Following the classifications under the Pastoral Award can be confusing. Common problems employers face include:
- Knowing what classification your employee is, and therefore what the applicable minimum pay rate is.
- Determining whether your employee is casual or part time, and therefore how much they should be paid.
- Ensuring that all staff receive at least three hours pay for any shift, regardless of whether they are casual or part time.
- Paying an hourly flat rate for all hours without having an Individual Flexibility Agreement (IFA) can cause trouble.
- Knowing if your IFA satisfies the BOOT (Better-off-overall-test).
- Any hours your employee works that are over 38 hours per week average entitles them to receive overtime unless you have an IFA.
- A farm worker who is paid as an independent contractor will be entitled to receive the minimum entitlements of the Pastoral Award, in most cases.
- Knowing when you can sack an employee and what the possible repercussions might be.
The Pastoral Award can be found at http://www.fwa.gov.au/documents/modern_awards/pdf/MA000035.pdf
Only clauses 1 to 32 of the Pastoral Award are relevant to the dairy, sheep, beef or cropping industry. Classifications are found in clause 27. Pay rates are found in clause 28.