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Public opinion divided on the 90-day hiring law

Public opinion divided on the 90-day hiring law expansion

Results from the latest SEEK Watercooler survey shows public opinion is split on the introduction of the proposed 90-day hiring law for all companies of any size. The poll asked whether the 90 day hiring law change should be extended to bigger companies, 48% voted yes and 52% voted no.

Advocates say the 90-day trial period will work as a safety net, and result in an increase in hiring, as employers will be able to take a risk on someone they might not have otherwise employed. Prime Minister John Key stated at the National Party Annual conference on Sunday that he believes this change will give people “a shot at work’”.

However there are concerns employers will use the new laws to prevent dismissed workers having access to unions after an unfair dismissal, and that the approach may limit training and development opportunities. Equal Opportunities Commissioner Dr McGregor has voiced concern in the National Conversation about Work Report;

“I think it means that there’s less obligation on employers to actually invest in that 90-day’s and that would be a tragedy for young people”.

Annemarie Duff, General Manager of SEEK New Zealand says that from a job seekers perspective, it’s important to talk to employers about their approach to a trial and to thoroughly review all aspects of an employment agreement;

“My advice would be to ask questions related to on-the-job training and development opportunities in the first three months, and to talk about the competence review process up front. Find out what the criteria for any performance assessments will be, and make sure you’re clear and comfortable with that at the outset.”


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