Christmas Closures Do’s and Don’ts
It’s hard to believe that Christmas is only 7 weeks away – so if you haven’t started planning your staffing requirements yet, now is the time to start!
This week we’ll tackle a few of the Christmas-related questions we’ve received on our Advice On-Demand hotline:
1) How much notice do I need to give staff of a Christmas shut-down period?
The answer to this depends greatly on the applicable Award. Many Awards allow employers to direct employees to take either Annual Leave or unpaid leave (where Annual Leave has been exhausted), but notice periods can vary to up to 3 months’ notice.
2) Can I make an employee work on a Public Holiday?
If it’s necessary for your business to operate on a Public Holiday, provided that your request is reasonable you can require employees to work on Public Holidays. It is worth noting though that this matter should be addressed in the employee’s Contract of Employment (or the relevant Enterprise Bargaining Agreement), and that employees should be given as much notice as possible of this requirement.
Employees can refuse to work Public Holidays in some special circumstances, so be sure to discuss this matter with an HR Professional first.
3) Do I have to pay employees who don’t work the Public Holiday?
Typically, if a Public Holiday falls on an employee’s regular day of work and they are not required to work it, the employee must be paid the amount that they would otherwise have received for working that day.
In some circumstances this can extend to Casual employees as well, so be sure to seek expert assistance when calculating Public Holiday entitlements.
If you have further questions or need assistance with Public Holiday or any other employee matter, you can speak to an HR Professional by calling 1300 55 99 62.