Video | Agriculture | Confidence | Economy | Energy | Employment | Finance | Media | Property | RBNZ | Science | SOEs | Tax | Technology | Telecoms | Tourism | Transport | Search

 

Employment agreements crucial this Gypsy Day

26/05/2017

Employment agreements crucial this Gypsy Day


“In an industry renowned for seasonal averaging, it is important dairy farmers focus on ensuring all current and new employees have the correct employment agreements, especially with the introduction of new employment laws in April,” says Melissa Vining, Agri Human Resources Consultant with Progressive Consulting, the human resources division of Crowe Horwath.

With Gypsy Day just around the corner, it marks the start of a new season when farms are bought and sold, and new sharemilking contracts signed.

“Dairy farmers need to ensure employment agreements are understood and agreed upon, to make certain that the employer and employee are both fully protected and aware of their rights. This is particularly important this year with amendments being made to the Employment Relations Act 2000,” Vining outlines.

The amendment to the Employment Relations Act 2000 ensures that hours are clearly defined and agreed upon in employment agreements, and if there is a requirement to be available in busy periods, such as calving, it needs to be documented along with adequate compensation for the employee.

“With the amount of hours significantly varying for dairy farm workers across the season, it is a tough field for employers to navigate, and there is a need for flexibility and good advice,” advises Vining.

Vining continues, “Previously farmers have defaulted to using seasonal averaging, as it provides the employee with a dependable income when work hours are low; however, it can often leave workers short of meeting minimum wage requirements during the high season of calving when they work long days.”

“A lot of farmers are simply unaware of their obligations,” Vining states. “The amendment means employers must not only pay at least the minimum wage for every hour worked; they must also ensure hours of work are clearly defined, with adequate compensation outside of these hours if they are required to be available.”

With many farmers taking on new employees, an important issue to note is that if employers do not have the employment agreements signed prior to the first day of work, the 90-day trial period is not valid for the employer. This trial period can only be used on new employees.

Farmers who have employees leaving over the Gypsy Day weekend also need to ensure they calculate and pay the final salary including any holiday pay within the agreed pay period.

“One of the key messages for when you are saying goodbye or hiring staff is to make sure you have a good understanding of your obligations as an employer. Get professional advice if you’re unsure, and put processes in place that support best practice and are pragmatic at managing your farming business,” Vining advises.

ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Freight: New Report On Auckland Port Relocation

The Government has released a major new report on the options for relocating the Port of Auckland’s freight operations while deferring any decision on the issue. More>>

ALSO:

Chartered Accountants: COVID-19 Fails To Knock Kiwi Investor Confidence, But More Disclosure Wanted

Three months of COVID-19 lockdown and investment turmoil has done little to knock confidence in New Zealand capital markets and listed companies with overall investor sentiment very similar to 2019, an investor survey held in mid June shows. However, ... More>>

ALSO:

Taxation: Black-Market Tobacco Sidesteps $287 Million In Excise Tax

Year-on-year increases in consumption of illicit tobacco in New Zealand have seen illegal trade swell to 11.5% of the total market. If consumed legally, illicit products would have netted the Government $287 million in excise tax during 2019. Independent ... More>>

ALSO:

Energy Sector: Meridian Spilled Water To Hike Electricity Prices - Authority Ruling

The Electricity Authority has found that generator Meridian Energy manipulated the power market, costing consumers about $80 million. More>>

ALSO:

XE Data Update: RBNZ Official Cash Rate Decision

The RBNZ will keep the Official Cash Rate (OCR) at 0.25%. T he key points in the RBNZ statement are: RBNZ keeps the OCR unchanged at 0.25% Maintain the LSAP (large scale asset purchase) at NZD$60 billion. Committee prepared to use additional monetary ... More>>

ALSO:

Electricity: Kiwis Ignore Promise Of Cheaper Power

Electric Kiwi and Flick Electric Co are joint winners of Canstar Blue’s award for Most Satisfied Customers | Electricity Providers From putting on an extra layer – rather than turning on a heater – to turning off lights and choosing the energy-saving ... More>>

ALSO:

Electricity: Transmission Pricing For A Low Carbon Future

The Electricity Authority has decided on new guidelines for transmission pricing. James Stevenson-Wallace, Chief Executive of the Electricity Authority says the new guidelines will deliver significant benefits to consumers, through lower electricity ... More>>

ALSO:

NIWA: The Climate Record That Keeps Getting Broken

Among the multitude of New Zealand climate statistics there is one record that continues to be broken month after month. Since January 2017 there has not been one month that recorded a below average nationwide temperature, according to NIWA’s seven station ... More>>

ALSO:

Govt: Extended Loan Scheme Keeps Business Afloat

Small businesses are getting greater certainty about access to finance with an extension to the interest-free cashflow loan scheme to the end of the year. The Small Business Cashflow Loan Scheme has already been extended once, to 24 July. Revenue and Small ... More>>

ALSO:

Science: 2019 Prime Minister’s Science Prizes Announced

The 2019 Prime Minister’s Science Prizes have been announced in a digital livestream event today. The Prizes recognise the impact of science on New Zealanders’ lives, celebrate the achievements of current scientists and encourage scientists of the ... More>>

ALSO:


RNZ: Fuel, Alcohol Costs To Go Up From Today

The increase today in the taxes on fuel, road user charges and alcohol is being called a tone-deaf move. More>>

ALSO:

Stardome Observatory: Young Kiwi Astro-Photographer Shoots For The Stars

Matariki by Josh Kirkley. The stars are aligning for up-and-coming Auckland-based astro-photographer Josh Kirkley (Kāi Tahu). During lockdown, one of his images was picked up by NASA and shared on the space agency’s Instagram to its 59.2 million ... More>>


DCANZ: Time For EU To Commit To A Level Playing Field For Trade

The Dairy Companies Association of New Zealand (DCANZ) has welcomed New Zealand Trade Minister David Parker’s statement that it is unacceptable for New Zealand exporters to continue facing an ‘unlevel playing field’ in the EU. Details leaked ... More>>

ALSO:

Potatoes New Zealand: Protecting NZ Fries As Part Of PNZ Pandemic Recovery & Transformation Plan

Potatoes New Zealand has met with Minister Faafoi this week to discuss investigating the potential importation of heavily discounted frozen potato chips into New Zealand. With MBIE’s support we are undertaking an investigation to gather evidence of the ... More>>

ALSO:


New Zealand Government: Supporting Kiwi Businesses To Resolve Rent Disputes

The Government will legislate to ensure businesses that suffered as a result of the COVID-19 response will get help to resolve disputes over commercial rent issues, Justice Minister Andrew Little announced today. More>>

ALSO: