Wednesday, 23 February 2011 13:02

Sifting through employment awards

Written by 

During the past month, I have received many calls regarding employment – the majority seeking clarification from people on whether they are employing or being employed correctly.

It is not hard to see why there is so much confusion about employment in the dairy industry.  We have different rules for different states and for different operating structures. We work variable hours – often seven days a week. We also have several levels of award. And – to top it all off – dairy operators are often time poor when it comes to keeping up with their business administration.

So where do we start to get things right?

My first suggestion is to ensure - as employers and employees - we are familiar with ‘The People in Dairy’ website and its ‘People Advisors’ at www.thepeopleindairy.org.au . This site is targeted at helping with the answers to people questions and managing our people resource to develop long-term success in our businesses.

Let’s start with some of the basics, even though this will only scratch the surface.

Employers need to ensure their employees are recording the hours worked in an accurate and regular fashion.  This will provides the detail needed to ensure employees are being paid correctly for their efforts.

As a basic snapshot, employees are paid at normal rates for their first 152 hours worked over four weeks, then paid at overtime rates for any hours worked over 152 during a four week period. They are paid double time for overtime worked on a Sunday, while any public holidays are paid at double time or by way of a day in lieu.

To manage this correctly, employees’ wages and rates of pay need to be calculated and reviewed on a monthly basis – even if they are paid weekly or fortnightly. Of course there are some exceptions which relate to ‘Managers’, but the discipline of recording hours should still be applied.

Employers and employees should also be familiar with the Federal Pastoral Award 2010 and how this relates to the dairy industry.  This sets the platform on how we engage employees correctly.  The Federal Pastoral Award can be found by following the links to Awards on the ‘Fair Work Australia’ website www.fwa.gov.au  - or you can find a link to it on my website.

Both employers and employees should also be au fait with the correct classification of permanent, part time and casual employees and the respective requirements of each. Permanent is classified as 38 hours or greater per week and part-time is less than 38 hours. Meanwhile, casual is classified as on an as-needed basis and has different loadings compared with a part time or permanent work.

As we start the new calendar year, make a decision to become an employer of choice by learning more about this part of your business.  There are a number of resources out there to help those willing to put the effort in.

As I was told recently by a large employer: “People aren’t the problem they are the solution!”

Gavin McClay is a dairy based business consultant based in Victoria. He can be contacted on 0425 825 288, This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or through his website: www.gavinmcclay.com.au

More from this category

Increased Euro dairy production no threat

 

THE MOVE to a more liberal market regime in European dairy will not pose a significant threat to the Australian industry, according to an international dairy specialist.

Northern NSW grass factory

UP ON the Northern Rivers of NSW – the top, eastern corner that abuts Queensland and the Gold Coast – they reckon Cory Crosthwaite is far and away the best grass grower around.

The Tweedside dairy’s 94ha, all sandy loam river flats apart from 8ha of red volcanic ‘hill’, produces more than 20,000kg of dry matter/ha a year, while pastures on your average dairy farm in the region do around 3500kgDM/ha/year. 

Effluent on pasture returns nutrients

THE RE-USE of second pond effluent back onto pasture will help return valuable nutrients to the soil, a six-year study has found.

The study at the DemoDAIRY research and demonstration farm at Terang tested a range of application rates of second pond effluent to pasture to determine how much can be safely applied.

It recommended that correct use of second pond effluent should be encouraged on dairy farms but found applying too much on the same land could have negative environmental impacts.

Fighting kikuyu invasion

A WEST Australia farmer is planning high sugar grass trials with the aim of holding back the kikuyu invasion of his dairy farm south of Perth.

Victor Rodwell, who milks 840 Holstein Friesians and crossbreds on a dairy platform of 250ha at Boyanup, 200km south of Perth, plans to sow more AberMagic high sugar ryegrass this autumn for its persistent and dense tiller and root growth, as well as its high nutritional value.

Change your rhythm to make lasting changes

I WAS recently informed that over 90% of what we do and how we do it is out of habit or routine and very little is spontaneous or based on the information on hand at the time.

Initially I wanted to challenge this suggestion but found that it is true in my life.

Summer rain can herald problems for livestock

THE VICTORIAN Department of Primary Industries (DPI) is advising livestock producers that while the recent rain could provide valuable green feed, they need to keep close watch on their stock to avoid possible health problems.

MANY FARM tracks are in need of serious maintenance after the wet conditions prevalent across most of Australia last year. Following are some practical tips that will hopefully help save time and money when the season permits some repair work.

 

The Stony Rises, near Colac, are aptly named.  While the soil is rich with nutrients and the rainfall consistently good, the land is disrupted by a vast number of basalt rocks caused by volcanic activity from thousands of years ago.

During the past month, I have received many calls regarding employment – the majority seeking clarification from people on whether they are employing or being employed correctly.

A new scanning device fitted to a four-wheel motorbike could revolutionise the way landholders   plan their attacks on red-headed cockchafers.

 

As we head out of the wettest summer on record how do we capitalise on the good conditions and turn it into ongoing benefit for our business?

WITH LAND prices of $19,000/hectare throughout Western Victoria, dairy farmers Mark and Kim Bayne were forced to think outside the square to get their own farm.

Leave a comment

Make sure you enter the (*) required information where indicated.\nBasic HTML code is allowed.

» Get social

When butter and chocolate collide

TWO New Zealand companies Lewis Road Creamery and Whittakers have teamed up to deliver what must be every dairy lover’s dream: chocolate butter.

» E-Newsletter

Subscribe to our mailing list

* indicates required