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Is redundancy the new performance management?

Too often we hear from an employer or manager when they’ve reached their limit with a poor performer. Our initial advice is often to begin a performance management process, but often we’re met with resistance because the problem has gotten out of hand and the employer now feels like they don’t have the time nor wherewithal to begin to manage the employee’s performance. Often, they turn the conversation to whether or not they can use redundancy as an alternative option. Is that a viable option? Let’s explore it.

What’s the difference between performance management and redundancy?

A performance process involves addressing the performance or behavioural concerns of an employee, and is focused on improvement.  This process can often involve first and final written warnings, and potentially termination of employment as a final outcome, or an immediate outcome depending on the seriousness of the issue.

In between those steps should be periods of review and assessment, during which you should provide your employee with the relevant support to assist sustained improvement.. It’s essential that a proper process is followed throughout the performance management process to ensure that all reasonable steps have been taken and documented in accordance with legislation.

Active performance management can help you create a strong culture of excellence for your business. It creates clear expectations and can help attract and retain highly motivated and productive team members.

If you’re trying to leverage redundancy in place of performance management, it could be illegal and have unintended consequences, like a post-redundancy hit to your team’s morale and an impact to their productivity, not to mention unfair dismissal risks.

“A classic mistake that employers often make is that they don’t realise that if they make a role or person redundant, they are claiming that the position is genuinely not required by the business, therefore potentially leaving the business under resourced and open to the risks of an non genuine redundancy process,” notes Businessary HR Manager Lauren McCleery.

“A redundancy means the employer no longer wants or needs to have that position performed by anyone. And if it’s not a genuine redundancy, for example if you then try to recruit to replace the role you’ve made redundant, the employee could claim that it’s an unfair dismissal and make a claim against the company to the Fair Work Ombudsman.

“Generally we would advise clients to focus on leading by example – providing coaching, mentoring and support to their teams, including a well structured performance management program. This will help mitigate the need for a knee jerk reaction of using redundancies to exit an underperforming or unliked employee from the business.

“Your managers and leaders should have the capability and confidence to handle difficult conversations, and if you’re not finding that they are able to, then perhaps it’s at their level that more training and effort should be applied.”

But businesses can and do have the need to make roles redundant at times. Your business could consider making roles redundant for a number of reasons, including new technology that reduces reliance on the role, economic slowdown or business slowdown, closing or relocating an office, or perhaps you’re undergoing a merger or restructure.

If you’re not making a role redundant for genuine business reasons, you could be trying to cut corners. However, if your reasons are valid, making a role or roles redundant could be the answer for your business.

How do I make someone redundant?

Firstly, make sure that you are looking at a ‘genuine redundancy’, which requires you as the employer to meet three requirements, according to Fair Work:

  • You do not still need the employee’s job to be done by someone (i.e. you’re not hiring someone else to do the same role)
  • You’ve followed relevant requirements to consult with your employees about the redundancy under an award or registered agreement
  • You’ve made a reasonable attempts to find suitable alternative roles for the employee within the organisation.

You then have an obligatory consultation process to set out what you as the employer need to do, and this process should be done ASAP after you’ve made the decision to make major changes to the workplace that will result in redundancy.

Your consultation requirements include:

  • Notifying your employees that may be affected by the changes
  • Provide them with information about the changes and the anticipated effects
  • Discuss steps that you’ve taken to avoid or minimise negative impacts on your employees
  • Consider your employees’ ideas or suggestions about the changes
  • Discuss any potential suitable alternative roles available.

Making the redundancy process as smooth as possible

Strong and consistent communication is key. You should carefully plan and implement a communication strategy to avoid mixed messages or inaccurate information throughout your obligatory consultation process.

“If you’re not sure about your obligations, this is when you need to rely on your HR team or find an HR consultant,” adds McCleery. “This isn’t the time to wing it or leave it to chance.”

Provide dignity, support and respect throughout the process

The number one skill that will be useful to achieving an outcome with dignity and respect is empathy – how would you want to be treated if you were in your employee’s shoes?

Often best practice involves asking your impacted employees their input regarding any measures that might mitigate against the impact of redundancy, such as redeployment opportunities.

If the result is indeed that the employee’s employment will terminate due to redundancy, there are a number of support options that you could consider making available, such as offering a reference or giving your employee access to career management support such as outplacement services, financial advice or legal advice.  It’s also important to consider providing your employees with access to counselling and health/mental health support through a confidential service like an Employee Assistance Program (EAP).

Your managers and leaders will have the most regular contact with the impacted employees during a redundancy process, so it’s vital that they’re well positioned and armed with the correct information and messages to make themselves available to answer questions and discuss the change process with employees as the need arises.

To summarise

  • You need to make sure that any redundancies you’re considering meet the criteria set out by Fair Work.
  • You can make roles redundant when it’s a genuine redundancy, which can be tricky so we encourage you to get expert advice.
  • Redundancy isn’t a good replacement for performance management – you can’t use it to terminate someone who is underperforming or a ‘bad cultural fit.’
  • Focus on your performance management process NOW so you don’t run into a scenario of wanting to exit someone from your business without the structure, process, time or energy to do so.

Need to have a difficult conversation with an employee?

Get 30 min free advice from an HR Manager first! Call today on (03) 9662 9900.

The information provided in this article is only general in nature – before making business decisions you should consider seeking advice specific to your situation.

Top 6 Reasons You Need To Be Investing In SEO

Understanding the basis of what search engine optimisation is, or SEO, will set the stage for you determining whether or not it’s something your business should be investing in, what’s the importance and what you should know about SEO as a digital marketing channel. We’ve put together 6 things you should know about investing in SEO.

Top 6 reasons you should be consistently investing in SEO.

 

6. Get FREE website traffic

Once you’ve had an SEO expert look over your business, website and online marketing strategy they will be able to determine the best keywords for you to target based on the outcomes you are trying to achieve, ranking in the organic section of Google is free which means it does not cost you any money when a customer clicks on your listing. This makes SEO much more cost efficient over time.

5. Target customers that are READY TO BUY

Google is the largest search engine in the world and is the most used search engine for customers looking for relevant and local businesses. It’s a place where people go to search for products and services when they are ready to buy. This means you can optimise your website to show up for the search terms that are more relevant to your business.

4. 94% of Australians use Google when they are looking for a product or service

So, if you are not ranking on page #1 of Google you are almost invisible to majority of your market. Only 2% of people click through to the second page of Google, so its imperative to be pulling out all the stops to get you ranking as high as possible.

3. Cheaper leads

For most businesses if they target the right keywords then over time SEO will generate the cheapest leads compared to any other digital marketing channel.

2. 70% of people click on the SEO listings

Compared to that of 30% of customers who click on Google Adwords. Why? Because ranking on page #1 in the organic section of Google makes you more credible and trustworthy. More tend to be sceptical when they see an ad as opposed to a ‘genuine’ listing as ranked by Google.

1. SEO is like wine, it gets better with age

Once you stop, your competitors will eventually outrank you.  SEO is an ongoing investment and is something that only gets better and cheaper with age! If you want your garden to bloom, keep watering it!

If you are still unsure if you should put your marketing dollars into SEO or if it’s the right move for your business feel free to contact us today and schedule a free consultation.

Or view more of our Digital Marketing Solutions.

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4 Reasons Why You Should Invest In Google Adwords

Have you ever liked the idea of running some Google Adwords but never really know whether you should or if it will work? Here 4 reasons why you should be using Google Adwords, the leading platform for search engine marketing (SEM).

1. Get to Page #1 FAST with Google Adwords

If you are eager to get onto page #1 then Google Adwords is the best way to do it.  You can have a campaign ready to go in just minutes. You make want to speak directly with a Google Adwords consultant Melbourne on how to get to page #1 using Google ads

2. Target customers that are READY TO BUY

Google Adwords is a way to reach the top of Google fast and you can select which keywords you would like to bid on in order to be on page #1 for. This means you can target people who are specifically looking for a service that you offer. Make sure you have done thorough research into which keywords have buyer intention and which keywords are just simply used for general search.

3. Featured at the TOP of Google Results

Google allows the Adwords to be featured at the top of the page which means Ads get featured higher than the organic listings for greater visibility.

4. Retarget Customers

Google Adwords has the added functionality to be able to create marketing lists to segment your website traffic into different categories based on their interests, you can then use these lists retarget them with specific ads for whatever service or product they were viewing on your website. If your customers did not convert the first time then this is the best way to retarget them and get them to  come back.

If you are still unsure if you should put your marketing dollars into SEM or if it’s the right move for your business, feel free to contact us today and scheduled a free consultation.

OR you can keep learning more about Digital Marketing Solutions here

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4 Benefits of Facebook Ads

Facebook is the most popular social media platform in Australia. With over 16 Million active users to date, it’s no wonder it’s a highly sought after digital marketing channel for businesses wanting to advertise their services on. Here’s the 4 major benefits of using Facebook Ads to generate leads for your business.

1. Highly effective targeting options

Facebook targeting is so refined it can now and it just keeps getting better, it’s a great platform for lead generation and to put you in front of customers who have never heard of you before by targeting you based on demographics, age, job, marital status, pages you’ve liked and much more.

2. Ad Creation Options

There are a multitude of Ad options, anything from ‘learn more’ campaigns, to ‘sign up’, to ‘app install’ campaigns, from linking you to an online shop. You have full capability to select your target market or interest group and then select the action you want them to take whether its getting them to know you through and engagement campaign or direct sale and leads through a conversion option.

3. It’s Instant

Similar to Google Adwords, Facebook ads can also be up and running in a matter of minutes (subject to Facebook approval of course) which means you can be getting website traffic and potentially leads very FAST!

4. Retargeting Options

Facebook has a Facebook pixel which you can place on your website to capture and create marketing lists for future retargeting. You can even create lookalike audiences based off your current website traffic, email and Instagram lists, which means you are able to target new customers based on your existing customer database behaviours. This means we can be a lot smarter with our marketing dollars and you get better results when you use targeted lists and lookalike audiences than if you were targeting just based on interests and demographics.

If you are still unsure if you should put your marketing dollars into a Facebook campaign or if it’s the right move for your business, feel free to contact us today and scheduled a free consultation.

Or learn more about our complete Digital Marketing Solutions here:

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5 reasons you need digital marketing to help you grow your business

Why do you need digital marketing?

So many businesses are still leveraging the same old marketing tactics and expecting different results. Perhaps you’re not sure why you should bother with it, why your business might need digital marketing solutions. But over 90% of shoppers researching or purchasing their goods and services online, you’re taking a pretty big risk to ignore your digital audience.

It’s not the silver bullet to all of your hopes and dreams for business growth, but you do need digital marketing to support your overall marketing strategy – read on to find out why.

5. Your audience is online – and growing

We can Google astonishing statistics but ultimately more than 90% of people use a search engine to research products and services (or to purchase online), and more than 80% of people participate in social media.

4. It’s flexible and fast

Make an error in printed marketing? Most times you’re out of luck, friend. Want to jump onto an emerging trend with a special offer? Enjoy your lead times. But with digital marketing, you can quickly come up with engaging and targeted content and copy, beautiful images, and then get your ad seen by your ideal audience. Not quite right? That’s ok, most digital marketing ads can be edited, or paused and restarted once you’ve corrected the issue.

3. It’s affordable

Digital marketing results can be achieved at a fraction of the cost of traditional marketing like radio, TV and print ads.

2. It’s targeted

And you’re also not paying to advertise to the wrong audience – unlike with digital marketing where you can specify your target audience by a huge range of factors, interests and demographics.

1. It’s measurable

You can track how your digital campaigns perform in real time and work to make changes to optimise your results and return on investment. It’s very rare in any other kind of business development or traditional marketing that you can see direct results from your marketing activity.

To learn more about out Digital Marketing Services please select your topic

Contact us to start generating leads for your new business pipeline today.

Join us for game changing HRIS launch event! | Businessary & Microimage HCM Cloud

Microimage Australia and Businessary have formed a strategic partnership to roll out a game changer in cloud enabled human capital management solutions.

When: Tuesday, 24 October – Starts at 4.30pm – Demo at 5.15pm SHARP
Where: Royal Melbourne Hotel, 649 Bourke St Melbourne

Find out more here.

RSVP to [email protected]om.au 

Who is Microimage HCM Cloud?

Microimage HCM Cloud powers SME organisations towards digital transformation of their Human Capital Management. Built on the Microsoft Azure Cloud platform the system encompasses core HR functionality through to integrated talent management, succession planning, robust real time analytics that includes BOTS, AI and native mobile apps.

www.microimagehcm.cloud

Media release: Microimage HCM Cloud and Businessary partner up to offer game changing cloud-based HR management system

Melbourne: Microimage Australia and Businessary have formed a strategic partnership to roll out a game changer in cloud enabled human capital management solutions.

Microimage Australia Pty Ltd, the Australian arm of the Microimage group (a well-established human capital management (HCM) solution provider in South East Asia) has formed a strategic alliance with Businessary Pty Ltd, a specialist in providing business and human resource professional services to Australian and New Zealand businesses.

Bringing fresh HR technology to progressive Australian/NZ businesses

Together, Microimage and Businessary will introduce a fresh perspective to human capital management to the Australian and New Zealand market, Peter Wijeyaratne, Director Microimage Australia, highlights.

“Workplace dynamics, culture and processes have changed dramatically over the past few years and with the new millennial mindset, and the digital savvy workforce now a dominant part of the employee mix, we are confident that our combined expertise in software and Businessary professional services will be a game changer in the Australian market,” said Peter.

“The Microimage HCM Cloud is a digital HR solution that covers all areas of HR including performance management, recruitment, talent acquisition, learning management, succession planning, employee engagement, time and attendance, analytics and native mobile apps. Our solution is a cloud based solution that is built for the Microsoft Azure platform and makes full use of the Microsoft Azure Cloud including all the security and technical features of the platform. This is a global Microsoft co-sell ready solution embracing all of the Azure benefits.

The Businessary difference

Businessary Managing Director, Annabel Rees sees this partnership as a refreshing and welcome opportunity for organisations of all sizes to make use of the modular nature and scalability of the application itself.

“Our purpose is to help businesses find a clear path to optimal business performance. Businessary has a depth of knowledge and resources in contemporary HR practices which we provide our clients, and we can see a fantastic synergy in coupling our experience with the Microimage solution to offer our clients and other organisations an HR system solution that is user friendly, intuitive, and easily customised.

“Our smaller clients will benefit from accessing a preconfigured HRM solution previously unobtainable due to pricing and customisation costs.  Businessary’s point of difference is driven from our multidisciplinary team using tight project management discipline, combined with our tech savvy HR and change professionals – a unique combination to take care of the all the account management, change management, customisation, documentation and training that results in a rapid deployment and seamless implementation. From our initial conversation with interested organisations, it’s clear that this is a compelling offer that will give our clients a competitive advantage.”

The Businessary and Microimage preferred partnership extends to Australia and New Zealand.

-ends-

For media enquiries, a demo or more information, please contact:

Annabel Rees | +61 407 562 244 | annabel.rees@businessary.com.au

—————————————————– ENDS—————————————————–

About Businessary

Businessary logo

After holding numerous high level corporate roles and successfully transforming the performance of many organisations, Businessary Founder and Managing Director Annabel Rees recognised that she could make a real difference by providing business expertise previously only available to large businesses to small and medium businesses.

Employing all the diverse knowledge, experience and expertise gathered over many years consulting and leading businesses in the corporate realm, the team at Businessary provides a range of business advisory solutions to help organisations find a clear path to business success. 

A trusted advisor that supports businesses to meet their business challenges and optimise business performance.

Our expertise lies in:

  • Business advisory
  • Digital marketing solutions
  • HR and people solutions

 www.businessary.com.au 

 

About Microimage

Founded in 1995, Microimage HCM Cloud Powers Digital HR enables organisations to digitally transform human capital management and shift to a complete digital HCM platform, with seamless scaling across functionalities. The all new Microimage HCM Cloud offers a comprehensive platform from core HR to talent management. HCM Cloud is designed to run on Microsoft Azure Cloud.

Microimage HCM products are used by a diverse client base across the Middle East to East Asia at present. HCM Cloud is our latest digital HR solution designed to transform human resources management with digital capabilities including cloud, mobile, social and analytics.

At Microimage, our vision is, “To be a leading technology innovator for people driven businesses.” Our mission is “To continuously innovate to deliver advanced HCM technology for people driven businesses.”

Microimage HCM was identified among the preferred HCM Solution vendors in the “Gartner Market Guide for HCM Suite Applications” in 2016. We maintain high standards in product quality assurance, professional services and post implementation support. Microimage also works closely with Microsoft Corp, by developing products on Microsoft Azure Cloud infrastructure. Our product engineering team consists of software engineers who have contributed to some of the award-winning products in the past.

With over two decades of domain experience in human resources, working closely with HR consultants and related domain experts, company continues to incorporate best HR practices with latest innovative technologies.

www.microimagehcm.cloud

Are you aware of the latest penalties from Fair Work effective July 1?

Did you know new penalties have kicked in for business record keeping requirements?

We all know that good business records help you manage your business, make sound business decisions and in most cases can also improve the value of your business if you decide to sell it, but did you know that as a business you have legal obligations to store records and have them available for up to five to seven years depending on the “type” of records?

If you employ people under a modern award or agreement, you are legally required to keep accurate and complete time, hours, wages, leave, termination and issue pay slips to each employee. You need to keep each employees’ time and wages records for at least seven years and make sure they are always accessible for inspection.

Employees must also be given a copy of their employment records should they request it.
Whilst not all employee records are legally required to be kept, it may be best practice to keep certain employee records.

Penalty Rates

Record keeping obligations can vary from state to state and having a better understanding of your obligations can help prevent substantial penalty fees. From 1 July 2017 maximum penalties under the Fair Work Act are up to $63,000 per breach for a corporate entity and up to $12,600 for individuals who are involved in a breach.

Case Study: Penalties for breaching record keeping obligations

A recent federal court hearing fined two employers and their Director a whooping $37,500 for failing to keep proper employee records.

The Fair work Obudsman audited a popular Perth restaurant chain and found their lack of proper record keeping breached multiple legislative requirements.

Tram Hoang Han, who controlled the Han’s Café franchise was penalised $7500 and two companies of which she was the sole Director were penalised a further $15,000 each.

The Fair Work Ombudsman had previously advised Ms Han about the need to comply with minimum Award pay rates and keeping employee records.

The Fair Work Ombudsman’s audit was able to calculate that over 100 employees across four Han’s Café restaurants had been underpaid by $30,440. As a result of being short-changed their minimum hourly rate, Ms Han was made to back-pay these employees.

The audit also found that the practices for keeping time-and-wage records were so poor that they hindered the Fair Work Ombudsman from quantifying the full extent of the underpaid wages and entitlements, including penalty rates and overtime.

In his judgment, Justice Michael Barker described the record-keeping contraventions as “serious”. He said the “failure to maintain records truly strikes at the very foundation of the regulatory scheme which is designed to ensure that employees are paid their legal entitlements,” Justice Barker said.

So what next?

This is a timely reminder to employers to review their record keeping practices and take steps to rectify any non-compliance.

Seek the right HR advice and partner with Businessary to ensure you are keeping on track with your legislative obligations.

References:

Penalties for breach of record keeping

Case study

Employer told to update “weak” policies after an investigation by Fair Work

The Metropolitan Fire Brigade (MFB) was told to review its recruitment and conflict of interest policies and practices, after a senior manager engaged in “blatant” nepotism.

An investigation found the MFB chief information officer engineered a recruitment process to ensure both her sons were hired, after she falsified their CVs, coached them prior to the interview, and got them to change their names to conceal the relationship. She even offered one of her sons a pay increase and moved him into a permanent role.

In a report into the allegations, Victorian Ombudsman Deborah Glass found this was “a case of deception where the family nest was feathered, plain and simple” and said even the most robust policy would not have prevented the level of deception shown by each of the subjects.

However, she found the MFB’s conflict of interest policy to be “profoundly deficient”, saying it “fails to acknowledge the potential for conflicts to exist during recruitment”.

Ombudsman Glass said while the employer in this case could not be held responsible for the deception perpetrated upon it, its conflict of interest policies were weak, and did not reflect best practice.  She said “…..leaders must ensure they create an environment in which conflict of interest policies are embedded in their organisational culture.”

If you need to check your policies and procedures you should seek some HR advice from a professional as soon as possible to figure out your next steps forward.

Key message

Fair Work investigations can happen at any time to any business no matter the size.  Is your business compliant? Get in touch with us to ensure you have the right policies and practices in place to pass the compliance test.

Special offer

Get the right people working for your business with our attraction, recruitment, selection and onboarding module – now 50% off (was $4,000, now $2,000) until the end of July!

Reference:

https://www.ombudsman.vic.gov.au/getattachment/b852e331-7bda-449a-87ea-9db393227039

3.3% increase to minimum wage effective 1 July 2017

The Fair Work Commission (FWC) recently announced a 3.3% increase to minimum wage effective 1 July 2017.

These changes affect employees that are:

  • paid in accordance with the National minimum wage
  • paid as per the calculations in modern awards
  • on government funded maternity/paternity or parental leave

How does this affect you?

Ensuring your employees are paid in line with legislative requirements is critical. Not all modern award wages are increasing, so to ensure compliance and find out if your business needs to take action, give us a call and take the stress out of adding another action to your to-do list.

Special offer

Buy 1 hour HR advice to see if you are HR compliant, and get an additional half hour free! Call 03 9662 9900 to take advantage.