An additional “step” in the process of managing rosters has recently been introduced to the Fair Work Act.
What does this mean to your rostering practices?
The new provision requires employers to consult with their employees about changes to their regular rosters or ordinary hours of work. It also provides rights for employees in regards to consultation about changes to their rosters and representation in regards to that consultation (if the employee wishes representation).
The employer is required to provide information to the employees about the change and invite the employees to give their views about the change. This can include the impact of the changes on their family or caring responsibilities.
The employer is then required to consider any views about the impact of the change to rosters which are given by the employees. The employer is not obligated to agree or act on these views.
When is this effective and what employees does it cover?
The new provision applies to all Modern Awards in operation on (or immediately before) 1 January 2014. Permanent employees and casual employees (who have a reasonable expectation of a regular and systematic pattern of working hours) must be consulted.