Competitors Oblige Agreement Termination

What to do with an agreement with generous conditions when your competitors keep beating you on all your tenders? This problem faced a company that found earlier largesse was coming back to bite as more players entered their patch, leaving them behind.

Intimidation, or just stating plain facts?

When a services company was faced with a mining operator’s ultimatum to reduce costs or lose the contract, it acted.  It decided that without a reduction in wage rates, penalties, and overtime entitlements (to apply only to new recruits), the contract would be lost.

Enterprise Agreements: Specific Explanations Needed

Once again the FWC has baulked at approving agreements where it was not convinced the employers had taken all reasonable steps to explain the proposed deals to the employees.

No Backdating Agreement Cancellation

The employee had argued that since the agreement had expired two and half years previously, the cancellation should operate from the day after the agreement expired. This would have presented the employer with a serious problem, because the award had ‘caught up’ with the agreement in some areas, so there would be a great deal of effort needed to ensure the 109,000 employees had been paid properly.

Not Just BOOT to be Explained to Employees

Many employers think their obligation to explain the effect of a proposed agreement is met when they set out the differences between a proposed agreement and the award(s) that would otherwise apply. But that’s not necessarily the whole story. Failing to explain the difference between an expired agreement and a new one as well, can […]

Had Not Genuinely Tried to Reach Agreement

A union has been told its protected action ballot application has been prematurely made, after it held one meeting with a HR officer of the employer. And to make matters worse, only two out of 11 claims on the union’s list were even discussed at that meeting, which came less than five hours after the […]

Trading-Off the Essence of Bargaining

Assessing the better off overall test for enterprise bargaining should focus on objectively verifiable matters and not descend into speculation about subjective or unquantifiable matters the FWC has said when rejecting union objections to a proposed agreement. The agreement had a fixed 43 hour week which the union contended eliminated the employees’ opportunities to accrue […]

Common Sense Returns

The Fair Work Commission has waved through an application for agreement approval despite what would once have been fatal errors in the process and paperwork. Relying on recent amendments to the Fair Work Act, the decision acknowledged errors had been made but none were of such magnitude or import to justify sending the employer and […]