Closing for the Holiday season? Have employees working over the holidays?
Here’s what you need to know as an employer.
With the many changes seen this year, holiday season shut down and employee leave rules and regulations have modified slightly. As most businesses in Australia have a scheduled shut down of business during the Christmas and New Year holiday season, understanding your legal obligations as an employer during the holiday seasons means being aware of your legal responsibilities.
When dealing with issues around employees working and taking leave during the holiday season, ensure you know their work status, applicable Awards, Enterprise Agreements and pay rates – these will affect your decisions.
1. Can I ask employees to work on public holidays over Christmas?
The answer is YES, however it cannot be mandatory. Employers are required to request an employee to work on a public holiday, if reasonable. An employee can refuse the request if it is not reasonable, or the refusal from the employee is reasonable given individual circumstances. Note that full-time employees must still receive their usual salary for the public holiday.
Use this link: Working on Public Holidays
The rule of thumb is yes, employees will receive penalty rates. Be aware of the award or agreement covering your employees. Employee work type (full-time, part-time, casual) will greatly impact the pay rates as well.
Use this link: List of Awards and Agreements