The Fair Work Commission (FWC) has announced that from 1 July 2017 there will be a 3.3% wage hike to the National Minimum Wage. You can read all 208 pages of the review here.
The increase raises the minimum weekly wage by $22.20, up to $694.90 or $18.29 an hour (previously $17.70). This will take effect from the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2017.
The announced increase is an upgrade on last years raise of 2.4% and comes shortly after details were released of the cuts to Sunday & Public Holiday Penalty Rates, meaning the increase will be somewhat bittersweet for employees covered by the following awards;
- Fast Food Award
- Hospitality Award
- Restaurant Award
- Pharmacy Award
- Retail Award
For more information on the Sunday & Public Holiday Penalty Rates and the next steps to take, check out our previous blog post.
What happens next?
Nothing for now. The FWC will be updating their Pay and Conditions Tool (PACT) shortly with the new rates and they advise subscribing to their email updates to ensure you don’t miss anything. You can do so here.
In the meantime, we would suggest contacting your software provider to draw up a plan of action so that once the pay tools have been released by the FWC they can be implemented quickly and efficiently.
Australian Retailers Association believes the hike is ‘devastating’, Chief Executive Russell Zimmerman believing the increase will “suppress the benefits achieved by the penalty rates reduction, negatively affecting increased trading hours”.
The Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry has a similar view, who were lobbying for a 1.2% increase instead. Director Jenny Lambert says “the Commission has put a greater burden on the small and medium businesses who rely on awards, making it harder for them to compete”, and in turn “help young people into paid employment”.
Alternatively, the Australian Council of Trade Unions had earlier proposed a significantly higher rise of 6.7%. Coupled with the cut in Penalty Rates, they believe this comes as a “double hit” on affected workers.