You may have heard late last year that Woolworths was found to be underpaying its employees over the span of almost a decade. The only reason it came to light – shocked store managers complaining that they were earning less than their staff.
More recently, supermarket giant Coles hit the spotlight, with the company expecting a $20m hit after underpaying managers over the past six years.
There is no better time to review how you’re paying your workers.
It’s not just large corporations that are being highlighted right now – several high-profile restaurants have closed or are being put under pressure considering similar issues.
It’s time to ask yourself – do we have our payroll under control?
The Industrial relations minister released a discussion paper earlier this year looking at options to tackle worker underpayments. The paper raises the prospect of “adverse publicity orders” which could require an employer to display a notice admitting to underpayments. Company directors could also be disqualified from holding office – this is being taken seriously.
Businesses that fail to prevent wage theft could also be banned from hiring migrant workers.
While most underpayments aren’t deliberate, it’s a serious issue that can easily be avoided. If managing your payroll is getting out of hand, or you’re considering a managed solution, Labour Solutions Australia and our subsidiary LSA Professional Services can help.
The Government is due to introduce legislation over the coming weeks to criminalise the most serious forms of worker exploitation with significant jail terms and fines.
Labour Solutions take our obligations seriously – we are a part of Adcorp Group, a multinational workplace solutions company. We have systems in place to ensure that your workers are paid correctly, avoiding errors and the associated negative publicity. We even have the certifications to prove it.