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Employsure has welcomed the announcement from Prime Minister Scott Morrison that Australia’s industrial relations system is set for reform, but warns that a “decision by committee” approach could jeopardise the clarity that business owners desperately need.

The JobMaker announcement is a sensible acknowledgement that the country’s economy cannot remain on life support, and that Australia’s existing workplace relations system will be a barrier to creating the jobs that Australia needs to recover.

“This is a solid first step, but now we need the roadmap. Employers and small business owners need clarity, not broad promises, sweeping statements or decision paralysis,” said Ed Mallett, Employsure Founder and Managing Director. “This is the chance to deliver the changes employers so desperately need.

“Just last week we saw a contentious decision that effectively allows casual workers to double dip on entitlements. It’s these kinds of situations that need to be urgently addressed.

“Sensible, practical workplace relations should be the framework for business recovery. Reform is not easy, and it will take vision and leadership to drive change. Now we’ve seen the vision, it needs to translate into action.”

“This is a chance for the Government to deliver real change in workplace relations. Reform can sometimes be met with resistance, but if we can bring all parts of the labour force together to have constructive conversations, we can work on a reform solution that benefits everyone.”

Employsure is calling for a review of the current industrial relations laws to identify any overlap in Modern Awards with the view to consolidating legislation where necessary. This would reduce compliance and red tape requirements, as well as the risk of oversights, errors and penalties to small business owners.

“Award simplification is long overdue. “There are more than 120 Modern Awards in the Australian workplace relations system. For some businesses, even small ones, it means they often have to comply with more than one Award. It is not just the minimum wage or award rate that’s the most difficult part, but many employees struggle with the myriad of entitlements, and varying rates throughout the time of week and time of day.

“The Prime Minister has stated what we’ve known all along – that the workplace relations system isn’t fit-for-purpose. Every month that the Government delays reform, means more small business owners are closing their doors. We don’t need brainstorming, we need action.”

Employsure consultants conduct 1,500 face-to-face meetings per week with small businesses, and its dedicated Advice Line handles more than 270,000 calls every year helping small business owners understand their workplace relations obligations.

The Government needs to step in or risk the livelihood of thousands of small Australian businesses already struggling through the COVID-19 crisis, according to Employsure, Australia’s largest workplace advisory firm for small to medium-sized enterprises.

A full bench of the Federal Court has ruled that regular and ongoing casual employees are entitled to seek paid annual leave, paid personal/carer’s leave and paid compassionate leave, if they are working regular shifts on an ongoing basis.

While seen as a win by unions, there are fears the changes will result in more than 2 million regular casuals double-dipping into taking paid leave, while at the same time receiving 20 to 25 per cent loading at the expense of the employer.

“We need the Government to step in here,” said Employsure Managing Director Ed Mallett.

“If JobKeeper was a life raft, this decision just sunk it. Small businesses are already on their knees trying to do what they can to survive, and this could be the final blow. This potentially exposes business owners to billions of dollars in backpay claims.

“This is a landmark Federal Court ruling that will effectively roll back the benefit of JobKeeper. Every regular and systemic casual that employers have included on their JobKeeper application, they now have a leave liability for.

“If we assume that of the 6 million workers on JobKeeper, a third are employed on a casual basis, we could assume that each one of those employees are owed an average of two years of leave. That would equate to 40 days which would be roughly $6,000. That is effectively a $12 billion hole in the side of JobKeeper.

“SMEs will simply not be able to afford this liability, particularly in the current environment. In New South Wales for example we’ve seen drought, followed by one of the worst bushfire seasons in history, followed by a global pandemic. Another significant financial blow to a business could be that final nail in the coffin.

“We can’t wait for more legal wrangling on the double-dipping issue. Small businesses need certainty now, especially in the age of COVID.”

The decision has prompted the Federal Government to flag legislative changes. Attorney General and Industrial Relations Minister Christian Porter has revealed pleas by employers to make changes to the Fair Work Act are being considered.

Small and medium businesses are struggling to get ready for a return to work as they attempt to decipher the complex and costly requirements which allow them to reopen, says Employsure, Australia’s largest workplace advisory firm for SMEs.

The call comes as states begin to ease lockdown restrictions and permit a reopening of hospitality and other businesses, as long as strict procedures are followed. The requirements for a business to be ‘COVID-Safe’ are complex, onerous and number more than 1300 pages of principles and directives published on the Safe Work website.

Among the requirements are for employers to ‘eliminate the risk of exposure to COVID-19 if reasonably practicable’. Employsure Managing Director Ed Mallett says this presents both a huge legal and financial challenge for SMEs.

“Businesses of any size can’t be expected to eliminate entirely the risk of exposure to COVID-19, let alone SMEs. It’s unclear what the litmus test for eliminating this risk would actually be and how that will be applied.

“Of course, all steps should be taken to ensure staff are safe and protected but asking SMEs to attempt to eliminate all risk is not practical or financially viable.”

The Council of Small Business Organisations Australia has warned that several hundred thousand businesses will not reopen largely because they will not be able to afford to do so.

“Businesses face a significant compliance bill to ensure they can reopen safely, and the government should be streamlining requirements and providing financial assistance to SMEs to help them meet these obligations,” Mr Mallett said.

In the past week 91% of calls to Employsure’s advice line have been from businesses worried about safely reopening and their various obligations to employees.

Many businesses are also concerned about their legal liability were an employee to contract COVID-19 at work. Complicating matters is the inconsistencies between the federal guidelines and how they’ve been applied and enforced between states, presenting a challenge for employers to know their obligations.

“Employers need to make sure they are complying with all relevant guidelines as they look to reopen their doors to ensure they aren’t subject to legal liability should an outbreak occur at their worksite, of the kind we’ve seen recently,” Mr Mallett said.

Employsure has launched a new Workplace Ready service to help businesses understand their obligations and ensure their workplace is compliant. As part of the service Employsure will conduct an on-site Risk Assessment of their workplace, develop strategies to minimise COVID-19 risks, and offer materials that can support them in managing these risks.

Eased Restrictions

Eased restrictions will provide little relief to small and medium businesses still struggling with overly complex and often unclear COVID-19 workplace rules, which have also been inconsistently applied across the States, according to Employsure, Australia’s largest workplace advisory firm for SMEs.

Employsure, which advises more than 27,000 SMEs in Australia including cafes, hair salons, retailers and tradies, says many small businesses who could now re-open are not because they aren’t sure how to apply new restrictions related to COVID-19. Over the past month, Employsure’s Advice has received 21,278 calls from employers. Of those 20% have been related to JobKeeper, while 77% relate to employee entitlements during the lockdown, indicating a consistent struggle facing small businesses.

Employsure, Founder & Managing Director, Ed Mallett, said, “SMEs account for 35% of Australia’s gross domestic product and employ 44% of the workforce so this cohort is a hugely important contributor to the economy.

“While the Government has done a remarkable job of navigating Australia through the crisis there have unfortunately been unintended consequences of unclear and inconsistent rules which have disproportionately detrimentally impacted SMEs.

“Many businesses initially closed because they were not sure how to operate during lockdown or whether doing so would be viable. Others are now saying that they are going to postpone re-opening as the rules and permissions are so unclear.

“State based differences are at the heart of the confusion, with variances seemingly illogical. There is also a growing narrative about being liable for any Covid-19 outbreaks, as well as a fear that re-opening will result in the loss of the JobKeeper subsidy. Businesses are on their knees already, they need help getting up, not more red tape.

“Business owners are confused about the real, everyday scenarios that they face in their workplaces. We’re getting questions like: can I have two employees in a car? What happens if my employee injures themselves while working from home? What if they refuse to catch public transport to the office? I have a vulnerable person in my workforce, how do I adequately protect them, and my business?

“These are very real and everyday challenges for small businesses. While JobKeeper is a great program to help pay staff wages, it isn’t the silver bullet for the myriad of other challenges business owners are still facing.”

Since the COVID-19 outbreak, Employsure has seen a 100% increase in calls from SMEs grappling with workplace challenges and the complications of rolling out the JobKeeper package. Demand is so high for salient information that Employsure is also offering a free daily livestreaming service on its Facebook page which attracts an audience of approximately 6,000 small business owners per day.

“We’re expecting another spike in the number of calls from business owners as restrictions are eased and they try to understand if and how they can reopen under new rules, as they attempt to get Workplace Ready,” said Mr Mallett.

Employsure has built a Resource Hub, which is free to all business owners, containing workplace policies, communications, checklists and FAQs for COVID-19. The site receives 20,000 visitors per day on average.

The client advice line of Employsure, which advises 25,000 small to medium sized businesses as clients, has been swamped by employers needing help managing their absent workforce as the coronavirus crisis takes hold.

The Advice Line has received a 150% spike in absence related calls over the last week and a doubling of virus related calls.

“Employers are struggling with staff who are calling in sick, which is understandable given the current circumstances. Additionally there are a myriad of Coronavirus related scenarios, such as the new self-isolation measures, potential forced workplace shut downs and what entitlements apply to staff in those situations,” said Employsure’s Head of Operations Stephen Roebuck.

“Basically, if the employee is calling in sick and they have a medical certificate, then usual Personal Leave will ordinarily apply. Employers don’t need to do anything different in this regard. If the employee’s symptoms are consistent with those of COVID-19 or cold and flu generally, we’re encouraging employers to direct that their staff get a medical clearance before returning to the workplace. Employers are within their rights to request this.

“For employees who have to self-isolate after international travel, if they are sick then personal leave applies. If they are not sick, then they may have access to accrued leave such as annual leave or long service leave. If those are not an option, then unpaid leave applies.”

By The Numbers: Employee Absence Related Calls To Employsure’s Advice Line

5 – 11 March: 10%
12 – 17 March: 25%

By The Numbers: Coronavirus Related Calls To Employsure’s Advice Line

Week commending March 9: 20%
Week commencing March 16: 45%

“Remote working is also a big issue right now. Not just managing the technology, but also understanding work health and safety obligations and the duty of care to employees who are working remotely,” Roebuck said.

“The shift has been so sudden and dramatic, employers are really struggling to understand their obligations to employees. The situation is evolving so rapidly, we’re urging business owners to stay informed and up-to-date.”

Coronavirus Resource Hub For Employers

To help employers understand and apply their obligations during the coronavirus pandemic, Employsure has built an online Resource Hub. It includes a free Coronavirus Policy for the workplace, FAQs and other helpful resources specifically for business owners. It can be found at employsure.com.au/coronavirus

No Small Business Owner Should Ever Be Called A “Wage Thief”

Protecting small business owners from the risk of underpayment is the aim of an Australian-first service launched by Employsure, Australia’s leading outsourced HR provider.

Developed specifically to help small business avoid Australia’s “wage theft” mess, Employsure’s Wage Guarantee audits employers’ pay records and reports on risks and errors. For added protection, the guarantee fully covers the cost of any underpayments detected in a business that has sought and followed Employsure’s wage advice.

In launching the service today, Employsure Managing Director Ed Mallett said the national conversation around “wage theft” had unfairly tarnished small business owners.

“I’m sick of small business owners being characterised as ‘thieves,’ he said. “It’s unfair and it’s wrong.

“They are operating in a complex and convoluted system that creates so much risk and almost no margin for error, then punishes them for mistakes.

“As we’ve seen recently, some of Australia’s biggest companies with immense HR resources can’t get wages correct. What hope is there for a small business?

“We want to change that. These are honest and hardworking people who have taken a risk by starting a business. They need protection in this difficult system and we want to stand up for them.

“There are all manner of systems trying to catch underpayment, but very few that try to prevent it in the first place. We are offering that solution. We’re also giving certainty to employers who seek and follow our advice that we will cover the cost of any underpayments found in their business.

“By using this service, no small business owner will ever have to wear the tag of a ‘wage thief’. That is my mission.”

How the service works

The Wage Guarantee involves an audit an employer’s pay records, providing a report on risks and errors. If an employer seeks and follows Employsure’s wages advice from that point forward, Employsure will cover any future underpayments found in their business.

Book a review with us today.

Media Enquires

Leigh Johnston

[email protected]

Catastrophic weather conditions including extreme heat, strong winds, and low humidity are forecasted for Sydney and its surrounding regions tomorrow – the first time the NSW Rural Fire Service has issued the maximum level of warning in ten years.

While Australia can experience a variety of natural disasters and wild weather conditions, such as floods, bushfires, tropical cyclones, and severe storms. These events can cause devastation and major disruptions to the people, businesses, and workplaces that are affected.

Employers must take this time to plan ahead under their obligations to ensure the safety and wellbeing of their employees.

What if employees cannot attend work due to a natural disaster or emergency?

According to Senior Employment Relations Adviser from Employsure, Michael Wilkinson, “In some circumstances, an employee may have entitlements under their Award or Agreement that are relevant when an employee is unable to attend work due to an emergency or natural disaster. If no such entitlement exists, there are a range of options available to employers and employees depending on the circumstances.”

What if the employer temporarily shuts down the business?

Mr Wilkinson says, if your employer decides to temporarily stop business operations or shutdown the workplace as a result of a natural disaster or emergency, “It is important for employers to apply the correct employee entitlements during the closure. If the closure falls within the stand-down provisions, then the employer might not be required to pay the employee. If the business is closed and it otherwise could have operated, an employee could be entitled to payment.”

Can employers stand employees down without pay?

The Fair Work Act includes provisions which enable employers to stand down employees, without pay, where they cannot usefully be employed during a period because of any stoppage of work for which the employer cannot reasonably be held responsible, such as a natural disaster or emergency.

However, according to Mr Wilkinson, “It is not mandatory for stand downs to be unpaid. Your employer may choose to continue to pay staff, but this is at their discretion.”

“Although employers aren’t required to pay employees during the catastrophic bushfires, many will choose to show compassion and do so anyway. The money goes a long way to support families and the community at this devastating time.”

If NSW employers choose to stand down employees during this time, “It’s important they notify those employees in writing (where possible), including the date which the stand down begins, whether the employees will or will not be paid, and the impact on other employee entitlements,” he said.

What are the alternatives to standing down employees?

Mr Wilkinson encourages NSW employers and business owners to consider a range of options to offer employees during this devastating time, such as:

•    Asking employees to take a period of paid annual leave
•    Where appropriate, consider flexible work arrangements, like working from home.
•    Where there is more than one worksite or workplace and not all sites are affected by the disaster, consider options for sharing work and hours among sites

An employee’s home was badly affected by the natural disaster. Are they entitled to paid or unpaid leave to sort out the personal problems caused by the natural disaster?

“Generally, yes, a significant bushfire event will qualify an employee to take carer’s leave to deal with the aftermath of an unexpected emergency and to support their immediate family or household.”

Permanent staff who have accrued annual leave may also use their annual leave entitlements in these circumstances (with the employer’s agreement) according to Mr Wilkinson.

“Where a member of an employee’s immediate family or household sustains a life-threatening injury or illness, or dies, the employee is entitled to two days’ paid compassionate leave (unless they are casual employees, in which case the leave is unpaid).”

“Where an employee is not entitled to any of the above paid leave, an employer can allow the employee to take paid or unpaid ‘special leave’ to address their personal circumstances at this difficult time.”

“Obviously such times are also difficult for businesses and it is vital that employers and employees communicate about their plans to deal with the impact of the fires.”

Media Contact.
[email protected]
tel: 1300 651 415

About Employsure.
Employsure is Australia and New Zealand’s leading outsourced HR solution for over 25,000 small and medium sized businesses; providing customised expert advice, documentation, and protection to manage their workplace with confidence. For more information on Employsure’s employment relations and health and safety solutions visit www.employsure.com.au

Are you planning to shut down your business over the Christmas and New Year period? It’s never too early (or too late) to start planning.

Businesses planning to shutdown across the festive season, need to confirm close dates and notify staff in accordance with Award requirements from now.

Senior Employment Relations Adviser from Employsure, Messina Angelis says, “The most important step is to check the conditions relating to your right to send employees on an annual shutdown. This will depend on the Modern Award or Enterprise Agreements that apply for your business and will outline the minimum required notice period to notify your employees.”

Employees covered by an Award.

Most Awards will contain terms which allow employers to send employees on an annual shutdown. This is usually subject to an employer giving affected employees at least four weeks’ notice, although an Award may require a greater period of notice. For example, the Building and Construction General On-site Award 2010, requires an employer to give at least two months’ notice of a shutdown. In another example, under the Security Services Industry Award 2010, an employer must provide at least one months’ notice in writing before the leave needs to be taken. The Hair and Beauty Award 2010, it is four weeks’ notice.

Award or Agreement free employees.

The Fair Work Act allows employers who may require an Award or Agreement free employee to take a period of paid annual leave, but only if the request is reasonable. “A ‘reasonable request’ would be if your business is due to shutdown for a period during Christmas and the New Year,” she said.

Matters that can be agreed between the employer and an Award or Agreement free employee include:

  • for paid annual leave to be taken in advance of accrual (when the period of the shutdown exceeds an employee’s annual leave balance)
  • for a specified period of notice must be given before taking annual leave, e.g. four weeks’ notice, and
  • the form of application for paid annual leave

“Make sure you follow any rules under the Award or Agreement about notifying staff and what should happen during the shutdown. If the Award or Agreement doesn’t say anything about shutdowns or directions to take leave, you can’t force employees to use their leave. Instead, you can negotiate with them to take paid or unpaid leave but if they don’t agree, you can’t force them.”

According to Ms Angelis the end of year festive season can be two sided: “Most employees want the festive season off from work to rest and recharge. However, some businesses have the reverse intent – service-based businesses that wish to operate across a key period and meet increased customer demand.”

Ms Angelis says the end of year festive season can be a quiet period for many businesses however, for those in the hospitality, restaurant, and retail industry, “This is the key season for fixed term and casual work and some industries are looking to bolster their workforce and fill specific jobs and meet the increased customer demand.”

For those businesses planning to stay open, Ms Angelis says, “During busy seasons, engaging employees on a casual or a fixed term basis will usually provide employers with the most flexibility in relation to fulfilling their resource requirements.”

However, Ms Angelis warns employers to, “Be extra aware of the requirements and obligations to all employees over this key period such as extra pay or an extra day off, particularly on public holidays.”

“If you aren’t one of the businesses open over the Christmas period – it’s important to check the conditions relating to your right to send employees on an annual closedown. Seek professional workplace relations advice.”

Public holidays.

The various upcoming public holidays over the Christmas – New Year period:

  • Christmas Eve – Tuesday 24 December 2019 (Northern Territory and South Australia from 7pm-midnight)
  • Christmas Day – Wednesday 25 December 2019 (all states and territories)
  • Boxing Day – Thursday 26 December 2019 (all states and territories)
  • New Year’s Eve – Tuesday 31 December 2020 (Northern Territory and South Australia from 7pm-midnight)
  • New Year’s Day – Wednesday 1 January 2020 (all states and territories)
  • Australia Day – Monday 27 January 2020 (all states and territories)

-ends-

Media Contact.
[email protected]
tel: 1300 651 415

About Employsure.
Employsure is Australia and New Zealand’s leading outsourced HR solution for over 25,000 small and medium sized businesses; providing customised expert advice, documentation, and protection to manage their workplace with confidence. For more information on Employsure’s employment relations and health and safety solutions visit www.employsure.com.au

Sexual Harassment


Since the ‘Me Too’ movement, sexual harassment scandals continue to claim the headlines. The headlines include high profile business leaders, political leaders, and movie directors; but for normal everyday working Australians, workplace sexual harassment is a familiar dismal reality.

Findings from the 2018 the Australian Human Rights Commission fourth national report on the prevalence, nature and reporting of workplace sexual harassment in Australia found a staggering one in three (33 percent) working Australians had experienced sexual harassment in the workplace in the last five years. The retail and accommodation and food services industries were found to have higher rates than the national rate with 42 percent and 39 percent respectively.

The Shop, Distributive and Allied Employees’ Association (SDA) approached the commission in relation to conducting an additional survey in response to high prevalence rates in the industry. The survey had more than 3,000 participants and revealed that female members were more likely to have been sexually harassed in the workplace (46 percent) than male SDA members (29 percent).

The Report found over half (54 percent) of SDA members who completed the survey, had been exposed to workplace sexual harassment in the last five years, either by experiencing it personally, as a bystander, or both.

The most commonly experienced type of sexual harassment behaviour for both SDA members (24 percent) and those in the working population (19 percent) was sexually suggestive comments or offensive jokes.

Alarmingly, the findings show that workplace sexual harassment is not exclusively experienced from employee to employee or manager to employee (vice versa), but by customers or patrons in the workplace. One in five (21 percent) SDA members said they had been sexually harassed by a customer in their current job, with female SDA members more likely to have had this experience (28 percent) than their male counterparts (11 percent). Of all workplace sexual harassment incidents experienced by SDA members in the last five years, one in three (36 percent) involved a customer as the harasser.

Female retail workers under the age of 30 were most likely to be harassed, making up 46 percent of all victims of customer related harassment. Of everyone in that age bracket who reported being sexually harassed, they revealed it happened, on average, seven times in the past year.

Senior Employment Relations Adviser Isabella Zamorano says no workplace – big or small – is immune to sexual harassment: “It’s time for those at the top of every business, even small business owners to take strong action against sexual harassment in the workplace.”

According to Ms Zamorano, it is unfortunate that it takes, “Shocking news headlines and important research reports such as these, to spark, necessary dialogue about the implications of unwanted sexual advances in the workplace and extensions of the workplace,” she said.

“The matter highlights that at all levels, professions and industries, sexual harassment is a risk and cannot be taken lightly – not only for the victims but for the businesses that also risk reputational damage and disruption.’ Ms Zamorano urges businesses to be proactive in dealing with sexual harassment. “Don’t wait for a crisis, act now.”

According to Ms Zamorano, there are four key activities employers can take to proactively stamp out sexual harassment in the workplace.

Zero tolerance

“If you haven’t already, formalise a zero-tolerance stance on sexual harassment in your policies and procedures. With your position clearly defined, articulate it to employees through every communication method available to your business. Every staff member — both incoming and existing — should be aware of your company’s policy on sexual harassment, and how sexual harassment is defined in your workplace.”

Train your staff

“While your sexual harassment policy can outline the standards of acceptable behaviour and conduct, training will help your employees retain the information and speak up to report incidents. Employees come from a vast range of backgrounds, beliefs, cultures and ages. Training sets out in very clear terms the type of behaviour that is unacceptable in the workplace.”

Set up a safe and confidential way for employees to make complaints

“Making a claim of sexual harassment can be daunting and deeply personal. Often, many victims stay silent out of fear that it will harm their careers or label them as troublemakers. It’s important that employees are aware of the process to make such complaints, and that their information and details will be treated seriously and confidentially.”

Investigate all claims

“It is up to victim whether they consider a particular incident as a form of sexual harassment. Even if the incident took place out-of-hours, outside your workplace – or even if you don’t find the accusation personally offensive – all claims must be properly investigated.”

Ms Zamorano says, “Sexual harassment is set to take greater prominence in the world of employment relations and it’s important that you have the relevant policies and procedures in place to protect your people and your business.”

“It’s time for business leaders to be proactive and lead the path to change,” she said.

-ends-

Media Contact.
[email protected]
tel: 1300 651 415

 

About Employsure.
Employsure is Australia and New Zealand’s leading outsourced HR solution for over 25,000 small and medium sized businesses; providing customised expert advice, documentation, and protection to manage their workplace with confidence. For more information on Employsure’s employment relations and health and safety solutions visit www.employsure.com.au

Reports today reveal that supermarket giant, Woolworths self-discovered underpayments over the last nine years with repayments expected to cost up to $300 million. The breach was discovered during a review prompted by the implementation of a new enterprise agreement with salaried employees.

The news today corresponds with the recent release of the Fair Work Ombudsman’s annual report revealing over $40 million was recovered in underpayments – the highest volume it has ever recovered in a single financial year.

Prompting calls for change, leading workplace relations firm Employsure says all businesses – large and small – need to be extra vigilant about their compliance with employee pay and entitlements.

Managing Director of Employsure, Ed Mallett said, the news of large businesses getting it wrong was indicative that “Both giants and the ‘little guy’ are equally struggling to navigate the minefield that is employment relations”.

Illustrating Australia’s workplace system failure, Mr Mallett asks, “If a business on the scale of Woolworths’ size with access to resources, as well as unions to keep it accountable, has made an error, how can regulators expect small businesses to get it right? The root of the problem is therefore in the legislation – not all employers should be branded as ‘wage thieves.’ Often, they make simple, honest mistakes because the system is far too complex.”

In addition, “Unlike larger businesses, small businesses do not have access to the expertise necessary to navigate the complexities of the Fair Work Act, where there are very narrow margins for error. Yet, small businesses make up more than 97% of all Australian businesses and employ more than 5.5 million people1.”

“The small business owner invariably handles all operational and legislative requirements, which include administration workplace relations obligations. They are not HR or legal experts and do not have HR departments, legal departments or finance departments. Put simply, the workplace relations system is too complex and time consuming for Australian businesses.”

Mr Mallett explains this is why Employsure has been busier than ever, “Each year, Employsure takes more than 267,000 calls, with 23% relating to employee wages and entitlements alone. Daily, we take calls from employers confused by what they are required to do to meet the requirements of the Fair Work Act leaving themselves exposed to penalties, fines, and serious legal costs.”

“We are educating and informing employers of their obligations in creating fair and safe workplaces is making an impact in more ways than ever before: it’s the difference between a business that is enabled to grow and a business that neglects their employees and therefore suffers the consequences of getting it wrong. We focus on advising employers, making the complex simple, so they can meet their obligations – which is fundamental to their business success.”

According to research commissioned by Employsure in 2017-18, only 1 in 3 small business employers are confident they are compliant with the Fair Work Act. Further, 1 in 5 admit they know very little or nothing at all about the Fair Work Act and 1 in 4 said they found it difficult to calculate the correct pay, entitlements, and interpret the Modern Awards for their business. In addition, only 10 per cent of managers said they were confident they understood the Fair Work Act.

According to Mr Mallett, “There has been a growing need to reform the system for small businesses that find themselves caught in the web of complexity that is expensive, time-consuming, and poorly explained by regulators.”

“Our views are that government should make practical and realistic reforms that attempt to make it simpler for businesses to do the right thing and build their confidence to employ, which is what the economy needs.”

-ends-

 

Media Enquires.

[email protected]
tel: 1300 651 415

Editor Notes.

  • Employsure is Australia’s largest workplace relations specialists, serving more than 25,000 Australian businesses. Each year, Employsure takes more than 267,000 calls, with 23% relating to employee wages and entitlements alone. Find out more about Employsure
  • Interviews with Employsure Managing Director, Ed Mallett are available upon request.
  • The Fair Work Index Research Report by Employsure explores the employment relations challenges facing Australia’s small and medium-sized businesses. Download the research report
  • Source1: https://www.asbfeo.gov.au/sites/default/files/Small_Business_Statistical_Report-Final.pdf

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