1 July 2015 – Minimum Wage Increase of 2.5% – FAQs

1 July 2015 – Minimum Wage Increase of 2.5% – FAQs

I pay my employees more than the minimum wage, do I need to check my pay rates?

  • You should check your employees’ minimum wages against the award wages under the relevant modern award to make sure that the amount you’re paying them covers their new entitlements. Allowances, loadings and penalty rates could also increase, so make sure you check these as well.

I have an enterprise agreement, how does this affect me?

The base rate in an enterprise agreement can’t be any less than the relevant award rate, or if no award applies, the national minimum wage. You’ll need to:

  • check your agreement to see what it says about annual wage increases
  • check the minimum award entitlements (or the national minimum wage) to make sure the rates in the agreement are at least the same or higher.

What should I do to get ready?

  • Check that your payroll systems are ready. Your payroll systems and staff should be preparing for the changes. They need to be aware that the new minimum wages apply from the first full pay period on or after 1 July.
  • Apply the changes from the first full pay period on or after 1 July. So if your business pay week is Thursday to Wednesday, then you’ll need to pay your employees the new rates for all the hours they work from Thursday 2 July.
  • Make sure your pay slips and records are updated.

What do I do with salaried employees ?

  • Some awards allow you to pay employees an annual salary, provided that the amount paid to the employee over a 12 month period is equal to or higher than what they would have received under their award.
  • If your annual salaries are still above the new award minimum rates, you’re not obliged to pass the pay increase onto staff.

What about if I have above award payments ?

  • Many employers choose to pay their employee’s wages that are higher than award minimum rates. Employees who receive more than the minimum wage are not guaranteed an increase provided they’re paid at least equal to the applicable minimum rate under the award

What is the national minimum wage ?

The new national minimum wage for a full-time adult will be $656.90 per week or $17.29 per hour.

Michael O'Shaughnessy

Michael is a specialist in all things HR. With vast HR experience in the USA and Australia, Michael brings a wealth of knowledge and advice to HR Central. When he's not blogging for HR Central you can find him out for dinner in one of Melbourne's newest restaurants.

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