Which states are the most Fair Work compliant?

by Cameron Edmond16 Dec 2013
Hospitality businesses have been targeted by Fair Work Australia in a bid to improve compliance with the law. The agency’s audits found some are further ahead when sticking to the law than others.

The compliance rates for pubs, bars, taverns and accommodation businesses by state are:

Queensland: 81%
The FWO conducted 196 audits in QLD, and found 158 businesses to be compliant, with 38 having non-compliance issues. 21 of these organisations had issues surrounding underpayment, with the others having record-keeping, pay slip and technical contraventions.

Tasmania: 74%
19 employers in Tasmania were audited, with 14 found to be compliant. While no monetary (underpayment) breaches were found in TAS, the remaining 5 (26%) employers were found to have pay slip and record-keeping contraventions.

New South Wales: 72%
264 audits were completed in NSW, with 191 found to be compliant and 74 to have issues. Again, the majority of these issues appeared to stem from underpayments, with 35 non-compliant businesses found to have problems in this area.

South Australia: 72%
56 of the 78 organisations audited were found to be compliant. Of the 22 with problems, 10 were found to have underpaid employees. On the whole, it was found pubs, bars and taverns had higher compliance than accommodation providers.

Western Australia: 54%
The 52 audits conducted in WA found 28 businesses to be compliant. While 24 organisations were found to have non-compliance issues, only three had underpaid employees. The biggest offender was found in Perth, where an employer had underpaid 18 employees a total of $10,049.

Northern Territory: 52%
The FWO audited 29 NT businesses, and found 15 to be compliant, while 14 had non-compliance issues. The majority of these issues regarded employees being underpaid, with record-keeping, pay slip and technical contraventions also found. “Payment of flat hourly rates for all hours worked, resulting in non-payment of penalty rates, was a common non-compliance issue in the NT,” Fair Work Ombudsman Natalie James said.

Victoria: 45%
46 of the 101 Victorian businesses audited were found to be compliant, with 55 having issues. “Underpayment of penalty rates and failure to increase minimum base rates of pay in line with the annual wage review decision were common non-compliance issues in Victoria,” James said. “We will work with relevant stakeholders and consider focusing further compliance and education activities on accommodation providers, bars, pubs and taverns in Victoria in future to improve compliance levels.”
The FWO have a range of free resources available to the hospitality industry, which can be found here.

Natalie James will be speaking at the HR Summit 2014. For more information and to register, go to www.hrsummit.com.au.


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