Presentation on theme: "Understanding your Rights and Responsibilities as an Employer"— Presentation transcript:
1 Understanding your Rights and Responsibilities as an Employer Date: Presented by:As an employer, you are responsible for meeting employee entitlements.Ignorance is no excuse – so you need to be aware of and understand your rights and responsibilities. Failing to do so can have serious financial and legal consequences for your business. It may also be a breach of your franchise agreement.I’m now going to take you through the main rights and responsibilities which are covered in your Employer Obligations GuidePresenter Note: The Guide is available for download at fairwork.gov.au/franchising > Advice for Franchisors .
2 Sources of Obligations FAIR WORK LEGISLATIONFair Work Act Regulations(includes National Employment Standards)INDUSTRIAL INSTRUMENTModern Award or Enterprise AgreementINDIVIDUAL ARRANGEMENTSIndividual Flexibility Arrangement or Contract of EmploymentEmployee entitlements can come from a number of different places.The primary source of entitlements is the Fair Work Act and Fair Work Regulations – which apply to all employers and employees in the national workplace system. The Fair Work Act contains the National Employment Standards or ‘NES’, which are 10 safety net provisions protecting minimum pay and conditions.The next source of employee entitlements is an industrial instrument. Most Australian workplaces are covered by an industrial instrument – either a modern award or an enterprise agreement .Lastly employees’ entitlements may be derived from an individual arrangement such as an Individual Flexibility Arrangement or a contract of employment.These operate in a hierarchy - individual arrangements cannot undercut employees’ minimum entitlements under the legislation or industrial instruments, just as industrial instruments cannot remove employees’ NES entitlements.
3 The National Employment Standards 1Maximum Weekly Hours2Right to Request Flexible Working Arrangements3Parental Leave4Annual Leave5Personal/Carer’s & Compassionate Leave6Community Service Leave7Long Service Leave8Public Holidays9Notice of Termination and Redundancy Pay10Fair Work Information StatementThe NES contains 10 minimum standards for all national system employees. The NES apply to all full time and part time employees. A number of the NES entitlements also apply to casuals.The 1st standard relates to maximum weekly hours, which for all employees is 38 hours per week plus reasonable additional hours.The 2nd standard is the right to request flexible working arrangements. All employees who are parents or carers of a child under school age, or of a child under 18 with a disability, can request a change in working arrangements to assist with the child’s care. Employers have an obligation to consider and respond to the request. A request can only be refused on reasonable business grounds.The 3rd standard relates to Parental leave. Fulltime, part time and long term casual employees are entitled to up to 12 months’ unpaid leave when they have or adopt a child. Employees also have a right to request an additional 12 months’ unpaid leave – meaning they can access a total of 24 months leave. An employers can refuse the extension of parental leave beyond the first 12 months on reasonable business grounds. Employees taking parental leave have the right to return to their pre-parental leave position. There are also a number of other entitlements associated with parental leave, such as the right to transfer to a safe job during pregnancy. The 4th standard relates to annual leave. Fulltime and part-time employees receive 4 weeks per year, accrued based on the employee’s ordinary hours of work. Certain shift workers receive an additional week of annual leave. Casual employees don’t receive annual leave.The 5th standard provides 10 days’ paid personal/carer’s leave per year and 2 days’ paid compassionate leave as required. It is important to remember compassionate leave is not an annual entitlement, but one that can be access as required – that is where there is a death or life threatening injury or illness in the employee’s household or immediate family. Casual employees are entitled to take unpaid carer’s leave and unpaid compassionate leave.The 6th standard relates to community service leave, which is unpaid leave for voluntary emergency management activities and jury service. Full time and part time employees are entitled to be paid for up to 10 days of jury service. Casual employees can access unpaid community service leave.The 7th standard covers long service leave – long service leave entitlements that existed before 1 January 2010 are continued under the NES, pending the development of a uniform national long service leave standard. Long service leave entitlements may come from certain industrial instruments or State or Territory long service leave legislation.The 8th standard relates to public holidays – employees have a right to be absent from work on a public holiday. Full time and part-time employees are entitled to be paid for that day off if they would ordinarily have worked it. Casuals are entitled to an unpaid day off. If an employee is requested to work on a public holiday they can reasonably refuse. If an employee does work on a public holiday a penalty rate may be payable under their award or agreement.The 9th standard covers notice of termination and redundancy pay. Full time and part-time employees must be given written notice of termination, or payment in lieu of notice. The amount of notice required will depend on the employee’s age and length of service. If the employee is being terminated because you no longer want the job done by anyone, redundancy entitlements may apply. The amount of redundancy payable is also based on length of service.The 10th standard requires that all new employees be provided with the Fair Work Information Statement. This is a document which contains basic information about employment matters. Copies of the statement are available from fairwork.gov.au. It is worth noting that the statement is available in approximately 30 different languages and is updated every 1 July.There are rules about how and when the NES entitlements apply. Factsheets explaining each of the NES are available on fairwork.gov.au
4 Workshop Challenge: Leave Cath is a full time employee.She has worked for you for 6 months. She has not taken a day off in that time.Cath calls before her shift to tell you her son is ill and she cannot come in.What sort of paid leave can Cath access?a) annual leaveb) personal/carer’s leavec) none - she hasn’tworked her 12 months.The NES contains a number of leave entitlements. This is a workshop challenge to test your understanding of the leave entitlements.Read the slide.
5 Workshop Challenge: Leave ANSWERWhat sort of paid leave can Cath access?a) annual leaveb) personal/carer’s leavec) none - she hasn’t worked her 12 months.The Answer is ‘B: personal/carer’s leave’Under the NES employees are able to take carer’s leave to provide care or support to a member of their immediate family or household, who is suffering a personal illness, injury or an unexpected emergency.Full time employees are entitled to 10 days of personal/carer’s leave for each year of service.Personal/carer’s leave accrues progressively from the start of employment.As a full time employee with 6 months service, Cath will have accrued 5 days personal/carers leave. There is no qualifying period for taking leave under the NES – once it is accrued the employee is entitled to take it subject to the notice and evidence requirements.In these circumstances you can request Cath provide reasonable evidence that the leave was for a permitted purpose – this might include a statutory declaration or medical certificate relating to her son’s illness.The FWO has an online Leave Calculator allows you to calculate annual and personal/carer’s leave entitlements under the NES.
6 Industrial instruments Modern Awardscover most workplacesindustry and/or occupation-basedcontain minimum entitlementsEnterprise Agreementsapply to specified workplacesnegotiated with employeesmust be approved by Fair Work Australiaoverride modern award (except base rate of pay)There are a two different types of instruments which can determine an employee’s pay and conditions.Modern AwardsModern awards were introduced on 1 January 2010 and cover most workplaces. There are 122 modern awards which streamline and simplify more than 3,000 awards that existed under the previous system.Modern awards establish minimum conditions for the relevant employers and employees, including things like rates of pay, penalties for working on weekends, or evenings, and break entitlements.The modern award that applies to the employee will depend on the industry or occupation they work in.[insert information about relevant modern awards]A modern award will not apply to employees covered by an enterprise agreement.Enterprise AgreementsEmployers and employees can create an enterprise agreement that will cover the wages and conditions which apply to their business. Enterprise agreements have also previously been known as ‘workplace agreements’, ‘collective agreements’, ‘registered agreements’ or ‘EBA’s’.Enterprise agreements set out conditions of employment for a group of employees at one or more workplaces. These agreements are negotiated between employers and employees, often with involvement from a third party such as a union or employer association. Enterprise agreements must be voted on by affected staff and lodged with Fair Work Australia. An enterprise agreement will need to pass the Better Off Overall Test (BOOT) in comparison to the relevant modern award before it will operate.Whether you are covered by an award or an agreement it is important to READ IT. Modern awards and agreements establish minimum conditions, including things like rates of pay, penalties for working on weekends, and meal break entitlements. Its critical to your business that you know what these conditions are.
7 Other arrangements Individual Flexibility Arrangements can vary certain award / agreement termsmust be genuinely agreed between employer and employeeemployee must be ‘better off overall’Employment Contractscan provide equivalent or more generous conditions than NES and award / agreementcannot undercut minimum entitlements.Employers may put in place other individual arrangements with employees to suit their workplace. The important thing to remember is that individual arrangements cannot undercut an employee’s minimum entitlements under the NES, the modern award or the enterprise agreement.Individual Flexibility ArrangementsAn employer and an individual employee can agree on an arrangement which varies the effect of the applicable modern award or enterprise agreement. This is known as an Individual Flexibility Arrangement or IFA.An IFA allows employers and employees to agree to vary certain conditions under the award/agreement – however, the employee must be ‘better off overall’ (that is, applying the BOOT) under the IFA. For more information download the Use of individual flexibility arrangements Best Practice Guide from the Resources section of the Fair Work Ombudsman website.Employment ContractsEvery employee has a contract of employment – this contract may be in writing, oral and / or inferred from the conduct of the employer and the employee.It is a good idea to record the terms and conditions of the employee’s engagement in writing. This can be done in a letter of engagement or through a more formal contract.An employment contract can provide more generous conditions (for example performance bonuses or provision of a car) but cannot remove an employee’s minimum entitlements.
9 WagesPay rates are set by the applicable modern award or enterprise agreementChanges to pay rates generally take effect on 1 July each year.Modern award wages are transitioning from the pre-modern award to the modern awardAn employee’s pay is generally set by their modern award or enterprise agreement. If there are no awards/agreements that cover their employment the National Minimum Wage will generally apply.An employee’s rate of pay will depend on a few things, including:their agetheir classification (that is, the level they are working at)the type of employment (e.g. a casual employee may be entitled to a casual loading), andthe hours of work (e.g. an employee working on Sunday may be entitled to a Sunday penalty rate)Fair Work Australia conducts an annual minimum wage review which may result in increases to pay rates. Changes to pay rates generally take effect on 1 July each year.It is important to note that modern award rates are currently in a transitional period. Most modern awards give employers and employees time to adjust to the new awards by transitioning pay rates in over a period of four years. The full modern award rates will apply from July Until this time, pay rates need to be calculated with reference to both the pre-modern award entitlement and the relevant modern award entitlement. In some states the rates are transitioning up, in others, they will be transitioning down.The FWO has a number of online tools to help you calculate award pay rates.
10 Pay slips & record-keeping Keeping proper records keeping and issuing payslips are not just a legal obligation but also an important business tool.If an employee makes a claim, it is your records and payslips that a Fair Work Inspector will use to find out what an employee is entitled to and to determine whether they're getting those entitlements. Even if you have paid the employee properly, you may run into issues if you cannot prove it! Think of good record-keeping practices as your best defence against employee claims.
11 Record-keepingYou need to keep employee records for each employee relating to:Their employmentPayOvertimeHours of workLeaveSuperannuation contributionsTermination of employmentOther matters (IFAs and guarantees of annual earnings)Records must be in English, accessible to employees and Fair Work Inspectors and kept for 7 years.Record-keeping templates can be downloaded for free from the Fair Work Ombudsman website.You need to keep records in respect of each employee relating to their employment, pay, overtime, hours of work, leave, superannuation contributions, termination of employment and other matters.These records must:be in a form that is readily accessible to a Fair Work Inspectorbe in a legible form and in Englishbe kept for seven yearsnot be altered unless for the purposes of correcting an errornot be false or misleading to the employer’s knowledge.For details about what information needs to be included in employee records download the Employee records and pay slips fact sheet from the Fair Work Ombudsman website.Record-keeping templates can also be downloaded from the Fair Work Ombudsman website.
12 Pay slips Pay slips need to be issued within 1 working day of payment Pay slips can be issued electronically or in hard copyPay slips must contain certain information – see the Employee records and pay slips fact sheet for detailsPay slip templates can be downloaded for free from the Fair Work Ombudsman websitePay slipsYou need to issue your employees with pay slips within one working day of paying them. Pay slips may be issued electronically or in hard copy.For information about what details need to be included in pay slips download the Employee records and pay slips fact sheet from the Resources section of the Fair Work Ombudsman websitePay slip templates can also be downloaded from the Fair Work Ombudsman website.
13 Workshop Exercise: Payslips Does your payslip contain all of the following details?Employer ABNFor employees paid an hourly rate –the ordinary hourly rate of paythe number of hours worked at that ratethe amount of payment at that rateEmployer nameEmployee nameDate of payment (e.g. 19/06/09)Period of payment (e.g. 04/06/09 – 18/06/09)Gross amount of payFor employees paid an annual salarythe salary as at the last day in the periodNet amount of payAny bonus, loading, allowance, penalty rate, incentive-based payment or other separately identifiable entitlementsDetails of any deductions madeSuperannuation amounts paid or liable to be paid and the name of the fundPay slips must contain certain information. Please pull out the payslip you brought with you and check if it contains all of these details.If all of those details appear on your payslip, then you are meeting your obligations, if they don’t appear then you need to address those deficiencies.Free Pay slip and record keeping templates can also be downloaded from the Fair Work Ombudsman website.
15 Hiring Employees Confirm: the award/agreement that applies the type of employment (full-time, part-time or casual)any conditions re: type of employment/proposed hoursthe employee’s classification (e.g. Level 1)the correct rate of pay, loadings and allowancesProvide new employees with:the Fair Work Information Statementan engagement letter confirming their conditions of employment (optional)Hiring employeesThere are a number of things you should do when employing staff:Write a position description - list all the duties and responsibilities of the position; consider what sort of skills and experience the employee will need; consider the hours you want the employee to work. Once you have decided what the position will be, you can confirm:Which modern award or enterprise agreement will apply to the employee. If you are unsure which modern award applies use the Award Finder tool, located in the Awards section of the Fair Work Ombudsman website.which type of employment the employee will come under in the modern award / enterprise agreement (full-time, part-time or casual)Any award/agreement conditions relating to the type of employment and the proposed hours (for example, will penalties or overtime apply to any hours worked? Do the hours and days of work need to be agreed in writing?)What classification in the modern award / enterprise agreement applies to the employee (i.e. Grade 2, Level 1)the correct rates of pay, loadings and allowances, using the PayCheck Plus tool located in the Pay section of the Fair Work Ombudsman website.When the employee starts remember to provide the Fair Work Information Statement. You can download the Fair Work Information Statement from the Employment section of the Fair Work Ombudsman website.It is good practice to inform your new employees about the terms and conditions through a letter of engagement. Template engagement letters are available at fairwork.gov.au
16 Engaging ContractorsIndependent contractors are people who are self-employed and contract their services to clients.Independent contractors are not employees and have different rights and obligations.Misrepresenting or disguising an employee as an independent contractor is known as ‘sham contracting’ and is against the law.An independent contractor is someone who is self-employed and contracts their services to clients, such as other businesses. Independent contractors are not employees and will generally have different rights to employees.It is lawful for a business to engage an independent contractor, however, there are laws in place to protect employees from being treated as an independent contractor when they are in fact employees. Misrepresenting or disguising an employment relationship as an independent contracting arrangement is known as ‘sham contracting’ and is against the law. Dismissing or threatening to dismiss an employee in order to engage them as an independent contractor is also against the law.It is important that you understand the difference between independent contractors and employees and provide them their correct entitlements. Just because workers have ABNs or provide an invoice for payment, does not of itself make them independent contractors. There are multiple factors that are taken into consideration.Significant fines have been imposed on employers for breaching the sham contracting provisions. In one case the employer attempted to convert existing hotel employees (including a receptionists, gardeners, cleaners and laundry workers) into independent contractors and dismissed a number of employees who refused to become contractors. The court found the contracting arrangements to be a sham and imposed a total penalty of $294,360. [FWO v Maclean Bay Pty Ltd and Mrs Wendy Wells]More information about independent contractors visit the Employment section of the Fair Work Ombudsman website.
17 ‘Adverse Action’Adverse action is includes taking, threatening to take or organising to take actions that:dismiss the employeeinjure the employee in his or her employmentalter the position of the employee to the employee's prejudicediscriminate between the employee and other employeesDifferent forms of adverse action apply to prospective employees and independent contractorsYou may have hear of the term ‘adverse action’. Adverse action is defined broadly and it includes taking, threatening to take or organising to take actions, in the case of employers taking action against employees, that:dismiss the employeeinjure the employee in his or her employmentalter the position of the employee to the employee's prejudicediscriminate between the employee and other employeesExamples of adverse action could includecutting the employee’s shiftsrostering them for less favourable shiftsdepriving the employee of overtimeforcing them to take leavecommencing an investigation into an employee's conductgiving the employee a written warningOther similar provisions apply prohibiting prospective employers from taking adverse action against prospective employees, principals (also including prospective principals) against independent contractors and industrial associations (including their officers and members) against other people, as well as provisions which prohibit employees and independent contractors from taking adverse action, in the form of ceasing work or taking industrial action, against their employers or principals.
18 Protections from Adverse Action It is unlawful for an employer to take adverse action in connection with the employee having:workplace rights2. freedom of association/union rights and/or engaging in lawful industrial activity3. protected attributes / on discriminatory groundsAdverse action by itself is not unlawful. But it is unlawful to take adverse action for certain prohibited reasons.For example, it is unlawful if the adverse action is taken because the employee has a workplace right, or has exercised a workplace right.Workplace rights include :the employee’s entitlement to the benefit of a workplace law or workplace instrument (such as an award or agreement),the employee’s ability to participate in a process or proceedings under a workplace law or workplace instrument, orthe employee’s ability to make a complaint or enquiry in relation to their employment.Dismissing employees because they have made complaints to the Fair Work Ombudsman would be an example of taking unlawful adverse action against the employees because they exercised a workplace right.It is unlawful to take adverse action because the employee is or isn’t a union member or does or doesn’t engage in lawful industrial activitiesIt is also unlawful for an employer to take adverse action against an employee because of protected attributes / on discriminatory grounds, that is, the person’s race, colour, sex, sexual preference, age, physical or mental disability, marital status, family or carer’s responsibilities, pregnancy, religion, political opinion, national extraction or social origin.Not hiring the best candidate for the job because he or she has family responsibilities would be an example of taking unlawful adverse action against the employee on discriminatory grounds.For more information download the General workplace protections fact sheet and the Unlawful workplace discrimination fact sheet from the Resources section of Fair Work Ombudsman website.
19 Handling workplace disputes Communicate - take time to understand and discuss the concerns. Keep detailed notes of discussions.Check the applicable modern award/agreement to confirm the process for handling disputes.If unresolved, refer to an independent third party or Fair Work Australia.Download the Effective dispute resolution - Best Practice Guide from the Fair Work Ombudsman websiteMany workplace problems are the result of poor communication. Where problems arise in the workplace, it is important to take time to understand and discuss what the concerns are. You should keep detailed notes throughout any dispute and make sure that everything is recorded in writing to avoid any misunderstandings.Modern awards and agreements provide processes to assist in the resolution of disputes about matters under the modern award/agreement or in relation to the NES. You should check the applicable modern award/agreement to confirm the process for handling disputes.The dispute handling process must allow for the representation of the relevant employees, for example by a union or by another employee.If the dispute cannot be resolved at the workplace level, the employer or employee can refer the dispute to an independent third party, or to Fair Work Australia (FWA).For more information download the Effective dispute resolution - Best Practice Guide from the Resources section of Fair Work Ombudsman website.
20 Managing underperformance Address underperformance promptly and appropriatelyFollow any steps set out in the award / agreement or contract and consider applicable policies or procedures concerning performance managementDownload the Managing Underperformance Best Practice Guide from the Fair Work Ombudsman websiteEmployee underperformance can impact the productivity and performance of the entire workplace. It is important to address underperformance promptly and appropriately.Follow any steps set out in the modern award, enterprise agreement or contract of employment concerning performance management. You should also consider any applicable policies or procedures.For helpful step by step guidance on how to manage underperformance download the Managing Underperformance Best Practice Guide from the Resources section of Fair Work Ombudsman website.Template warning letters can also be downloaded from the Resources section of Fair Work Ombudsman website.
21 Terminating employment Provide written notice of termination of employmentEnsure the dismissal is fairEnsure the dismissal is lawfulCheck if redundancy entitlements applyKeep recordsPay outstanding entitlementsProvide notice in writing. Full-time and part-time employees are entitled to notice of termination of employment, or payment in lieu of notice. The amount of notice depends on the employee’s length of service and age.Generally employees won’t be entitled to notice, however, where they have engaged in ‘serious misconduct’ for example theft, fraud or assault.Ensure the dismissal is fair. Employees may make unfair dismissal claims if the termination of their employment was:‘harsh, unjust or unreasonable’;not consistent with the Small Business Fair Dismissal Code (if applicable); ornot a case of genuine redundancy.The process you follow in dismissing an employee is important – the employee should be given reasons for dismissal and an opportunity to respond to those reasons.Businesses with less than 15 employees should comply with the Small Business Fair Dismissal Code which is available on our website. The FWO’s Managing Underperformance Best Practice Guide also has a really useful step by step guide to manage performance issues.Ensure the dismissal is lawful. It is unlawful to sack employees because they were temporarily absent from work because they were on personal leave, community service leave or parental leave; because they have made a complaint against you; are a union member or non-member; or because of their protected attributes / on discriminatory grounds (as set out for adverse action above).Check whether redundancy entitlements apply. If you no longer require anyone to do the job, redundancy benefits may apply. For more information about redundancy download the Notice of termination of employment and redundancy pay fact sheet from the Fair Work Ombudsman website.Keep records. Employers must keep a record of the termination of employment, including who terminated the employment, and how it was terminated (e.g. by notice, summarily, or in some other manner). Template termination of employment letters can be downloaded from the Fair Work Ombudsman website.Pay outstanding entitlements, including:any outstanding wages or other remuneration still owingany payments that are being made in lieu of notice of termination by the employerany accrued annual leave and long service leave entitlementsany redundancy entitlements.Employers often seek to withhold money on termination of employment or making deductions from an employee’s final pay for things like unreturned uniforms – you can only do this if the award/agreement allows it. If the employee is under 18, you'll also need written consent from a parent/guardian. Employees can authorise deductions in writing but only if the deduction is for the employee’s benefit, for example: salary sacrifice arrangements. Deductions for things like till shortages or breakages are NOT lawful deductions as these do not benefit the employee.
22 Workshop Challenge: Notice Anthony has been working for you on a full-time basis for 5 months.You have decided to terminate his employment due to ongoing performance issues.His contract stipulates a 6 month ‘probation period’ during which he can be terminated without notice.How much notice do you need to provide Anthony?a) Noneb) 1 weekc) 4 weeksThis is a workshop challenge to test your understanding of the notice requirements.Read the slide.
23 Workshop Challenge: Notice ANSWERHow much notice do you need to provide Anthony?a) Noneb) 1 weekc) 4 weeksThe Answer is ‘B: 1 week’.Under the National Employment Standards employees who have been employed for less than 1 year are entitled to 1 week’s notice of termination or payment in lieu of notice.A contract of employment cannot undercut the NES, so the contract clause stating that no notice is required during the 6 month ‘probation period’ will have no effect.Anthony’s employment can be terminated during the probation period without cause – employees cannot make an unfair dismissal claim until they have completed 6 months employment (threshold is 12 months for small business employers with fewer than 15 employees).NB: prohibitions on unlawful dismissal and adverse action still apply to employees in their probation period.
24 Things to avoid… Not paying penalties, allowances or overtime Not paying for work trials, meetings or trainingOffering goods or services instead of payFailing to provide pay slipsUnlawful discriminationSham contractingSham apprenticeships or trainee arrangementsThings to avoid include:Not paying penalty rates, allowances and loadings. Often this occurs in situations where the employee is paid a ‘salary’ or flat rate that isn’t sufficient to meet all entitlements under the award / agreement or where there are some entitlements which cannot be ‘offset’ against a higher, overall, salary under the award / agreement .Not paying for work trials, meetings or training – There is no such this as a lawful unpaid work trial!Offering goods and services instead of payFailing to provide pay slips – employees shouldn’t have to ask for their payslips, they should be provided within one day of payment.Unfortunately cases of unlawful discrimination in the workplace still occur. FWO prosecuted a pregnancy discrimination case in which a woman was demoted from office duties to packaging duties in the business’ factory after informing her employer that she was pregnant and they hired a replacement employee to perform her office duties. When she requested to go back to her office job, the employer refused and told her that “many employees resign when they fall pregnant and then stay home in bed”. The employee was later subjected to unwarranted performance management because she made a complaint to the FWO before the owners insisted that she had resigned when she had advised them that she would not be coming in to work when she had the baby (the Court accepted that she had been constructively dismissed). The owners, were fined $23,760 for their conduct and ordered to pay $2, to the woman in compensation for the lower rate of pay the demoted duties attracted – the company itself was in liquidation so the orders were made just against the owners. [FWO v Wongtas Pty Ltd (in liquidation) & Ors]Sham contacting It is important that you understand the difference between independent contractors and employees and provide them their correct entitlements. Just because workers have ABNs or provide an invoice for payment, does not of itself make them independent contractors. There are multiple factors that are taken into consideration.Sham apprenticeships and traineeships’ – this refers to new employees being paid as ‘trainees’ or ‘apprentices’ when they are not actually undertaking a formal traineeship or apprenticeship. This is unlawful and can lead to very large underpayments.
25 What to do if the FWO contacts you Speak with your franchisor and seek advice if you need itCooperate with the Fair Work Inspector – produce requested documents and records; ask questions if you don’t understandSeek to promptly resolve the complaint or any issues raised in an auditIf the Fair Work Ombudsman contacts you:Contact your franchisor – they are there to support youCooperate with the investigation or audit, including producing documents and records requested by the Fair Work Inspector.Seek to promptly resolve the complaint or any issues raised in an audit – Ignoring the problem will not make it go away!The Fair Work Ombudsman recognises that the vast majority of employers do not set out to deliberately avoid their responsibilities. If you have made a mistake and you fix it, that will usually be the end of the matter.
26 Where to get help Speak with your franchisor or employer association Visit for:Pay tools and Leave calculatorFact Sheets and Best Practice GuidesTemplate Documents and ChecklistsIndustry Specific Web PagesLive chat and enquiriesLatest news and subscriptions servicesCall the Fair Work Infoline –Speak with your franchisor or employer association. [Detail supports available to franchisees]The FWO has developed an extensive range of tools and resources to help you with your workplace relations issues.At - you can:use the pay and leave calculatorsdownload factsheets and best practice guidesaccess free interactive templates to assist you with record-keeping and preparing correspondence for hiring, managing and terminating the employment of staffView Industry-specific web page for employers in certain industrieschat online with an adviser or an enquirycheck the Fair Work Ombudsman's latest news articlessubscribe to the FWO e-newsletter or RSS updates - you can also subscribe to award updates from Fair Work Australia via their website.Lastly, you can call the Fair Work Infoline on during business hours, Monday to Friday to speak to a Fair Work Adviser.