be crucial in determining casual status.
  2. Operational Disruption: Employers may refuse a conversion request if transitioning a casual employee to permanent status would significantly disrupt business operations. Industries with fluctuating demands or weather-dependent work, such as retail and quarrying, are examples where maintaining a flexible workforce is essential for operational continuity.
  3. Advance Commitment: Employers can also consider whether there are full- or part-time employees performing the same duties as the casual worker requesting conversion. If such employees exist, it may indicate a firm advance commitment to ongoing work, potentially justifying a refusal to convert the casual employee.

Best Practices for Employers

To prepare for these upcoming changes, Employers should focus on these practices:

  • Understanding the New Definition: While regular work patterns may suggest a move towards permanent status, employers must assess each situation based on the practical realities of the employment relationship, not just the hours worked. This nuanced understanding will help make informed decisions regarding conversion requests.
  • Communicate Clearly: Provide a detailed written explanation of the operational reasons for refusal, emphasizing how permanent conversion could impact business flexibility.
  • Legal Compliance: Maintain accurate records that reflect the casual nature of employment, including clear contractual terms and records of casual loading payments. These records are crucial in demonstrating compliance with the new definition of casual employment and justifying any refusals.

These changes aim to balance the needs of businesses for operational flexibility with the rights of casual workers seeking greater job security. By effectively understanding and applying these new laws, businesses can navigate the complexities while minimizing legal risks.

Check Out our Leading Others Workshop!

Leading Others is an eight-week workshop series designed to help you get the most out of your team and build your leadership skills. Contact our team for more information or discuss building high-performing teams on 1800 868 254, or set up a meeting.

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Australia’s bold step toward gender pay transparency in large organisations

Jan 10, 2024

  • 2min

Australia’s bold step toward gender pay transparency in large organisations

Industry News, Legislative Changes, Talent Operations
A groundbreaking initiative to close the gender pay gap is set to take effect in Australia early this year.

Data from the Workplace Gender Equality Agency shows that as of May 2023, women in Australia earned, on average, 87 cents for every dollar men earned. Legislative changes will compel larger organisations of 100 employees or more to disclose their gender pay data, marking a crucial step in promoting transparency, accountability, and ultimately closing the gender pay gap.

Mandatory gender pay reporting will be required for organisations with workforces exceeding 100 employees starting in 2024.

Key provisions

Mandatory gender pay reporting

Starting in 2024, organisations with a workforce exceeding 100 employees will be legally required to disclose their gender pay gaps. This disclosure will encompass data illustrating the disparities in earnings between male and female employees, shedding light on any existing inequalities.

Transparency in remuneration practices

The legislation is not solely focused on revealing the pay gap but also emphasises transparency in remuneration practices. Organisations will be obligated to provide insights into their salary structures, ensuring a clear understanding of how pay decisions are made within the organisation.

Inclusion of bonuses and benefits

Unlike previous reporting mechanisms that might have excluded bonuses and benefits, the new legislation mandates a comprehensive approach. Organisations will be required to disclose not only base salaries but also additional forms of compensation, providing a more accurate representation of the total remuneration received by employees.

Sector-specific benchmarks

Recognising that pay disparities may vary across industries, the legislation allows for the establishment of sector-specific benchmarks. This tailored approach aims to facilitate more nuanced assessments and comparisons within specific sectors, fostering targeted strategies for improvement.

Expected impact 

Heightened accountability

With mandatory disclosure, organisations will face increased accountability for their gender pay practices. The transparency brought about by the legislation will empower employees, investors, and the public to hold companies accountable for fostering an equitable workplace.

Identifying and addressing disparities

The detailed data on gender pay gaps, including bonuses and benefits, will enable organisations to identify specific areas of concern. Armed with this information, organisations can implement targeted strategies to address disparities and promote a more inclusive work environment.

Catalyst for change

The legislation serves as a catalyst for cultural and systemic change within organisations. By making gender pay data publicly accessible, there is a collective push for organisations to reassess their policies, promote fairness, and work towards closing the gender pay gap.

Australia’s decision to mandate gender pay disclosure in organisations with over 100 employees from 2024 signifies a landmark move toward workplace transparency and gender equality. 

As organisations prepare for compliance, the spotlight on gender pay gaps will undoubtedly drive a renewed commitment to fair remuneration practices, creating a more inclusive and equitable workforce for the future. This legislative shift reinforces Australia’s dedication to fostering gender equality and sets a progressive example for other nations to follow.

Our team can help you create and manage your own policies and procedures. Call us on 1800 868 254 or set up a meeting to discuss how we can help you.

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Year in review – take a look at a few of our highlights of 2023

Dec 12, 2023

  • 2min

Year in review – take a look at a few of our highlights of 2023

Industry News
Total HRM team
If you’re a Spotify or Apple Music user, chances are you were eagerly awaiting your 2023 Wrapped or Replay 2023 year-in-review summary. It’s the chance to look back on what made the year memorable and maybe think about what you’d like to listen to more of next year.

For us at Total HRM, our year in review is about celebrating and reflecting on client and team milestones, additional ways we’ve supported our clients and broader business community and legal wins for our clients.

Here’s our 2023 year in review.

Total HRM team
2023 was a big year, and we’re looking forward to even more in 2024.

Team updates and milestones

There have been a few changes to the Total HRM team this year. We’ve welcomed Sarah and Rebecca to the team, each bringing a wealth of industry, HR and customer service experience. Kim celebrated five years with us, and we welcomed our youngest recruit, Amelia, to the Total HRM team, with doting dad Ash becoming a first-time parent.

As exciting as it is to welcome new faces to the team, we were just as excited to see our team members spread their wings. Tom, Felicity, and Caitlin have accepted new opportunities to further their careers. For us, it’s all about living our vision, enabling every person in every workplace to improve themselves, their team and their results.

Supporting our clients and the business community

Launch of the Training Space – our multi-purpose training, function and meeting room

The Training Space was designed to be a place for learning, connecting and sharing. It’s fully equipped with a projector, webcam and AV connectivity, so it has everything you need for a collaborative session. This year, we’ve hosted large 20 to 30-person training sessions, after-hours product launches, breakfasts, and events with in-person and virtual attendees.

Leading Others – a training series developed with the experience we’ve gained from our own leadership journeys

We’re excited to continue Leading Others in 2024. The feedback and response from this year’s session have been invaluable and overwhelmingly positive. The 10-week course helps participants develop the strong foundations to be influential leaders. Whether you’re new to a leadership role or looking to upskill, we share practical tips and best practice methods for getting the most out of your teams.

Some of the most valuable topics for participants include adding new tools to their leadership toolbox and learning to adapt their communication style based on the DiSC framework.

Onboarding new clients

In 2023, we’ve worked with around 40 new clients, from government agencies to small businesses. We’ve worked across a wide range of projects with new and existing clients, including board reviews, investigations, recruitment, process reviews, and legislation compliance. One of the largest projects we worked on involved an organisational restructuring, including executive and administrator consultation, employee structure creation, and union consultation.

Recruited over 100 new employees for our clients

Our clients trust us to find high-performing team members to fill their vacant roles. It’s no secret that 2023 was a challenging year for finding suitable candidates and achieving results like these is truly one of the best parts of what we do.

Client legal wins

A significant team milestone in 2023 was Ash’s first Fair Work case win. Ash worked on behalf of the client, guiding them throughout the entire process, including interviews, mediation and conversations with the other party.

“Because the client took our advice from the start, we were able to settle the matter with only an agreement of a statement of service to be provided by the employer. It meant that from the start, the client had a sound and defensible position in order to better defend their case and resulted in no monetary compensation being provided,” Ash said.

What’s coming up in 2024

We’re looking forward to working with our current clients and welcoming new businesses that need support across all HR functions, from strategic planning and recruitment to investigations and exit strategies.

Leading Others will continue in 2024, with the next 10-week course beginning on Thursday, 8 February. We’re running our Wraw – Workplace Resilience and Wellbeing workshops, helping you understand what resilience is, why it’s important and how to maximise your own.

Learn more about Leading Others and Wraw

Before we jump into the new year, remember to take some time to slow down so you can return to work refreshed and ready to help your team excel.

If you need help with recruitment or strategic planning in 2024, contact our team on 1800 868 254 or set up a meeting.

Want to hear more about our upcoming events?

Employment Innovations regularly runs webinars covering topics including HR, Payroll, Employment Law & Migration.

Subscribe to our newsletter to receive updates on future webinars, helpful resources, and industry news.

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Recent FW decision in a digitally connected age

Nov 28, 2023

  • 2min

Recent FW decision in a digitally connected age

Industry News, Legislative Changes, Talent Operations
A person using their work laptop for personal browsing in a digitally connected age
In today’s digitally connected era, the line between personal and professional life has become increasingly blurred. The recent case of a lawyer being unfairly terminated for personal internet browsing during work hours sheds light on the challenges employers face in addressing this crossover.

This incident highlights the importance of establishing clear guidelines and procedures to balance an employee’s personal activities and professional responsibilities.

three men sit over a work table using a laptop and a personal phone.
We are more connected than ever, our business policies need to be adaptable.

Understanding the Modern Workplace Dynamics

In the age of remote work and constant connectivity, team members often find themselves juggling personal and work-related tasks. Employers need to recognise this reality and adapt their policies to accommodate the evolving nature of the workplace. The lawyer’s case underscores the need for a nuanced approach that considers the challenges of the modern work environment.

Performance Concerns and Remote Work Issues

The lawyer’s situation included concerns about both performance and unauthorised remote work. Employers must proactively address performance issues and set expectations for remote work to avoid misunderstandings. Regular performance evaluations, open communication, and clearly defined remote work policies can help mitigate such issues.

The Dilemma of Personal Internet Browsing

The lawyer’s seven-hour personal internet browsing over four days raised questions about the acceptable boundaries of personal activities during work hours. While employers have a legitimate interest in maintaining productivity, it is crucial to establish realistic expectations and communicate them clearly to team members. Striking a balance between personal freedom and professional responsibilities is key to fostering a healthy work environment.

Procedural Deficiencies in Termination

The Fair Work Commission’s ruling emphasised the procedural deficiencies in the lawyer’s termination. Employers should ensure that any disciplinary actions, including terminations, follow a fair and transparent process. This includes notifying team members of specific concerns, providing them with an opportunity to respond, and considering the overall context of their performance.

Recommendations for Employers

Clear Communication

Clearly communicate expectations regarding personal internet usage during work hours. Establish guidelines that distinguish acceptable from unacceptable behaviour.

Regular Performance Reviews

Conduct regular performance reviews to address concerns promptly and provide constructive feedback. This allows team members to understand expectations and improve their performance.

Remote Work Policies

Clearly define remote work policies, outlining when and how team members can work remotely. Address concerns about unauthorised remote work through open communication and collaboration.

Fair Disciplinary Process

Follow a fair and transparent disciplinary process when faced with performance issues. Notify team members of specific concerns, allow them to respond, and consider the overall context of their performance.

Training and Awareness

Provide training to team members on acceptable internet usage and the company’s policies. Foster awareness of the impact personal activities can have on overall productivity.

As the digital landscape continues to shape how we work, employers must adapt their policies and procedures to address the challenges posed by personal and work internet browsing crossover. Striking a balance between personal freedom and professional responsibilities and fair and transparent processes is essential for maintaining a productive and harmonious workplace. By navigating these boundaries thoughtfully, employers can foster a positive work environment that encourages accountability and employee well-being.

Our team can help you create and manage your own policies and procedures. Call us on 1800 868 254 or set up a meeting to discuss how we can help you.

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Fixed term contracts change

Nov 13, 2023

  • 2min

Fixed term contracts change

Industry News, Legislative Changes
Fixed term contract changes are coming into effect on 6 December 2023. The new rules focus on information transparency and time limitations on how fixed term contracts work. The changes aim to phase out fixed term contracts that should be part-time or full-time employment contracts.

The rules, or limitations, that are coming into effect focus on how long a fixed term contract can be, renewing a fixed term contract and how many times it can be renewed, and employing a person on consecutive contracts.

man in flannel shirt and cargo pants overlooks a field being ploughed by a red tractor
Fixed term contracts are commonly used in agriculture, transport, and seasonal work industries.
The changes also include the legal requirement for employers to provide team members with a Fixed Term Contract Information Statement (FTCIS) if they are engaged on a fixed term contract.
Time limitations:
  • A fixed term contract can’t be for longer than two years, including extensions and renewals.
  • Fixed term contracts can’t have an option to extend or renew the contract so that the employment period is longer than two years.
  • They cannot be extended or renewed more than once.

There are also rules surrounding consecutive contract limitations that reinforce the new rules. An employer cannot employ someone on a fixed term contract if the new contract is for the same work as a previous one. A substantial break in the employment relationship must exist before signing a new fixed term contract.

The new time limitation rules also apply to consecutive contracts; the employer cannot employ someone if the total period of employment for the previous and new fixed term contracts is more than two years or if the new fixed term contract can be extended or renewed.

The changes also include the legal requirement for employers to provide team members with a Fixed Term Contract Information Statement (FTCIS) if they are engaged on a fixed term contract.

The new limitations make keeping team members on ongoing fixed term contracts harder. Fixed term contracts are not a replacement for part-time or full-time employment contracts.

As with most employment updates, there are exceptions to all of these rules. Exceptions include specialised skills,  training arrangements, essential work, emergency circumstances or temporary absences, high income team members, government funded contracts, governance positions and if there are any award provisions for fixed term contracts.

You can visit the Fair Work Ombudsman for more information. They also have a breakdown of the changes with examples.

If you need help creating new employment contracts, please contact our HR experts on 1800 868 254 or email us at info@totalhrm.com.au.

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Positive duty to eliminate unlawful acts

Oct 31, 2023

  • 2min

Positive duty to eliminate unlawful acts

Industry News, Legislative Changes
man in check suit jacket corners a woman in a green shirt against a glass wall. She is uncomfortable with her arms crossed.
Since the revised Sex Discrimination Act came into effect at the end of 2022, employers have a positive duty to eliminate unlawful acts. The unlawful acts includes discrimination on the grounds of sex in a work context, sexual harassment in connection with work, sex-based harassment in connection with work, and conduct creating a workplace environment that is hostile on the grounds of sex and related acts of victimisation. 

The goal of these changes is to help create safe, respectful, and inclusive workplaces for all. There is now a legal obligation placed on organisations and businesses to take proactive and preventative steps to stop unlawful conduct from occurring in the workplace or in connection to work.  

woman sits at an desk with her phone, laptop and diary. A male colleague is standing over her shoulders, with one hand resting on her shoulder.
Businesses and organisations must be proactively eliminating unlawful acts in the workplace.
The changes effect organisations and businesses across Australia, regardless of their size or industry. The major difference is on prevention, instead of addressing it only after an incident has occurred.  

From December 2023, the Australian Human Rights Commission (AHRC) will have new powers to investigate and enforce the positive duty.  

Respect@Work outlines the wide range of different behaviours that are considered to be sexual harassment, including:  

  • inappropriate physical contact 
  • intrusive questions about a person’s private life or physical appearance 
  • sharing or threatening to share intimate images or video without consent 
  • images or videos that are sexually suggestive or that constitute a sexual advance 
  • unwelcome touching, hugging, cornering or kissing 
  • repeated or inappropriate invitations to go out on dates 
  • sexually suggestive comments or jokes that offend or intimidate 
  • requests or pressure for sex or other sexual acts 
  • sexually explicit gifts, images, videos, cartoons, drawings, photographs, or jokes. 
  • actual or attempted rape or sexual assault 
  • following or watching someone inappropriately, or someone loitering inappropriately, either in person or via technology 
  • sexually explicit comments made in person or in writing, or indecent messages (SMS, social media), phone calls or emails—including the use of emojis with sexual connotations 
  • sexual gestures, indecent exposure or inappropriate display of the body 
  • technology-facilitated unwelcome conduct of a sexual nature—including on virtual meetings 
  • inappropriate staring or leering 
  • repeated or inappropriate advances on email or other online social technologies. 
The AHRC has published comprehensive guidelines to help businesses to understand what positive duty is, who must meet the positive duty, how positive duty will be enforced and other related legal obligations. 

They also have a Resource for Small Businesses on the Positive Duty to help small businesses to satisfy their obligations to prevent sexual harassment in the workplace.  

If you feel unsafe now, please call 000. For a full list of support services, visit AHRC Support Services.

If you are in NSW and need support, you can call Domestic Violence Line Department of Community Services: 1800 656 463 (24 hours)

In Victoria you can contact Sexual Assault Crisis Line Crisis Line: 1800 806 292 (free call).

If you need to implement workplace policy to ensure you are complying with legislation, or if you have a workplace related question, please contact our team of HR experts on 1800 868 254. Total HRM can help you create or adapt your existing policies.

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Christmas is coming – what are the leave rules? 2023 update

Oct 30, 2023

  • 2min

Christmas is coming – what are the leave rules? 2023 update

Industry News
Sarah and Beck sit back to back on against a white wall. They are laughing and looking at each other. Sarah has cartoon reindeer antlers on her head. Beck has a cartoon santa hat, both of which have been edited on.
With the Christmas holiday period quickly approaching, now is the time to start planning your holiday operating hours and ensuring you’ve got appropriate coverage if you have employees requesting leave.

The holiday season is an important time for many people to spend time with their family and friends to relax and recharge for the year ahead. It’s also a busy time for many businesses, especially those in retail and hospitality, so balancing your business’s needs with your team’s needs can be challenging but not impossible.

What are the new rules in 2023 – let’s break it down

Kim & Dave in enjoying the Christmas (Photoshop) Spirit.

Shutdown period over Christmas and New Year

If you’re planning on closing during the Christmas and New Year period and your employees are covered under an award, you’ll need to check the relevant rules for that award to ensure compliance.

In May of this year, rules around shutdown periods for 77 awards (including building and construction, hospitality, hair and beauty, and real estate) changed, and you can only direct an employee to take leave during shutdown periods if their award or registered agreement allows it.

One key change is that employers must give 28 days’ notice of the shutdown period unless an agreement for a shorter notice period has been reached with the majority of affected employees.

A few other things to keep in mind

  • Shutdown period notice must be in writing.
  • The direction for taking leave must be reasonable.
  • You can’t direct employees to take unpaid leave during a shutdown – employees can use time in lieu and employees without enough paid leave available can be granted paid leave in advance.
  • Employees will be paid for any public holidays during the shutdown period that would otherwise be a normal working day.

No shutdown period over Christmas and New Year

If your business won’t be closing over the holiday period, your employees may request to take annual leave during this time. Employees will need to request leave in advance in accordance with their award, registered agreement, company policy or employment contract.

It’s important to remember that an employer can only refuse an employee’s request for leave if the refusal is reasonable. 

Cancelling a leave request

Similar to refusing an employee’s leave request, an employer’s cancellation of approved leave must be reasonable. You’ll also need to consider whether the employee has incurred any expenses concerning the leave request and how much notice you’re giving the employee. 

Likewise, if the employee wishes to cancel an approved leave request, the employer shouldn’t unreasonably refuse the request.

Have a stress-free holiday season

Workforce planning around the holidays can be tricky. You may have multiple employees who want to take the same period off, making it challenging to create rosters and ensure you’ve got appropriate coverage. 

Reducing stress during this time of the year comes down to being reasonable, good communication and robust employment policies. Communicate with your employees early about the business’ needs and expectations during the busy Christmas and New Year period. If you don’t shut down during this time, ensure your company policies and employment contracts set out how leave requests are managed during high-demand periods.

If you need any help with preparing your business for the holiday season or would like to find out more about our successful recruitment campaigns, call our HR experts on 1800 868 254 or talk to an expert.

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The benefits of workplace flexibility

Sep 05, 2023

  • 2min

The benefits of workplace flexibility

Industry News, Recruiter Tips
Dave in the foreground on a duel screen computer set up in Total HRM office, with Caitlin and Felicity in the background working on the computers. Dave wears a red checkered shirt, Caitlin wears a black and white striped shirt. Workplace flexibility allows the team to work when they can.
In recent years, flexibility in the workplace has become increasingly important for both businesses and team members. Workplace flexibility refers to the ability of team members to work outside traditional hours and locations, such as working from home or adjusting their work hours to accommodate personal commitments. Below, we list the benefits of workplace flexibility and some options for you to incorporate flexibility into your workplace.

Here are some of the key reasons why offering team members flexibility in the workplace is beneficial:

  1. Improved work-life balance: 
    Offering flexibility in the workplace can help team members achieve a better work-life balance. It allows them to better manage their personal and professional commitments, which can help reduce stress and improve overall well-being.
A woman sits at home desk in front of a monitor with various windows open using the benefits of workplace flexibility.  The desk has a lamp, pot plant and a digital clock, with three photos of landscape and a white horse hung on the wall.
Working from home or WFH has remained popular since the pandemic.
  1. Increased productivity: 
    Research has shown that team members with flexibility in the workplace are often more productive. They are able to work within timeframes when they are most productive and can avoid distractions that may be present in a traditional office environment.

  2. Greater job satisfaction:
    Team members with workplace flexibility often have greater job satisfaction. When they feel trusted and valued by the business, they are more likely to be satisfied with their role and to stay with the business longer.

  3. Attract and retain top talent: 
    In today’s competitive job market, offering flexibility in the workplace is a ‘must’ to help businesses attract and retain top talent. Many team members place a high value on work-life balance and flexibility and may choose to work for a business that offers these benefits over one that does not.

  4. Cost savings: 
    Offering flexibility in the workplace can also lead to cost savings for businesses. By allowing team members to work from home, businesses can reduce the need for office space and associated costs, such as utilities and office supplies.
Offering team members flexibility in the workplace can bring numerous benefits to the team and the business. It can improve work-life balance, increase productivity, enhance job satisfaction, attract and retain top talent, and lead to cost savings. By prioritising flexibility, businesses can create a culture that values team members’ well-being and success, leading to long-term success for the business.

Now we understand the benefits of workplace flexibility, here are seven ways that you can offer workplace flexibility to your team:

  1. Flexible work hours: 
    Offering flexible work hours can be a great way to accommodate team members’ personal commitments. For example, allowing team members to start and finish work earlier or later than usual can help them manage childcare or other responsibilities.

  1. Remote work: 
    Allowing team members to work remotely, either full-time or part-time, can be a great way to provide flexibility in the workplace. It can be particularly useful for team members who live far away from the office or have other commitments that make it challenging to come into the office. It may also allow you to tap into a remote workforce, especially when good talent is scarce.

  2. Job sharing: 
    Job sharing involves splitting one full-time role between two or more team members. Job sharing can be a great way to provide flexibility while ensuring the work gets done.

  3. Reduced hours:
    Offering team members the option to work reduced hours can be a great way to provide flexibility. It could mean working part-time or reducing the hours worked per week.

  4. Compressed workweek: 
    A compressed workweek involves working longer hours over fewer days. For example, a team member could work four 10-hour days instead of five 8-hour days. You should check the appropriate Award to ensure you are not paying overtime rates.

  5. Flexibility around leave: 
    Offering flexibility around leave can be a great way to accommodate team members’ personal commitments. It could involve offering additional leave days or allowing team members to take leave at short notice.

    Workplace flexibility can take many different forms. By offering flexibility in the workplace, businesses can help their team members manage their personal and professional commitments, which can promote productivity, increase job satisfaction, and improve well-being.

    Contact our team to discover how you can incorporate workplace flexibility within your own business on 1800 868 254 or set up a meeting.

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Legislation changes from 1 July 2023

Jun 27, 2023

  • 2min

Legislation changes from 1 July 2023

Industry News, Legislative Changes
Are you ready for all the changes happening on 1 July? There is a new minimum wage, updated parental leave rules, and increased superannuation payments.

Paid parental leave will be combined with the current Dad and Partner Pay entitlement, taking the combined total for partnered couples to 20 weeks paid parental leave between them. Parents who are single at the time of their claim can access the full 20 weeks.

The government has combined paid parental leave with Dad and Partner Pay entitlements, taking paid parental leave to a total of 20 weeks.
The changes to paid parental leave entitlements affect government payments only. Employers are still not required to offer their own paid parental leave, although many employers choose to provide this as a discretionary benefit. You must update your policies regarding parental leave from 1 July 2023.

The changes will affect parents whose babies are born or adopted from July 2023. The Labor government aims to progressively increase it to 26 weeks by 2026.

 Other changes include:

  • allowing partnered employees to claim a maximum of 20 weeks’ pay between them, with each partner taking at least 2 weeks (except in some circumstances)
  • introducing a $350,000 family income limit (indexed annually from 1 July 2024) for claiming paid parental leave pay
  • expanding the eligibility rules for fathers or partners to claim paid parental leave pay
  • making the whole payment flexible so that eligible employees can claim it in multiple blocks until the child turns 2
  • parents can share their Parental Leave Pay with each other
  • allowing parents to both take parental leave at any time in the 24 months after the birth or placement of their child 
  • removing the requirement to return to work to be eligible for the entitlement
  • pregnant employees and primary adoptive parents can access parental leave days up to six weeks before their expected due date
  • Any unused Parental Leave Pay days will be forfeited to encourage both parents to access the payment. Single parents will get the total amount.  
  • increasing the Child Care Subsidy (CCS) 

Employers should review their parental leave policies and practices to ensure compliance with these changes by 1 July 2023. If you would like advice or assistance to update your policies, please get in touch with our team, and we will be more than happy to help you ensure you are ready to go from 1 July.  

The national minimum wage will increase from $21.38 per hour to $23.23 per hour for our lowest-paid employees. The minimum rate for awards will increase by 5.75%.

You must be paying the new rate as of 1 July 2023. Our team is here to help you with any questions or concerns about the new national minimum wage and the award rate increase.

If you are covered by a registered agreement, your pay rate might also increase, as the base pay rate in a registered agreement cannot be less than the base pay rate in the relevant award.

These changes will take effect from your first full pay cycle after 1 July 2023, meaning if your pay period starts on Monday, the changes will take effect on Monday, 3 July 2023.

Also increasing on 1 July is the Superannuation Guarantee rate from 10.5% to 11%. Speak with your accountants to ensure your contributions are following the latest legislation.

As always, our team is here to help you. You can book a call with an expert or call us directly on 1800 868 254. If you need help reviewing your HR Documentation or creating new policies, please reach out to us and we’ll be happy to assist.

You can find out more about paid parental leave entitlements here:



For more information about the National Minimum Wage, visit:


All Superannuation information can be found here or talk to your accountant:


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