Changes to Australian modern awards took effect 1 March 2020
If you’re an Australian employer, you may be aware that changes are in place to modern awards that will require added compliance.
The Fair Work Commission announced its final decision last year amid media stories of employers underpaying workers. The new award requirements took effect on 1 March 2020.
Many businesses will need to review employment contracts and update their HR and payroll practices in the coming weeks. If you’re an employer who uses Xero Payroll, you’ll want to ensure you’re compliant. These are just a few of the tasks that will apply to an enlarged group of 22 modern awards:
- Annual calculations of what the employee would have been paid under the award compared with the annualised wage actually paid (with reconciliations and back pay of any shortfalls)
- Recording start and finish times, as well as any unpaid breaks taken by each employee subject to an annualised wage arrangement (in order to perform the calculations and reconciliations as listed above)
- Records must be signed by employees or acknowledged as correct in writing (including electronic methods) with each pay period/roster cycle.
Some employers will also need to advise employees of the formula that was used to determine their annual salary and any excess hours of work not covered by their annual salary.
Tools to help
Many Xero subscribers already use third-party apps that integrate with Xero Payroll. These apps can handle rostering and timesheets. Research which ones might be a suitable fit for your situation come 1 March or let us know if we can help whittle down your choices, such as:
- Deputy: scheduling, timeclock and communication. Payroll and time billing integrate with Xero. Free Android and iOS apps
- Employment Hero: cloud-based HR with extensive employee benefits giving businesses the tools to manage and be compliant with respect to payroll and HR
- HR Central: cloud-based software for HR compliance. Manage policies, leave, employee qualifications, procedures and documentation
- Tanda: scheduling, time clock attendance, award interpretation and pay calculation that integrates with Xero Payroll
Fair Work resources
There’s an app and timesheet template available from Fair Work. While the Fair Work app is a standalone resource, you can export information and enter it manually into Xero. The timesheet template may be useful for those disinclined to record details via electronic methods.