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  • 01-Jul-2016 08:30 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    With the commencement of a new financial year, it brings with it important changes and new rates which will apply from 1 July 2016.

    NEW! High Income Threshold (HIT)

    With the HIT:

    • it increases to $138,900
    • it impacts:
    (a) who can make a claim for unfair dismissal (for those not covered by a Modern Award or to whom an enterprise agreement does not apply)
    (b) the maximum amount of compensation payable in an unfair dismissal claim
    (c) those on a 'guarantee of annual earnings' (a Modern Award does not apply to an employee whilstever this guarantee is in place provided it continues to meet the relevant legislative requirements)

    NEW! Modern Award Increases

    With Modern Awards (including enterprise awards):

    • minimum wages increase by 2.4% (starting on the first full pay period on or after 1 July 2016)
    • absorption of wage increases into over-award payments is permissible (subject to the terms of the relevant employment agreement and what other amounts are being absorbed into any annualised salary)
    • increases to the minimum wages of junior workers, apprentices, trainees, piece workers and employees on the supported wage system will occur
    • expense-related allowances in Modern Awards will increase as set out in the Modern Award (eg, by the applicable CPI index figure)
    • annualised salaries will need to be checked to ensure they can still properly absorb/include all relevant minimum Modern Award amounts and that they continue to meet the technical requirements of the Modern Award

    NEW! National Minimum Wage (NMW)

    With the NMW:

    • this is applicable to employees to whom neither a Modern Award or enterprise agreement applies
    • the NMW increases by 2.4% to become $672.70 per week or $17.70 per hour
    • in addition:
    (a) two special NMW orders exist (relating to those with a disability)
    (b) the minimum casual loading remains unchanged at 25%
    (c) minimum rates of pay for juniors and those on training arrangements apply

    NEW! Impact on Enterprise Agreements

    With enterprise agreements:

    • they must always meet or exceed the minimum wage of:
    (a) the relevant Modern Award (ie, the Modern Award that would have applied had the enterprise agreement not been in existence)
    (b) the NMW (ie, where a Modern Award would not apply even if the enterprise agreement was not in existence)
    • thus, pay rates in enterprise agreements may need to be increased (even if the enterprise agreement has its own wage increase regime)

    NEW! The Sting

    Be mindful that wage increases have flow-on effects such as increasing:

    • the value of leave loading, penalty rates, overtime and superannuation contributions
    • the value of accrued leave entitlements
    • the cost of wage related expenses such as payroll tax and workers compensation premiums

    NEW! Redundancy

    The tax-free component of a genuine redundancy payment increases to be:

    • base limit of $9,936
    • additional amount for each completed year of service of $4,969

    NEW! Superannuation Contributions Base

    With superannuation:

    • the maximum superannuation contribution base increases to $51,620 per quarter ($206,480 per annum)
    • an employer is not required to make superannuation contributions on behalf of employees on earnings in excess of that maximum contribution base


    If you have any questions or would like any assistance, please feel free to speak with or email a member of our Matthews Folbigg Workplace Solutions team on (02) 9635 7966 or

    DISCLAIMER: This article is provided to clients and readers for their general information and on a complimentary basis. It contains a brief summary only and should not be relied upon or used as definitive or complete statement of the relevant law.

  • 30-Jun-2016 10:20 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The excitement is building in Western Sydney as PARKROYAL Parramatta is set to bring a new level of accommodation, dining and meeting and event experiences to the heart of Sydney’s dual CBD this August 2016, following a AUD25 million extension.

    With 13 flexible meeting and event rooms, including five new rooms, all with the latest in audio-visual technology, PARKROYAL Parramatta is setting the benchmark for conferencing in Western Sydney. 

    Be one of the first to experience our new premium facilities and take advantage of a AUD72* Day Delegate package and the following extras when you book and hold your next event by 30 September 2016 :

    - Complimentary Wi-Fi

    - Complimentary data projector and screen

    The Day Delegate package also includes full day catering with a sit-down buffet lunch, room hire, stationery and an onsite paging system linking you directly to your conference concierge. Half Day Delegate packages are also available.

    Looking for accommodation? Speak to a dedicated events specialist from the Meetings and Events team today about our Residential Meeting Packages.

    To request a quote or site visit, please speak with us today on 02 9685 0391 or email

  • 29-Jun-2016 12:58 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    City of Parramatta will work with TAFE NSW to establish the Parramatta Skills Exchange (PSX) to provide industry-based opportunities for young, unemployed and under-employed workers.

    The initiative will form a key part of a three-year Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) that will be signed on 1 July to strengthen local jobs growth and foster a closer partnership between City of Parramatta and TAFE NSW.

    “The MoU will see Council work more closely with TAFE NSW to provide opportunities for those in the community who are unemployed or under-employed. The Parramatta Skills Exchange is a pre-employment program that will provide opportunities to work on some of the biggest developments in the city,” City of Parramatta Administrator Amanda Chadwick said.

    “The PSX is based on the award-winning Barangaroo Skills Exchange (BSX) and we are aiming to replicate the success of that program in Parramatta. Participants will have the opportunity to work on development sites with values in excess of $50 million and receive on the job training as they go. Already, approximately 10,000 people have received training through the BSX including 700 apprentices.

    “Parramatta is becoming the Smart City for education with a number of providers now offering the highest quality learning opportunities. This latest MoU comes on the back of other existing agreements with Western Sydney University (WSU) and the University of New England (UNE).”

    TAFE Western Sydney Director Robin Shreeve said he is excited to be partnering with City of Parramatta Council to deliver these important initiatives.

    “As Sydney’s second CBD and pivotal to the growth of New South Wales, Parramatta needs a forward-thinking skills model that focuses on the jobs of the future. This partnership will ensure Parramatta has the training, skills and capability which will enable it to become Australia’s leading ‘Smart City’,” Mr Shreeve said.

    City of Parramatta and TAFE NSW will work together to identify a suitable site for the PSX over the coming months with the aim of having the facility fully operational in 2017.

  • 27-Jun-2016 16:34 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Being an employee in the present day is quite different from what it was just a few decades ago. Workplaces are becoming more diverse, and a strict 9 to 5 schedule no longer applies to an increasingly wired workforce. Human capital is moving across borders and workers are picking up new skills in a time of intense change. Here are the top five global workforce trends all businesses need to be cognisant of.

    Global demographic shifts

    As some economies have matured and others grown and developed, we are seeing dramatic demographic shifts on a global scale. In developed societies, ageing populations have caused skills shortages to many industries specifically; health, education and engineering sectors.

    According to the 2015 Intergenerational Report, the number of people aged 15 to 64 for every 1 person aged 65 and over, has fallen from 7.3 people in 1975 to an estimated 4.5 people today. By 2054, this is projected to nearly halve again to 2.7 people for every 1 person over 65 years of age. Given these statistics, there is a substantial gap between baby boomers retiring and the number of Generation X available to fill their shoes, putting immense pressure on employers’ ability to find the right talent.

    On the other hand, developing countries, most notably China and India, are supplying huge numbers of workers skilled in areas where developed countries are facing shortages. According to the Wall Street Journal, businesses in the US are clamouring to obtain visas for skilled workers from overseas. It was reported that the April 2015 round of applications for H-1B visas exceeded the annual limit within the first week.

    Workplaces are becoming more multicultural and more diverse, and Generation Y workers are redefining the way things are done. Despite the influx of younger workers, many baby boomers still continue to work beyond retirement age. This has produced a vibrant multigenerational workforce. It is not uncommon to have at least three generations working together in the modern workplace bringing with it some challenges but also many advantages.

    Mobility programmes

    Workers are much more mobile than before, and relocating to another city or even another country is now a common career move. Businesses are realising the need to groom talented employees with international experience, and mobility programmes that enable workers to gain global exposure are becoming increasingly popular.

    Mobility in the financial services sector is extremely common. For instance, Credit Suisse are great proponents of internal mobility, and employees are encouraged to apply for positions in other regional offices. In 2014, 4,600 of their employees made an internal move, while 42% of their global vacancies were filled through internal transfers.

    PwC's Survey of Global Mobility Policies found that 46% of the participating employers offered permanent transfer policies in 2012, up from 29% in 2002. Clearly, employees have more opportunities than ever to broaden their horizons.

    Equality in the workforce

    While women, ethnic minorities and disabled people still earn less and face discrimination in the workplace in modern society, we are slowly creeping towards greater equality in the workforce.

    Many developed societies have enacted laws against discrimination on the basis of gender, ethnicity or disability, and awareness of the need for equality in the workplace is rising every day. The enactment of a slew of legislation targeting discrimination over the past 30 years seems to have helped to boost equality in the workforce and shaped Australians attitudes towards discrimination in general.

    While the gender pay gap in Australia stands at 17.1% according to the Australian government, a recent survey showed that employers were cognisant of the need to pay their staff fairly, and many planned to undertake their own gender gap analyses to ensure they were not guilty of discrimination.

    According to statistics released by the Australian government, the unemployment rate for 15 to 65 year olds in Australia with disabilities decreased from 17.8% to 9.4% from 1993 to 2012. This suggests that significant strides have been made in equal opportunity employment as far as it concerns those with disabilities.

    Casualisation in the workforce

    Working the traditional 40 hour week is no longer standard protocol in many professional businesses. Organisations are engaging with workers in many ways, such as, permanent part-time, fixed-term contracts, casual employees, via recruitment agencies and as independent contractors. For the worker, these options are fast becoming acceptable ways of earning a living.

    While the advantages and disadvantages of such work arrangements can vary greatly depending on the circumstances, research published in the Guardian shows that a significant proportion of people working under casual arrangements in Australia do so out of choice. Further to that, Entity Solutions’ IPro Index indicates that over 80% of contractors surveyed are very satisfied with working as a contractor.

    The wider range of working arrangements on offer can be a boon to a workforce with differing lifestyle needs.

    Attraction and retention

    Thanks to increasing worker mobility and the rise of the global marketplace, there are more opportunities than ever for young, ambitious workers. Businesses are seeing a marked change in employee ideals and are scrambling to put in place retention strategies that can encourage workers to stay for the long haul.

    Employers are discovering that Generation Y employees don't just want a stable job -they're looking for opportunities for growth, flexibility and a cause they care about. The savviest employers are able to adjust their retention strategies to help young workers find meaning and satisfaction in their work.

    For instance, Richard Branson has increased the amount of paid paternity leave at Virgin to a full year. Google provides employees with free on-site medical care, travel insurance on their personal vacations and even free legal advice. It's no wonder that Virgin and Google are two of the most sought after employers today.

    Workplaces all over the world continue to evolve, and in a few decades we can expect workplaces that are radically different from those of today. While we can't predict with certainty what the future holds, the trends of today give us a hint of what is to come. Businesses need to start thinking about workforce issues on a global scale, and deciding how they are going to deal with the sea change that awaits.

  • 27-Jun-2016 10:46 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    City of Parramatta will award 40 community groups with funding grants worth more than $410,000 at a ceremony on Wednesday 29 June, 2016.

    The annual grants will be awarded to local not-for-profit community, recreation and sporting groups, local services, social enterprises and individuals across eight funding categories.

    “Investing money back into programs that assist the community encourages and supports the creation of new and innovative projects that will make a positive difference to people’s lives,” City of Parramatta Administrator Amanda Chadwick said.

    “Council supports a wide range of services and activities that contribute to our strategic objectives and help local communities. The recipients will also be allocated a staff member within Council to ensure ongoing collaboration and support for their projects.”

    Among the programs that have received funding are cultural and creative projects, local school sports initiatives, a multicultural healthy cooking program and a music therapy program for deaf and hearing impaired children and their families.

    “This is the 10th year that Council has run the Community Grants program in this form and I am pleased to support so many important services and initiatives.”

    Small Grants, Parramatta Sport and Recreation Grants, and Representative Sport Grants are open year round. Updates on community funding rounds for 2016/17 will be provided at

    For a full list of successful applicants click here.

  • 24-Jun-2016 09:18 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The 18th Annual Ronald McDonald House Westmead Charity Golf Classic is coming up on Tuesday 9 August and we need your support.

    Gold Hole Sponsorship is a fantastic opportunity for any organisation looking to help us provide a ‘home away from home’ for families with seriously ill children. Plus, you get to play on a world-class championship course which has been recognised as one of the Top 100 courses in Australia.



    • Registration and entry for team of 4 including carts
    • Prominent corporate signage and opportunity for brand activations at sponsored hole
    • Logo displayed in the Golf Day Program and Presentation
    • Logo displayed on the Ronald McDonald House Westmead social media platforms
    • Photograph opportunities on the day
    • Opportunity for a branded item in the player gift bag
    • Invitation for private tour of RMH Westmead for organisation and key stakeholders
    • Certificate of Recognition for your support

    Activities on the day include:

    • A day of Ambrose golf at Castle Hill Country Club
    • Great prizes plus fun and games at various holes on the course
    • BBQ breakfast
    • Delicious meal in Members Lounge after golf
    • Live and silent auctions
    • Great opportunity to network with over 100 other corporate attendees

    To discuss sponsorship opportunities or to donate prizes, please contact our Event Coordinator, Michelle Burman on 02 9845 0600 or email

  • 24-Jun-2016 09:11 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Boundaries are a common area of thought, professional debate and clinical intervention in professions which work with individuals dealing with mental illness. In counselling settings the invitation that is made to clients to alter the normal boundary around what information they share with others and how much of themselves they can openly reveal clearly has to be matched with very clearly defined and understood boundaries that puts a professional shape to that relationship.

    However similar boundaries are found all over the workplace, in HR policy and Key Performance Indicator documents, in employment contracts, legislation, return to work plans and performance meetings. Anywhere that an agreement has been reached about what is typical and expected behavior for a given situation, and even sometimes only in the unspoken assumptions of individuals, there exists a boundary such as the helping professions would define one.

    However they are expressed, boundaries, when clearly articulated and reached in collaboration with relevant stakeholders, can be the way we come to understand and assess our own sense of achievement, competence, self-worth and of our alignment with the others in our lives, personally or professionally.

    Within the workplace, boundaries are often expressed as policy documents, KPIs and performance expectations, codes of conduct and even simple elements such as shift times and meeting start times. It goes without saying that when clearly articulated, collaboratively designed, well promoted and maintained with regular and equitable implementation across a business, these workplace boundaries can contribute to a psychologically healthy workplace.

    Naturally, in providing a response to an employee’s disclosure of mental illness, and its potential impact on their participation in the workplace, it is these kinds of boundaries that require review to ensure that support is provide to the employee of a nature which is appropriate to their individual needs and their required performance.

    It is in the definition of appropriate support and required performance that lie the challenges for workplaces, individuals and health professionals alike. Employees facing new or changing experiences of mental illness are already likely to be sensitive and perhaps less resilient in the face of changes in workplace expectations.

    Clearly stated expectations, identified via professional assessment of functional capacity over time in the workplace, collaboratively developed and closely resembling the typical expectations for the employee are the most likely to maintain the employees function throughout and beyond recovery.

    It may be obvious that a blaming, stigmatizing or inflexible approach to changing employee needs contributes to poor outcomes. However, even well intentioned offers of flexibility, relaxation of performance expectations and open ended support time frames can impact outcomes negatively if the boundaries around the changed role and expectations are vague in the minds of stakeholders.

    The structure and clarity that is a necessary component of a well-functioning workplace can serve as a strongly protective and stable influence in the lives of employees with experiences of mental illness. The tools and processes which provide this stability are the very ones managers of all stripes use every day, however are also ones which they are the most likely to begin to dilute in the face of an unfamiliar mental illness disclosure by employees.

    If you would like to find out more about Injury Treatment’s Optimise Corporate Health Services please contact us on 1300 622 734.

  • 23-Jun-2016 12:38 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The words ‘disruption’ and ‘change’ are uttered daily these days, as organisations of all kinds seek to keep pace with never-ending challenges and transformations to the way they do business. The question is – how can businesses effectively adapt and innovate in the face of constant change?

    This question was at the core of DibbsBarker’s Client Innovation Day, recently hosted in the firm’s Sydney office. From morning until night, clients mixed and mingled with DibbsBarker staff at a series of thought-provoking sessions that pulled everyone out of the day-to-day, immersing them in creative thinking and inspiring discussion.

    The day kicked off with a breakfast panel featuring Angela Mentis, Group Executive, Business Banking at NAB, speaking about the changing world of banking and how her organisation is harnessing the power of those changes to move forward. Angela was joined by Christine Middap, Editor of The Weekend Australian Magazine, as well as Fay Calderone from DibbsBarker’s People & Workplace team.

    In a second stand-out session, Dr Gerald Khoury facilitated an enlightening discussion over lunch about the value of creativity as a leadership trait, the connection between creativity and innovation, and the secret to creating industry-changing innovation and disruption.

    DibbsBarker’s own presenters included restructuring specialist Macaire Bromley, intellectual property experts Stuart Green and Catherine Boxhall, property specialist Andrew Flannery and corporate / M&A specialist Lis Boyce.

    David Carter, the DibbsBarker partner who spear-headed Client Innovation Day, said: “We wanted to give both our clients and our staff an opportunity to take a step away from their desks and participate in something different – something that would engage and inspire them to think about what it really means to be ‘innovative’, which we all need to be in a climate of so much change. It was a great day and we were privileged to have such exceptional guest speakers leading and participating in the fun.”

    DibbsBarker has plans to host a similar Client Innovation Day in its Brisbane office, following the resounding success of the Sydney event.

    For more about DibbsBarker, visit the firm website or LinkedIn page.


  • 23-Jun-2016 12:09 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    BREED would like to invite you to their next Bottom Line Series seminar for 2016: Unfair Terms in Contracts and Small Business.

    This free seminar will cover contracts used in small business and the unfair terms that can go along with them. Bring your questions!

    The event details are as follows:

    Presenter: Steve Brown - Etienne Lawyers

    Date: Wednesday 20th July, 2016

    Time: 5:15pm for 5:30pm

    Address: Nirimba Education Precinct, Building T2A, Warawara Circuit, Quakers Hill NSW 2763 

    RSVP: As numbers are limited, bookings are essential - Register here

    Cost: Free

    For more information, visit or contact Naomi Pikse:

    P: 9853 3200


  • 23-Jun-2016 11:11 | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    I was sure the problem was in my knee. It hurt when I walked, it hurt when I stood up, it hurt whenever I straightened it. I definitely had a problem with my knee.

    But no, my doctor diagnosed a hamstring strain. After a week of following his instructions it was a good as new.

    So what led my doctor to look away from my obvious pain point?

    He was armed with the results of a raft of tests. He drew on his experience with clients with similar complaints. He had his own expertise and had access to an array of specialists and their knowledge. In short, he had built up knowledge that led him to take a more holistic view. He understood how everything fit, how all the parts worked together.

    Running a business is similar. Understanding how all the parts of the business interact is the key. Intelligence is the fuel that runs the business. How do you know if a downturn in sales is due to seasonality or a parts shortage or the loss of a major client? Business intelligence is the answer and the key to business intelligence is the business management system on which the organization is run.

    What sort of system do you want? You want a system that is simple to use. Ideally, you would like something that looks familiar and is easy to learn. You want a system that will grow with the business. You don’t want to have to move to a new system and move any data across. You want a system that will manage all aspects of the business. You want a system that adapts and grows and may be customised to your industry.

    The good news is that KPMG’s Microsoft Dynamics practice provides an enterprise resource planning (ERP) solution that meets these requirements. It’s a solution designed to help businesses make smarter decisions with real time insights. It is a system that understands how all the parts work together.

    If you would like further information contact me:

    Greg Hunt


    M: 0412 402 464 


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