Historical Enterprise Agreements

1.20 The short timeline above focuses on changes to the extension of the scope of the agreement. With its new Senate majority, the government announced its intention to introduce legislation in Parliament at the end of 2005 to “simplify” the agreements. Government announcements indicate that the bill will aim to encourage the use of Australian Employment Contracts (AWAs) at the expense of collective agreements and to reduce the structure of public procurement over time. The Australian Industrial Relations Commission (AIRC) will be responsible for simplifying premiums, regulating trade union actions and registered organisations and will play a role in the termination of employment. Employers and workers can also use the AIRC to help them resolve a dispute. The new Australian Fair Payment Commission will set and adjust a single minimum wage and establish other working conditions as part of a reduced number of authorized cases. This is expected to include annual leave, parental leave, parental leave and the maximum normal duration. In particular, the amendable law amends section 188 of the Fair Work Act 2009 to be free of review by the Fair Work Commission, to approve an enterprise agreement despite procedural errors or minor technical errors. Under Australia`s labour law, the 2005-2006 industrial reform, known as “WorkChoices”[3] (with the corresponding amendments to the Workplace Relations Act (1996), changed the name of these contractual documents to a “collective agreement.” State industrial legislation may also impose collective agreements, but the adoption of the WorkChoices reform will reduce the likelihood of such agreements occurring. 1.56 The overriding importance of employers` demands is the need to increase productivity. The error in this argument is that the cost of work and hours worked are only two elements of the productivity equation. Chapter 3 argues that printing work in increasing productivity is much less effective than improving management, technology and capital. This tells us that productivity is generally highest in companies where collective agreements and not individual agreements are the norm and where safety and hence worker satisfaction are reflected in good work performance.