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Workplace Relations

Block employee wage rates

New Commonwealth workplace laws, including the Modern Horticulture Award 2010 and National Employment Standards came into effect on 1 January, 2010. The latest national wage review, announced on 1 June 2016, resulted in a wage adjustment which applied from 1 July 2016.

Modern Horticulture Award – important features for the dried grape industry:

  • Piecework: little change to existing arrangements, although the piecework rate will now include a 15% loading (rather than the previous 12.5%) plus an additional 25% for casuals (same as previously).
  • Importantly, there is no guarantee that an employee on a piecework rate will earn at least the minimum ordinary time weekly or hourly wage as the employees' earnings are contingent on their productivity.
  • Ordinary hours and overtime: these provisions don't apply to casuals. That is, casuals can work any hours at ordinary time rates plus casual loading of 25%.
  • Ordinary hours for full-time and part-time employees won't exceed 152 hours over a four-week period, with all time worked in excess of ordinary hours being deemed overtime (the previous award provided for a 40-hour week, however the new modern award provides for a 38-hour week).
  • Time off in lieu of overtime: employees are allowed time off duty, with pay for a period equal to the overtime worked (to be taken within three weeks unless mutually agree on another time). Rather than taking time off in lieu, the employee may elect to be paid for overtime worked, provided that is made clear to the employer when overtime is offered.

The Dried Fruits Australia Block Wages Sheet has been updated and mailed to members. You can download a copy below.

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