FibreHR Blog

We share some of our recruitment strategies in our blog. FibreHR, your people are our business.

Minimum Wage increase

Lisa Spiden - Friday, June 06, 2014
The Fair Work Commission has announced a 3.0% increase in the minimum wage in its annual review. Effective from July 1 2014, the national minimum wage will be $640.90 per week for employees who are not on modern awards. This is an increase of $18.70 per week, or 50c per hour.

According to the commission, the decision was based on a number of factors, including the anticipated positive outlook for the Australian economy, social and lifestyle considerations of lower paid employees, and the increase in the cost of living. The Commission noted that while ‘real earnings’ have typically increased in the past decade, inequality in earnings was also increasing and a number of factors had culminated in there being a reduction in the relative living standards of award-reliant workers. 

In making its decision, the Commission has again said that the introduction of an increased superannuation guarantee rate was a moderating factor in considering the adjustment that should be made to minimum wages. However, it refused to take into account any improvements in living standards that could arise as a result of the government’s proposed abolition of the carbon price, saying this approach invited it to ‘speculate on the outcome of an uncertain political process’. For the same reason, it did not take into account proposed changes to the tax-transfer system announced in the latest federal budget.

New wage details for those employees who are covered by modern awards will also be available from July 1. As an employer, there are a number of steps you should take to prepare your business for the changes, and make sure you are in compliance with the new award increases:
  1. Review your budget to prepare for the increase from July 1.
  2. Make sure you receive the updated award information from Fair Work Australia so you can check that your employees are being paid the correct amounts for the relevant awards.
  3. Update your payroll systems so they are ready to go for July 1.
  4. Don’t forget there is a rise in superannuation payments effective from July. This will take the employer contribution from 9.25% to 9.50%.
The Commission also confirmed an increase in the casual loading for award/agreement free employees to 25% (which aligns with the casual loadings applicable in most modern awards).

What is performance management?

Lisa Spiden - Wednesday, February 06, 2013

As a business owner or manager, performance management is a term which you are probably familiar with. Although the phrase is widely used in the business world, there are a lot of misconceptions about exactly what performance management is, and how to do it effectively.

Here is a brief guide to the process of performance management, and how a good performance review can benefit both your employees and your business.

Performance management involves monitoring an employee’s performance against a pre-defined set of goals or behaviours. Feedback can be provided in the form of formal reviews, and also more informal discussion on a regular basis.

Why is performance management important?

If you want your team to work effectively, everyone needs to be aware of their role and receive regular feedback on what they are doing well, and what they can improve on.

Performance management should be a proactive process that you undertake on an ongoing basis with your employees, rather than be just a reactive way of dealing with inappropriate attitudes or behaviours in the workplace.

What are the benefits of performance management for the employer?

Regularly undertaking performance management strategies can help ensure everyone knows what their role is within the team, and the organisation itself, and that the business as a whole is working as effectively as possible. Monitoring performance and providing feedback can also help you identify and deal with potential issues before they become major problems.

Although performance management is about individual employees, every staff member is part of a larger team. For your team to run effectively, every person in your business needs to be working towards the same goals. Conducting regular performance management can help achieve this.

Regularly undertaking performance management can also help employees feel more valued, which can make it easier to retain staff. Losing valuable employees can be detrimental to your business. Ensuring that every team member knows their role and receives regular advice and guidance as to how they can better meet expectations can help your staff develop in their role, and maintain their loyalty to your business.

What are the benefits of performance management for staff?

Having a clearly defined role and receiving regular feedback can help your employees grow and develop their skills. Demonstrating that you are paying attention to your staff helps them feel more valued and rewarded for their efforts, which can lead to a higher level of job satisfaction and lower levels of stress.

If undertaken well, a performance review can be an opportunity for employees to discuss their concerns, as well as receive feedback. Making sure that staff members are clear on the parameters of their role, and what their expectations are, makes it easier for them to do their job, and reduces any potential misunderstandings that might affect their performance.

Regular performance management activities have many benefits for both employees and employers. Your staff members are your best assets, and by demonstrating that you are prepared to invest time and effort into helping them achieve their full potential, you can benefit both individual team members and your business as a whole.

How to improve your recruitment process

Lisa Spiden - Thursday, August 11, 2011

Here are several helpful steps to improving your recruitment process, which are summarised below:

  • Identify the needs of the business: get a clear picture of your workforce.
  • Define the job: write a clear, concise and accurate job description.
  • Determine the selection criteria and attributes required for the position, and create a profile of the ‘ideal’ candidate.
  • Check the Award coverage.
  • Write a short advertisement, including salary range, and include any extra information which may help prospective candidates decide if they might be suitable.
  • Prepare for the interview: including who will conduct it, where it will happen and how much time is required.  Prepare questions, and review resumes beforehand.
  • Conduct the interview: ask one question at a time, use some open-ended questions, and let the candidate talk and probe for more information if required. 
  • Remember to check qualifications and references from former employers.
  • Make the decision: by analysing the previously determined criteria and applicants to find the best match.
  • Offer the job to the chosen applicant, using a clearly worded letter of offer.
  • Take the successful applicant through an induction process.
  • Monitor their performance at regular intervals and provide constructive feedback.