Do you have all of your employment contracts in writing?
Even though a ‘contract of employment’ does not have to be in written form, employers who do not put the terms of the employment in writing do so at their peril.
The biggest benefit of having an employment contract is that it provides a formal (and legal) record of both parties’ expectations and agreements at the time of hire.
Please see the checklist below for a list of terms that should be covered in the Employment Agreement.
Issues specific to the industry of employment or business of employment:
When drafting an employment agreement, it is likely undesirable to use a ‘pro-forma’ employment contract. Industry specific agreements should be drawn up to manage the actual employee/employer relationship as it will exist once the staff member is hired. No matter how an employment agreement is formed it must always be remembered that minimum employment conditions are dictated by awards or the Fair Work Act (2009) which must be followed when businesses engage employees.
If you are unsure of the statutory compliance requirements of employment, please contact Butlers Business and Law and we can assist you.
The following issues should be addressed when formulating an employment contract:
It is invaluable for you and your employees to have a formal disciplinary policy. This creates certainty for all parties of the process to be followed when managing employees that demonstrate wrongdoing in their business dealings.
As an example, an employee could agree, through their employment agreement, to receive a verbal warning, a written warning, and/or a performance improvement plan before termination.
Another policy could outline serious infractions for which immediate termination can result.
Harassment or discrimination policy:
It is important to have this policy in your employment contract to protect your employee from workplace harassment or discrimination.
It is crucial for your employees to feel comfortable and safe in their work environment. There are significant consequences if such policies are broken.
For example, in the case of Nikolich v Goldman Sachs