A COVID-19 flexibility schedule has been inserted to the Clerks-Private Sector Award 2010, with changes including:

  • Employers may direct an employee to perform where necessary, any duties within their skills, licences and qualifications and competencies regardless of their classifications provided that the duties are safe and that the employee is licensed and qualified to perform them. An employer must not reduce an employee’s pay if the employee is directed to perform such duties.
  • Casual employees and part-time employees who are working from home by agreement with the employer are required to be rostered for a minimum of two consecutive hours on any shift.
  • The spread of ordinary hours of work for day workers can be varied by agreement between an employer and an employee to between 6.00 am and 11.00 pm, Monday to Friday and between 7.00 am and 12.30 pm on Saturday, without incurring shift worker penalties.
  • An employer and the full-time and part-time employees may agree to temporarily reduce ordinary hours of work for the employees in the workplace or section of a workplace for a specified period, subject to meeting certain criteria including the approval of at least 75% of the affected employees.
  • An employer and employee may agree to an employee taking twice as much annual leave at half the rate of pay for all or part of the annual leave, including any close-down.
  • An employer may direct an employee to take annual leave that has accrued, subject to criteria including giving at least one week’s notice, and a direction to take annual leave cannot result in an employee having less than two weeks of accrued annual leave remaining.
  • An employer may direct an employee to take annual leave by giving at least one week’s notice as part of a close-down of all or part of its operations.
 
The provision will expire on 30 June 2020 though there is a possibility of further extension.
 
Consultation is underway about changes to other key modern awards. We will keep you updated as we hear about any changes.
 
If you have any queries about this or any other employment law matter please contact our employment law team.