August 2018 Blog Posts (20)

Employer obligations to work-related injury or illness

Regardless of what state we reside in, an employer has a duty of care to provide and maintain a safe workplace for all its employees. However, unfortunately despite all efforts, incidents and injuries still occur in the workplace. When an employee becomes ill or injured because of their work, and has incapacity for work, the employer has an obligation to ensure that they are cared for; has every opportunity to recover and return to work. Let’s explore this in more detail for…

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Added by Emir Montazer (CAHRI) on August 20, 2018 at 10:07 — No Comments

PCBU fined $375,000 following death of turf stacker

In yet another decision resulting from a tragic workplace safety incident, an employer has been fined $375,000 after one of its workers was fatally crushed by a turf harvester being driven by a co-worker.

In SafeWork NSW v Turfco Australia Pty Ltd [2018] NSWDC 191, the Court heard that, at the time of the incident, Turfco had in place a ‘hop-off’ system used by its workers that was contrary to its own operator’s manual.

Turfco is engaged in the growing, harvesting and…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on August 17, 2018 at 16:28 — No Comments

Deficient work practices resulted in ladder fall death

In SafeWork NSW v Li [2018] NSWDC 189 the NSW District Court convicted a person conducting a business or undertaking (PCBU) of failing to comply with a health and safety duty after a worker died following a fall from a ladder as a result of a poor system of work.

Mr Li, who traded as Apple Electronic Security, operated a business that involved installing security systems. In June 2016, Mr Li was engaged by a smash repair business to install seven security…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on August 17, 2018 at 16:25 — No Comments

A moving experience – what to expect and what to consider when relocating Part 1

Down-sizing, upgrading, outgrowing and restructuring – change in the life-cycle of a business is inevitable and changes in size and operational needs often demand a relocation.

Relocating a business is a huge logistical challenge in itself and as a result, it’s not uncommon for the employment and HR aspects of a relocation to become secondary considerations.

In this two-part blog, we outline some of those key considerations and touch on a few issues that HR, managers and…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on August 17, 2018 at 16:21 — No Comments

Leadership Perspectives – Interview With David Ryan, MD City West Water

Today, as part of our leadership series, we’re sitting down with David Ryan, managing director of City West Water, a government owned retail water company, to hear his thoughts on leadership and running a large organisation.

The background is that People Leaders ran a six-month leadership programme for David’s team at City West Water in Melbourne. Based on the feedback and the shift in behaviour we've seen, it’s been very successful. David explains:

“Leadership is a journey of…

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Added by Jan Terkelsen on August 17, 2018 at 14:45 — No Comments

Analysing Evidence: The Key Step of Workplace Investigations

One of the most challenging and important tasks undertaken by a workplace investigator is the analysis of the evidence that has been gathered during the course of the investigation. 

Key questions to consider include: What evidence should be contained in the investigation report? How do I analyse what I have gathered? How does this connect with the findings I make in the investigation report? …

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Added by Vince Scopelliti on August 15, 2018 at 18:00 — No Comments

Are you ready (willing and able) for it? When employees are unable to perform their contractual duties

One of the fundamental principles of the employment relationship is the work-wages bargain – an employer pays an employee wages in exchange for work performed. The work-wages bargain assumes that employees are ready, willing and able to perform the work requested of them by the employer. This assumption is challenged when an employee is unable to perform the required work because of some limitation such as the loss (or suspension) of an essential qualification such as a driver’s…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on August 13, 2018 at 10:47 — No Comments

Flight of fancy – flight attendant’s claim that excessive drinking was not his fault rejected by FWC in unfair dismissal case

In Urso v QF Cabin Crew Australia Pty Limited T/A QCCA [2018] FWC 4436 the Fair Work Commission (FWC) considered whether a flight attendant was unfairly dismissed after he failed to attend for work following a night out in New York.

The flight attendant was scheduled to operate a seven-day flight pattern of Brisbane-Los Angeles-New York-Los Angeles-Brisbane.

After arriving in New York, the flight attendant visited a bar with another employee. The…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on August 13, 2018 at 10:46 — No Comments

Cecchin in on your employees: Managing mental health in the workplace

The recent decision by one of the National Rugby League’s (NRL’s) leading referees to retire at the end of the 2018 season has (again) prompted discussion about the obligations of employers when managing mental health in the workplace.

For some time now, Matt Cecchin has bravely spoken publicly about the extreme pressures of his job and their effect on his mental health. To summarise, in 2017, Cecchin revealed that he had almost feigned an injury because he felt too…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on August 13, 2018 at 10:40 — No Comments

5 Ways You Can Use Technology To Improve Your HR Team's Productivity

By digitising routine administrative tasks , HR professionals have the freedom to focus on adding significant value to the business.

Think of a typical day in the life of a modern HR professional.

 An inbox full of “urgent” emails demands…

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Added by Gal Thompson on August 13, 2018 at 10:30 — No Comments

It’s 2018… Does your business celebrate diversity & inclusion?

We live in an interesting era where despite the advancement of globalisation and technology, we still come across or hear from bigots daily; including some of our politicians to the everyday people. We all know how dangerous this can be to our society as it divides the community. What about in the workplace? If our workplaces were operating with that sort mentality, no doubt there will be a lot of conflict amongst employees, let alone the discrimination cases going through the roof for…

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Added by Emir Montazer (CAHRI) on August 13, 2018 at 9:52 — No Comments

The Ever-Growing Relationship Between HR and Marketing Departments

It has become ever harder to attract, engage, and retain top talent. This is a top priority for executives and most companies/organizations place this responsibility on HR professionals and departments because of their central roles in the hiring process.…

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Added by Larry Reed on August 10, 2018 at 23:13 — No Comments

How to hire a top performer using an assessment tool

The traditional hiring process leaves a lot up to chance. You might sift through a stack of resumes trying to narrow down the people with the right experience and qualifications. You’ll then perform a round of interviews to gauge which candidate sounds and acts right for the role.

You might ask yourself, “does this person have the right skills to perform the job?.. the right credentials?.. enough experience?.. will…

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Added by David Leahy on August 10, 2018 at 17:22 — No Comments

Common Issues with Workplace Mediations

Occasional conflicts and disputes are a fact of life in all workplaces. One of the best ways to defuse difficult situations, resolve office concerns and keep your staff happy is mediation. But even though this is a potentially very effective device in the employer's toolkit, workplace mediations can go wrong.

Let's take a look at the process of mediation, and some of the issues which might…

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Added by Vince Scopelliti on August 8, 2018 at 12:56 — No Comments

How serious is ‘Serious Misconduct’?

It’s no brainer that when an employee engages in serious misconduct and they get caught, their employment will be terminated without giving it too much thought. One would think that the process should be relatively straightforward when compared to other types of dismissals, but why is it that employers still end up trying to battle an unfair dismissal or a general protection claim? That’s because most of the time, the correct process is not followed!…

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Added by Emir Montazer (CAHRI) on August 6, 2018 at 9:46 — No Comments

The fine cut: Small Business Employers and Anti-Discrimination Legislation

Small businesses have a litany of rules, regulations and red tape they are required to comply with, including registration and tax compliance, employee minimum entitlements, fair trading, work health and safety and privacy obligations.

Small businesses are also subject to anti-discrimination legislation which prohibits direct and indirect discrimination on the basis of a protected attribute. Australia’s federal anti-discrimination legislation prevents discrimination on the basis…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on August 6, 2018 at 9:43 — No Comments

And a Step to the Right – Coles loses appeal of $1 million claim for safety step injury

The ACT Court of Appeal has dismissed an appeal by Coles Supermarkets and confirmed an earlier decision in which a Coles employee was awarded more than $1 million in damages after she injured her right hip in a fall after stepping sideways down from a safety step (Coles Supermarkets Australia Pty Ltd v Harris [2018] ACTCA 25).

The employee claimed that she was not trained in the proper use of the safety step and was not told by Coles that she should step backwards down from…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on August 6, 2018 at 9:41 — No Comments

Size doesn’t matter – Dismissed employee compensated despite vulgar language

A small business employer’s “disgraceful and grossly unfair” dismissal process has cost it over $10,000 in compensation, despite the Fair Work Commission (FWC) finding the dismissed employee had used language “so grossly vulgar” that it would have been sufficient grounds for his summary dismissal.

In Trialonas v Steric Solutions Pty Ltd [2018] FWC 3996, the FWC was required to consider the summary dismissal of a yard hand who had been employed with Steric…

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Added by Shane Koelmeyer on August 6, 2018 at 9:39 — No Comments

The New and Improved High Performing Team Assessment Tool

The High Performing Team Assessment Tool (HPT) is one of our most downloaded resources. It’s so popular because it’s simple to use and benchmarks your team across eight critical areas, enabling you to easily measure improvements over time. At People Leaders, we’re also all about continuous improvement. That’s why we’ve revamped the HPT in line with feedback received and our own new learnings. In this post and …

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Added by Jan Terkelsen on August 2, 2018 at 8:30 — No Comments

Why Employers Can't Afford to Ignore Procedural Fairness

It is important for employers to keep procedural fairness top of mind when conducting workplace investigations or taking disciplinary action.

Failing to do so can result in terminations being deemed unfair, as the recent Fair Work Commission decision of Nicholas Jarmain v…

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Added by Vince Scopelliti on August 1, 2018 at 11:00 — No Comments

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