How to Understand the Manufacturing Award in Australia

Bryn Tardent-Powell

10 August 2020    |   

The manufacturing industry presently accounts for 5.6% of Australia’s economy. The industry is responsible for producing a wide range of products including food, beverages, tobacco, textiles, chemicals, machinery, and furniture and as such covers a large number of Australian workers. Although there is some variance, the majority of employees in these professions are covered under the manufacturing award. Despite a recent slowdown, industry prospects are looking up. The latest quarterly survey of industrial trends found that while COVID has heavily impacted the industry, many firms are able to see past current challenges and expect a return to normality in the near-term. The industry is facing challenges, the most significant of which is managing talent. This begins with an accurate and reliable payroll that balances labour expenses with profits.  What is the Manufacturing Award? The Manufacturing and Associated Industries and Occupations Award 2010 [MA000010] outlines the award for this industry. It covers all employers and employees throughout Australia who are involved in any manufacturing-related work. Examples of these occupations include engineering and manufacturing tradespersons and apprentices, laboratory technicians and testers, and locksmiths. Classifications and minimum award rates for an adult employee can be found below. However, there are exceptions that need to be taken into account. Using the manufacturing award is not always as easy as it appears.     Read more: Australian Manufacturing Back on Track: How to ride the sector’s trends Manually calculating manufacturing award rates Many business owners and managers manually compute manufacturing award rates through the P.A.C.T. Pay and Conditions Tool. Using this tool, you can look up the award rates for your employees based on their occupation. You can also use the leave and shift calculators. The more staff you have, the more time consuming and difficult this becomes. Payroll errors are a frequent occurrence for businesses who choose to manually calculate their employee’s entitlements, and these mistakes can be costly. For example, inaccurate calculations can result in compliance penalties, retroactive tax payments, and labour hours spent rectifying mistakes flagged by employees.  Read more: Taking Back Time: Solving the enduring wage theft problem in Australia Automatically calculating manufacturing award rates With many Australian business owners in manufacturing industries unable to manually calculate the increasingly complex award entitlements,  automatic award interpretation software has become the new industry standard. Within Tanda, our award engine automatically adds compliant pay rates to your rosters and timesheets, including base rates, overtime, allowances, and higher duties. All managed awards, including the manufacturing award, have built-in base rates that sync with payroll and update when Fair Work mandates change. This means that award rates are updated in accordance with all future Fair Work changes and birthdate rollovers for employees, keeping businesses compliant without constantly monitoring Fair Work’s site for updates to complex rule sets. To put our award engine to the test sign up for a free trial of the system. 

The manufacturing industry presently accounts for 5.6% of Australia’s economy. The industry is responsible for producing a wide range of products including food, beverages, tobacco, textiles, chemicals, machinery, and furniture and as such covers a large number of Australian workers. Although there is some variance, the majority of employees in these professions are covered under the manufacturing award. Despite a recent slowdown, industry prospects are looking up. The latest quarterly survey of industrial trends found that while COVID has heavily impacted the industry, many firms are able to see past current challenges and expect a return to normality in the near-term. The industry is facing challenges, the most significant of which is managing talent. This begins with an accurate and reliable payroll that balances labour expenses with profits. 

What is the Manufacturing Award?

The Manufacturing and Associated Industries and Occupations Award 2010 [MA000010] outlines the award for this industry. It covers all employers and employees throughout Australia who are involved in any manufacturing-related work. Examples of these occupations include engineering and manufacturing tradespersons and apprentices, laboratory technicians and testers, and locksmiths. Classifications and minimum award rates for an adult employee can be found below. However, there are exceptions that need to be taken into account. Using the manufacturing award is not always as easy as it appears.

 

 

Read more: Australian Manufacturing Back on Track: How to ride the sector’s trends

Manually calculating manufacturing award rates

Many business owners and managers manually compute manufacturing award rates through the P.A.C.T. Pay and Conditions Tool. Using this tool, you can look up the award rates for your employees based on their occupation. You can also use the leave and shift calculators. The more staff you have, the more time consuming and difficult this becomes. Payroll errors are a frequent occurrence for businesses who choose to manually calculate their employee’s entitlements, and these mistakes can be costly. For example, inaccurate calculations can result in compliance penalties, retroactive tax payments, and labour hours spent rectifying mistakes flagged by employees. 

Read more: Taking Back Time: Solving the enduring wage theft problem in Australia

Automatically calculating manufacturing award rates

With many Australian business owners in manufacturing industries unable to manually calculate the increasingly complex award entitlements,  automatic award interpretation software has become the new industry standard.

Within Tanda, our award engine automatically adds compliant pay rates to your rosters and timesheets, including base rates, overtime, allowances, and higher duties. All managed awards, including the manufacturing award, have built-in base rates that sync with payroll and update when Fair Work mandates change. This means that award rates are updated in accordance with all future Fair Work changes and birthdate rollovers for employees, keeping businesses compliant without constantly monitoring Fair Work’s site for updates to complex rule sets.

retail award rate

To put our award engine to the test sign up for a free trial of the system. 

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AU Exclusive: Free Superannuation Contributions Calculator now available

Figuring out the correct superannuation for your employees is effortless with Tanda’s free superannuation contributions calculator. This free super calculator shows you the correct contributions for multiple employees at once. Click here to try the super contributions calculator! Who qualifies for superannuation? In Australia, employers must pay super for any work casual, part-time, and full-time temporary resident employee who falls under the following: Employees over 18 years of age, who earn $450 or more every month (before taxes) Employees under 18 years of age, who earn $450 or more every month (before taxes), and work at least 30 hours a week From 1 July 2014, an employer is required to pay a minimum of 9.5% of the employee’s ordinary time earnings into super. This is set to gradually rise over the coming years. But you won’t need to worry about any of this when you use our free superannuation contributions calculator. Free Superannuation Contributions Calculator in three steps Step 1: Input. Input the first employee’s details in each field using our switch system. Step 2: Add. Click the “add employee button” to input another set of details. Repeat as necessary. Step 3: Calculate. Click the “calculate” button to see results. Click here to try the super contributions calculator! Upgrade to experience Tanda’s full range of services Calculating correct super contributions is just one small part of Tanda’s full range of services. With Tanda, you will also be able to: Search and consolidate all employees’ super Accurately track time and attendance Manage leaves, shifts, and unavailability See real-time staff count and wage spending Connect to your existing payroll system Produce reports for strategic planning Start your free trial now and get one step closer to workforce success! Disclaimers: The results generated from this website should only be used as a guide, and may not be completely accurate.  If you have other eligibility criteria not covered by this calculator, please refer to the ATO’s superannuation guarantee eligibility decision tool.

Awards & Rostering    |   

Want to retain frontline employees? Pay them properly

Eat out at a trendy restaurant or stroll into a store for some window shopping and the first person you encounter can set the tone of your interactions with the business as a whole. The demanding job of pleasing paying customers falls squarely onto the shoulders of frontline workers. They’re the first touchpoint someone has with a business and could be their last. You can be a loyal customer to your favourite brand for years and never interact with someone who works behind the scenes, at a desk in the head office.  Numbers support the value of a well-trained frontline workforce providing high-quality customer service. According to a HubSpot research, people no longer trust businesses as they used to, preferring the opinion of family and friends. But who influences that opinion? Around 90% of the research participants consider an immediate response from customer service support very important, while 72% expect a response within 30 minutes. And they aren’t afraid to spread the word about their experiences, good or bad.  So to keep doing good business, you need to retain your best-performing frontline employees. How do you make them stay?  Give frontline workers their due Sometimes struggles with employee retention can be traced back to the basics. Are you paying them the right way, with the right wage, at the right time? Wage compliance is a big deal for frontline staff, most of whom are casual workers.  When managers are too busy chasing down employees to wrangle data on clock-ins, overtime, and leave balances, and payroll managers are unavailable for hours every pay period, they lose precious time that could have gone to improving employee engagement (understood to be a key factor in retention).  A few employee engagement strategies managers could be missing out on implementing: Instituting more transparency Creating programs for appreciation and recognition Professional development training and career planning Regular communication and candid feedback The Australian award system can be a roadblock to this, however. It has been steadily undergoing review since 2014, and businesses can expect many policies to change this year. While the review’s main aim is to simplify the language used in regulations to make them easier to understand, there’s also the possibility of slight changes in rates. These award changes are yet another factor businesses need to adapt to—and combining that with an already-complex system means without the right workforce management tools, administrators may make mistakes.  Streamline pay processing with an online payroll calculator  When manual payroll errors hold you back from improving frontline engagement, it’s time to find automated tools to do it for you.   Save time by avoiding the need to encode each clock-in, set up spreadsheets, and manually calculate staff wages. Using an online payroll calculator makes it easy. Just input your employees’ start and end times, their hourly rate, and any breaks they’ve taken and the online payroll calculator will automatically present their final wages to you.  You can add as many employees as you want and print the completed calculations when you’re done. With an automated tool, not only do you reduce time manually calculating, you can also be more assured that what you’re paying staff is accurate. Timesheets shouldn’t take days on end for any company, and software is taking care of these tasks to give back time to many HR and payroll officers. Is an online calculator not enough for your more complicated wage calculations? Then it might be time to invest in a workforce platform with more features.    For more extensive payroll automation, Tanda’s Award Interpretation Engine automates rostering and payroll for any business, taking into account overtime, allowance, and higher duties. It also automatically updates for any new Fair Work regulations. Try Tanda for free, for 14 days, no credit card required.

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About the author

Bryn Tardent-Powell

Committed to helping business owners optimise their day to day practices through technology.

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Industry Insights

AU Exclusive: Free Superannuation Contributions Calculator now available

Figuring out the correct superannuation for your employees is effortless with Tanda’s free superannuation contributions calculator. This free super calculator shows you the correct contributions for multiple employees at once. Click here to try the super contributions calculator! Who qualifies for superannuation? In Australia, employers must pay super for any work casual, part-time, and full-time temporary resident employee […]

Awards & Rostering

Want to retain frontline employees? Pay them properly

Eat out at a trendy restaurant or stroll into a store for some window shopping and the first person you encounter can set the tone of your interactions with the business as a whole. The demanding job of pleasing paying customers falls squarely onto the shoulders of frontline workers. They’re the first touchpoint someone has […]

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