Working together to get employment right
Western Australia has the most complex industrial relations system in the nation. With both a National and State industrial relations system to consider it can be difficult to get things right.
We know that WA employers want to do the right thing, but sometimes just don’t have the support or resources available to navigate their way around the pitfalls of the system.
Here you can find the practical advice, guidance and resources you need to get employment right, including:
- A free eLearning Course on WA employment law
- Access to regional workshops facilitated by one of our employment lawyers
- Resources and information sheets from our Employee Relations Advice Centre
- An FAQ on the common questions we regularly answer for our Clients and Members
- NEW resources to help you get work health & safety (WHS) right after the 2022 reform is now available at this link
Free eLearning Course
This free eLearning Course contains 17 different modules.
It begins with an introductory module on employment law in WA to provide you with a general understanding of how the system works.
From there you will be able to select from an additional 16 modules on various Awards from the National and State employment law systems.
This knowledge is essential in minimising the risk on your business of accidental underpayments being made.
What you'll learn
- What WA having two Industrial Relations systems means for you
- How to navigate an Award
- What you need to know to get things right
Access to in-person support can be a challenge for businesses outside of the Perth region. This series of free workshops aim to give regional businesses the opportunity for more support.
Facilitated by a CCIWA employment lawyer, these workshops will cover the fundamentals of employment law in WA and give you the opportunity to discuss practical, hands-on scenarios in a collaborative environment.
Topics of discussion include:
- The implications of WA having two industrial relations systems
- Your record keeping obligations
- The risk of underpayments for your business
- What Awards are and how they work
- Practical case studies that can be applied to your business
Free Webinar Workshop
There is a lot you need to know as an employer, and it can easily get overwhelming. To help with this, we have put together a number of free resources you can download from our Hub to keep on hand for when you need them most. Below are a few examples of where these resources could help.
Getting pay right
Pay rates, deductions, allowances, overtime, penalty rates – these are all common areas where mistakes are made. By understanding how Awards work, how employees should be paid, what their entitlements they have and the obligations that you have are essential to getting pay right. In addition to the rest of the content in this Hub these information sheets will help you avoid common mistakes.
Understanding the system
The WA industrial relations system is not a simple one. There are important standards and protections employers need to be aware of to protect their business and look after their employees. We have free information sheets to help with this.
- Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety website has a wealth of information on the State System in WA. You can learn more about long services leave, WA Awards, pay rates and much more.
- Guide to who is in the WA state system is a webpage maintained by the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety and could be a valuable tool in helping to determine which system your business is covered by. Remember to always seek professional advice if you’re uncertain.
- Fair Work Commission website has the information you need to know about the National System. This is where you can go to access Modern Awards, agreements and numerous other valuable and free resources.
- Wageline is a free advice line specifically for questions on the State System in WA. They can help you with questions about WA awards, your obligations, long service leave, pay rates and more. They cannot advise on the National System.
Unboxing Employee Relations YouTube Channel
Sometimes it’s easier to watch a quick video to get an understanding of a change or current hot topic for employers. Our YouTube channel Unboxing Employee Relations will keep you up to date on key employer issues, changes to law and general advice.
I have a contract of employment with my employee, does this mean I don’t need to worry about an Award?
No, most employees are covered by Awards and a contract being in place does not mean the Award stops applying to the employee.
No, Awards contain the minimum rates of pay that can legally be paid to employees. Paying less than this, even by agreement is a breach of the Award and could lead to an underpayment claim.
My employee is a shiftworker, but they are happy to work without penalty rates even though the Award says they should be paid, is that ok?
No, if an Award requires you to pay an employee a penalty rate, it cannot be ignored – even by agreement.
No, while there are ways to lawfully do this, simply paying above the Award does not mean you can stop following it. There are other terms and conditions in the Award that need to be considered aside from just the rate of pay.
Not necessarily, there are two Industrial Relations Systems in WA and a number of factors to be considered when working out your system. If you aren’t sure, you should speak with a qualified accountant or seek legal advice.
Expert advice if you need it
Mistakes happen and there is help available to correct and prevent them moving forward. Our Employment Law WA Team can help your business get things back on track in a number of different areas such as:
- Underpayment claims
- Unfair dismissals
- Employment contracts
- Workplace policies