Auckland builders Juno Homes and EXP fined for serious employment breach
Two Auckland building companies have been fined $7,500 for employment law breaches, as they failed to keep employment records or ensure workers were paid correct holiday pay. The firms then also failed to comply with a notice to fix issues that the Labour Inspectorate sent them in March 2017.
Good employment relationships start with a good recruitment process so that the employer and employee have the same expectations about the role and working conditions. Missing this critical step of have a well written employment agreement for each employee in your business can spell disaster for the small business owner, as it helps the employee and the employer to know what is expected of them and what they are entitled to. This means that misunderstandings are less likely to happen and if a problem does come up, then the employee and employer can go to the employment agreement to clarify things.
Every employee must have a written employment agreement.
- The employment agreement can be either an individual agreement or a collective agreement.
- An individual employment agreement should be signed by the employer and employee, although it can still be valid even if it isn’t.
- There are some things that must be in your employment agreement and other things that are usually in employment agreements but don’t have to be, such as your notice period.
- Minimum rights (such as the minimum wage and annual holidays) are legal requirements and apply even if they’re not in the employment agreement. Your employment agreement can’t reduce these or trade them off for other things.
- Employers are required to keep a copy of the employment agreement (or the current signed terms and conditions of employment). The employer must keep an ‘intended agreement’ even if the employee hasn’t signed it. Employees are entitled to a copy of their agreement on request.
- The type of employment agreement an employee is on may depend on whether or not they are a union member. It is the employee’s choice whether they join a union, and an employer can’t unduly influence their choice. If an employee chooses to join a union, they will be covered by the relevant collective agreement, if there is one.
“All business in New Zealand, no matter what business they may be in, need to provide employees with their basic employment rights, such as providing employment agreements and the correct minimum wage and holiday pay.”
If you’re unsure if your employment records are up to scratch, check out the resources on employment.govt.nz.