National Minimum Wage rise effective 1 July 2023

The Fair Work Commission has announced this year’s Annual Wage Review Decision

National Minimum Wage Increase 

Effective from 1 July 2023, the National Minimum Wage will increase by 5.75%.

In addition to the percentage increase, the Commission has also increased the wage level that the minimum wage had traditionally been based on under certain Modern Awards.

Together these two changes mean that those employees in receipt of the minimum wage will receive the following rates before tax:

  • $23.23 per hour, and
  • $882.80 per week (based on a 38-hour week for a full-time employee).

This increase will see an extra $70.20 ‘in the pocket’ each week.

Modern Award Rate Increase 

Similar to the National Minimum Wage increase, all 121 Modern Awards will also increase by 5.75% on 1 July 2023

The Fair Work Commission will release updated Pay Guides in line with the effective date.

Modern Awards can be complex. If you need help determining if a Modern Award applies to your employees or you understand what Awards apply but you need assistance understanding the specific Classification they fall under, contact the Allan Hall Human Resources Team on 1300 675 393.

Non-Award Employees 

It is important to note that if you have non-award covered employees receiving payment which is above the national minimum wage, you are not obliged to increase their salary/wages. However, with the current Australian job market being so competitive and a shortage of potential employees available, it may be worth undertaking a salary benchmarking exercise and considering if an increase would be suitable during your next salary review.    

At Allan Hall HR we can provide you with Salary Benchmarking reports, based on data from a range of current and reputable reporting sources. If you want to know what the market is doing, contact us to gain access to salary insights based on a range of factors such as industry, turnover, headcount and location!

Changes to Superannuation from 1 July 2023

As a reminder, the Super Guarantee rate will rise from 1 July 2023. This will rise by another half per cent, taking the minimum super guarantee from 10.5% to 11%.

The Super Guarantee rate will continue to rise by an additional 0.5% at the start of each financial year until it reaches 12% in 2025.

Next Steps

  1. Check if your employees are covered by the national minimum wage or a Modern Award.   
  2. Should a Modern Award apply to your employees, ensure you have correctly classified your employees under the relevant award, and confirm the minimum rates of pay that will apply.    
  3. Review the current rates of pay for your employees and, if required, adjust their pay rates from their first full pay period starting on or after 1 July 2023.
  4. Ensure you start applying the new Superannuation Guarantee rate of 11% from 1 July 2023.

Our experienced HR Consultants at Allan Hall HR are available to answer your queries regarding the wage rise and assist you with clarification of awards, salary benchmarking or any other employee-related matters. Feel free to get in touch with us today on 1300 675 393.



Payday super proposed

Superannuation system update in consultation

Following a media release last week, the Government announced that from 1 July 2026, employers will be required to pay super for their employees at the same time as their salary and wages.

The start date will provide employers, super funds, payroll providers and other parts of the superannuation system with sufficient time to prepare for the change. 

This is not yet law.

Treasury and the ATO will consult closely with industry and stakeholders on these changes in the second half of 2023. This measure is aimed at closing the gap on billions of dollars in unpaid super.

The upside for small business is the bank account better reflecting actual cash flow position. With most accounting software packages heavy lifting the additional administration required, employers who outsource their payroll will face additional compliance costs.  

For more information, see the Hon Stephen Jones MP joint media release here or contact the team at Allan Hall.


apprentice wage subsidy

Wage subsidy applications for employees close 30 June

Be quick to claim yours! 

Overview of the Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements (BAC) wage subsidy 

The Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements (BAC) wage subsidy supports employers of any size in onboarding new apprentices.  

The subsidy is not just for traditional apprentices or young people (although it does also apply to them). Employers who organise training for their employees through Group Training Organisations may also be eligible – see eligibility criteria below.  

Group Training Organisations must pass on the BAC and CAC payments to the host employer. Employers (via the Group Training Organisation) will be eligible for the wage subsidy for up to 30 approved employees registered for training. 

Businesses that employ an Australian Apprentice for training between 5 October 2020 and 30 June 2022 may be eligible for a subsidy of 50% of the gross wages paid. The subsidy is for a maximum of $7000 per quarter, per eligible employee, for wages paid in the 12-month period from the date they start.  

Payments will be made quarterly in arrears into the employer’s nominated bank account. Employers are encouraged to submit claims as soon as possible after the relevant claim period opens. 

Eligibility Criteria  

The subsidy is available to employers of any size, industry, or geographic location.  

Your business may be eligible if: 

  • You engage an Australian Apprentice between 5 October 2020 and 30 June 2022 
  • Your Australian apprentice or trainee is undertaking a Certificate II or higher qualification and has a training contract that is formally approved by the state training authority.  

Please note, you may still be eligible for the wage subsidy if your employee is registered prior to 30 June 2022 to complete the training, and the required application is completed / approved.  

Additional eligibility requirements apply to existing workers. 

The employee must not be: 

  • Employed as a casual or contractor 
  • Sole director of the employer company 
  • Sole trader 
  • Majority shareholder in the employer company 
  • Partner in a partnership (of the employing business) 
  • Trustee in a trust (of the employing business) 

For further information regarding eligibility refer to the Department of Education, Skills and Employment Q&A here » 

Moving forward – the Completing Apprenticeship Commencements (CAC) wage subsidy 

After 12 months of this support, employers may be eligible to transition to the time-limited Completing Apprenticeship Commencements (CAC) wage subsidy for the second and third years of an apprenticeship.  

Under this scheme, eligible employers will receive a 10% wage subsidy in the second year of an eligible apprenticeship, up to a maximum of $1500 per quarter per apprentice, and a 5% wage subsidy in the third year of their apprenticeship, to a maximum of $750 per quarter per apprentice.  

How to apply for BAC and CAC 

  1. Employers must set up a Digital Identity (such as myGovID and link it to your business)  
  1. Employers should then check their eligibility using the Apprenticeship Data Management System (ADMS) 
  1. If eligible, a form will be created in ADMS and you will receive an email notification inviting you to make the claim 
  1. When ready to claim, go to ADMS Website and log in using your myGovID, fill in the form and upload evidence for your apprentice and submit application. The ADMS will assist in calculating the subsidy amount you may be able to claim 
  1. Once you have submitted the claim, you will receive an email notification with the outcome.  

Alternatively, there are a number of third-party providers who can assist.  You simply provide them with details of your eligible employees and they do the rest.   

Other rebates available 

Wage subsidies are also available for employees who have been hired through an employment services provider, and fit the following criteria: 

  • 15 to 29 years of age 
  • Indigenous Australians 
  • 50 years of age and above 
  • A parent 
  • Registered with an employment services provider for 12 months or more 

For more information please check out the Australian Government Wage Subsidies Fact Sheet » 

Contact us 

Our experienced HR Consultants are available to support you with any employee-related questions. Please get in touch with us today on 1300 675 393 or at [email protected].

national minimum wage review

National Minimum Wage Rise Reminder

As a reminder to all our clients, the third and final fleet of Awards are due to have wages increased from the first full pay period on or after 1 November 2021.

To re-cap, the wage increase is part of the national minimum wage rise.

This year the Fair Work Commission announced a 2.5%  increase to all Award wages, which were to be rolled out in three stages.

There are 21 Awards which will be impacted by this last stage.

Please refer back to our initial article for further details:

In light of the current Coronavirus pandemic, we want you to know that our team at Allan Hall HR is still working hard and assisting many businesses with HR matters. First and foremost, we are here to help, so please do not hesitate to contact us should you have any questions or require any HR advice.


national minimum wage review

National Minimum Wage rise

National Minimum Wage to rise by 2.5% 

In its decision on 16 June 2021, the Fair Work Commission increased the national minimum wage to $772.60 per week or $20.33 an hour.   

Unions had sought an increase of 3.5% on the basis that pay growth is crucial to stimulate post-pandemic economic recovery, while some employer groups called for no increase due to the impact of the pandemic on businesses. 

When does the change come into effect? 

The new national minimum wage will apply from 1 July 2021. However, the award increase has been delayed in sectors most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and will therefore take effect in 3 stages.  

Most awards will increase from 1 July 2021. Wages in the Retail Award will increase from 1 September 2021 and the rates in 21 other awards where the FWC deemed there were exceptional circumstances will increase from 1 November 2021. 

The awards that will increase from 1 November 2021 are listed here

  • Pilots Award 
  • Cabin Crew Award 
  • Airline Ground Staff Award 
  • Airport Award 
  • Alpine Resorts Award 
  • Amusement Award 
  • Dry Cleaning and Laundry Award 
  • Fitness Award 
  • Hair and Beauty Award 
  • Hospitality Award 
  • Live Performance Award 
  • Models Award 
  • Marine Tourism and Charter Vessels Award 
  • Nursery Award 
  • Racing Clubs Events Award 
  • Racing Ground Maintenance Award 
  • Registered Clubs Award 
  • Restaurant Award 
  • Sporting Organisations Award 
  • Travelling Shows Award 
  • Wine Award 

Which employees will receive this increase?  

Employees whose minimum wage entitlements are set by:   

  • The national minimum wage   
  • A modern award    
  • A registered agreement (in some circumstances)   

It is important to note that if you have non-Award covered employees on a salary which is above the national minimum wage, you are not obliged to increase their salary, however you could consider an increase at their next salary review meeting.   

What do employers need to do?  

  1. Check whether your employees are covered by the national minimum wage, or a modern award.  
  1. Should a modern award apply to your employees, ensure you have correctly classified employees under the relevant award, and confirm the minimum rates of pay that will apply.   
  1. Review the  current rates of pay  for your employees  and, if  required, adjust their  pay rates from their first full pay period starting on or after the appropriate date as it applies to your modern award.   

Need help? 

We assist many businesses with their application of the relevant awards and the minimum rates of pay for their employees to ensure businesses remain legally compliant. Our team at Allan Hall Human Resources can assist you to navigate this process smoothly and efficiently. Please do not hesitate to contact us should you require assistance or have any further questions. 


Casual Employees or Part time

Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements

Expansion of the targeted wage subsidy program

An extension to the apprenticeship wage subsidy program for another 12 months has been announced.

The Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements wage subsidy program is fully subscribed, helping create 100,000 apprenticeships in less than five months. 

The Program will now become demand driven and expanded for a full 12 months for new apprentices and trainees signed up prior to 30 September 2021.  It is estimated that this demand driven expansion will generate around 70,000 new apprentice and trainee places, with the Government investing around $1.2 billion. 

Eligibility requirements

A business or Group Training Organisation may be eligible if:

  • you engage an Australian Apprentice between 5 October 2020 and 30 September 2021, and
  • your Australian Apprentice or trainee is undertaking a Certificate II or higher qualification and has a training contract that is formally approved by the state training authority.

How much is the subsidy?

Eligible employers and Group Training Organisations will receive a wage subsidy of up to 50 per cent of the Australian Apprentice’s gross wage paid.

The subsidy is available for Australian Apprentices commencing or recommencing between 5 October 2020 and 30 September 2021.

The wage subsidy is available for a maximum of $7,000 per quarter, per eligible Australian Apprentice, for wages paid in the 12-month period from date of commencement or recommencement.

Additional information

  • The subsidy is available to employers of any size, industry or geographic location.
  • The subsidy is not available to any apprentice receiving any other form of Australian Government wage subsidy e.g. Supporting Apprentices and Trainees or JobKeeper.
  • Payments will be made quarterly in arrears, with first claims for the subsidy available from 1 January 2021.
  • Final claims for payment must be lodged by 31 December 2022.
  • The 100,000-cap limit has been removed to provide additional support to employers and Group Training Organisations.

How to apply or find out more

Creating jobs, generating economic opportunities and boosting the skills of workers lies at the heart of Australia’s National Economic Recovery Plan.

For further information on how to apply for the subsidy, including information on eligibility, contact an Australian Apprenticeship Support Network provider.


Happy friends enjoying on terrace. Smiling man and women are celebrating together during sunset. They are wearing casuals in party

How to avoid HR Issues during the Festive Season

A different kind of Christmas Party during COVID!

Each year we like to send out a reminder to employers of your obligations when it comes to those end of year celebrations.

CLICK HERE to read ‘How to Avoid Christmas Party Incidents!’

This information certainly still applies, in fact this year you have additional responsibilities, including making sure that your party is held in a COVID safe manner.

What does this mean? Essentially, you need to continue to abide by the latest COVID safe advice from the NSW Government. Updated information can be found HERE.

If you have a large workforce and are planning a gathering, you might have to consider breaking your team up into smaller groups to satisfy social distancing requirements.

Or get creative and host a virtual gathering with some added flare, such as a guided Christmas cooking class with all ingredients delivered, virtual wine tasting or traditional trivia. You may even consider ways in which you can take your event outdoors where more people are allowed to gather.

We have all had to adapt to new ways of thinking this year. Including those ever important social events!  

Annual Leave Requests

With the Christmas–New Year period fast approaching, you may notice an increased number of annual leave requests waiting for your approval. For those businesses that shut down over this period, approving annual leave is usually a joyous task. However, for smaller businesses continuing to trade during this period, it can be somewhat of a difficult juggling act to ensure you have enough employees on board to meet your customers’ needs while also ensuring employees receive a well-deserved break.

When reviewing annual leave applications, it is important to remember that you cannot unreasonably refuse to authorise an employee’s request to take annual leave. If you need assistance with understanding the rules surrounding ‘reasonableness,’ please do not hesitate to make contact with our HR team.

Public Holidays

In NSW the gazetted public holidays for the holiday season are:

  • Christmas Day Friday 25 December
  • Boxing Day Saturday 26 December
  • Additional Day Monday 28 December 2020
  • New Year’s Day Friday 1 January 2021
  • Australia Day Tuesday 26 January 2021

Can employees refuse to work on Public Holidays?

Employers can request that employees work on a public holiday if the request is reasonable. Likewise, an employee can refuse to work on a public holiday if the employer’s request is not reasonable. In determining whether the employer’s request is reasonable, under the Fair Work Act a broad range of factors are taken into account.  These include:

  • The nature of the employer’s workplace and the nature of the employee’s work
  • The employee’s personal circumstances
  • Whether the employee could reasonably expect the employer might request work on the public holiday
  • Whether the employee is entitled to receive overtime or other penalty payments that reflects the expectation to work public holidays
  • The type of employment of the employee (eg whether full-time, part-time, casual or shift work)
  • The amount of notice in advance of the public holiday given by the employer to the employee
  • The amount of notice given by the employee when refusing a request to work on a public holiday.

Payment for Public Holidays

A permanent employee who is absent from work on a public holiday is entitled to be paid their usual pay for his or her ordinary hours that would have been worked, even if they reasonably refused to work that day. Payment is at the employee’s base rate of pay (which excludes bonuses, loadings, allowances, overtime or penalty rates). Casual employees who refuse to work on a public holiday are not entitled to payment.

For Award covered employees or employees covered by enterprise agreements, it is important to check the penalty rates which apply on public holidays. Where a public holiday falls on a weekend, as it does on Boxing Day this year, there may be an entitlement to either the greater of the applicable penalty rates between the public holiday and the weekend penalty rates or both penalty rates. It is therefore important to check the Award or enterprise agreement carefully to ensure you pay your employees correctly.

Proposed changes to Employment Laws

Also, very topical in the lead up to Christmas this year is the Government’s significant proposed changes to employment laws in Australia. These include:

  • The way casuals are defined and treated
  • Changes to underpayment of wages, compliance and enforcement measures
  • Changes to the way Enterprise Agreements are made and approved
  • Simplification of Modern Awards

On 9 December 2020, the Federal Government introduced into Federal Parliament the Fair Work Amendment (Supporting Australia’s Jobs and Economic Recovery) Bill 2020 which set out several reforms to the Fair Work Act 2009 to address some long-standing issues in these areas.

Our HR experts are experienced in interpreting these reforms and are monitoring the progress of the Bill closely. It seems likely that there will be amendments negotiated in coming weeks and we will provide you with further detail and explanation once the legislation has passed. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to contact us directly at [email protected].


Underpayment Of Employee Wages Graphic $100 notes

Underpayment of Employee Wages and Entitlements – Is Your Business at Risk?

How to Identify Issues of Underpayment of Employee Wages

Underpayment Of Employee Wages Graphic (1) $100 notes Australia’s employment legislation is extensive, broad and can be incredibly complex. And, if you don’t have a thorough understanding of your obligations to your employees, then the likely answer to our title question is YES…you are at risk of underpayment of employee wages! The underpayment of employee wages, or what the media has cleverly coined ‘Wage Theft’ can occur in any business. Recent media publications have shone a light on this issue, highlighting that every business, no matter the industry or business size, is at risk if wage obligations are not met. Sample Case: George Calombaris is a very familiar name on this topic. It could even be argued that the popular MasterChef judge and celebrity is now just as renowned for his Wage Theft faux pas as he is for his culinary skills! The saga with his hospitality empire, MaDe Establishment, commenced after a former employee contacted the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) back in 2015. What followed was an extensive audit, a self-disclosure of underpayment by George, further FWO investigations and even more underpayments revealed, before the true extent of the theft was publicly revealed in July of this year…The underpayment of 515 staff a total of $7.8 million over a six-year period! The repercussions of this theft were extremely damaging for George. He was (and still is) battling against a significant amount of negative publicity, he was ordered to make back-payments and had to pay huge penalties. So where exactly did George go wrong? In this case, the FWO found that the majority of the wages’ underpayment was caused by:
  1. the failure to correctly apply annualised salary arrangements to employees covered by a modern award; and
  2. further failure to conduct annual audits to ensure workers under annualised salary arrangements were being appropriately compensated for the overtime and penalty rate hours worked.
There were also cases of workers not being paid according to their correct award classifications and corresponding pay grade. Could this apply to you? In reading this case, you may be thinking a few things, like…what is a modern award? Do I have employees who may be covered under a modern award and am I paying them in accordance with these conditions? What is an award classification? Or, what on earth is an annualised salary arrangement? We are the first ones to admit that Australia’s industrial relations system can be difficult to navigate, especially without the help of HR professionals. So, recently our Allan Hall HR team facilitated a seminar to assist our clients in identifying whether they are meeting minimum wage obligations, or if they are at risk of underpayment of wages and subsequent penalties. The biggest takeaway from the seminar was for employers to understand the key instruments their employees may be covered by. Key instruments such as; National Employment Standards, the National Minimum Wage Order, Enterprise Bargaining and Collective Agreements, Modern Awards, Individual Flexibility Agreements or Employment Contracts (to name a few!) can have the ability to dictate what, when and how much an employee is paid. Businesses who do not understand what industrial instrument covers their employees, or businesses without proper processes and systems in place, can often be unintentionally underpaying their staff, as rates of pay can vary greatly and are dependent on a number of factors. What you can do to mitigate risk If reading this blog has provoked any questions for you in respect to how you are paying employees within your own business, then we recommend you take steps to ensure that you are paying your employees correctly and reduce the risk of any potential mistakes. We encourage you to complete our HR Health Check questionnaire. Our 1-minute HR Health Check is designed to identify your compliance and business risk in relation to a number of key HR legislative compliance activities. To complete the questionnaire, please click the button below, and following submission we will provide you with a confidential report.

Complete our 1-minute HR Health Check Questionnaire

If you have any immediate questions regarding payment of your employees or any other HR matter, or are seeking support with a partial or full wage audit for your team, please feel free to get in touch with our experienced HR Consultants today on (02) 8978 3752 or [email protected].

Contact us