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BSBWRK510

Manage employee relations

Learner Guide

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BSBWRK510
Manage employee relations

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Table of Contents
Table of Contents …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 3

Unit of Competency ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 7

Performance Criteria ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 8

Foundation Skills …………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 9

Assessment Requirements ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 10

Housekeeping Items …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 11

Objectives ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 11

1. Develop employee and industrial relations policies and plans …………………………………………. 12

1.1 – Analyse strategic plans and operational plans to determine long term employee relations .. 13

Strategic Plans ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 13

Operational Plans ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 13

Employee relations ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 13

Employee communication ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 14

Employee involvement ………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 15

Employee discipline ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 15

Employee rights ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 16

Employee satisfaction ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 16

Activity 1A ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 17

1.2 – Analyse existing employee relations performance in relation to workforce objectives ……… 18

Performance systems …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 18

Activity 1B ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 20

1.3 – Evaluate options in terms of cost-benefit, risk-analysis and current legislative requirements

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 21

Cost-benefit………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 21

Risk analysis …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 21

Developing risk management …………………………………………………………………………………………. 22

Providing information ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 23

Legislative requirements ………………………………………………………………………………………………… 24

Fair Work Act ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 24

Agreement types …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 24

Updates 2014 ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 25

National Employment Standards …………………………………………………………………………………….. 25

Discrimination – protected attributes ……………………………………………………………………………… 27

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Unacceptable workplace behaviours ……………………………………………………………………………….. 28

Activity 1C ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 29

1.4 – Work with the management team to develop industrial relations policies and plans ………… 30

Policies and plans ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 30

Site, enterprise and statutory requirements …………………………………………………………………….. 30

Enterprise agreements …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 30

Continuous operation of agreements ………………………………………………………………………………. 31

1.5 – Identify the skills and knowledge needed by management and the workforce to effectively

implement these strategies and policies ……………………………………………………………………………… 34

Skills and knowledge required ………………………………………………………………………………………… 34

Management skills ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 35

Activity 1D ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 36

2. Implement employee relations policies and plans …………………………………………………………. 37

2.1 – Develop an implementation plan and a contingency plan for the employee relations policies

and strategies …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 38

Business plans ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 38

Implementation plans ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 38

Communication …………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 38

Trends …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 39

Failures ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 39

Contingency planning ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 40

Activity 2A …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 42

2.2 – Make arrangements for training and development for identified needs to support the

employee relations plan ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 43

Training ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 43

Formalise the acceptance of training ………………………………………………………………………………. 43

Possible conflicts …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 44

Ease of access ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 44

2.3 – Undertake associated employee relations activities to reach agreement on changes required

by the organisational policies or implementation plan ………………………………………………………….. 45

Involvement practices ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 45

Communication practices ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 45

Problem solving practices ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 46

Financial practices …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 46

Activity 2B ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 47

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2.4 – Ensure procedures for addressing grievances and conflict to stakeholdersare properly

documented …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 48

Grievances ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 48

Documenting the process ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 48

2.5 – Communicate key issues about procedures for addressing grievances and conflict to

stakeholders …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 49

Dealing with grievances …………………………………………………………………………………………………. 49

Policy statement …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 49

Stages ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 49

Timeframe ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 50

Representation……………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 50

Monitoring and reviewing ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 50

Activity 2C ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 51

2.6 Review employee relations policies and plans to establish whether they are meeting their

intended outcomes …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 52

Trial 360 degree feedback ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 52

Ask the staff …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 52

Conducting surveys ……………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 53

Anonymity ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 54

Online surveys ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 54

Encouragement from management …………………………………………………………………………………. 54

Incentives …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 54

Activity 2D ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 55

3. Manage negotiations to resolve conflict ………………………………………………………………………. 56

3.1 – Train individuals in conflict management techniques and procedures …………………………….. 57

Conflict ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 57

Effective conflict resolution ……………………………………………………………………………………………. 58

Collaborating ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 60

Competing ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 60

Compromising ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 61

Accommodating ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 62

Avoiding ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 62

Creating communicative atmospheres …………………………………………………………………………….. 63

Defuse emotions …………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 63

Setting ground rules ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 63

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Choosing the time and place ………………………………………………………………………………………….. 65

Activity 3A …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 66

3.2 – Identify, and where possible alleviate or eliminate, sources of conflict or grievance according

to legal requirements ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 67

Alleviating conflict …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 67

Collective disputes ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 69

Activity 3B ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 71

3.3 – Check documentation and other information sources to clarify issues in disputes ……………. 72

Checking documentation ……………………………………………………………………………………………….. 72

3.4 – Obtain expert or specialist advice and/or refer to precedents, if required……………………….. 75

Specialist advice ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 75

3.5 – Determine desired negotiation outcomes, negotiation strategy and negotiation timeframes

………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 76

Negotiation ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 76

3.6 – Advocate the organisation’s position in negotiation to obtain agreement ……………………….. 78

Advocate the organisation’s position ………………………………………………………………………………. 78

3.7 – Document, and if necessary certify, the agreed outcomes with the relevant jurisdiction…… 79

Certify the agreed outcomes ………………………………………………………………………………………….. 79

Contract differences ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… 79

Federal industrial laws …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 79

Activity 3D …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 81

3.8 – Implement agreements ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 82

Smooth implementation ………………………………………………………………………………………………… 82

3.9 – Take remedial action where groups or individuals fail to abide by agreements ………………… 83

Remedial action ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 83

Activity 3E…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 84

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 84

References ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 86

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Unit of Competency

Application

This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to manage employee and industrial relations
matters in an organisation. It involves developing and implementing employee and industrial
relations policies and plans and managing conflict resolution negotiations.

It applies to those who are authorised to oversee industrial relations and manage conflict and
grievances in an organisation. They will have a sound theoretical knowledge base in human
resources management and industrial relations as well as current knowledge of industrial relations
trends and legislation

.

No licensing, legislative or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of publication.

Unit Sector

Workforce Development – Workplace Relations

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Performance Criteria

Element
Elements describe the
essential outcomes.

Performance Criteria
Performance criteria describe the performance needed to
demonstrate achievement of the element.

1. Develop employee and
industrial relations
policies and plans

1.1 Analyse strategic plans and operational plans to determine
long term employee relations

1.2 Analyse existing employee relations performance in relation
to workforce objectives

1.3 Evaluate options in terms of cost-benefit, risk-analysis and
current legislative requirements

1.4 Work with the management team to develop industrial
relations policies and plans

1.5 Identify the skills and knowledge needed by

management

and the workforce to effectively implement these strategies
and policies

2. Implement employee
relations policies and
plans

2.1 Develop an implementation plan and a contingency plan for
the employee relations policies and strategies

2.2 Make arrangements for training and development for
identified needs to support the employee relations plan

2.3 Undertake associated employee relations activities to reach
agreement on changes required by the organisational
policies or implementation plan

2.4 Ensure procedures for addressing grievances and conflict to
stakeholders are properly documented

2.5 Communicate key issues about procedures for addressing
grievances and conflict to stakeholders

2.6 Review employee relations policies and plans to establish
whether they are meeting their intended outcomes

3. Manage negotiations
to resolve conflict

3.1 Train individuals in conflict-management techniques and
procedures

3.2 Identify, and where possible alleviate or eliminate, sources
of conflict or grievance according to legal requirements

3.3 Check documentation and other information sources to
clarify issues in dispute

3.4 Obtain expert or specialist advice and/or refer to
precedents, if required

3.5 Determine desired negotiation outcomes, negotiation
strategy and negotiation timeframes

3.6 Advocate the organisation’s position in negotiation to obtain
agreement

3.7 Document, and if necessary certify, the agreed outcomes
with the relevant jurisdiction

3.8 Implement agreements
3.9 Take remedial action where groups or individuals fail to

abide by agreements

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Foundation Skills

This section describes language, literacy, numeracy and employment skills incorporated in the
performance criteria that are required for competent performance.

Skill

Performance

Criteria

Description

Reading
1.1, 1.2, 1.3, 3.3  Interprets, critically analyses and applies appropriate

strategies to construct meaning from complex texts

Writing
1.4, 2.1, 2.4, 2.5, 3.7  Displays knowledge of required structure and layout,

employing broad vocabulary, grammatical structure and
conventions appropriate to purpose and audience

Oral
communication

1,4, 2.5, 3.1, 3.6  Conveys information using language and non-verbal
features appropriate to the audience

 Employs listening and questioning techniques to clarify and
confirm understanding

Numeracy
1.2, 1.3  Extracts and evaluates the mathematical information

embedded in a range of tasks and texts

Navigate the
world of work

1.3, 1.4, 2.3, 2.6, 3.2,
3.7

 Modifies or develops organisational policies to achieve
organisational goals and comply with legislative
requirements

 Keeps up to date on changes to legislation or regulations
relevant to own rights and responsibilities and considers
implications of these

Interact with
others

1.4, 2.3, 3.1, 3.2, 3.4,
3.6, 3.9

 Collaborates with others to achieve joint outcomes, playing
an active role in facilitating effective group interaction,
influencing direction and taking a leadership role on
occasion

 Actively builds networks that include key people with
expert skills and knowledge

 Uses a range of strategies to facilitate an acceptable
outcome for all parties where conflicts occur

Get the work
done

1.3, 1.4, 1.5, 2.1, 2.2,
2.4, 2.5, 3.2, 3.5, 3.7,
3.8

 Sequences and schedules complex activities, monitors
implementation and manages relevant communication

 Uses analytical techniques to identify issues and generate
possible solutions, seeking input from others as required,
before making decisions or implementing solutions

 Draws on the diverse perspectives of others to gain insights
into current practices and opportunities for change

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Assessment Requirements

Performance Evidence

Evidence of the ability to:

 Analyse organisational documentation to determine long-term employee relations objectives

and current employee relations performance
 Collaborate with others to develop and review industrial relations policies and plans
 Develop implementation and contingency plans for industrial relations policies
 Identify the skills and knowledge needed to implement the plan and organise training and

development for self and staff
 Document and communicate strategies and procedures for eliminating and dealing with

grievances and disputes
 Train others in conflict-resolution techniques
 Manage industrial relations conflicts, including advocating the organisation’s position during

negotiations and documenting, implementing and following up agreements.

Note: If a specific volume or frequency is not stated, then evidence must be provided at least once.

Knowledge Evidence

To complete the unit requirements safely and effectively, the individual must:
 Explain relevant industrial relations legislation or regulations
 Summarise enterprise and workplace bargaining processes
 Summarise key entities in the current Australian industrial relations system, including courts and

tribunals, trade unions and employer bodies
 Relevant industrial, workplace health and safety, equal employment opportunity and

anti-discrimination legislation in federal, state and territory jurisdictions.

Assessment Conditions

Assessment must be conducted in a safe environment where evidence gathered demonstrates
consistent performance of typical activities experienced in the workforce development – workplace
relations field of work and include access to:

 Awards and enterprise bargaining agreements
 Relevant legislation, regulations, standards and codes
 Relevant workplace documentation and resources
 Case studies and, where possible, real situations
 Interaction with others.

Assessors must satisfy NVR/AQTF assessor requirements.

Links

Companion volumes available from the IBSA website: http://www.ibsa.org.au/companion_volumes –
http://www.ibsa.org.au/companion_volumes

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Housekeeping Items
Your trainer will inform you of the following:

 Where the toilets and fire exits are located, what the emergency procedures are

and where the breakout and refreshment areas are.

 Any rules, for example asking that all mobile phones are set to silent and of any

security issues they need to be aware of.

 What times the breaks will be held and what the smoking policy is.

 That this is an interactive course and you should ask questions.

 That to get the most out of this workshop, we must all work together, listen to each

other, explore new ideas, and make mistakes. After all, that’s how we learn.

 Ground rules for participation:

o Smile

o Support and encourage other participants

o When someone is contributing everyone else is quiet

o Be patient with others who may not be grasping the ideas

o Be on time

o Focus discussion on the topic

o Speak to the trainer if you have any concerns

Objectives

 Discover how to develop employee and industrial relations policies and plans

 Know how to implement employee relations policies and plans

 Learn how to manage negotiations to resolve conflict

 Gain skills and knowledge required for this unit

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1. Develop employee and industrial relations policies and
plans

1.1 Analyse strategic plans and operational plans to determine long term employee relations

1.2 Analyse existing employee relations performance in relation to workforce objectives

1.3 Evaluate options in terms of cost-benefit, risk-analysis and current legislative requirements

1.4 Work with the management team to develop industrial relations policies and plans

1.5 Identify the skills and knowledge needed by management and the workforce to effectively
implement these strategies and policies

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1.1 – Analyse strategic plans and operational plans to determine long term
employee relations

Strategic Plans

The key elements of strategic planning are an organisation’s:

 Vision statement – the vision outlines how the organisation wants to be; it is a long

term objective that concentrates on the future.

 Values – this is a set of beliefs that are shared amongst the shareholders of the

organisation. This is the framework and basis on what all decisions should be made.

 Mission – the mission defines the fundamental purpose of the organisation, why it

exists and what it does to achieve its vision.

 Strategy – the strategy itself it how the organisation intends to meet its vision what

goals are set, what policies will they use.

Operational Plans

An operational plan can be described as the process of defining what steps a company will take in

order to achieve the organisational objectives.

It is also the plan that assists employees to work towards the achievement of the mission and vision

statement.

Planning in advance means that managers can:

 Identify strengths and weaknesses

 Resolve potential issues before they arise

 Cater to employee needs and requirements

 Take advantage of opportunities

Employee relations

Employee relations encompass all aspects of employment and workplace conditions and the

employee / employer relationship. In respect of strategic and operational plans it is essential for

organisations to ensure that when plans are made they factor in employee relations, for the

advancement and well being of the organisation’s future.

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Employee relations have four fundamental elements:

Employee communication

Employee communication is the process by which information is exchanged between the sender and

the receiver. It is the cohesive agent that holds organisations together.

In employee relations communication there are key issues related to communication in the
workplace, such as:

 Communication is the fundamental process of organising

 All management should be committed to open communication

 Management should devise effective communication systems in the workplace

 Information should be relevant to the employee

 Messages should be consistent with actions

 Cross cultural communication is contributing to a diverse workplace

 Training in communication increases effectiveness of the organisation.

Employee
relations

Employee
communication

Employee

rights

Employee
involvement

Employee
discipline

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Within the organisation there will be three forms of communication used, these are:

 Verbal – in the form of informal or formal speech. Face to face communication

combines the auditory and the non-verbal.

 Non-verbal – communicating through gestures or facial expression used in

conjunction with verbal communication it can send much more information to the

receiver than just words.

 Written – in the form of notes, memorandums, emails and letters.

Employee involvement

Management have the task of holding the organisation’s employee relations together and part of

that task involves keeping control and commitment in the workplace. One of the strategies used to

do this is employee involvement.

The Involvement-Commitment Cycle

(Adapted from Bratten and Gold pg 455)

Employee discipline

When all avenues of communication fail managers may have to resort to disciplinary action.

Disciplinary actions are important tools designed to help managers maintain an efficient and orderly

work environment. If these processes are used properly, they will assist employees in correcting

unacceptable behaviours.

Managers perceive the
need for involving

employees in decision
making

Introduce new forms,
employee involvement

and open communication
mechanisams

Greater autonomy and
input into decision making

Increased employee job
satisfaction, motivation

and commitment

Improved individual and
organisational
perfomance

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Failing to use disciplinary actions to correct inappropriate conduct and performance may lead to

more serious problems for the organisation and management. It may also harm the morale of those

employees who are working according to the rules and requirements of the workplace and are

meeting their required performance standards.

The time and effort you spend to correct problems early is a good investment. In dealing with

problems early you can avoid additional problems later, such as low morale, loss of productivity,

high turnover of staff, and loss of respect for

management.

Employee rights

Employee rights play a vital role in the protection of employees against unfair behaviours from

management and co-workers. Protecting employee rights ensures that employees have confidence

in management and that they will be fairly treated. It is important to the organisation both legally

and economically, as they are required to adhere to employment law and risk hefty fines if they do

not.

Employee satisfaction

Job satisfaction is a business term that refers to a person’s contentment with his or her job.

There are various factors that contribute to employee satisfaction, which may include:

 Work environment

 Employee relations

 Salary.

Employers can measure employee satisfaction by undertaking surveys then implement measures

that nurture job satisfaction amongst workers.

Job satisfaction has been linked to increased work productivity and increased motivation which

typically leads to improved performance and reduces staff turnover.

Human resource management professionals often measure employees’ job satisfaction by assessing

workplace attitudes. This can take place informally through conversations between workers and

their supervisors or with human resources representatives.

Many organisations administer formal surveys and then use the results to amend workplace policies

and procedures. Some businesses work with outside consulting firms to analyse the results of their

employee satisfaction surveys. They might then hold workshops or training sessions to help their

employees determine the professional roles that suit them.

http://www.wisegeek.com/what-is-resource-management.htm

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Activity 1A

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1.2 – Analyse existing employee relations performance in relation to
workforce objectives

Performance systems

There are also a number of reasons why performance systems should be monitored and a number of

ways in which employee relations performance can be monitored.

Managers need to identify what is going well and what needs to be improved within the

organisation. They also need to be able to monitor and measure effectiveness of resources, to

ensure that the organisation’s workforce objectives are being met.

Therefore, it is important to have some systems in place to report and record any specific

information related to the employee relations performance systems an organisation has in place.

It would be important for managers to monitor the following:

 Workplace Health and Safety (WHS) issues such as accidents, incidents and near

misses

 Absenteeism and sickness

 Lateness

 Productivity

 Staff turnover

 Performance appraisals and reviews

 Staff training and development

 Staff satisfaction, based on surveys and

feedback

 Complaints and grievances.

Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) should be measured and maintained as part of a continuous

improvement process. If a training gap or a performance gap is determined using KPIs or other

methods, then the issues can be addressed.

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Performance of employees can be measured in any of the following ways:

Observation

Manager and supervisor

reports

Performance Management Plans

Annual reviews

Discussions

Informal meetings

Formal meetings

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Activity 1B

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1.3 – Evaluate options in terms of cost-benefit, risk-analysis and current
legislative requirements

Cost-benefit

Employee relations have a huge impact upon the success of a business. Good employee relations can

help organisations avoid conflicts and minimise negative impact. In terms of the costs of time and

money, it is an investment well spent.

Investing in training is the key to providing a harmonised organisation. Training may include:

 Teamwork

 Diversity

 Conflict resolution.

Productivity

Creating a pleasant atmosphere in the workplace can increase employee motivation and morale,

which in turn will lead to increased production and an increase in profits for the organisation.

Training programs can also teach staff how to work as teams.

Employee loyalty

Creating a pleasant and productive atmosphere for employees can encourage a loyal workforce.

Workers that are loyal to the organisation are less likely to want to leave. Improving retention of

workers will decrease costs of recruiting and training new staff. Low turnover of staff ensures a

trained, skilled workforce.

Quality

When worker morale is high, their loyalty to the organisation increases, as does the quality of their

work. The reduction in staff turnover makes for an experienced workforce which produces higher

quality work.

Fair pay

It never hurts to pay an employee a fair wage for an honest day’s work. The less money problems

they have, the less likely they are to want to get a second job or look for work elsewhere.

Risk analysis

Assessing the risks in terms of employee relations should demonstrate an understanding of the

industrial relations environment. Taking into consideration lessons learned from previous issues, the

risk assessment should identify an employee’s ability to comply with policy guidelines towards

efficiency and productivity.

To provide accurate information and feedback to management on employee relations matters or to

inform those persons and groups of relevant matters, it is good management to conduct a risk

assessment once you have gathered your information from the feedback methods mentioned

previously.

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Developing risk management

When developing a risk management review for your employee climate or other human resource
management activities, there are a number of considerations which may include:

 Likelihood – is the chance that something will happen. This can be represented

qualitatively as a word, quantitatively as a probability or frequency, or as both.

 Consequence – is the impact that a risk may have and is measured in degrees of

severity, should the risk occur.

The risk management process involves a series of sequential steps which can be defined as:

The areas which are most likely to be flagged when conducting risk management assessment may
include:

 Compensation and benefits

issues

 Discriminatory practices

 Hiring unsuitable employees

 Wrongful

dismissal

 Promises made to employees that cannot be honoured

 Policies and contracts of employment

Establish the context

Identifying risks

Evaluate risks

Analyse risks

Treat risks

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 Safe working conditions

 Adequate training

 Appropriate clothing and safety equipment

 Adequate policies and procedures

 Reputation in the community

 Release of personal information

 Adequate supervision

 Exit interviews.

Providing information

There are two main ways of providing information and feedback, these are:

 Via management

 Directly to the relevant persons or groups.

As is suggested in all the better manuals on risk management, risk, in all its many forms is best
managed at the source; this may mean:

 Including management or relevant persons and groups, whatever their role in your

organisation

 It is more likely that attention will be focused on the actions required if somebody

takes responsibility for the risk

identified.

The methods and design of the information format will largely depend on organisational

preferences. The level of detailed information, feedback or advice should relate to the level of risk

identified.

Where an organisation operates similar industrial activities from several workplaces, they may

produce a generic assessment that addresses findings. Circumstances may exist however, that

require adapting or amending the information for each workplace or work activity.

Good feedback helps an individual improve their actions.

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Legislative requirements

Under Australian law, all organisations must abide to certain legislation. Getting this wrong can

jeopardise the organisation financially and threaten its reputation.

Fair Work Act

Australia introduced the new Fair Work Act on 1 July 2009. Key elements of the system include:

 A legislated safety net of ten

National Employment Standards

 New modern awards

 Revised enterprise bargaining arrangements

 Streamlined protections dealing with workplace and

industrial rights, including:

o Protection against discrimination and unfair

dismissal

o Two new organisations to regulate the system:

Fair Work Australia and the Fair Work Ombudsman.

The Workplace Authority only has responsibility for accepting lodgements of workplace agreements

and then assessing them against the No-Disadvantage Test (NDT).

Agreement types

Under the Fair Work Act there are three types of enterprise agreements:

1. Single-enterprise agreements: made between a single employer and a group of

employees. They can involve more than one employer in limited cases (e.g. where

two or more employers are engaged in a joint venture).

2. Multi-enterprise agreements: made between two or more employers and groups of

their employees.

3. Greenfields agreements: single-enterprise and multi-enterprise agreements relating

to a genuine new enterprise of the employer(s) and are made before any

employees to be covered by the agreement are employed.

Greenfields agreements

are made with one or more relevant unions.

All of these are collective agreements. Unions involved in bargaining for an enterprise agreement

may choose to be covered by the agreement.

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Updates 2014

A Fair Work Amendment Bill was introduced into Parliament in February 2014. The bill includes:

 Further reforms to Greenfields agreements

 Measures to provide clarity around workforce flexibility arrangements.

 Measures for underpaid workers.

Repeal Day

Australia’s Coalition Government had a “Repeal Day” in March 2014,

during which a number of alterations were made to the Fair Work

Act’s principles, including:

 Changes to the requirements for suppliers to the

Government

 Changes in obligations for tenderers in the textile,

clothing and footwear industries

 Prosecutions for underpaid wages.

Such changes only serve to highlight the ever changing process of legislation to which an

organisation must comply. It is in an organisation’s best interest to keep up to date with any

changes

that the Australian Government introduces.

National Employment Standards

The National Employment Standards (NES) ensure that all employees are protected by a strong

safety net of fair minimum conditions that can’t be stripped away. The NES apply to all employees in

the federal system regardless of industry, occupation or income.

The NES provide employers with the flexibility and simplicity they need while also ensuring an
employee’s key entitlements are protected. The NES include:

 Maximum weekly hours of work

 Request for flexible working arrangements

 Parental leave and related entitlements

 Annual leave

 Personal/Carer’s leave and compassionate leave

 Community service leave

 Long service leave

 Public holidays

 Notice of termination and redundancy pay

 Fair Work Information Statement.

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Further legal requirements and codes of practice may include:

 Compliance with applicable laws and regulations

 Compliance with accounting policies and financial reporting practices

 Compliance with financial and internal control systems

 Compliance with external and internal audit functions

 Compliance with identification and management of risks.

WHS and environmental

issues

The Law: Australia

The Commonwealth Constitution does not give the

Commonwealth a general power to legislate for work health and

safety. Hence there are ten general statutes for work health and

safety (six state Acts, two territory Acts, a Commonwealth Act

covering Commonwealth employees and employees of certain

licensed corporations, and Commonwealth Acts covering the

maritime, and the offshore petroleum and gas industries). There

are also specialist statutes covering the mining industry in some

states.

Codes of practice Codes of practice are developed by all states and territories.

Anti-discrimination The Law: Australia

COMMONWEALTH RACIAL DISCRIMINATION ACT (1975) The

Racial Discrimination Act (RDA) is designed to ensure that all

Australians have human rights and freedoms in full equality

regardless of their race, colour, descent or national or ethnic

origin, being an immigrant, or being a relative or associate of

someone of a particular ethnicity. The RDA applies to everyone in

Australia including businesses, schools, local governments, State,

Territory and Commonwealth government agencies and

departments. It overrides racially discriminatory State or

Territory legislation.

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Discrimination – protected attributes

Discrimination based on protected attributes is illegal. The grounds vary between States and

Territories.

The following grounds summarise those across Australia:

 Age

 Physical features (VIC only)

 Profession, trade, occupation or calling (ACT only)

 Industrial/trade union activity

 Political belief or activity

 Transexuality, transgender and gender identity

 Criminal record

 HIV/AIDS

 Medical record

 Defence service

 Pregnancy (including potential pregnancy)

 Homosexuality, sexual orientation, sexuality, lawful sexual activity

 Carers’ responsibilities, family responsibilities, parental status

 Disability, including physical, mental and intellectual disability, medical record

 Race (including colour, nationality, descent, ethnic, ethno-religious or national

origin).

 Religious belief or activity

 Sex

 Marital status

 Breastfeeding

 Spent convictions.

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Unacceptable workplace behaviours

There are a number of behaviours that are legally unacceptable in the workplace and your

organisation or business is responsible for ensuring they don’t occur. Policies and training should be

in place to minimise the likelihood of these behaviours.

Bullying

The repeated less favourable treatment of a person by another or others in the workplace, which

may be considered unreasonable and inappropriate workplace practice. It includes behaviour that

intimidates, offends, degrades or humiliates a worker.

Harassment

Any unwelcomed action, behaviour, comment or physical contact that is objectionable or causes

offence. Harassment is often based on discrimination.

Sexual harassment

Sexual Harassment is the unwelcomed, unsolicited and unreciprocated behaviour of a sexual nature.

Workplace violence

Involves incidents where employee is physically attacked or threatened in the workplace.

Threat

Statements or behaviour where person believes they are in danger of being physically attacked.

Physical attack

Physical attack includes any direct or indirect application of force to the body of, or to the clothing or

equipment worn by another person, where that application creates a risk to health and safety.

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Activity 1C

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1.4 – Work with the management team to develop industrial relations
policies and plans

Policies and plans

As part of the management team your role will involve the development of policies and plans. To do

this you must have a good understanding of the organisation, its strategic and operational plans and

employment law. The following gives a guideline of what may need to be included and considered in

the development of the policies and plans.

Site, enterprise and statutory requirements

Site, enterprise and statutory requirements may include:

 Award and enterprise agreements, and relevant industrial instruments

 Dispute settlement procedures

 Grievance mechanisms

 Relevant industry codes of practice

 Relevant legislation from all levels of

government that affects business operation,

including:

o WHS and environmental issues

o Equal opportunity

o Industrial relations and anti-discrimination

o Reporting channels and procedures.

Enterprise agreements

Enterprise agreements are agreements made at an enterprise level between employers and

employees about terms and conditions of employment. Fair Work Australia can assist in the process

of making such agreements and also deal with disputes.

Who can make an enterprise agreement?

An enterprise agreement is made between one or more employers and: employees and (in the case

of a Greenfield agreement) one or more relevant employee organisations or unions.

Why make an enterprise agreement?

Awards cover a whole industry or occupation and only provide a safety net of minimum pay rates

and employment conditions. Enterprise agreements can be tailored to meet the needs of particular

enterprises.

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What can an enterprise agreement include?

Enterprise agreements can include a broad range of matters such as:

 Rates of pay

 Employment conditions e.g. Hours of work, meal breaks, overtime

 Consultative mechanisms

 Dispute resolution procedures

 Deductions from wages for any purpose authorised by an employee.

However, they cannot include unlawful content such as discriminatory or objectionable terms.

Single-enterprise agreements

Single-enterprise agreements involve one or more employers, such as in a joint venture, co-

operating in what is essentially a single enterprise. Such employers are known as single interest

employers.

Multi-enterprise agreements

Multi-enterprise agreements involve two or more employers that are not

all single interest employers.

Greenfields agreements

Greenfields agreements involve a genuinely new enterprise that one or

more employers are establishing or propose to establish and who have

not yet employed persons necessary for the normal conduct of the

enterprise. Such agreements may be either a single-enterprise

agreement or a multi-enterprise agreement.

Further information can be found here:

https://www.fwc.gov.au/awards-and-agreements/agreements/make-agreement

Continuous operation of agreements

Policies and procedures will vary from organisation to organisation. Under the Fair Work Act 2009,

agreements continue to operate after their nominal expiry date until they are replaced or

terminated by application to Fair Work Australia. Through provisions in the Fair Work (Transitional

Provisions and Consequential Amendments) Act 2009, agreements made under previous legislation

continue to have effect as agreement-based transitional instruments.

.

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Some generic policy and procedure headings would likely include:

Agreement

principles

 Title

 Arrangement

 Application of the Agreement

 Date and period of operation

 Status of this Agreement

 Renegotiation of the Agreement

 Posting of Agreement

 Flexibility term

 Definitions

 Committees

 Dispute resolution procedures.

Staffing  Appointment

 Full-time

 Casual

 Ongoing

 Fixed-term

 Multiple appointments.

Remuneration

 Salary / wages schedules

 Superannuation

 Salary packaging

 Bonuses

 Allowances and penalty rates.

Hours of work  Attendance

 Meal breaks

 Overtime

 Flexible working hours arrangement

 Shift work

 Shift rosters.

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Performance
management

 Reviews

 Assessments

 Rewarding performance

 Appraisals

 Staff development

 Training assistance

 Promotion

 Unsatisfactory performance

 Counselling and first warning

 Misconduct

 Workplace rehabilitation

 Termination.

Leave  Recreation leave

 Sick leave

 Carer’s leave

 Bereavement / compassionate leave

 Parental leave

 Public holidays

 Leave without pay

 Long service leave

 Special leave

 Jury service

 Trade union leave.

Termination  Notice periods

 Payment on cessation of employment

 Exemptions

 Provisions for completion of fixed-term appointments

 Redundancy.

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1.5 – Identify the skills and knowledge needed by management and the
workforce to effectively implement these strategies and policies

Skills and knowledge required

Management and the workforce will require certain skills and knowledge to effectively implement
employee relations strategies and policies effectively these include:

Communication

 Interpersonal understanding

 Problem solving

 Giving feedback

Communication

Strong communication skills are required of everyone, and especially of managers. The ability to

effective and efficiently communicate changes, plans, next steps, the direction of the organisation,

etc. is required to ensure that all employees understand where they need to head and how to get

there. Effective communication builds trust.

Interpersonal understanding

Managers and the workforce must understand

those around them; not just staff and colleagues,

but their managers and the other department

heads/employees. The ability to understand how

others think and what’s important to them helps

to ensure success in accomplishing your goals.

Problem solving

The workforce and managers should know how

to understand a situation completely – they plan,

they don’t react. Understanding the root cause

of a situation is necessary in order to effective

problem-solve the

issue.

Feedback

Learning how to give constructive feedback; provide those who report to you and work with you

with feedback on a regular basis about how they are doing, and identify if they have any issues or

areas that they can be assisted with.

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Management skills

The specific skills and knowledge of managers may include:

 Team Leadership

Influence

Providing motivation

 Planning

 Monitoring.

Team leadership

This requires ensuring the team understands the mission, goals and objectives before them. A strong

team leader builds effective teams that can accomplish the goals of the organisation and enables the

team to move toward a common goal.

Influence

Effective managers can persuade others to accomplish the organisational goals; just telling someone

what to do doesn’t work, even if they report to you. The most successful managers are able to

influence others to move in the direction they need them to go.

Providing motivation

Learning how to motivate those around you is an important skill for managers – what’s important to

your staff? Not everyone is motivated by the same things and a good manager understands their

employees and what motivates them to come to work each day and do a good job.

Planning

The ability to effectively plan projects is important for any manager. This requires sharing the vision

with others, getting them on board, creating plans to implement the vision, and ensuring timelines

are met and budgets are managed.

Monitoring

As with all management practices, you would be well prepared if you first know what you are going

to be looking for before it happens.

It may be advisable to bear in mind that:

 Communicating good news to employees is easy.

 Communicating employee relations policies and procedures, although they may

very well be good policies, can be difficult.

 A cautious approach is always good management.

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Activity 1D

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2. Implement employee relations policies and plans

2.1 Develop an implementation plan and a contingency plan for the employee relations policies
and strategies

2.2 Make arrangements for training and development for identified needs to support the
employee relations plan

2.3 Undertake associated employee relations activities to reach agreement on changes required
by the organisational policies or implementation plan

2.4 Ensure procedures for addressing grievances and conflict to stakeholders are properly
documented

2.5 Communicate key issues about procedures for addressing grievances and conflict to
stakeholders

2.6 Review employee relations policies and plans to establish whether they are meeting their
intended outcomes

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2.1 – Develop an implementation plan and a contingency plan for the
employee relations policies and strategies

Business plans

An organisation will have a performance or business plan in place in order to define the steps a

company plans on taking in order to achieve the organisational objectives set by management. It

also forms a blueprint for the provision of assisting employees to work in line with, and towards, the

achievement of the mission and vision statement.

Business Plans are usually externally focused and relate to the organisation as a whole, what

objectives it has and how it can work to continually improve processes and systems.

Operational plans are internally focussed so that employees understand what the company expects

from them in terms of working towards the desired objectives.

Implementation plans

An implementation plan will involve several parties or individuals these include:

 Management and Senior Management teams

 Employee relations specialist

 Employees

 Legal representatives

 Representatives and unions

 Stakeholders.

Communication

Managers need to communicate the overall implementation plan to relevant staff members so they

can work towards the achievement of the introduction of employee relations polices and strategies.

There will always be a number of risks and constraints that can apply to the implementation of

policies and strategies. However, staff members should usually be aware of any contingency plans

and back up options in the unlikely event that a risk should present itself to the business.

Planning is about looking towards what the company wants to achieve, therefore, implementing the

plan is about determining how it is going to achieve this. It should focus on what is going to happen

to the organisation as it moves towards achieving these objectives and milestones.

Actions that result directly from plans should be considered as part of the process of

implementation also. Past situations should be taken into account to determine what the future

implications are likely to be.

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Some of the ways in which policies and strategies information could be given include:

Posters in common areas

General staff meetings

Conferences

 Informal staff discussions

Emails to staff

 Annual performance review.

Information of policies and strategies should be accurate, valid and sufficient. It should relate

directly to the organisational objectives and should be easy to implement and follow.

Trends

Trends should be analysed according to the data available. It is a good opportunity to analyse

anything relating to the planning, review performance, compare with competitors, and improve

general company procedures.

Managers should be familiar with suitable ways of collecting and keeping track of information that is

collected to analyse these trends and understand how the company is progressing.

Failures

It is always an organisation’s intention to make change for the better; however, not all change is

successful.

Some examples of why changes fail are:

 Misunderstanding what the change is and why it has to be changed

 Change implemented without planning and preparation is doomed to fail

 No clarity of the organisation’s mission or vision

 Lack of communication with its employees and stakeholders can cause discontent

 If previous change has not been successful its legacy can have an impact upon

future change

 Change is not about a quick fix it’s about a long term vision for the future.

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Contingency planning

Contingency planning and risk management play a very big part in managing a business. However,

contingency planning is not always about doom and gloom. It is simply a matter of trying to identify

possible risks to the business and finding a solution in the unlikely event that something happens.

Sometimes history can also dictate the necessity for a contingency plan. For example, something

may not have been considered a risk until after it happened.

Risk management is an area that all managers need to take seriously. The possibility of something

happening that can impact on the organisational objectives is a matter that needs to be considered

and all options made available on the chance that it does.

Managers can often identify and determine the possible risks but sometimes they may need to

employ an expert in the field. Experts can include risk assessors, insurance assessors or someone

with prior knowledge of the risk. Contingency planning allows for these factors to be considered in

the event that a risk factor becomes a reality and should be flexible on the chance that a situation

requires adapting to.

Contingency plans can include the following aspects:

 Description of the possible nature of the risk

 How the risk is going to impact the organisation if it

occurs

 Financial implications if the risk occurs

 Options for response

 Cost of response options

 How the options chosen will affect team members.

In organisations, the main factors that need to be considered when making plans and contingency
plans for employee relations are causes of possible conflict, such as:

 Ineffective or insufficiently trained staff

 Unfair treatment

 Unclear job roles

 Poor communication

 Poor work environment

 Equal opportunities

 Bullying and harassment

 Unresolved historical issues

 Increased workload on workers.

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Managers need to be given the authority to make decisions based on possibilities and other

scenarios presented on the chance that a risk occurs.

Plans should be as concise as possible and

should include:

 A definition of the situation that could occur

 An outline of how the organisation will continue to operate if the scenario or

situation does occur

 Variable factors

 Costing and suggested budgetary requirements

to implement the options

 Timeframes and deadlines for the options to be

implemented.

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Activity 2A

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2.2 – Make arrangements for training and development for identified needs
to support the employee relations plan

Training can be the key to the success of the introduction of new employee policies and strategies.

Often among employees there will be some resistance to change, it is not necessarily the change

that employees resist it is the impact that the changes may have on them personally. This is where

training can help; it can inform employees, identify difficulties and provide solutions, enabling the

implementation processes to run as smoothly as is possible.

Training

What does the training involve?

Training will mean making sure that everybody is aware of the policies and procedures; this may

involve:

 When devising training for staff, do so with care and

concern for the emotions that can occur when

discussing employee relations policy or procedural

changes

 Face to face training is highly recommended rather

than online or virtual training as it evokes emotional

responses which cannot be monitored online or

virtually

 Listening to the concerns of staff and be willing to

compromise if that is possible. Not all policies and

procedures are written in stone

 Establishing an open line of communication to the Human Resources (HR)

department or whomever is authorised to handle training questions

 Consulting with unions or staff representatives.

Formalise the acceptance of training

Upon communicating policy and procedures it is good practice to have each employee sign an

acknowledgement of having been trained on the relevant information. It should be part of this

acknowledgment that they also understand the new policy and procedure requirements and are in

agreement with the details.

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Possible conflicts

You should anticipate potential industrial relations conflicts and negative handling of the requested

actions if they occur. When issues do arise respecting the way an employee feels paves a much

better path for gaining full acceptance of the policies and procedures and any changes that may

directly affect the individual. Allow employees to express their concerns but promote the positive

attributes, particularly as they relate to employees and the how important these policies are to the

organisation

Ease of access

You should ensure that all policies and procedures are easily accessed to all employees after the

training.

Ways to do this may include:

 Your website

 Intranet

 Company newsletters

 Bulletin boards

 Hard and electronic copies

 A manual or document that is easily accessible.

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2.3 – Undertake associated employee relations activities to reach agreement
on changes required by the organisational policies or implementation plan

Involvement practices

When there is change there will always be some resistance, involving employees in the planning and

implementation of polices can assist in alleviating concerns of employees. Generally employees that

are better informed about their workplace are more likely to have higher performance. Ramsey

(1996 cited in Gennard and Judge 2006) argued that the improved economic performance stemming

from participation is the result of employers being able, on behalf of their employees, to change

employees’ attitude, to increase their business awareness, to improve their motivation, to enhance

their influence/ownership and to involve their trade unions.

Ways to alleviate the concerns of employees may include:

Communication practices

 Workplace meetings

Problem solving practices

 Financial practices.

Communication practices

Briefings

This form of involvement would usually be ‘cascaded’ down from management to the supervisors

and then on to the general workforce. This method of communication is not without its problems

often the information can become watered down and quickly become out of date by the time it

reaches the workers.

Workplace meetings

This method of communication can be effective in that it gives management at all levels the

opportunity to communicate, then allows the opportunity to have questions raised and answers

presented.

Staff newsletters

This is a good format to communicate as it is permanent record and cannot be watered down.

However, each member of staff must be given access to the newsletter. An efficient way of

distribution is needed, such as enclosing a newsletter with every employees pay slip, or posting on

staff notice boards and encouraging employees to take the time to read it.

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Problem solving practices

Suggestion schemes

This is a formal method of allowing employees to communicate their ideas to management so that

they can consider a wide range of areas and review work practices and operations.

Employee attitude surveys

These are used periodically to discover how employees feel about

particular aspects of their work.

Financial practices

Profit-related bonus schemes

This gives employees rewards for their contribution to the

organisation. It works by linking a percentage of employees’ pay

to the profits of the organisation.

Deferred profit schemes

This is where profits are put into trust funds to acquire shares in

the organisation for employees.

Employee shared ownership schemes

This gives employees a stake in the ownership of the organisation. It gives the employee shareholder

rights and encourages them to have a long term commitment to the organisation.

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Activity 2B

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2.4 – Ensure procedures for addressing grievances and conflict to
stakeholdersare properly documented

Grievances

A grievance is a complaint, problem or concern that an individual may want to take up with their

employer. Grievances usually arise when an employee feels that a decision or behaviour by another

individual or party is unfair or unjust. Not all grievances are justified and management can argue that

there is legitimate reasoning for the action or decision being taken. It is essential that all

management have adequate training to be able to deal with grievance situations and have the ability

to discern between legitimate and non-legitimate grievances.

The grievance procedure should be clarified as part of the induction

of all employees. Organisations will often include grievance

procedures in the employee handbook or display it on a notice

board.

The grievance procedure itself should set out clearly what an

employee needs to do if they have a complaint, problem or concern

and who they should discuss this with.

Documenting the process

Throughout the grievance management process, accurate documentation and records must be

prepared by the relevant parties, except when it is not appropriate such as when the grievance is

dealt with informally. However, keeping a log of the informally solved grievances may become useful

if the same employee raises a similar issue or complaint in the future.

If the grievance is to be formally investigated, the grievant and the respondent should each be asked

to document their position and the nominated supervisor or Executive Staff member conducting the

investigation should properly document the proceedings. Your organisation may already have record

forms for this purpose.

You may also need to complete other documents or records including items such as:

 Confidentiality agreements

 Investigation request

 Witness statements

 Actions taken documentation

 Any signed or written agreements between the involved parties.

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2.5 – Communicate key issues about procedures for addressing grievances
and conflict to stakeholders

Dealing with grievances

The grievance procedure benefits the employees and gives them an understanding of how their

concerns may be dealt with.

The purpose of the grievance procedure is:

 To ensure fair and consistent treatment of all employees

 To reduce inconsistencies,

 To clarify how each case will be dealt with

 To maintain good employee-employer relations

 To avoid disputes and possibility of legal action against

the employer.

Policy statement

The policy statement defines in advance how the organisation intends to deal with the grievance
and will include:

 The stages of proceedings

Timeframe

Representation

 The monitoring and reviewing processes.

Stages

These will state the typical stages of the procedure. The following is an example:

Stage One – A formal grievance should be raised with your supervisor or direct line manager either

orally or in written format, in the instance where the grievance is related to that individual you

should raise the concern with their supervisor. This should be dealt within five working days.

Stage Two – If the matter is not resolved within the agreed timeframe, you may refer it to the next

level management. You or your representative should clearly state your reason of complaint and on

what grounds you feel it is justified. A meeting should take place within seven days of the request.

Stage Three – If the matter is not resolved at stage 1 or 2 or within the agreed timeframe, you or

your representative may apply in writing to the next level of management. A meeting will normally

take place to consider the matter within ten days of the request being made. The decision of the

divisional executive is the final stage and a response will be given in writing.

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Timeframe

Employees will want their grievance settled as soon as possible and would consider their grievance

to be high priority; however, the manager will need to

take time to consider how to approach the grievance and

may need time to consult or investigate the grievance.

Representation

Employers must ensure that they remain fair and assist

employees to have representation, such as a union

representative or an individual who can advocate for the

employee. Often employees can find the grievance

process intimidating and lack confidence especially if the

grievance involves a member of the management team.

The representative will often be from an internal source

of the organisation with a good working knowledge of the

organisation’s policies and procedures, but the

representative must also be non-biased in order to ensure a fair resolution to the grievance.

Monitoring and reviewing

After the resolution of a grievance, the manager should ensure that measures are taken to try to

prevent the same or similar grievance occurring again. Monitoring and reviewing both organisational

practices and employee practices should highlight any issues arising so that managers can deal with

them before they become employee grievances.

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Activity 2C

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2.6 Review employee relations policies and plans to establish whether they
are meeting their intended outcomes

When policies and plans have been implemented it is necessary to review them. The review and

monitoring process will establish whether they are meeting their intended outcomes. There are

various ways in which these policies and plans can be reviewed one of these is the use of feedback.

Trial 360 degree feedback

Trial 360 degree feedback provides an organisation with constructive feedback on how their work-

based behaviour is seen by their colleagues.

It serves a number of functions including:

 It is primarily for personal development but can be used for other purposes

 Feedback is collected from employees who are asked to complete a questionnaire

that explores how the subject of review influences

their work.

 Feedback is usually collected electronically via email or the

web.

 The information received in the feedback is combined into a

report of charts, graphs, tables and written comments, that

are fed back to the review subject.

It is called a 360 review because responses will come from people all around the review

subject – their manager, peers and other co-workers, team members, even their clients and

customers can all play a constructive part in providing them with valuable feedback on how they feel

about change and the introduction of new policies and plans in the organisation.

Ask the staff

Common questions managers seek input on include:

 How engaged are the employees with their job roles?

 How satisfied are they working for the organisation under the new conditions?

 What is the communication climate like with management?

 Do they have the right tools to do the job?

 How secure do they feel in the job?

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Conducting surveys

There are a number of ways to conduct surveys including:

 Getting employee feedback – conducting employee surveys on working conditions

 Conducting a full-scale employee survey is still the most recommended method for

gaining sound and measurable employee feedback.

 Professionals recommend doing surveys on a regular basis, but do not overdo this

as employees will feel intimidated and not take the purpose seriously.

Conduct your employee surveys so that the right questions are asked in seeking the most

informative answers.

Other recommendations include:

 Avoid leading questions. A leading question suggests to the employee that the

organisation may expect or desires a certain answer.

 Don’t ask double barrelled questions such as more than one topic in a single

question. The survey questions should stick to one topic about the industrial

climate. Multiple answers are of no help in measurement.

 Avoid loaded questions. A loaded question asks the employee to rely on their

emotions more than the facts.

 Make sure that your employees can easily understand every survey question about

your industrial climate. You will know the level of detail you require first so replace

unusual words, technical words, or jargon with simple, common language that is

used in the workplace.

 You should only ask your employees for feedback information on the industrial

climate that they are in a sound position to know firsthand and do not need to

speculate.

 Although it is recommended to tailor the specific questions

to your industrial relations issues, most surveys also tend to

discover how connected the employee feels to the

organisation.

 Most surveys of this nature can also address if employees

have a good work-life balance, whether they are proud to

work for the organisation and how much effort they put into

their work.

 Questions on industrial climate in the workplace can also be

tailored to find out how long the employee plans to stay

with the company or what their feelings are about health

and safety issues.

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 Professionals say a mix of quantitative questions — asking employees to rate their

satisfaction on a five-point scale, for instance — should be mixed with open-ended

questions to gain a mix of anecdotal and statistical information.

 As for length, experts say a survey with between 35 and 55 questions is the ideal

length, and it should take no more than 15 to 25 minutes to complete.

 You should allow sufficient time for employees to complete the survey.

 Avoid busy or inappropriate times like holidays or free time.

Anonymity

If the employees are reluctant to complete open surveys or focus groups, provide anonymity. If

employees can be assured their responses won’t lead to any retribution, they are much more likely

to give honest answers.

Online surveys

Online surveys are considered the most efficient method for

surveys, but you’ll need to make sure everyone in the

organisation has access to a computer. This can be done by

setting up a dedicated computer station in the human

resources office or by scheduling time for workers to use a

certain computer terminal.

Encouragement from management

A successful push for employee engagement has to be believable. That’s why experts say if you really

want to hear from your employees, you should have your senior executives encourage feedback on

a regular basis or send out reminders.

Incentives

While experts discourage companies from offering direct incentives to individual employees who

participate in feedback opportunities, other methods are available such as offering an open style

raffle or monthly prize of something substantial like an iPad or iPod etc.

Offers of donating money per response to a charity if the surveys reach a certain response level is

not always regarded as an ‘incentive’ as typically the ‘out’ by the employee is they don’t agree with

the charity.

The worst thing for your organisation is to go to great lengths to solicit employee feedback and then

do nothing with it.

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Activity 2D

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3. Manage negotiations to resolve conflict

3.1 Train individuals in conflict-management techniques and procedures

3.2 Identify, and where possible alleviate or eliminate, sources of conflict or grievance
according to legal requirements

3.3 Check documentation and other information sources to clarify issues in dispute

3.4 Obtain expert or specialist advice and/or refer to precedents, if required

3.5 Determine desired negotiation outcomes, negotiation strategy and negotiation timeframes

3.6 Advocate the organisation’s position in negotiation to obtain agreement

3.7 Document, and if necessary certify, the agreed outcomes with the relevant jurisdiction

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3.1 – Train individuals in conflict management techniques and procedures

There are many ways to resolve conflicts – surrendering, running away, overpowering your

opponent with violence, filing a lawsuit, etc. Conflict resolution grew out of the belief that there are

better options than using violence or going to court. Today, conflict resolution is used in a wide

range of industries covering an array of different situations.

It is very easy to view all conflict as negative, but this is not true. We are all different and those

differences can sometimes emerge as conflict. Viewing conflict in this way can help us consider the

possible positive outcomes of the problem at hand.

Conflict

Wherever people live and work together there will be tensions and disagreements. Whilst some are

relatively minor skirmishes which soon blow over, others become entrenched and simmer away for

years. A few escalate and explode into serious strife.

Some examples of conflict can include:

 Executives receive a 10 per cent pay increase whilst shop floor employees are laid

off.

 An employee gains permission to work from home whilst other employees are

refused.

 One department refuses to work with another due to a personality clash with

management.

 One employee is bullied by their supervisor.

Conflict can also be healthy for an organisation. Conflict can sometimes increase motivation and

competitiveness in certain situations.

 Two companies vie for the top market share.

 Several sales people work to be the top salesperson.

 Australia works towards winning the Rugby World Cup.

These examples of conflict can result in greater success, whether it means

a better product, better teamwork, better processes, lower prices,

trophies, or medals, etc.

Everyone experiences conflict – it’s how you deal with it that matters.

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Effective conflict resolution

Conflict resolution can be obtained in many different ways, from mutual agreement to completely

wiping out your opponent. Few of us can deny that the conflict of World War 2 was eventually

resolved, but at what cost? If Germany had won the war, this would also mark the resolution to the

conflict. This would imply that conflict resolution has no right or wrong outcome, only a subsidence

of the conflict. Effective conflict resolution implies a satisfactory outcome to the conflict which

satisfies all parties.

Some common conflict resolution terms include:

 Mediation: a process to resolve differences, conducted by an impartial third party

 Mediator: an impartial person who conducts a process to resolve differences

 Dispute resolution: the name given to any process aimed at resolving differences

between two parties

 Apparent conflict: a situation where the conflict is in the open

 Hidden conflict: a situation where the conflict is not in the open

 Destructive conflict: can result in heavy organisational and personal costs

 Constructive conflict: can enhance problem solving, and decision making.

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Conflict comes in many forms, and our process will help you in any situation.

Below, you can find a brief overview of how we are going to spend most of this workshop:

Although we have outlined the various conflict resolution phases in a particular order and with a

particular grouping, that doesn’t mean that you have to use all the phases all the time.

Effective conflict resolution styles

As with many subjects that improve our working or personal environment, effective conflict

resolution has five widely accepted styles and processes. We will concentrate during this workshop

on the collaborative style. There may be some situations that require a different style so during this

section of the workshop we will touch on the other four styles.

Understanding all five styles and knowing when to use them is an important part of successful

effective conflict resolution.

• Defuse emotions

• Set ground rules

• Set the time and place

Create a
communicative

atmosphere

• What do I want?

• What do you want?

• What do we want?

Mutual
understanding

• Identify common ground

• Build positive energy and good will

• Strengthen the partnership

Individual and
shared needs

• Examine root causes

• Create a Fishbone diagram (for complex issues)

• Identify the benefits of resolution
Go to the root cause

• Generate, don’t evaluate

• Create mutual gain options and multiple option
solutions

• Dig deeper into the options

Create options

• Create criteria

• Create the shortlist

• Choose a solution

• Build a plan

Solution building

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The five styles include:

Collaborating

Competing

Compromising

Accommodating

 Avoiding.

Collaborating

Collaborating is both assertive and cooperative — the complete opposite of avoiding. Collaborating

involves an attempt to work with others to find some solution that fully satisfies their concerns. It

means digging into an issue to pinpoint the underlying needs and wants of the two individuals.

Collaborating between two persons might take the form of exploring a disagreement to learn from

each other’s insights or trying to find a creative solution to an interpersonal problem. This is the

approach that we will use during this workshop.

The collaborative approach encourages parties in conflict to work together to develop a win-win

solution. This approach promotes assertiveness (rather than aggressiveness or passiveness).

This style is appropriate when:

 The situation is not urgent.

 An important decision needs to be made

 The conflict involves a large number of people

 Previous conflict resolution attempts have failed.

This style is not appropriate when:

 A decision needs to be made urgently

 The matter is trivial.

Competing

Competing is assertive and uncooperative — an individual pursues his own concerns at the other

person’s expense. This is a power-oriented mode in which you use whatever power seems

appropriate to win your own position — your ability to argue, your rank, or economic sanctions.

Competing means “standing up for your rights,” defending a position which you believe is correct, or

simply trying to win.

With a competitive approach, the person in conflict takes a firm stand. This style is often seen as

aggressive because it causes the other party to feel injured or stepped on.

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This style is appropriate when:

 A decision needs to be made quickly

 An unpopular decision needs to be made.

 Someone is trying to take advantage of a situation.

This style is not appropriate when:

 People are feeling sensitive about the

conflict.

 The situation is not urgent.
Compromising

Compromising is moderate in both assertiveness and cooperativeness. The objective is to find some

expedient, mutually acceptable solution that partially satisfies both parties. It falls intermediate

between competing and accommodating. Compromising gives up more than competing but less

than accommodating. Likewise, it addresses an issue more directly than avoiding, but does not

explore it in as much depth as collaborating. In some situations, compromising might mean splitting

the difference between the two positions, exchanging concessions, or seeking a quick middle-ground

solution.

With the compromising approach, each person in the conflict gives up something that contributes

towards the conflict resolution.

This style is appropriate when:

 A decision needs to be made sooner rather than later

 Resolving the conflict is more important than having each individual “win”

 Power between people in the conflict is equal.

This style is not appropriate when:

 A wide variety of important needs must be met

 The situation is extremely urgent

 One person holds more power than another.

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Accommodating

Accommodating is unassertive and cooperative – the complete

opposite of competing. When accommodating, the individual neglects

his own concerns to satisfy the concerns of the other person; there is

an element of self-sacrifice in this mode. Accommodating might take

the form of selfless generosity or charity, obeying another person’s

order when you would prefer not to, or yielding to another’s point of

view.

This style is one of the most passive conflict resolution styles. With this

style, one of the parties in conflict gives up what they want so that the

other party can have what they want. In general, this style is not very

effective, but it is appropriate in certain scenarios.

This style is appropriate when:

 Maintaining the relationship is more important than winning

 The issue at hand is very important to the other person but is not important to you.

This style is not appropriate when:

 The issue is important to you

 Accommodating will not permanently solve the problem.

Avoiding

Avoiding is unassertive and uncooperative — the person neither pursues his own concerns nor those

of the other individual. Thus he does not deal with the conflict. Avoiding might take the form of

diplomatically side stepping an issue, postponing an issue until a better time or simply withdrawing

from a threatening situation.

People who use this style tend to accept decisions without question, avoid confrontation, and

delegate difficult decisions and tasks. This is another passive approach that is typically not effective,

but it does have its uses.

This style is appropriate when:

 The issue is trivial.

 The conflict will resolve itself soon.

This style is not appropriate when:

 The issue is important to you.

 The conflict will continue or get worse without attention.

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Creating communicative atmospheres

Creating a communicative atmosphere is a very important step in the effective conflict resolution

process. The people involved in the conflict will typically be negative. With emotions like anger,

frustration, and disappointment being only a few roadblocks you will have to contend with. By

establishing a positive communicative atmosphere, you can begin to turn that negative energy

around, and create a powerful problem-solving force. This creates a sound foundation for the

effective conflict resolution process to start.

Defuse emotions

Before beginning the effective conflict resolution process, there must be a willingness by both

parties to resolve the conflict. This may seem a an obvious requirement but in some competing

conflicts one party may not wish to discuss if there is any hint they may need to give any ground.

Without buy-in from both sides, achieving a win-win solution is close to impossible.

Once participants have agreed that they do wish to resolve the conflict, it is important to defuse as

many negative emotions as possible. This requires you to allow the participants in the conflict time

to vent and work through the feelings associated with the conflict.

Key steps for the people in conflict include:

 Accept that you have negative feelings and that these feelings are normal.

 Acknowledge the feelings and their root causes. Example: “I feel very angry that

Marie never offers to make the tea.”

 Identify how you might resolve your feelings. Example: “If Marie would offer to

make the tea occasionally instead waiting for me to make it.”

This can generate ideas about what the root cause of the conflict is, and how to resolve it. Example:

“Marie’s work may be heavier than mine. I wonder if she might be having some stress and anxiety

regarding her time.”

Setting ground rules

Ground rules provide a framework or a set of rules for people to resolve their conflict. Ground rules

should be set at the beginning of any effective conflict resolution process. They can be very brief or

very detailed – whatever the situation requires.

Ground rules should be:

 Developed and agreed upon by both parties

 Positive when possible

 Fair to both parties

 Enforceable

 Adjustable

 Distributed to both parties who agree to the rules prior to the meeting taking place.

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If the parties are using a mediator to help them resolve the conflict, it is important that the ground

rules are developed by the parties and not the mediator. The mediator’s role is to guide and mentor,

not to judge.

Some examples of ground rules include:

 Keep interactions respectful, even when feeling frustrated or hurt. Avoiding put-

downs, name calling, interruptions, etc. This helps prevent conflict escalation

 Maintain emotional control, even when feeling angry. Vent or redirect emotions to

avoid yelling or other intimidating behaviour. This helps provide a safe environment

for resolving differences

 Keep interactions on “hot topics” within a structured process. Avoiding

spontaneous discussions on such issues helps prevent unintended “blowups.” Using

a planned negotiation or mediation helps focus and balance communication about

especially delicate issues

 Show a willingness to understand. If others feel understood and acknowledged,

they are more likely to collaborate when problem solving. This requires focusing on

and empathising with what is being communicated by others rather just waiting for

a turn to respond

 Communicate honestly and openly. Holding back on what the real concerns are will

only delay or complicate the resolution of differences

 Be as objective as possible. Avoid speculation, rumours, and assumptions. Rely on

personal observations and experiences or what can be independently verified

through a credible witness or available documentation

 Express concerns in a constructive manner. Each party describing which of his/her

needs are not being met is typically better received by others than accusations or

demands for change

 Focus on future solutions rather than past blame. Emphasising what needs to be

changed rather than who is at fault takes less time and energy and increases the

chances of successful change

 Look for solutions that meet everyone’s needs. Using an approach that tries to find

common ground or shared interests is the most effective way for each person to get

his/her own needs met. An approach that disregards a person’s needs is likely to

cause resentment in that individual, which can lead to future resistance or

retaliation.

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Participants can use the ground rules throughout the conflict resolution process to monitor and

modify their behaviours. Ground rules give participants an objective, logical way of addressing

personal attacks and emotional issues.

An example: “David, I feel like you have cut off my last statements. We agreed at the beginning of

this that we would listen to each other’s statements fully before answering.”

If the conflict is being mediated, this also gives the mediator a fair way to give participants feedback

and help them work with the conflict. Since the same rules are being applied to everyone, it can help

the mediator maintain fairness and avoid bias.

Choosing the time and place

Thoughtful consideration of the environment in which the discussions are to take place are very

important. The correct location enhances the parties’ commitment, supports quality decision-

making, and can enhance the appearance of the mediator’s neutrality. It could be the most

important decision made by the mediator.

The environment should include physical surroundings that affect people’s bodily comfort levels. It

also should include some less tangible elements: the parties’ relative levels of power, their feelings

of safety, and arrangements that convey respect.

You should remember to bring flip charts, markers, calculators, and

notepads for the parties. Make sure the facility has available phones,

fax machines, laptop computers, and printers. If you feel it necessary,

make tissues available. On-site issues relieve emotional parties of

embarrassment and tension. They communicate a clear nonverbal

message that crying is an acceptable and normal event that happens

during this stressful time.

Make sure that there is lots of time allowed. Minimise distractions if

possible: turn cell phones off, forward office phones to voice mail and

turn off computers.

If you are mediating a conflict resolution meeting, be conscious of the needs of both parties when

scheduling the meeting. Make sure that the time chosen works well for both of them. Choose a

location that is neutral (one that they are both comfortable with or that neither has visited before).

Removing distractions will enable both parties to concentrate on the matter at hand: resolving the

conflict.

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Activity 3A

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3.2 – Identify, and where possible alleviate or eliminate, sources of conflict or
grievance according to legal requirements

Alleviating conflict

Conflict in the work place should not always be viewed negatively, often out of conflict new

solutions can be conceived. However conflict can become destructive and quickly spiral out of

control. Identifying possible sources of conflict early can prevent them becoming major issues.

There may be signs in the organisation that difficulties are impending; these could include:

 Staff absence increases – some employees find it difficult to cope with stress and

may feel the need to take sick leave

 Decreased productivity – workers are less likely to be focused on their job and more

likely to make errors and do their work more slowly

 Increase in resignations – some workers may not want to be confrontational and

rather resign and move to another job

 Behavioural changes – employees may turn up for work late,

become more emotional, withdrawn or become aggressive

towards other members of staff or management

 Increase in workplace injuries – employees under stress are

more likely to injure themselves

 Increase in complaints and grievances – staff may be

approaching management with complaints a pattern may

emerge that the complaints or grievances may have a

common factor linking them

 Bickering and backbiting – employees may bicker or form

cliques

 Low morale – staff may become disenchanted or lack motivation

 Increase in employees accessing support services – staff may seek advice or help

form support services within the organisation such as counselling services.

 Negative feedback – employees may express their dissatisfaction with areas within

the organisation such as management, workload, decision making during annual

appraisals or when conduction staff surveys.

Part of your role as manager is to identify the above factors and investigate the root cause. There

are some measures you can implement to alleviate or even eliminate these issues before they

escalate.

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Communicate with employees

If it’s an interpersonal issue between two or more parties talk with those involved, ensuring that the

discussion remains private. Act as a mediator between the parties, remain unbiased and don’t take

sides allowing the parties involved to air their issues.

Be approachable

Become approachable to staff so they can come to you with their issues. Keep conversations

confidential except in circumstances were other parties may be at risk of harm. However if an

employee discloses that another party or

themselves may be at risk of harm, then you

must inform the individual that you intend to

disclose the information to either a specialist or

another party that may be able to help with the

issue.

Train employees

Train employees in conflict resolution skills and

how to communicate properly. The goal is that

your employees know how to discuss their

problems in an effective manner that prevents

conflicts from developing. Show them how to

communicate by using a respectful tone,

choosing the right words, actively listening, and

remaining nonthreatening towards coworkers.

Teach everyone conflict-resolution skills and

expect all employees to use them.

Encourage fun

Promote the benefits of humor at work. The workplace should be not only a challenging and creative

place; it should also be a place that employees enjoy. Add fun to meetings when you can. Start a

meeting with a funny story or joke. Bring fun things into the workplace. It should be stated that

inappropriate or offensive humor is off limits.

Establish expectations

Clearly state all of your expectations. People work best when they know what to expect at work and

what is expected of them. State expectations through positive directives and always follow through.

Employees need to know their responsibilities, the roles others play, and how these duties relate to

each other. Ensure employees know the codes of conduct they are expected to abide by.

Be positive

Be positive and give your employees praise and feedback. Take the time to offer words of approval.

Being positive will generate positive results. Show your employees that you appreciate their efforts

and accomplishments. Offer insight into how employees can improve, and always keep your

comments work related. People work best when they hear positive words. Encourage your

employees to talk about the positive aspects of their job as well.

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Be a role model

If you are seen taking a passive-aggressive approach when dealing with your own conflicts and

issues, your employees are more likely to behave passive-aggressively when involved in their own

quarrels. Model the behavior you want your employees to exhibit.

Establish boundaries

Without boundaries, there are more likely to be workplace conflict

and power struggles. Be professional while being empathetic and

compassionate towards your employees.

Implement behavioral consequences for employees who are

uncooperative – Despite all of these strategies, you could have an

employee who just won’t change, either because they are unwilling

or unable. Explain the consequences and follow through if the

employee still remains unresponsive.

Collective disputes

Often conflict and grievance can involve an employee collective often in cases of poor work

environment or increased workload. These situations are dealt with through the grievance

procedure, but can often lead to workplace disputes.

Increasingly alternative dispute resolution is being used to deal with disputes, this kind of
resolution process can be:

 Facilitative

 Advisory

 Determinative.

Alternative dispute resolution can help individuals and parties through the following methods:

Conciliation – Requests for conciliation in collective disputes often come from the employer trade

unions or representatives. Conciliation is a voluntary process for all parties with no commitments,

only the willingness to discuss the issues. This is a process in which the parties, with the assistance of

the conciliator, identify the issues in dispute, develop options, consider alternatives and endeavour

to reach agreement. A conciliator will provide advice on the matters in dispute and/or options for

resolution, but does not make a determination. The conciliator is responsible for managing the

conciliation process.

Mediation – If the conciliation process is unsuccessful and no settlement can be reached then

mediation may be the answer. It is a voluntary process in which the parties to a dispute, with the

assistance of a neutral third party (the mediator) identify issues, consider alternatives, develop

options and endeavour to reach agreement. The mediator has no advisory or determinative role on

the content or outcome of the dispute but may offer advice on the process for resolving the dispute.

Mediation is usually conducted in private and the outcomes are confidential to the parties to the

mediation.

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Arbitration – This is a process in which the participants to a dispute present arguments and evidence

to a dispute resolution practitioner (the arbitrator) who makes a binding decision. Unlike in the

conciliation and mediation process the employer does not retain control all parties before the

arbitration process begins must agree by the arbitrator’s decision.

For more information on Alternative dispute Resolution go to The National Advisory Council on

Alternative Dispute resolution (NADRAC) website www.nadrac.gov.au.

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Activity 3B

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3.3 – Check documentation and other information sources to clarify issues in
disputes

Checking documentation

Management should keep up to date records regarding any complaints, concerns, disputes of

grievances. In some cases this may be HR’s responsibility if it is relating to an individual’s dispute; for

example in the case of an employee claiming discrimination. Often cases can be dealt with informally

without the need to go into grievance procedures, however all cases should be documented

Communicating with employees is one of the most important things you do in your job as a

manager. Your written communication must be clear, accurate and timely. When an employee has a

performance, conduct problem or dispute your documentation may be the tool that helps the

employee or employer identify and clarify the issues. A secondary benefit of documentation is that is

protects the organisation and employee from losing complaints, appeals and grievances.

Objectivity is the first step of effective communication. Effective organisational decisions and

effective documentation are based on an objective analysis of factual information. Your analysis

must consider all available information and be free of emotion and bias.

Getting the facts

Facts are the key to effective documentation. You must describe an employee’s conduct and / or

performance objectively. Effective documentation is factual and specific, so that the employee, your

manager and any third party will get a clear picture of situation.

Record all events as soon as possible. Contemporaneous evidence carries more weight in a

proceeding or court than a reconstruction of events from memory after time has passed.

In documenting the facts surrounding an incident, dispute or grievance, it is advisable to:

 Be factual and specific, recording what people actually say and did. Answer the

questions:

o What happened? – was there a specific incident that triggered the

complaint?

o When did it happen? – be specific about dates, and timings

o Who was involved? – include all parties and individuals that were involved or

may have witnessed the incident

o How did it happen? – if it was a specific incident, or conversation what

occurred before and after the incident

 Be sure the dates, times and places your list are accurate.

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 Do not use subjective thoughts, assumptions, opinions, judgments, or conclusions.

They will not stand up to scrutiny by a third party unless objective facts are

provided to support them. Instead, describe your direct observations of the

employee’s behaviour or record the direct observation of others. An excellent way

to do this is to use words that describe your five senses:

o I heard…

o I touched…

o I smelled…

o I tasted…

 If there was another witness to an incident, you should attempt to get a signed

statement from that person. When another person describes an employee’s

behaviour, you should ask questions to help the person use objective observations

to describe what they saw, heard, felt, tasted, and touched.

 Always write for the benefit of a third party. Don’t assume the person reading the

documentation knows anything about the organisation or the duties performed in

your workplace.

 In addition to witness statements, you should also collect any other reports or

records that exist (e.g., accident reports, police reports, time cards, computer

records, etc.) that can help you explain what happened. Also, you should take

photographs, videotape, etc. if they will help document the incident.

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Activity 3C

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3.4 – Obtain expert or specialist advice and/or refer to precedents, if
required

You may not always be able to resolve workplace grievances before escalation, but either way you

may need to contact employee relations experts to help with the situation. You may have had the

guidance of a supervisor or manager to deal with the grievance but they could possibly refer you to

an expert who you will need to contact for further advice.

Specialist advice

Employee relations expertise may include:

 Employment relations consultants

 Industrial relations and employment lawyers

 Industry peak bodies or chambers of

commerce

 HR officers and managers.

You will need to decide on the most appropriate expert with the supervision of a supervisor or

manager. Once you have decided who can help with the situation, you will need to contact them,

giving them details of the issue. There may be occasions when you seek an expert’s advice about

general issues rather than a specific case, so you should always be prepared to communicate with

such specialists. HR officers and managers will always be present within most organisations to aid in

employee relations.

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3.5 – Determine desired negotiation outcomes, negotiation strategy and
negotiation timeframes

Negotiation

Negotiation is the coming together of two parties to discuss with the view of concluding a jointly

acceptable agreement.

There are two main elements involved in negotiation these are:

 Persuasion

 Compromise.

Before the negotiation process begins the parties involved need to determine what their desired

outcome of the negotiations are. Both parties must be willing to communicate and should have

chosen their representatives.

There are five stages in the negotiation process:

Preparation

Presentation

Finding common ground

Concluding the agreement

 Documenting the agreement.

Preparation

During the preparation stage all information is collected to substantiate each parties claim. This

information is used to form persuasive arguments and counter arguments. Part of this stage will

include the identification of tradeable items this gives the parties something to bargain with and a

basis for a compromise agreement. The management will weigh up the significance of the issues at

stake for the protection and advancement of the organisation, its employees and economic

interests.

In negotiation of each party will anticipate what the other party is willing to bargain and what

strategies they will use. Negotiators will set of aims and objectives of what they are trying to

achieve, these must be flexible as all negotiation is about compromise. The negotiating teams need

to consider when setting aims and objectives.

Presentation

This is the meeting stage. It initially involves giving each party a summary of its proposals. Then each

party will substantiate their case, with supporting facts basically telling each other what they ideal

outcome they would like to see from the negotiation. At the end of this stage it is unlikely that either

party will have discovered any common ground between them, however each party will know what

the other wants from the negotiation process.

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Finding common ground

This stage will involve looking for commonalities between the two parties that could form a possible

agreement. At this point parties will have open discussions possibly using the ‘if and then’ technique.

An example may be; if you are prepared to meet closer on our position in regard to X then we are

prepared to Y.

Using adjournments gives both parties the time to consider and re-consider their positions and time

to review and assess progress made.

Concluding the agreement

When concluding the agreement all parties must first be satisfied that all the issues have been

discussed and agreed and that both parties fully understands what they have agreed upon and

accepted. If at any point either party is unsure the negotiation process must recommence. This part

of the negotiation process should not be rushed, as once the agreement is in place it should be

adhered to or either or both parties will lose credibility and the negotiation process will have been a

waste of time.

Documenting the agreement

Once the agreement has been made it should be formalised by writing up the agreement. This

should include:

 Who the agreement is between?

 When it was concluded?

 When it is to implement from?

 Does it cover other parties and employees?

 The contents of the agreement and any clauses

 How long the agreement is in place?

 Can the agreement be re-opened?

 How will future grievances occur regarding the same matter be settled?

 Does it replace any previous agreement?

All parties and representatives should sign the agreement when they are satisfied that it meets all

parties involved requirements.

It is often difficult to put in place a timescale in negotiation proceedings as no one can really

anticipate how long the process will take. However if times and date are set these should be

adhered to.

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3.6 – Advocate the organisation’s position in negotiation to obtain
agreement

Advocate the organisation’s position

When negotiating organisations need to be clear on what they are aiming to achieve.

The benefits of advocating the organisation’s position in negotiation include:

 It demonstrates that the organisation is being operated in an efficient and

businesslike manner

 It demonstrates uniformity and consistency in decision making and operational

procedures

 It fosters stability and continuity

 It assists in establishing accountability

 It clarifies functions and responsibilities

 It shows consistency with the values of the organisation

and employment legislation

 It internally saves time when a new problem can be

handled quickly and effectively

 It is a framework to employees for business planning.

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3.7 – Document, and if necessary certify, the agreed outcomes with the
relevant jurisdiction

Certify the agreed outcomes

When agreements are drawn up certifying the agreements and jurisdiction needs to be taken into

consideration.

Under the Workplace Relations Act 1996 Australian Workplace Agreements were introduced these

were an agreement between individuals and employers that set out terms and conditions of the

employer relationship. No dispute resolution process was required to introduce these agreements.

AWA can no longer be lodged or modified however any AWA already in place still stands.

Contract differences

It is important to understand the difference between a common law contract of employment and a

workplace agreement. Whilst a common law contract exists whenever you engage an employee

regardless of whether it is verbal or written, the term workplace agreement as used in industrial law

means a formal document which contains specific terms and which is formally lodged with an

authority.

A workplace agreement is different to a common law contract of employment in a number of
important ways including:

 A workplace agreement is a formal written document which must by law contain

certain terms

 A workplace agreement must be formally lodged with an authority

 A workplace agreement can be inconsistent with an award so long as the employee

is not at an overall disadvantage

 Specific documents must be completed before a

workplace agreement can be lodged, and failure

to do so can lead to penalties

 Specific documents must be given to the

employee to read outlining their rights at law

before a workplace agreement can be lodged, and

failure to do so can lead to penalties.

Federal industrial laws

The federal industrial laws about workplace agreements have changed a number of times in recent

years. Before the WorkChoices laws came into effect in March 2006, workplace agreements were

called Certified Agreements (agreements between an employer and a group of employees) and

Australian Workplace Agreements or AWAs (agreements between an employer and an individual

employee).

The WorkChoices laws retained AWAs but changed Certified Agreements to Collective Agreements.

http://peopleindairy.businesscatalyst.com/engagement-reward/common-law-contracts-of-employment.htm

P a g e | 80

The Fair Work laws which came into effect in 2008 created Individual Transitional Employment

Agreements or ITEAs (special individual agreements which could only be made up until the end of

2009) and in July 2009 changed Collective Agreements to Enterprise Agreements.

The content of enterprise agreements are covered in section 1.4 of this booklet as are some of the

2014 updates.

Jurisdiction

Under the Fair Work system, the majority of employees come under the federal jurisdiction. The

following groups of employers (and consequently their employees) are covered by the national

system:

 Constitutional corporations (including financial or trading corporations – generally

Pty Ltd or Ltd)

 The Commonwealth and Commonwealth

authorities

 Employers who employ flight crews, maritime

employees or waterside workers

 All employers in the Australian Capital Territory and

Northern Territory

 Most Victorian employers

 Private sector employers in New South Wales,

Queensland, South Australia and Tasmania.

The following groups of employers (and consequently their employees) are generally not covered
by the national system:

 State government

 Australian corporations whose main activity is not trading or financial

 Sole traders and partnerships in Western Australia.

When all enterprise agreements are approved and signed by each employer and employee the

proposed agreement must be lodged with the Fair Work Commission within 14 days of the

agreement being made. When the commission is satisfied that it meets all the requirements only

then can the agreement be implemented this is usually seven days after approval by the Fair Work

Commission, or a later date if the agreements specifies.

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Activity 3D

P a g e | 82

3.8 – Implement agreements

Smooth implementation

Once the agreement has been approved by the fair work commission, the organisation must take

steps to ensure that the agreement is implemented smoothly. Earlier in this unit we discussed

implementation plans for the introduction of new policies and procedures. The implementation of

workplace agreements should follow the same steps.

Some of the ways in which workplace agreements could be implemented include:

Training
Posters in common areas
General staff meetings
Conferences

Informal discussions with staff members

Emails to staff

During annual performance reviews

P a g e | 83

3.9 – Take remedial action where groups or individuals fail to abide by
agreements

Remedial action

All agreements are in place and enforceable until another is approved to replace the previous

agreement. After the implementation of the agreement there may still be existing contentions

amongst certain parties or individuals. Often when agreements are made during the negotiation

process certain aspects of the agreement may have been concluded by the voting process, thus

leaving certain individuals and parties that did not vote in favour, not fully behind the agreement.

If an individual or group of employees contravene the new

agreement they can be in breach of their contract and

therefore may have to face disciplinary action or even

dismissal. Each organisation will have its own procedure

regarding disciplinary and procedures for dismissal in place.

However it is important to note that employers must not take

any adverse action against employees that have made a

complaint or have engaged in lawful industrial activity or

refused to participate in industrial action under the Fair Work

Act 2009 Part 3-1.

P a g e | 84

Activity 3E

P a g e | 85

Congratulations!

You have now finished the unit ‘Manage employee relations’

P a g e | 86

References

These suggested references are for further reading and do not necessarily represent the contents

of this learners guide

Books

Bratten J. and Gold J. 2007 Human resource management: theory and practice 4th (ed). Palgrave:

New York

Gennard J, and Judge G. 2006 Employee relations 4th( ed) CIPD:London

Websites

Enterprise Agreements: www.fwc.gov.au/awards-and-agreements/agreements/make-agreement

Fair Work Act 2009: www.fwa.gov.au/index.cfm?pagename=resource

Library

Library

The Fair Work Australia Library is a dedicated workplace relations and law library based in

Melbourne. Its collection dates back to the early 1900s and includes:

 Commonwealth Arbitration Reports

 Law reports and industrial gazettes from all Australian jurisdictions

 Old English law reports

The library has copying facilities and also houses the Sir Richard Kirby Archives and its associated

educational displays.

Location

Level 8, 11 Exhibition Street, Melbourne.

Public access

Limited public access to the library is available, with the permission of the librarian, to those with an

interest in workplace relations including academics, employee and employer associations, the law

fraternity and journalists.

Hours of operation

 The library is open 9.00 am to 5.00 pm Monday to Friday, excluding public holidays.

Inquiries

Contact librarian@fwa.gov.au or telephone (03) 8661 7823.

AHRI Services & Tools (Australian Human Resources Institute)

Document Library: The AHRI website document library is a collection of presentations, articles and

event brochures accessible through a search engine to assist HR professionals keep up to date with

the latest information on human resources.

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Learner Guide

BSBWRK520

MANAGE EMPLOYEE

RELATIONS

This learner guide is copyright protected and belongs to:

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2

BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

TABLE OF CONTENTS

TABLE OF CONTENTS………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 3

UNIT INTRODUCTION …………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 5

ABOUT THIS RESOURCE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 5

ABOUT ASSESSMENT ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 6

ELEMENTS AND PERFORMANCE CRITERIA ………………………………………………………………………….. 8

PERFORMANCE AND KNOWLEDGE EVIDENCE ……………………………………………………………………. 10

PERFORMANCE EVIDENCE ……………………………………………………………………………………………………. 10

KNOWLEDGE EVIDENCE ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 10

ASSESSMENT CONDITIONS …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 12

PRE-REQUISITES ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 12

TOPIC 1 – DEVELOP EMPLOYEE AND INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS POLICIES AND PLANS …….. 13

ANALYSE EXISTING EMPLOYEE RELATIONS PERFORMANCE IN RELATION TO

WORKFORCE OBJECTIVES ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 17

EVALUATE OPTIONS IN TERMS OF COST-BENEFIT, RISK-ANALYSIS AND CURRENT

LEGISLATIVE REQUIREMENTS ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 19

KEY FEATURES OF RELEVANT INDUSTRIAL RELATIONS LEGISLATION OR REGULATIONS …………………………………… 24
Key sources of expert industrial relations advice …………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 24
Fair Work Ombudsman ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 24
Employee entitlements …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 24
Pay ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 24
Awards and agreements ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 25
Leave …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 25
Ending employment ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 25
Best practice for small business ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 26
Employing people with a disability ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 26
Employing Indigenous Australians …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 27
Paid parental leave ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 27
The Fair Work Commission …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 27
The Fair Work system …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 28
The Workplace Gender Equality Agency ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 29
Trade unions ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 30
Employer bodies/associations …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 30

IDENTIFY THE SKILLS AND KNOWLEDGE NEEDED BY MANAGEMENT AND THE

WORKFORCE TO EFFECTIVELY IMPLEMENT THESE STRATEGIES AND POLICIES ………….. 32

TOPIC 2 – IMPLEMENT EMPLOYEE RELATIONS POLICIES AND PLANS ……………………………… 35

DEVELOP AN IMPLEMENTATION PLAN AND A CONTINGENCY PLAN FOR THE EMPLOYEE

RELATIONS POLICIES AND STRATEGIES ………………………………………………………………………………. 35

MAKE ARRANGEMENTS FOR TRAINING AND DEVELOPMENT FOR IDENTIFIED NEEDS TO

SUPPORT THE EMPLOYEE RELATIONS PLAN ………………………………………………………………………. 37

THE TRAINER ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 37
TRAINING DELIVERY ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 38
TRAINING SCHEDULING ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 39

UNDERTAKE ASSOCIATED EMPLOYEE RELATIONS ACTIVITIES TO REACH AGREEMENT

ON CHANGES REQUIRED BY THE ORGANISATIONAL POLICIES OR IMPLEMENTATION

PLAN ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 40

KEY FEATURES OF ENTERPRISE AND WORKPLACE BARGAINING PROCESSES ………………………………………………………. 41

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

REVIEW EMPLOYEE RELATIONS POLICIES AND PLANS TO ESTABLISH WHETHER THEY

ARE MEETING THEIR INTENDED OUTCOMES ……………………………………………………………………. 47

TOPIC 3 – MANAGE NEGOTIATIONS TO RESOLVE CONFLICT …………………………………………….. 49

IDENTIFY, AND WHERE POSSIBLE ALLEVIATE OR ELIMINATE, SOURCES OF CONFLICT OR

GRIEVANCE ACCORDING TO LEGAL REQUIREMENTS ……………………………………………………….. 52

OBTAIN EXPERT OR SPECIALIST ADVICE AND/OR REFER TO PRECEDENTS, IF REQUIRED

…………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 57

DETERMINE DESIRED NEGOTIATION OUTCOMES, NEGOTIATION STRATEGY AND

NEGOTIATION TIMEFRAMES ………………………………………………………………………………………………… 59

DOCUMENT, AND IF NECESSARY CERTIFY, THE AGREED OUTCOMES WITH THE

RELEVANT JURISDICTION …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 64

TAKE REMEDIAL ACTION WHERE GROUPS OR INDIVIDUALS FAIL TO ABIDE BY

AGREEMENTS …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 66

TOPIC 4 – FURTHER INFORMATION ……………………………………………………………………………………… 68

KEY FEATURES OF RELEVANT ENTITIES IN THE CURRENT AUSTRALIAN INDUSTRIAL

RELATIONS SYSTEM, INCLUDING COURTS AND TRIBUNALS, TRADE UNIONS AND

EMPLOYER BODIES ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 68

COURTS AND TRIBUNALS ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 68
Australia’s workplace relations laws ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 68
Industrial Relations Australia ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 69
Industrial Relations Court of Australia …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 70
Trade unions ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 70
Employer bodies/associations …………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 70

KEY FEATURES OF RELEVANT ORGANISATIONAL POLICIES AND PROCEDURES ………………………………………………….. 71
KEY FEATURES OF ORGANISATIONAL OBJECTIVES ………………………………………………………………………………………………. 72

SUMMARY ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 74

REFERENCES ………………………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 75

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

UNIT INTRODUCTION

This resource covers the unit BSBWRK520 – Manage employee

relations.

This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to manage employee and

industrial relations

matters in an organisation. It involves developing and implementing employee and industrial

relations policies and plans and managing conflict resolution negotiations.

It applies to those who are authorised to oversee industrial relations and manage conflict and

grievances in an organisation. They will have a sound theoretical knowledge base in human

resources management and industrial relations as well as current knowledge of industrial relations

trends and legislation.

No licensing, legislative or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of publication.

About This Resource

This resource brings together information to develop your knowledge about this unit. The

information is designed to reflect the requirements of the unit and uses headings to makes it

easier to follow.

You should read through this resource to develop your knowledge in preparation for your

assessment. At the back of the resource are a list of references you may find useful to review.

As a student it is important to extend your learning and to search out textbooks, internet sites,

talk to people at work and read newspaper articles and journals which can provide additional

learning material.

Your trainer may include additional information and provide activities, PowerPoint slide

presentations, and assessments in class to support your learning.

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

About Assessment

Throughout your training we are committed to your learning by providing a training and

assessment framework that ensures the knowledge gained through training is translated into

practical on the job improvements.

You are going to be assessed for:

 Your performance and knowledge using written and practical activities that apply to a

workplace environment.

 Your ability to apply your learning to the workplace.

 Your ability to recognise common principles and actively use these on the job.

You will receive an overall result of Competent or Not Yet Competent for the assessment of this

unit. The assessment is a competency based assessment, which has no pass or fail. You are either

competent or not yet competent. Not Yet Competent means that you still are in the process of

understanding and acquiring the skills and knowledge required to be marked competent.

The assessment process is made up of a number of assessment methods. You are required to

achieve a satisfactory result in each of these to be deemed competent overall.

All of your assessment and training is provided as a positive learning tool. Your trainer/assessor

will guide your learning and provide feedback on your responses to the assessment. For valid and

reliable assessment of this unit, a range of assessment methods will be used to assess practical

skills and knowledge.

Your assessment may be conducted through a combination of the following methods:

 Written Activity

 Case Study

 Observation

 Practical tasks

 Short answer questions

 Third Party Report

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

The assessment tool for this unit should be completed within the specified time period following

the delivery of the unit. If you feel you are not yet ready for assessment, discuss this with your

trainer/assessor.

To be successful in this unit, you will need to relate your learning to your workplace. You may be

required to demonstrate your skills and be observed by your assessor in your workplace

environment. Some units provide for a simulated work environment, and your trainer and

assessor will outline the requirements in these instances.

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

ELEMENTS AND PERFORMANCE
CRITERIA

1. Develop

employee and

industrial relations

policies and plans

1.1 Analyse strategic plans and operational plans to determine long term

employee relations in accordance with organisational objectives

1.2 Analyse existing employee relations performance in relation to

workforce objectives

1.3 Evaluate options in terms of cost-benefit, risk-analysis and current

legislative

requirements

1.4 Work with relevant internal stakeholders to develop industrial relations

policies and plans

1.5 Identify the skills and knowledge needed by management and the

workforce to effectively

implement these strategies and policies

2. Implement

employee relations

policies and plans

2.1 Develop an implementation plan and a contingency plan for the

employee relations policies and

strategies

2.2 Make arrangements for training and development for identified needs

to support the employee

relations plan

2.3 Undertake associated employee relations activities to reach

agreement

on changes required by the organisational policies or implementation plan

2.4 Document procedures for addressing grievances and conflict

2.5 Identify and communicate key procedures for addressing grievances

and conflict to stakeholders

2.6 Review employee relations policies and plans to establish whether they

are meeting their intended

outcomes

3. Manage

negotiations to

resolve conflict

3.1 Develop and deliver training to individuals in conflict-management

techniques and

procedures

3.2 Identify, and where possible alleviate or eliminate, sources of conflict or

grievance according to legal requirements

3.3 Evaluate documentation and other information sources to clarify issues

in dispute and ensure completeness, balance and relevance

3.4 Obtain expert or specialist advice and/or refer to precedents, if

required

3.5 Determine desired negotiation outcomes, negotiation strategy and

negotiation timeframes

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

3.6 Advocate the organisation s position in negotiation with the view to

reaching a resolution that aligns to organisational objectives

3.7 Document, and if necessary certify, the agreed outcomes with the

relevant

jurisdiction

3.8 Take remedial action where groups or individuals fail to abide by

agreements

Developed by Enhance Your Future Pty Ltd 10

BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

PERFORMANCE AND KNOW LEDGE
EVIDENCE

This describes the essential knowledge and skills and their level required for this unit.

Performance Evidence

Evidence of the ability to:

 Analyse organisational documentation to determine long-term employee relations

objectives and current employee relations performance

 Collaborate with others to develop and review industrial relations policies and plans

 Develop implementation and contingency plans for industrial relations policies

 Identify the skills and knowledge needed to implement the plan and organise training

and development for self and staff

 Document and communicate strategies and procedures for eliminating and dealing

with grievances and disputes

 Train others in conflict-resolution techniques

 Manage industrial relations conflicts, including advocating the organisation’s position

during negotiations and documenting, implementing and following up agreements.

Note: If a specific volume or frequency is not stated, then evidence must be provided at least

once.

Knowledge Evidence

The candidate must be able to demonstrate the following knowledge to effectively complete the

tasks outlined in the elements and performance criteria of this unit, and to manage tasks and

reasonably foreseeable contingencies in the context of the work role:

 Key features of relevant industrial relations legislation or

regulations

 Key features of enterprise and workplace bargaining

processes

 Key features of relevant entities in the current Australian industrial relations system,

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

including courts and tribunals, trade unions and employer

bodies

Key sources of expert industrial relations advice

 Key features of relevant organisational policies and procedures

Key features of organisational objectives

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

ASSESSMENT CONDITION S

Assessment must be conducted in a safe environment where evidence gathered demonstrates

consistent performance of typical activities experienced in the workforce development workplace

relations field of work and include access to:

 Awards and enterprise bargaining agreements

 Relevant legislation, regulations, standards and codes

 Relevant workplace documentation and resources

 Case studies and, where possible, real situations

 Interaction with others.

Assessors of this unit must satisfy the requirements for assessors in applicable vocational

education and training legislation, frameworks and/or standards.

PRE-REQUISITES

This unit must be assessed after the following pre-requisite unit:

There are no pre-requisites for this unit.

Developed by Enhance Your Future Pty Ltd 13

BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

TOPIC 1 – DEVELOP EMPLOYEE
AND INDUSTRIAL RELAT IONS

POLICIES AND PLANS

Welcome to the unit BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations.

This unit describes the skills and knowledge required to manage employee and industrial relations

matters in an organisation. It involves developing and implementing employee and industrial
relations policies and plans and managing conflict resolution negotiations.

It applies to those who are authorised to oversee industrial relations and manage conflict and
grievances in an organisation. They will have a sound theoretical knowledge base in human
resources management and industrial relations as well as current knowledge of industrial relations
trends and legislation.

No licensing, legislative or certification requirements apply to this unit at the time of publication.

In this unit you will learn how to:

 Develop employee and industrial relations policies and plans

 Implement employee relations policies and plans

 Manage negotiations to resolve conflict

Let’s begin!

Developed by Enhance Your Future Pty Ltd 14

BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

Analyse strategic plans and operational plans to

determine long term employee relations in

accordance with

organisational objectives

Industrial relations is the balance between people feeling nurtured and capable of doing their jobs

and people performing to meet strategic and operational objectives. Every business thrives on

the strength of its employee base so taking a long-term approach to developing, managing and

retaining employees, provides more reliability and stability and reduces risks. In order to do this,

you will need to analyse both the strategic and operational plans to determine the long-term

employee relations that have existed in the past. This will help you to identify where changes

need to be made and where things can stay the same. If previous employee relations have been

good, then there may be little change required, but, if there have been issues, they may need to be

changed.

There are two approaches to determining long-term employee objectives – firstly setting the

goals and integrating or adding these to other strategic and operational plans. Alternatively, you

can set the plans and identify the industry relations goals and workforce need to support these

plans.

Some of the objectives you might aim to develop through targeting industrial relations

management

include:

 Developing culture

 Improving employee satisfaction, commitment retention and re-engagement

 Working in line with unions and employer representative bodies

 Developing workforce knowledge, skills and innovation

 Design of position descriptions, individual employee roles, responsibilities and the

benefits and bonuses that may accompany these

 Restructure or workplace reform

In order for these goals to be successful, they need to be aligned with the businesses goals,

objectives, values, mission and general approach to business so that the people that fill the roles

and conduct the business do so with appropriate training, support and consistency. It might help

to think of industrial relations as being independent with the goals of the business.

Developed by Enhance Your Future Pty Ltd 15

BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

There are many business problem-solving and planning tools that can be used to analyse the

goals for industrial relations and you may have heard of or used these in the past. These tools

and their approach is about incremental change on evolving basis and over a long period of time.

You might consider:

TOOL What is it? PROs CONs LEARN
MORE

SWOT
Analysis

Strengths,
Weaknesses,
Opportunities and
Threats. Some
businesses also
analyse
opportunities
from weaknesses
and threats to
strength.

Can be used on
multiple

business

areas
Quick – can be
brainstormed in a
few minutes and
added to with time
You don’t need
any special skills to
contribute
Can be used one-
to-one, in small
and big teams

Can be too
broad in some
applications
Can be difficult
to use with
people who
find self-
criticism
difficult

http://www.l
eadershipvict
oria.org/docs
/plugin_swot-
template

PEST
Analysis

Political,
Environmental,
Socio-Cultural and
Technological –
investigates four
areas of the
business and the
impact of and
opportunity for
change in each
area

Quick to use
across the four
core functions of
every business
Can be integrated
into triple-bottom
line reporting and
evaluation
Can be used to
strengthen SWOT
analysis
Particularly useful
for
transformational
change as it looks
at the areas of
influence and
conflict

Some skills of
analysis are
needed to
unpack changes
and
improvements
and embed
across the four
areas
Occurs
infrequently
Some
preparation
required
Needs a leader
or team
directing the
collection of
evidence

http://www.
mindtools.co
m/pages/artic
le/newTMC_
09.htm

The Five
Whys

A system for root
cause analysis.
Participants take a
problem that is
occurring and ask
“Why” five times
with the other
party involved in

In time-and-place
review and
adjustment
Easy to use and
understand.
Addresses
problems at a
lower level as a

Only one
problem at a
time
Can be difficult
to do with
people who
have language
barriers

http://www.i
sixsigma.com
/tools-
templates/cau
se-
effect/determ
ine-root-
cause-5-
whys/

http://www.leadershipvictoria.org/docs/plugin_swot-template

http://www.leadershipvictoria.org/docs/plugin_swot-template

http://www.leadershipvictoria.org/docs/plugin_swot-template

http://www.leadershipvictoria.org/docs/plugin_swot-template

http://www.leadershipvictoria.org/docs/plugin_swot-template

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_09.htm

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_09.htm

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_09.htm

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_09.htm

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_09.htm

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

Developed by Enhance Your Future Pty Ltd 16

BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

discussion giving
reasons each time.

form of
intervention
Positive results are
magnified across
business at a
higher level
Cheap

Can cause a
period of
downtime each
time a problem
occurs
Only works on
team-centric
problems

These approaches take what you have done in the past and break down why you did not achieve

the goals that you want to achieve in this current year or future. Each of these investigates a

range of business variables and take information from a range of sources and across a number of

business management areas and tracks patterns of weakness. The Five Whys is the most

responsive system as it is used in time and place, whereas the PEST analysis is a more long-term

review and takes data over a large period of time into consideration. They are not specific to

problems with employees but look at the big picture goals instead. It is good business practice to

use a number of different methods of review as built-in features of your industrial relations.

Developed by Enhance Your Future Pty Ltd 17

BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

Analyse existing employee relations performance in

relation to workforce objectives

As part of a systematic business review, you should also review your employee relations using a

range of measurements for past and predicted future performance.

Predicted future performance assumes that if nothing changes the problems multiply – they will

not stay the same. It is important to remember that employee dissatisfaction and motivation are

states that are unpredictable in different people. There are internal and external influences on

whilst there are many ways you can manage the internal influence these feelings are

interdependent on what happens in the employee’s employee life too.

There a number of measures that you can use to help you to determine the likely internal

influences on achievement:

 Internal surveys

 External studies

 Records of industrial action

 Workplace health and safety figures

 Absenteeism – planned and unplanned

 Outputs, quality, productivity and wastage

 Participation in meetings, employee communications, events and committees

 Staff retention and/or turnover

 Participation in internal professional development opportunities and feedback on

these activities

There are two types of evidence that can be collected:

 Qualitative: feedback, comments, statements, conclusions and individual cases

 Quantitative: statistics, numbers, values, calculations, finance, volume

A strong approach to analysis involves both types of data – the quantitative identifies that there

is a problem, and the qualitative is often used to explain ‘Why’.

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BSBWRK520 – Manage employee relations

It is important to determine first whether numbers are significant enough to warrant action.

There are a number of ways of doing this involving statistics and probability. It is important to

look at the big picture and patterns also. One person who experiences stress and associated

absenteeism is significant, but it is not a pattern. On the other hand, a decrease in production and

quality and a high level of absenteeism is more significant in regards to the need for change.

Once you have established an area of concern, it is important that either the analysis of the data

you have already collected or a new analytical process is started to determine the possible root

cause of the concern.

Root cause means you that is not always the problem that is the problem! This sounds confusing,

so it can help to think about all of the times you’ve experienced frustration and anger over

something small. Often the problem that has triggered your emotional reaction is just one of a

series of

problems.

For example, the bin overflowing bothers you because you’ve had a bad day, you’ve had a bad

day because you didn’t sleep well, and you didn’t sleep well because the bed is broken in a

number of places. This means that the problem is the broken bed. Someone can empty the bin

for you, but it’s not going to solve the problem.

There is no one tool that works effectively to get to the root cause which means multiple levels

of exploration may need to be applied.

Tools that can help to explain root problem, however, include:

 The Five Whys

 Cause and Effect

 Issues Tables

Initially, narrowing down the area, the type of absenteeism, the types of work and any patterns of

dispute and conflict are enough to move forward with planning.

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Evaluate options in terms of cost-benefit, risk-

analysis and current legislative requirements

All options for change, development and restructure must comply with both the needs of the

company at the time and legislation, regulations and industry codes of practice. This should not

stifle innovation or progression, but rather provide for risk mitigation sustainably throughout the

lifecycle of change.

Your options, when it comes to change, should first deal with the obvious and then deal with the

larger problem. This means that, using the example in the previous chapter, if the bed is broken

– fix it first!

Ideation for change is a whole other subject in itself. But consider the following methods when it

comes to tackling problems in your workplace:

 Use basic controls – consider the hierarchy of risk control when considering the

types of options. This includes personal protective equipment, administration,

engineered controls, isolation and elimination

 Brainstorm – this brings together the collective knowledge of a number of people

who possibly already know how to implement the solution.

 Ask the employees – consider holding a consultation meeting or series of meetings to

find out what the employees need or want

 Turn to your industry – consult industry groups, networks, peers in other businesses,

specialists and industry web sources

 Get expert help – engage specialist HR representatives, experts in the particular

problem, members of other businesses, agencies or unions

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Here is what you need to consider:

Consideration What to Consider Where to Learn More

Legislation,
Fair Working
Conditions
inclusive of
The National
Employment
Standards

What are the
current
requirements, how
are you protected,
how are employees
protected, what
resources are
needed/available

http://www.fairwork.gov.au

Health and
Safety

What are the
impacts to health
and wellbeing?
What are the
changes to the work
environment? Will
there be stress
during change and
how will you
manage this? What
will be the business
response to this?

http://www.worksafe.vic.gov.au

Cost vs.
Benefit

What are costs to
the employer and to
the employee and
how does this
compare to the
benefits?
What is the cost of
losing staff with
their knowledge of
the business and
experience in
comparison to the
gain?

Change
Management

What are the risks,
what are the
benefits, what are
the rewards, how
will this affect an
employee’s pay or
hours, what is the
impact on an
employee’s home
life, how does it
change the physical
aspects of the work,
are their new

skills

needed

http://www.business.vic.gov.au/hiring-and-managing-
staff/staff-management/change-management-
procedures-and-role-change

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/

http://www.worksafe.vic.gov.au/

http://www.business.vic.gov.au/hiring-and-managing-staff/staff-management/change-management-procedures-and-role-change

http://www.business.vic.gov.au/hiring-and-managing-staff/staff-management/change-management-procedures-and-role-change

http://www.business.vic.gov.au/hiring-and-managing-staff/staff-management/change-management-procedures-and-role-change

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Please remember that this stage of the change is not about implementing change but rather

generating ideas about the likely problems and their possible solutions in the context of the

current business goals, values, mission and approaches. This is with the exception of safety; any

matter arising that indicates that there is a risk to well-being, health or safety must be dealt with

immediately, proactively and in line with ordinary Occupational Health and Safety

responsibilities. This may include implementation of immediate wellbeing and stress-relieving

strategies.

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Work with relevant internal stakeholders to develop

industrial relations policies and plans

You might remember from Work/Occupational Health and Safety Training that an important

control for the safety and being staff is a range of administrative controls including training,

policies, procedures, processes, templates and plans. Likewise, needs evaluation tools identify

training, development, the security of process and knowing exactly what is to be done as essential

in maintaining motivation and commitment

also.

A useful tool for both developing the approach to Industrial Relations and maintain the standard

long term is an Industrial Relations policy. Policy development is usually carried out in

cooperation with management and the leadership team and involves:

 Consultation across a number of platforms

 Ideation

 Planning and drafting

 Trailing and review

 Implementation and embedding

An Industrial Relations plan includes many of the same characteristics as a mission statement

including a set of values or ideas which the business wishes to make central to core business,

goals and a plan for executing this with monitors and controls that will be applied.

The ideas included in a plan include (this is not an exhaustive list):

 Communication

 Training

 Consultation

 Engagement

 Participation

 Planning

 Opportunity

 Reward/Recognition

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 Promotion

 Community

 Empowerment

 Inclusion

 Diversity

More importantly, however, is the statements about each of these will be achieved:

i.e.

Recognition

 360o feedback and performance appraisal systems that systematically identify and

positively recognise both achievement and achievement beyond expectations

 Staff Awards recognising success on a monthly basis with the view towards an overall

recognition reward annually.

Likewise, the policy or statement should recognise the goals or standards that the organisation is

trying to achieve. For example, i.e. reduced absenteeism, increased engagement in group

meetings, increased community participation.

The policy, in your workplace, may be a stand-alone document or it may be incorporated into a

suite of other tools such as Industrial Relations Plans, Strategic Plans, Operational Plans, Code of

Conduct, Values statements and more.

The Plan is an accompanying document that takes the policy (the approach) and turns it into a

series of actions and tasks that need to be completed systematically and across the whole

organisation in the same way that you would roll out a strategic plan in a business. The plan

takes each area of the policy, the overview of how it will be achieved and turns it into the what,

when, where, how, why and by whom using SMART-like goals.

A SMART Goal is one that is specific, measurable, achievable or actionable, realistic and time-

focused. A plan may break each of these aspects up over a number of columns, or they may

word their goal using this format and provide additional details in the plan.

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Different business will approach this task in different ways with some incorporating industrial

relations into the broader strategic plan whilst others distinguish the two areas as being equally

important, or they do not formally plan their approach beyond setting the direction. In any case,

an important part of SMART goals and of Industrial Relations plans, in general, is that it is

measurable both quantitatively and qualitatively over a period of time.

Key features of relevant industrial relations legislation or

regulations

At all times you will need to consider the legislation, regulations and codes of practice that relates

to industrial relations. There are many sources of expert advice as discussed below that will assist

you when developing policies and plans. The following information outlines some of the key

features of each.

Key sources of expert industrial relations advice

Fair Work Ombudsman

The Fair Work Ombudsman provides assistance to employers and employees to recognise their

rights and responsibilities under Australian workplace laws. The Fair Work Ombudsman also

collaborates with workplaces to resolve employee relations issues which may arise.

Employee entitlements

There are regulations around employee’s activity in the workplace, such as the hours they work

and how regularly they should have a break. These regulations can be established in different

locations such as an award, registered agreement or employment contract. Employee

entitlements are set out in the National Employment Standards (NES) and awards. A registered

agreement or employment contract can deliver other entitlements but cannot offer less than the

relevant NES or the award that applies.

Pay

The minimum pay rate for an employee may be set out in an award, enterprise agreement,

another type of registered agreement or the national minimum wage.

It is a requirement that employees be paid the correct pay rate for all hours they work, including

time spent:

 Training

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/Dictionary.aspx?TermID=2034

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/Dictionary.aspx?TermID=2027

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/Dictionary.aspx?TermID=2034

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 Participating in meetings

 Opening and/or closing the business

 Undertaking a trial shift

Awards

and agreements

Minimum conditions in the workplace are set out in registered agreements, awards or legislation.

When an employer has a registered agreement established, and it covers the functions of the

employee, the minimum pay and conditions outlined in the agreement will apply. Where no

registered agreement exists and an award covers the business and the work functions of the

employee, the minimum pay and conditions in the award will

apply.

There are 123 awards that encompass most employees in Australia, meaning many employees

who may not be protected by an agreement will most likely be covered by an award. In cases

whereby no award or agreement applies, the minimum pay and conditions in the legislation will

apply.

Leave

Employees take leave for a multitude of reasons, such as taking holidays, because they are ill or

to care for sick family members. Minimum leave entitlements for employees are stipulated in the

National Employment Standards (NES). An award, registered agreement or contract of

employment can offer other leave entitlements however they cannot be less than what is outlined

in the NES.

Ending employment

Employment can end for a variety of reasons. An employee might resign or be dismissed.

Regardless of the reason, it is important to follow guidelines regarding dismissal, notice and final

pay.

In addition, there are different rights and obligations in cases of job redundancies or when a

business becomes bankrupt.1

1 “Best practice guides” http://www.fairwork.gov.au

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/Dictionary.aspx?TermID=2034

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/Dictionary.aspx?TermID=2027

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/Dictionary.aspx?TermID=2034

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/

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Best practice for small business

Best practice guides seek to assist small businesses and employees with a host of workplace

issues. By taking on best practice initiatives, employers and employees can achieve a fair and

more productive workplace. The topics and areas of assistance include:

 Work and family

 The right to request flexible working arrangements

 Consultation and cooperation in the workplace

 Use of individual flexibility arrangements

 A guide for young workers

 An employer’s guide to employing young workers

 Gender pay equity

 Small business and the Fair Work Act

 Workplace privacy

 Managing underperformance

 Effective dispute resolution

 Improving workplace productivity through bargaining

 Parental leave

Employing people with a disability

There are a variety of services available to businesses to help them with recruiting, training and

employing people with a disability. Disability Employment Services, a Commonwealth

government initiative, offer a list of free services that assist employers with the recruitment and

retention of people with disability, injury or health condition including:

 Professional recruitment advice / job matching

 Assistance with role design for employees with disability

 Workplace or off-site support to facilitate new employees with a disability settle into

their role

 Ongoing support for the required period, for both employees and employers who

request support services to maintain their employment

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/work-and-family

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/the-right-to-request-flexible-working-arrangements

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/consultation-and-cooperation-in-the-workplace

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/use-of-individual-flexibility-arrangements

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/a-guide-for-young-workers

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/an-employers-guide-to-employing-young-workers

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/gender-pay-equity

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/small-business-and-the-fair-work-act

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/workplace-privacy

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/managing-underperformance

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/effective-dispute-resolution

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/improving-workplace-productivity-through-bargaining

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/About-us/policies-and-guides/Best-practice-guides/parental-leave

http://dss.gov.au/des

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 Disability employment information and awareness training

 Assistance for workers whose job may be at risk as a result of their disability

Disability Employment Services assist people to access a host of other financial support and

incentives, such as workplace modifications, assistive technology, mental health first aid training,

a range of awareness training, Auslan interpreting, and wage subsidies.

Employing Indigenous Australians

Employers wishing to employ Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples can receive financial

assistance from the Australian Government through the Indigenous Wage Subsidy program. The

program offers a wage subsidy to employers of eligible Aboriginal or Torres Strait Islander new

employees after a set number of weeks in a job. Some employers may also be eligible for

retention bonuses and funding towards training expenses.

Further support exists in the form of the Indigenous Employment Program for all types of

organisations that contribute to activities or projects that go to increasing employment outcomes

and economic participation for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. Employers able to

provide work placements and ongoing employment to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander

tertiary students receive financial assistance via the Indigenous Cadetship Support program.

Paid parental leave

The Paid Parental Leave scheme provides eligible working parents with a period of government-

funded parental leave pay, which is generally paid at the rate of the national minimum wage.

Under the scheme, the Australian Government funds employers to provide Parental Leave Pay

to their eligible employees.2

The Fair Work Commission

The Fair Work Commission sets award pay rates and conditions, and assists employers and

employees develop cooperative and productive workplace relations. It facilitates workplaces to

prevent disputes, as well as helping to resolve them when they do occur. The commission makes

the following information available to employers and employees and provides related resources:

 The workings of the national workplace relations system

2 Australian Government, Department of Employment – http://www.employment.gov.au

http://www.employment.gov.au/indigenous-wage-subsidy-iws

http://www.employment.gov.au/indigenous-cadetship-support-ics

https://www.employment.gov.au/paid-parental-leave-scheme-employers

https://www.fwc.gov.au/creating-fair-workplaces/the-national-workplace-relations-system

http://www.employment.gov.au/

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 Minimum wages and conditions by workplace

 Basic rights and obligations according to the legislation

 Assistance with resolving disputes in your workplace

The Fair Work system

The primary organisations that make up Australia’s Fair Work system are:

The Fair Work Commission which:

 Sets minimum wages and employment conditions

 Ensures the enterprise bargaining process is fair

 Deals with protected and unprotected industrial action

 Assists with resolving workplace disputes

 Deals with termination of employment issues3

The Fair Work Ombudsman which:

 Assists individuals find correct pay rates, and assists employers determine what they

should be paying employees

 Assists individuals determine their entitlements such as leave, overtime and

allowances

 Educate industry and individuals on fair work practices, rights and obligations

 Investigate complaints or suspected contraventions of workplace legislation, awards

and agreements

 Act to enforce workplace legislation

 Work with industry, unions and other stakeholders

3 “Fair Work Commission” https://www.fwc.gov.au/creating-fair-workplaces/overview

https://www.fwc.gov.au/awards-and-agreements/minimum-wages-conditions

https://www.fwc.gov.au/about-us/legislation-regulations-0

https://www.fwc.gov.au/resolving-issues-disputes-and-dismissals

https://www.fwc.gov.au/about-us

https://www.fwc.gov.au/creating-fair-workplaces/overview

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 Assist in the management of business transfers, shutdowns and closures

Fair Work Building and Construction which:

 Offers advice and education on workplace arrangements, pay, conditions and

workplace rights and responsibilities in the building industry

 Deals with complaints regarding potential breaches of the law in the building industry

 Issues information about the building industry’s national code of practice

The Federal Court of Australia which:

 Has jurisdiction over all civil and criminal matters arising in the Fair Work

jurisdiction

 Provides a simpler alternative to employment litigation in the Federal Circuit Court of

Australia

 Aims to operate informally, and uses streamlined procedures to deal with matters

promptly and efficiently

The Workplace Gender Equality Agency

The Workplace Gender Equality Agency is an Australian Government statutory agency created

by the Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012. Its role is to promote and improve gender equality

in Australian workplaces. It works in collaboration with employers offering advice, practical tools

and education to assist the improvement of their gender performance.

The agency also helps employers comply with the reporting requirements under the Workplace

Gender Equality Act 2012. This reporting framework seeks to promote measures that improve

gender equality outcomes and is intended to minimise the regulatory burden on business. The

Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 (Act) replaced the Equal Opportunity for Women in the

Workplace Act 1999. The legislation seeks to improve and promote equality for both women and

men in the workplace. The principle objects of the Act are to:

 Promote and improve gender equality (including equal remuneration between women

and men) in

employment

 Assist employers to remove barriers to the full and equal participation of women in

the workforce, in recognition of the disadvantaged position of women in relation to

https://www.wgea.gov.au/report

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employment

 Work towards the elimination of discrimination on the basis of gender in relation to

employment matters (including in relation to family and caring responsibilities)

 Foster workplace consultation between employers and employees on issues

concerning gender equality in employment and in the workplace

 Improve the productivity and competitiveness of Australian business through the

advancement of gender equality in employment and in the workplace.4

Trade unions

A trade union is an organisation whose membership consists of workers and union leaders,

united to protect and promote their common interests.

The principal purposes of a labour union are to:

 Negotiate wages and working condition terms

 Regulate relations between workers (its members) and the employer

 Take collective action to enforce the terms of collective bargaining

 Raise new demands on behalf of its members

 Help settle their grievances5

In order to identify the trade union that meets the needs of your business type you can contact

the ACTU Workers’ Line on 1300 362 223 or check out their website: http://www.actu.asn.au/

Employer bodies/associations

There is a range of employer bodies/associations that you can contact in relation to employee

relations. These include:

 Peak organisations

o Australian Council of Trade Unions

4 https://www.wgea.gov.au/about-wgea/our-role
5 http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/trade-union.html

http://www.actu.asn.au/

https://www.wgea.gov.au/about-wgea/our-role

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o Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry

o Australian Industry Group

 National

o Australian Workers’ Union

o United Voice

 State and territory based

o Australian Business Industrial (NSW)

o Union of Christmas Island Worker

o Victorian Employers’ Chamber of Commerce and Industry

There may be other employer bodies or associations that may relate directly to your organisation.

These could be more industry related rather than overarching. You will need to check for the

ones that relate to you.

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Identify the skills and knowledge needed by

management and the workforce to effectively

implement these strategies and policies

Amongst a number of strategies that ensure that change works is the essential rollout of

knowledge not only across management in regards to the strategy and the likely ways that it will

impact on the workforce, but to the people whom the change will most likely affect.

Knowledge is what underpins our ability to do anything, and it relates ‘how’ to do something and

what you need to know prior to doing something.

For example, for you to be able to make a phone call to the appropriate person you first need to

know who the appropriate person is, why you are calling them, what you will say to them, what

important pieces of information are required to be told to that person, how they are likely to use

that information or what you are likely to get out of giving them that information, what language

to do, use how to address the person, what telephone number to call, and so on.

Skill alternatively is the practical skills that enable us to take the knowledge and use it a variety of

situations. It can relate both to manual process and to the use of our mind to carry out tasks. It

is a skill to perform a calculation in your head, to chew food in a way that it is easy to swallow

without choking and to build a simple model out of clay.

In a situation where you are implementing new strategies the managers need to know:

 What they are doing

 In what context

 To what standard

In training and assessment situation, this is called a learning outcome, and we use it build and

design activities, to set the direction of activities and to measure outcomes. It is the goal of what

the training.

Like goals, we then break down our learning outcomes into specific topics and areas that need to

be covered.

For example:

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A company wants to improve internal communication, at the department level, to achieve 75%

employee satisfaction. To achieve this, the company must address:

 What are the likely areas of internal communication

 What are the subjects likely to be covered

 How to cover the topics concisely, clearly, correctly

 What are the communication methods

 Who will initiate communication

 How communications will be approved or reviewed

 What are the standards for communications such as spell checking, a specific format,

specific size, target market, language, use of pictures, etc.?

 Who needs this knowledge to make this place succeed

 What policies, procedures and templates will be involved

 How to get more support or training

Additionally, your role may involve identifying where people need guidance on how to establish

committees, steering committees, host meetings, design templates, give feedback, receive and act

on feedback, fill in forms correctly and competently and more. You should always assume that

at least one person who has to complete a function of the plan will not have the necessary skills

and knowledge to do it effectively the first time.

Opportunities, therefore, exist

for:

 Internal and external personal and professional development

 Training courses – accredited and non-accredited

 Meetings, consultation conversations and information sessions

 Procedures, processes and visual diagrams

 Memos and instructional emails

 Videos, podcasts, blogs and

 Formal communication trees where higher level employees pass information down to

a level who pass it to the next level

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 Coaching, mentoring and work skill instruction

 Introductions and networking

Remember this step is not about delivering training or ensuring that people are competent, but

rather identifying likely critical points for information required to successfully administer the

plan.

Some ways that you can identify the information requirements are:

 Brainstorm against each point in the plan what someone needs to do and then to drill

down to each step and the knowledge contained in the step

 Undertake a skills audit – against each area of the plan have people create their own

brainstorms of what they need to do, how and what they need to know OR have

them rate their ability to complete the tasks using a scale

 Use an external organisational training needs analysis service – identify the goals and

the plans and then work with external auditors to identify training needs

 Design a series of topic ideas based on initial group discussions and then have

employees register their interest

 Have employees drive their own training needs by allocating a budget and asking

them to spend the budget on PD that maps directly to one or more of the actions

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TOPIC 2 – IMPLEMENT EMPLOYEE
RELATIONS POLICIES A ND PLANS

Develop an implementation plan and a contingency

plan for the employee relations policies and

strategies

Unlike an Industrial Relations Plan which provides a focus for specific Industrial Relations

activities an implementation plan strategically ‘rolls out’ changes across the organisation ensuring

the people have the knowledge and training they require. It plays a major role, particularly at the

management level, in breaking down barriers and objections and building cohesion and

commitment to the cause. Similarly, contingency plans provide the alternative actions and

alternative pathways towards a goal so that momentum is not broken.

In general, an implementation plan:

 Details the objectives, purpose, method, risks and timeframes

 Sets actions and tasks that can be broken down for individual contribution – each of

these has a measure and a deadline

 Provides for contingencies associated with health and safety, business and financial

risk – in some cases social risk may also be used as a measure.

 Identifies key stakeholders and provides for an internal and external communication

plan.

The plan itself has no set format. However, many believe for a plan to be able to be fully

implemented it needs to show the big picture at the top of the document, break it down into

individual pieces, and then build up again into an action plan. This, therefore, turns it into a

complete action plan which in some cases can be automated.

Your company, however, may choose instead to provide the big picture view and have

employees build the finer details by contributing instead to performance management, feedback

sessions or consultations.

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Here are some of the tools you might include in your implementation plan:

 A copy of the SWOT/PEST analysis and the evaluation that shows how you came to

the conclusions you have drawn

 SMART Goals

 A copy of the IR policy and plan – generalised if this is needed

 A risk management table identifying, what, when, where, how and by whom

 A communication plan with sample communications, sample wording, key topics, a

schedule of key communications and who is responsible for each

 A GANTT chart showing how initiatives are scheduled and overlap

A GANTT chart is a detailed map of what to do and over what period. It looks a little like a

graph with different areas shaded over days, weeks or months depending on the length of your

project. The benefits of a GANTT chart is that it combines both data with visual

communication methods to help people remember their responsibilities and time frames, it can

also help you to plan resources by scheduling their availability or non-availability into the process,

including people, facility, equipment, stationary, time and money resources.

GANTT charts are easy to create if you have planned all of your activities, tasks, people and

resources in a list. Navigate here to learn more: http://www.gantt.com/

If you would like to create your own GANTT charts, there are a number of tutorials for doing

this in Excel – here is one: http://www.smartsheet.com/blog/gantt-chart-excel

http://www.gantt.com/

http://www.smartsheet.com/blog/gantt-chart-excel

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Make arrangements for training and development

for identified needs to support the employee

relations plan

Once you have established what types of training and information are needed, and you have a

plan for when people will need the training you will need to then consider how training will be

developed and conducted to fit in with this schedule.

There are a number of considerations when it comes to arranging training:

 Is there a qualification that would cover all of these skills or will this be non-

accredited?

 How will you group the skills – will everyone get the same skills or will there be lots

of smaller doses of training?

 Where will the training occur – in the workplace and in teams, in meetings, on-site

off the job or offsite?

 Who will run the training – individuals and trainers in the workplace, supervisors,

mentors, coaches or training companies, specialists and trainers outside of the

business

 What is the budget – what is the cost of having staff off the job, what is the cost to

productivity during the training period, venue cost, catering, utilities, cost of course

development, fees

The trainer

The most qualified people to answer these questions are learner and development personnel,

organisation trainers and training organisations you already engage for other purposes. Only the

person who is going to be running the training can tell you whether your timelines and objectives

are reasonable and achievable and how long it will take them to develop the training, so it fits

your purposes perfectly.

Additionally, you should consider the skills and knowledge of the people that are required to

deliver training or the combination of sessions to provide specialist knowledge, internal

knowledge and oversee skills development. It might be necessary to have an internal session for

outlining change, and the impacts to staff followed up with an external session to teach new skills

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and knowledge run by an expert. Staff might then be coached by a supervisor or team mentor to

increase productivity over a period of time.

Not every trainer, even one who is qualified in the industry, will have the skills and knowledge or

experience to cover new techniques, different areas of the business or the broader skills needed

to support the IR plan. Trainers who are familiar with the business can also be less effective in a

difficult transition as they represent a part of the business that has caused instability.

Training delivery

You should also consider the cost of the organisation if someone attends training, and they either

do not get anything new from the training or the instructions and standards they get does not

match the internal processes and procedures closely enough to be useful. It is helpful to

develop a risk management table that identifies ways of aligning with external training with

internal needs and increasing the benefit of all training – a good training provider will work with

you to do this.

The delivery should also match the need. It is not possible to deliver all messages on the job,

and it is not possible to deliver all training in the classroom. It is also not possible to do

everything in a one-day or two or even one-month-long course.

You may even need to consider the types of people who will be attending each course. People

learn in different ways with some people able to read memos and look at procedures and know

exactly what to do, and others are needing to try skills and get it wrong many times before they’ll

learn.

Consider structuring programs that provide blended learning models with some reading material,

some visual material and multimedia, the ability to research aspects of the learning and have

students generate their own ideas, some coaching in the workplace on a regular basis and then

some classroom or off-the-job learning.

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Training scheduling

Prior to locking in training, it is useful to communicate the likely training needs with the

supervisors and managers that are most likely to be affected by staff participation. You may need

to investigate running training over multiple occasions to cater for teams that cannot send all

staff at once, absentees, staff who do not work on the scheduled training days and other

circumstances that would prevent participation.

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Undertake associated employee relations activities

to reach agreement on changes required by the

organisational policies or implementation plan

When considering your implementation plan, it can be useful to schedule a fair amount of time

for:

 Questions

 Coaching

 Consultation

 Referral

All change is serious, impacts on people in ways that you cannot reasonably expect or predict and

involves safety, wellbeing and remuneration. There may be any number of areas of the proposed

changes that will need gentle and careful negotiation for a positive outcome.

When we negotiate with employees directly, we call this an ‘employee relations activity’ as it

involves the development and maintenance of the relationship with not just the employee

involved in the conversation but anyone in a similar situation. Even in situations where you

would like to control the spread of information that is unfavourable for change you should

expect that staff will discuss impacts with their peers. How you handle an individual consultation

will direct affect the spread of negative information.

Some examples of employee relations activities include:

 Acknowledging, clarifying and communication the terms and conditions of individual

and group employment contracts and any changes in these

 Working with employee representatives, staff representatives, consultation groups,

unions and employee representative bodies for the best possible conditions

 Working with specialists, advisory services and government departments to assess the

viability and legality of internal policies, procedures and innovation

 Engaging and referring employees to employment assistance programs and internal

and external supports as required

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Key features of enterprise and workplace bargaining

processes

On 1 July 2009, the various types of collective and individual workplace agreements that existed under the

previous workplace relations system were replaced by a single type of agreement: an ‘enterprise agreement’. This is

simply an agreement between one or more national system employers and their employees, as specified in the

agreement. Enterprise agreements are negotiated by the parties through collective bargaining in good faith, primarily

at the enterprise level. Under the Fair Work Act 2009, an enterprise can mean any kind of business, activity,

project or undertaking.6

Your organisation will have policies, procedures and processes that relate to how bargaining and

agreements are enacted. Below are some key steps in reaching an agreement.

Whenever you work with employees to reach agreements you should:

 Let the employee talk it out – many problems arise when a person feels he or she has

not been consulted, listened to or acknowledged.

 Identify the key issues – this means taken the surface problem and identifying the

root cause(s). It can help to state the issues arising from the original conversation and

then apply a root cause technique to break down each to find the underlying

problem. Remember what someone complains about is seldom the problem.

 Identify the actions – it is best if you ask the employee what actions they want to be

taken but to never promise that it will reach the resolution they desire. You should

add additional actions that would need to be undertaken within your own role to the

list in the spirit of transparency. It is useful to discuss timelines with the employee

also.

 Consider the options for consultation and specialist support and build these into

actions that you take.

 Research, have conversations, get support, give support!

 Tell the employee(s) what you can compromise on. It is useful in negative situations

to focus only on the positives. It can be helpful to explain the steps that were taken,

the conversations held and then introduce the opportunities arising. This keeps the

6 https://www.fairwork.gov.au/how-we-will-help/templates-and-guides/fact-sheets/rights-and-
obligations/enterprise-bargaining#enterpriseagreement

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conversation focused on the positives. It is also a great way of avoiding planting

negative thoughts or raising issues that may have been forgotten!

 Seek agreement or start the negotiation steps again. Repeat these steps as often as

necessary.

Remember there are many issues that cannot be fully or positively addressed because of legal,

ethical, business or financial constraints. It is important to remember that not every activity

undertaking will result in employee retention either. The important part of this process is to

identify any larger, more pressing issues, states or situations that were not fully addressed in the

initial discovery phase and to systemically break these down over time.

Where an activity is not able to be achieved within the implementation phase, it should still be

added to the action list for longer term implementation in the spirit of continuous improvement.

The process of change should have no beginning or end point.

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Document procedures for addressing grievances and

conflict

To support employee actions, it is useful to have a comprehensive set of policies, procedures and

proformas for raising, addressing and resolving grievances and conflict in your business. This not

only creates transparency in the process but the reliability of outcomes, sustainability of business

initiatives, commitment to future resolutions, employee trust and therefore motivation to report

problems.

The problems that may be raised will vary greatly in a business from lack of follow through on

matters of OHS, pay disputes, allowances and penalty rates to flexibility in hours and days,

bullying, promotion and more. As employee awareness of their entitlements and rights expands

so too does the myriad of issues raised.

You may already have a range of procedures in your business which indicate how to raise

problems; industrial relations action should not take away from the current processes and

procedures.

Good practice suggests

that:

 Communication about how and when to raise complaints is broad, thorough and

repetitive. There should be signs, memos, standing items on agendas, general

discussions, regular training and formal communication.

 Issues are raised in a vertical direction bypassing only the people who are the subject

of a problem. This means a worker brings their complaint to their manager unless

the problem is with the manager. It should be clear who is in the next level for the

complainant, or a human resource role should be able to make this advice.

 Complaints should be considered in whatever format they are raised or presented at

the time and in any time and place. A telephone complaint, or one in a face-to-face

situation, isn’t any less serious than a written complaint. Initial steps should be taken

in this format but if you then require them to fill in a template or complete a written

complaint this is just a formality – the process is already in motion.

 Consultation is used as the first defence – you should acknowledge that you have

heard and understood the person at every opportunity and find out what they need or

want.

 Grievances are not a silent or a hidden process – they are addressed directly with

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whoever is involved or affected, and outcomes are made available to these same

people albeit censored for privacy and confidentiality. Problems should always be

acknowledged and addressed quickly. There should never be processes that are good

for one but not good for all!

 Grievances and complaints are tracked and recorded for continuous improvement.

Whilst the process is not about creating statistics it is about learning from the

mistakes of the past to prevent future problems. Where a problem cannot be fully

resolved in a short period of time, it is also about tracking its impact over time in a

way that is reliable.

You will need to develop, over time, a range of processes both internal and external for raising

issues. It should be clear when and how to involve employee representatives and union

representatives, how to access employee assistance programs and the support services available

through government agencies and hotlines.

It is also helpful to develop a range of templates for managing the intake of grievances to ensure

that the employee, the issues and the resolutions are recorded and track for both internal reasons

and for legal reasons too. For example, health, safety and wellbeing records need to be

maintained in case of future legal action and pay matters need to be documented in case of a

retrospective action or the misinterpretation of the award.

Templates should identify:

 The date

 The person(s) involved

 The nature of the grievance and the issues presenting

 Who was involved in the resolution

 Actions arising from the grievance

 Any future actions arising

 Agreement from all parties by way of signatures or contracts

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Identify and communicate key procedures for

addressing grievances and conflict to stakeholders

It is normal, during the review of industrial relations policies and procedures in the workplace to

experience strong opposition to the review process, change and even the review of the change.

An underpinning need for motivation is stability which makes it natural for people to feel

unmotivated in these situations.

The absolute objective for the implementation of an Industrial Relations plan needs to be change

management. A change that involves communication, inclusion, empowerment, training and

opportunity is smoother than that which is improperly planned and administered. When we say it

is smoother this means that it will not be without fault, complaint or conflict but just that the

period of negatively will be comparatively shorter in well-planned situations; where there is gap in

the planning employees will always find a way to exploit this.

Whilst you would always like to avoid conflict, it can be healthy in a developing workforce to air

grievances and resolve them directly, publicly, universally and wholly to build team confidence.

Conflict and grievance expose the holes in thought processes, procedures, policies and

administration and gives you the opportunity to address this. If you don’t know what is broken,

you definitely cannot fix it! Therefore, avoidance of conflict is not the healthiest state but

learning from conflict or growth from conflict represents a health organisation.

When an employee raises an issue of procedure or process:

 Thank them for bringing it to your attention, acknowledge the courage it takes to

raise problems

 Ask questions about how they discovered the issue

 Determine any health and safety concerns and address these immediately

 Explain the process

 Consult with others who use or access the procedure

 Consult with experts both internal and external

 Collate information from all sources and present to the stakeholder group

 Evaluate the options for improvement

 Trial, implement and embed

 Thank those involved in the process and recognise or reward where appropriate

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 Take the opportunity to reinforce grievance and conflict procedures

Even in situations where conflict and grievance is a negative experience – perhaps there is no

positive outcome to be achieved, or the person is being unreasonable – you can follow the above

process to ensure that the company learns and grows.

It is also important, where possible, to communicate not only the times and need to raise

experiences but the process that will be followed for consultation and resolution and the

approximate time frames. A hindrance to participation in grievance procedures is fear of

ramification for the person, complicated processes and humiliation. People also need to know

that a problem will be fixed within their immediate future, and this can be difficult to rely on

when it’s just words on the page.

A process may be:

 Find out more about the nature of the grievance – same day

 Speak with management / the board – within 48 hours

 Identify issues and other impacts – within 7 business days

 Evaluate options – within 10 business days

 Set actions for resolution – within 14 business days

 Review and finalise within 21 business days

Consider communicating both internally and externally about grievances using central

communication systems and additional systems if necessary such as:

 Intranet-based policies and procedures

 Blog posts or forum posts

 Internal memos

 Newsletters

 Website banners and posts

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Review employee relations policies and plans to

establish whether they are meeting their intended

outcomes

All good development processes involve a period of planning and development, putting the plan

into action, reviewing the plan and making adjustments. We review policies, procedures,

processes, administration and other plans to check that what we are doing, saying, achieving or

reducing is in line with the goals we set at the beginning of the process.

When we review our goals, we are looking for opportunities to improve. For many this is

overwhelming – it involves measurements, consultation, conversations, drafting of changes, new

implementation plans, new goals, new measurements and more. Try instead to see the review as

an essential part of the process and look for ways to challenge yourself and others to do better.

A policy and plan that is working might be achieving results in line with the plan within a 5%

margin of error.

A policy or plan that is not working might be producing lower or less exciting results. A policy or

plan that isn’t right for the organisation has targets and expectations that are being exceeded by

the current results. In both of these cases, the plan needs adjustment.

The review can occur in many ways:

 It can be an organic process that results from comments, grievances, results or

external changes

 A planned process involving the systematic capturing and evaluation of

measurements on an administrative level

 A planned process involving consultation and connection with the end users

 A planned process that unpacks and repacks the policy and procedure looking for

better ways

It is useful to build a number of different types of reviews both into your implementation plan

and into the Industrial Relations plan to ensure that there are triggers and collection methods

that do not involve lengthy delays or processes that are cost and time ineffective.

Methods of review might include:

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 Reviewing logs and records for inconsistencies, problems or negative patterns

 Consultation with stakeholders

 Review of meeting minutes and actions arising on a team level to look for patterns

 Use of financial and production data

 Statistics, long-form records, summaries and tallies

 Workshops to unpack and repack policies and procedures

 Inclusion of resolutions and actions arising from conflict

 Collection and consideration of new methods, techniques, strategies, tips and

information

The most important aspect of the review is the analysis of alternatives, adjustments and options

and adjustment as required. Not all documents, processes, procedures, policies or plans will need

change or clarification, however, but all should receive the endorsement of some kind and an

update of the version number or review number.

You should consider including, on all documents, version control features such as:

 The location of storage

 The file name

 The date the document was created

 Any endorsement or change dates

 Version numbers

 History of changes

If you cannot include these on the document, consider using a register of these details that can

be reviewed and/or tracked with time. These features protect both the person administering the

document and the person using the document from out of date documents that could pose a risk

to compliance, health, safety, statistics or production.

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TOPIC 3 – MANAGE
NEGOTIATIONS TO RESO LVE

CONFLICT

Develop and deliver training to individuals in

conflict-management techniques and procedures

Conflict management is the process of breaking down the conflict in a way that identifies the

issues, proposes opportunities for negotiation and results in positive action. It is not, however,

about winning or getting everything that you want nor is about standing your ground.

Whilst we would all love to avoid conflict, Australian workplaces generally look at conflict as

being a part of a diverse workforce with differing views, cultural needs and other forms of

diversity. Instead of focusing on the elimination we look, instead, at controlling it reducing the

reasons for conflict and improving our response with the right policies, procedures, strategies,

plans., communication methods and frequency, skills and knowledge and more.

There are three types of conflict management that are used in businesses, and this generally

represents the key levels of procedural planning – the first being internal, the second being

assisted internal and the third being assisted external. The fastest for everyone is the internal

unassisted procedure where the employee initiates action with their line manager and works,

using a system of policies and procedures, to resolve the issue with the appropriate staff. The

most expensive, time-consuming, slowest and least beneficial is an external assisted resolution

where the employee takes their complaint to another body for arbitration through legal

proceedings.

Because everyone wants to avoid arbitration, it is helpful to have a number of internal conflict

resolution mechanisms and good relationships with assistive services, unions and other employee

representatives. Internally you might try:

 Issue raising – an employee raises a problem with their line manager, and together

they investigate opportunities for resolution. They might use a root cause diagnosis

tool and work together or with the help of others in the business to workshop the

best solution. It is quick, easy, free and a win-win for everybody.

 Grievance procedures – as covered in previous topics this is the procedure, policies

and procedures for getting help in the workplace. Normally they are more formal

pathways to getting help and should be activated when issue raising does not meet

the needs of the individual, the matter is complex or private, there are health, safety

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or wellbeing concerns involved or there is an allegation.

 Mediation – this can be an internal process involving independent people, normally

someone from human resources, or can involve people who provide this dialogue

internally. Mediation is assisted in that a third party helps the two parties talk through

a problem, break down the issues and solutions, ask appropriate questions and work

in a generally positive way towards a resolution.

We have all had to deal with some form of conflict in our workplaces or in our lives before, and

everyone has a different style. You may have met people who don’t raise issues until they are at

boiling point, people with short fuses, people who deny regardless of the situation, those that cry

and those that get so worked up they can no longer communicate – and these same people may

now be in position of management where they are faced with conflict with employees on a

regular basis.

One of the biggest barriers to staff participation in conflict management mechanisms is their lack

of skills, knowledge and training in this area; fear of getting the process wrong, saying the wrong

thing, being put under pressure, having to compromise or not having the solution are all signals

of a this.

Staff who are required to manage conflict within their roles may need skills in:

 Questioning including clarification, paraphrasing and summarising

 Investigation and problem diagnosis including root cause analysis

 Problem-solving and evaluation of options

 Communication including active listening and mediation and negotiation

 Identifying internal and external support people and services

When you investigate training options, both internally and externally, it is useful to find programs

that:

 Identify leadership and conflict styles and provide direct strategies for each of these

 Target specific skills

 Blend with or complement internal training, policies and procedures

 Give the opportunity to practice through case study, role play and project

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 Involve informal or formal assessment and feedback from a third party to improve

skills

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Identify, and where possible alleviate or eliminate,

sources of conflict or grievance according to legal

requirements

There are certain areas of conflict that are required to be eliminated by law – immediately you

might think of health, safety and wellbeing concerns, discrimination, harassment and bullying and

unfair pay. Not surprisingly, these are some of the most reported sources of friction in Australia,

and they are the most costly financially and to productivity.

Like the Hazard Control’s that you might use to control risk in areas of health and safety you can

use the same process of immediate control with a long-term view to elimination. In the hierarchy

relating to general risk, we replace personal protective equipment with supervision.

Here is the hierarchy and some suggested actions working from the least effective to the most

effective:

Supervision  Have employees work in pairs or with an
observer – normally a team leader whose
sole function is to oversee work.

 Have employees report weekly to a
mentor, coach or supervisor and unpack
the productivity reports with suggestions
for improvement.

 Induction / Probation periods
Administration  Training in any format offered for self-

enrolment or to entire teams

 Signage / Diagrams

 General policies on hiring / firing /
performing

 Checklists. Templates including interview /
hiring / induction documents that check
each person has been given the same
information

 Single or minimal communication channels

 Feedback, reports, statements & analysis

 Budget / Spending on IR

 Dedicated HR or IR staff with formal
training / experience

Engineering / Development  Procedures and processes

 Workforce planning and development

 Position Descriptions, Code of Conduct

 Monitors / Logs / Records

 Workplace organisation – i.e. design,
equipment availability, layout of
workstations

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 Team Development activities / budget
Isolation / Substitution  Coaching / Mentoring

 Individual training, supervision or
performance management

 Formal evaluation / surveying including
problem-solving at the whole of business
level

 Staff surveys, collection of internal data,
formal and informal interviews for
isolating problems

 Regular reviews on all other strategies
including measurement taking and
reporting

 Multiple feedback channels

 Pathways enablement for promotion,
expanding roles, taking on extra duties (for
reward).

Elimination & Termination  KPI’s combined with performance
management

 Strong policies on retention, supervision
and termination combined with routine
manager training/coaching in what to do
and when to do it

 Hiring for cultural and professional fit

 Regular relationship development activities
including recognising and rewarding
achievement and when someone exceeds
expectations

 Grievance policies and procedures

 Regular reporting on all facets of business
including the strength of the teams,
workshopping of findings with other
managers / CEO / Board

There will, of course, be times when regardless of the internal development and investment in

industrial relations, a business is likely to be perceived as unresponsive, uncooperative or even

oblivious to some disputes. Take for instance after a major safety incident – often people

become disgruntled because there has been a history of not acting quick enough or investing in

the best option in the early days leading to greater, unresolved conflict and certainly conflict with

multiple people simultaneously.

In Australia, we recognise a number of different mechanisms for employees to voice concerns

and have them settled assisted or unassisted at the local level. Earlier we mentioned that all

conflict is bad for productivity, but the following are some examples that will directly influence

productivity in unresolved or prolonged conflict:

 Strike action including picketing, participation refusal and absenteeism

 Work bans affecting one or more single processes / jobs

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 Go-Slow strikes where employees reduce their work pace

 Work-to-Rule where employees only perform the tasks in their position descriptions

or that are in certain areas of business procedure *NOTE: this can occur on an

individual level, not just on whole of team or whole of business disputes, with

employees systematically reducing their own investment in a job and reverting to

“position description” duties only. This can be a warning sign of conflict even before

the employee reports it!

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Evaluate documentation and other information

sources to clarify issues in dispute and ensure

completeness, balance and relevance

When dealing with conflict internally is it important to be accurate but not to the point of being

unsupportive or dismissive. This means checking documents, records and situations to ensure

that what the employee is saying and what is available are congruent. You are looking to support

the employees’ evidence with documented or witnessed evidence that will help you better treat

and prevent the problems occurring in the future. You are not undertaking an investigation,

gathering legal evidence or passing judgement and no one is being cross-examined.

Your first and primary source of information should be a formal complaint letter or template. It

is useful to set out a way that you want employees to raise issues so that they can be broken

down easily and to even provide an example. Whilst this will often raise the history and the

nature of the complaint, you should always break down each point into what the situation is,

what is being asked of the employee, what actions need to be taken and the intended result.

Conversely, if the employee has taken their matter outside of the business, you may need to

collect legal evidence over a short period of time to either support the company’s position or to

make decisions about formal concessions and changes that can be made. It is important to

approach this task with an open mind that perhaps the company is wrong.

It is useful to include in your policies and procedures a checklist for helping you to clarify issues,

but as this list would vary between different types of disputes, it is useful to work with some

flexibility also.

Documentation might include:

 Records and logs

 Matrixes, tables, schedules and plans

 Administrative documents, templates and filing systems

 Client/employee records

 Invoices, statements, bills and financial accounting documents

 Emails, written correspondence, call logs and notifications

 Policies, procedures, templates, signage and tip sheets

 Legislation, regulation, industry code of practice

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It might also be helpful to work with people in the organisation informally or formally to gather

eye-witness accounts and to get feedback on a situation.

As you collect information you should record it in a number of ways to ensure that there is

transparency in what you are doing there is a chain of evidence, you have been accurate, the

evidence supports one or both positions, and you can use the evidence in time and place to

continue the dispute resolution process. A helpful document for recording evidence might be a

matrix in which you can record the issues, the company position, the employee position, any

legislation, regulation or industry code of practice that supports your position and the evidence

you will use to support that it is has been applied appropriately in the workplace.

In your collection process, it is useful to undertake any ordinary reviews of information to check

for accuracy and quality and to apply any normal adjustments provided for in your plans.

If at any time you are unsure about what should be collected, accessed or maintained throughout

a dispute resolution process you should get legal help from the company’s lawyers, through the

FairWork information service, from an employer representative agency or in accordance with

instructions from legal enforcement agencies.

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Obtain expert or specialist advice and/or refer to

precedents, if required

Even with the most up-to-date training, all staff involved in the supervision, hiring, firing or

management of people in the workplace may need help to resolve complex disputes. There are

specialists who do nothing but resolve or consult on particular areas of employee satisfaction,

and they are available at any time to support anyone in the workplace to resolve disputes

internally or externally.

Specialist services may include:

 Human resources consultancies

 Disability or Cultural advocates

 Evaluators / Research companies

 Rewards and loyalty programs

 Unions, employee representatives and employer representatives

 Government agencies and departments

 The Industrial Relations Commission for each state, territory or federally

 Legal representatives

 Independent mediation/conflict resolution services

It is important, before you contact any of these organisations, to be clear on the pathway that you

have agreed to follow on any current disputes, and that you have invested internally in gathering

evidence and documentation to help these services to help you.

Best practice suggests that you:

 Research the best service to support your needs – write down or record the details

for two or more services that you will approach.

 Prepare for a phone call with some key points, key questions and making copies of

complaints, policies and procedures available in one folder or place.

 You should always call the service first to ascertain their fit and their availability with

your timelines. You should provide a summary of the matter and tell them the

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questions you are trying to answer. You should ask for rough timeframes or

turnaround periods and enquire about the processes they will undertake.

 Compare multiple service options where possible to choose the best fit for the job.

You should look specifically for services that can turn around work within your time

frames, which are available, that represent quality, that have a complex or thorough

approach to consultation and have a working knowledge of either your industry, area

or state.

 If the matter is brief, and there is no payment involved you should take notes of

responses during this phone call.

 If the matter is more complex, you should get details to send a cover letter and copies

of documents and any objectives for the consultation including your questions or

required formats. If there is a fee involved you should try to pay this upfront or

provide a letter of authority to invoice or purchase order.

It is important that you are clear about your timelines when engaging the help or support of

people externally as these can become crucial to the positive resolution of employee conflict. In

any case, you should advise the employee as matters progress and of any expected timeframes

each action. For example: when you have contacted an agency and sent the paperwork you

should let the employee know that you have done this and when you expect to get an answer, or

if you have received contact from the specialist but need time to analysis the results you should

tell this employee this too.

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Determine desired negotiation outcomes,

negotiation strategy and negotiation timeframes

Negotiation is often described as a tug-o-war between two parties, but if you remember the

game, from your childhood, you might also remember that someone always exerts more power in

the long run and effectively “wins” by pulling the other party across the line into their side. This

is not, at all, the intended effect of negotiation which is more about persuasion and compromise.

It is a state of win-win instead.

In order to negotiate or compromise you must have clear and stated expectations from both

parties – in other words, in order to be flexible you must have something to be flexible with!

The best way to prepare for negotiation is to get a clear statement, preferably written or in

another way recorded, from the employee(s). You should then undertake research and

consultation internally to define the expectation of the company or the parties you represent. It is

important to remember that “people’s” expectations may differ from the policies and procedures

that are in place.

The process from here is clear:

 Review and analyse the expectations – where are the two parties expectations the

same, where are they different, why are they different, if they are the same what is

stopping you from resolution, what are the associated laws / regulations and so on.

 State what you can do immediately – if you have expectations that are the same or

similar, and there is minimal, or no barrier to resolution then tell the other party

exactly what you are going to do, how you are going to do it and in what time frame

to resolve the problem.

 State what you are willing to do with time – if you have expectations that are the

same or similar and there are major barriers to resolution then tell the other party

exactly what you are going to do, how you are going to do it and in what time frame

to resolve the problem.

 State what you can’t do because it is prohibited as a matter of law or regulation in

your state / country.

 Allow time for reflection – are there matters that, for the employee, are not fully

addressed by the resolutions already set, what are their new expectations, what are

their questions or objections.

 Repeat the process until a resolution has been achieved or until only matters of law

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are left. In the case of matters of law, you may need to refer the employee externally

to have the matter resolved at a higher or governmental level.

The persuasion or concession aspects of this process come in stating what you can and will do

without focusing on the negatives. Where you say “we are not willing”, “we won’t”, “we can’t”,

“it’s not possible”, “but” or “however” you are providing negative discussion points that take

away from the positive action that you can take. Where there are negatives you should:

 Leave them out of initial discussions and responses, especially those in writing.

 Try reframing instead –

o “We can refer you externally to…. to discuss … To do this, we will …..” or

o “We can release you from that duty / position / expectation, and this will

mean….. We will do this by…” or

o “We have to apply a fair and even approach to this matter, and we have done

so in consultation with ….. We will keep doing …..”

 Refer externally on any problems that are too complex to discuss or when emotions

are escalated. You should take a proactive approach such as setting up meetings and

consultations or providing the details to the employee at the time of any discussions.

In the event that you are resolving a complex matter where there is both personal and emotional

investment on the part of the employee(s), you should make available the opportunity to be

represented. This is an employee right in all matters although you may wish to provide a

framework for its productivity. Many Australian organisations that are aligned with a union

choose to make representation a union representative only option, especially in the early stages of

negotiation. Where possible use discretion so as to avoid being unfair to people who are not yet

members of the union or do not wish to be.

A negotiation is only an option when the two parties are willing and able to discuss their options

and when there is still the ability to move or bend in a position. You may find that you prepare

for negotiation but in the meeting with the other party, they are no longer willing to bend or be

flexible with their expectations. It is important, therefore, to set time periods for responses,

investigation and negotiation to ensure that you do not miss any windows of opportunity.

A good timeline is:

 Respond to complaints within 24 hours acknowledging receipt and thanking the

person for bringing the matters to you in the appropriate way

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 Gather additional evidence within 48 – 72 hours to help you to plan for a more

detailed response. If possible, meet with the person during this time.

 Investigate any impediments to timeframes such as planned leave, public holidays or

the whole of business functions and advise the employee of the timelines that will

apply to them.

 Try to respond with the first round of negotiation within 7 days. If you do not have

any resolutions or outcomes at this point, you should state this and what you are

going to do to get the information you need.

 Try to resolve 95% of all matters within 14 days – this means 95% of all complaints

raised, in general, and 95% of all matters raised by the employee in their complaint if

you cannot get final outcome within this time because of impediments.

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Advocate the organisation’s position in negotiation

with the view to reaching a resolution that aligns to

organisational objectives

As outlined in the previous section sometimes you, a manager or a human resources practitioner

will be required to negotiate on behalf of the organisation in order to achieve a win-win

resolution. There will be times when this is advocated to an external service provider,

representative, agency or department.

The level of formality needs to be considered when advocating externally, and your

communication should include all areas where action can be taken. When working with people

who are not a part of your organisation, you will need to include:

 Background information such as the policies and procedures, how these are explained

to individuals and how you know that the person making a complaint was aware prior

to the complaint

 Copies of documents that are subject to the complaint including any forms, records,

logs, templates or communications.

 Copies of communications from senior management, the CEO or the board stating

the position

 Any legislation, regulation or industry codes of practice to support your position.

In general, an external agency will forward all correspondence with their summary of the

situation to the employee, so they need to understand the who, what, when, where, how and why

every bit as much as the employee should. This also gives them time to unpack any additional

issues that may be arising, or that may need addressing.

It is important when advocating a position that you:

 Remain professional at all times

 Focus on the positives

 Back everything up with evidence

 Remember your human side

 Use a formal format and tone

 Check everything for accuracy and integrity

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 Have the authority to write on behalf of the organisation or to represent the

organisation – you may get this through your position description, or you may have a

process for signing off negotiation approaches through workplace procedure.

It is possible, in all negotiations, that the employer has acted within the law, regulations and

current awards and they are not prepared to be more flexible in the application of their legal

entitlements. In this case, you may advocate for compliance with the law, change of the law for

your employees, or for concessions instead.

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Document, and if necessary certify, the agreed

outcomes with the relevant jurisdiction

The process of resolution for outcome includes:

 Identify the core issues

 Negotiation

 Documentation of outcomes

 Implementation of outcomes

 Review of outcomes

After you have completed negotiations and a resolution has been offered and accepted, it is an

important part of the process to document what you have agreed to and to have the terms,

accepted by both parties. An example of this might be in the negotiation of a workplace

agreement that changes that normal hours of an employee – you would make the offer, create the

agreement highlighting the new arrangements, send it to the employee to sign and then have

someone with workplace authority sign it on behalf of the employer.

Documentation is more than just writing a letter or making a note – these are just records of one

sides approach. Instead, when we talk about this final stage of negotiation, we mean a systematic

approach to updating policies and procedures, contracts and agreements and formalising these

with a sign-off.

In the event that you are working with more binding documents that impact multiple people

within your business, you may need to go through the process of certifying an agreement i.e. in

the case of an Enterprise Bargaining Agreement. This process is carried out in accordance with

the law giving the industrial relations committee in your region the final sign-off authority and

allowing them to publicly publish the agreement for it to be found and used by all stakeholders.

An agreement often supersedes an Award or minimum entitlements. Therefore, it is important

that the right process is followed.

Agreements may be made between for just your company, across multiple companies, across

companies and their associates or for all businesses carrying out duties within a particular field or

industry. There are different processes for each type of agreement. You can learn more about

these by navigating to https://www.fwc.gov.au/awards-and-agreements/agreements/make-

agreement

It is also important that you ensure that all documented agreements are:

https://www.fwc.gov.au/awards-and-agreements/agreements/make-agreement

https://www.fwc.gov.au/awards-and-agreements/agreements/make-agreement

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 Related to current expectations and trends, legislation, regulation and awards

 Correct, accurate, spell-checked and well written

 Vetted for discriminatory, misleading or unjust terms

 Set out with a limitation of liability or use

 Validated and version controlled in line with your company or industry policies and

procedures

 Comprehensive including any additional agreements required such as confidentiality,

discretion, copyright or intellectual property retainers

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Take remedial action where groups or individuals

fail to abide by agreements

There are a number of reasons why an individual or group may fail to abide by an agreement, and

you should also approach these situations with the intent to uncover the reasons and put in place

actions to support meeting the agreement. However, when the act is deliberate or wilful or when

attempts to resolve problems have not been successful, you may need to consider remedial action

to protect the business and its employees.

The Fair Work Act 2009 provides employers with a number of options for a remedy when

individuals and groups are not participating in the dispute resolution process and in a number of

protected actions. This act underpins the majority of employee relations activities, and you can

find a copy of the act here – http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/num_act/fwa2009114/

Some of the actions that may be available to you include:

 Recovery of damages ad costs

 Injunctions to prevent, stop or delay action

 Penalties on employees and companies

 Cessation of payments during protected action

Protected Industrial Action means that there is protection from civil liability for either the

employers or employees under a range of conditions and this is administered by the Fair Work

Commission in Australia. There are a number of actions that need to occur before industrial

action, such as a strike, can be initiated and protected. The best source of information for

employers and employees is the Fair Work Commission website and contact line. You can learn

more about industrial action by navigating here: http://www.fairwork.gov.au/about-us/policies-

and-guides/fact-sheets/rights-and-obligations/industrial-action#protected

There are also a number of internal remedies that can be actioned fairly. This may include:

 Review of medical certificates for extended period of illness absenteeism – for

periods that are not covered or confirmed pay may be withheld

 Review of employment in cases of misconduct, inconsistent performance,

unexplained non-attendance and behavioural non-conducive with the role

 Performance review and management against the position description including

limitation to bonuses and performance recognition

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/num_act/fwa2009114/

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/about-us/policies-and-guides/fact-sheets/rights-and-obligations/industrial-action#protected

http://www.fairwork.gov.au/about-us/policies-and-guides/fact-sheets/rights-and-obligations/industrial-action#protected

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When considering any remedial action, at any time you need to consider:

 What do your agreements say are the sanctions or likely outcomes?

 What does the award say, if there are no provisions in the agreement?

 What does the legislation say?

 What is fair, reasonable, ethical and appropriate and what support can you get from

internal and external sources?

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TOPIC 4 – FURTHER
INFORMATION

Key features of relevant entities in the current

Australian industrial relations system, including

courts and tribunals, trade unions and employer

bodies

Courts and Tribunals

Australia’s workplace relations laws

As set out in the Fair Work Act 2009 and other workplace legislation, the key elements of our workplace

relations framework are:

 A safety net of minimum terms and conditions of employment.

 A system of enterprise-level collective bargaining underpinned by bargaining obligations and rules

governing industrial action.

 Provision for individual flexibility arrangements as a way to allow an individual worker and an

employer to make flexible work arrangements that meet their genuine needs, provided that the

employee is better off overall.

 Protections against unfair or unlawful termination of employment.

 Protection of the freedom of both employers and employees to choose whether or not to be represented

by a third party in workplace matters and the provision of rules governing the rights and

responsibilities of employer and employee representatives.

Australia’s workplace relations laws are enacted by the Commonwealth Parliament. The practical application of

the Fair Work Act in workplaces is overseen by the Fair Work Commission and the Fair Work Ombudsman.7

7 https://www.jobs.gov.au/australias-national-workplace-relations-system

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Industrial Relations Australia

The Fair Work Commission (FWC), until 2013 known as Fair Work Australia (FWA), is the

Australian industrial relations tribunal created by the Fair Work Act 2009 as part of the Rudd

Government’s reforms to industrial relations in Australia. Operations commenced on 1 July

2009.

The Commission is Australia’s national workplace relations tribunal. It was established by the

Fair Work Act 2009 (Fair Work Act) and is responsible for administering the provisions of the

Fair Work Act.

The Commission’s powers and functions include:

 Dealing with unfair dismissal claims

 Dealing with anti-bullying claims

 Dealing with general protections and unlawful termination claims

 Setting the national minimum wage and minimum wages in modern awards

 Making, reviewing and varying modern awards

 Assisting the bargaining process for enterprise agreements

 Approving, varying and terminating enterprise agreements

 Making orders to stop or suspend industrial action

 Dealing with disputes brought to the commission under the dispute resolution

procedures of modern awards and enterprise agreements

 Determining applications for right of entry permits

 Promoting cooperative and productive workplace relations and preventing disputes

The Commission and General Manager also have responsibilities in relation to the registration,

amalgamation and cancellation of registered organisations and the making and alteration of their

rules under the Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Act 2009.8

8 https://www.fwc.gov.au/about-us

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Industrial Relations Court of Australia
The Industrial Relations Court of Australia (IRCA) is a superior court of law and equity, established by the

Australian Parliament under the Industrial Relations Reform Act 1993 which amended the Industrial Relations

Act 1988. It is equal in status to other national superior courts such as the Federal Court of Australia and the

Family Court of Australia. It consists of a Chief Justice and as many other Judges as hold office under the

Industrial Relations Act 1988. As a consequence of the Workplace Relations and other Legislation Amendment

Act 1996, the Court’s jurisdiction has been transferred to other Courts, mainly the Federal Court of Australia.

On 25 May 1997 the staff and resources of the Industrial Relations Court of Australia were transferred to the

Federal Court of Australia.

Despite the transfer of jurisdiction, the Industrial Relations Court of Australia continues to exist at law until the

last of its judges resigns or retires from office. 9

Trade unions
A trade union is an organisation whose membership consists of workers and union leaders,
united to protect and promote their common interests.

The principal purposes of a labour union are to:
 Negotiate wages and working condition terms
 Regulate relations between workers (its members) and the employer
 Take collective action to enforce the terms of collective bargaining
 Raise new demands on behalf of its members

 Help settle their grievances10

In order to identify the trade union that meets the needs of your business type you can contact
the ACTU Workers’ Line on 1300 362 223 or check out their website: http://www.actu.asn.au/

Employer bodies/associations
There is a range of employer bodies/associations that you can contact in relation to employee
relations. These include:

9 https://www.fedcourt.gov.au/about/courts-and-tribunals/irca
10 http://www.businessdictionary.com/definition/trade-union.html

http://www.actu.asn.au/

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 Peak organisations
o Australian Council of Trade Unions
o Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry
o Australian Industry Group
 National
o Australian Workers’ Union
o United Voice
 State and territory based
o Australian Business Industrial (NSW)
o Union of Christmas Island Worker
o Victorian Employers’ Chamber of Commerce and Industry

There may be other employer bodies or associations that may relate directly to your organisation.
These could be more industry related rather than overarching. You will need to check for the
ones that relate to you.

Key features of relevant organisational policies and

procedures

Industrial relations, often called labour-management relations or labour relations, is the human

resources discipline most often associated with matters involving union workers. Employee

relations is the companion discipline that HR experts typically use when defining the HR

responsibilities for a non-union employee base. Policy development for industrial relations

generally is formed by the employer’s HR department leader; however, if an HR leader is not on

staff, industrial relations policies become the responsibility of the employer’s highest-ranking

manager, such as the company president.

Organisational policies that relate to long-term employee relations objectives may include:

 Effective management of grievances, conflict situations and dispute-resolution

procedures

 Employee commitment

 Employee satisfaction

 Job design

 Negotiation outcomes

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 Organisational culture

 Relations with unions and other peak bodies

 Restructuring

 Salary, remuneration, benefits and bonuses

 Workforce planning

 Workplace reform

Your organisation will have policies and procedures in place so you should identify them and

read them to ensure you are aware of the features of each.

Key features of organisational objectives

Every organisation has objectives. In this case we are talking about the objectives of an

organisation relating to employee relations. Some objectives an organisation may have could

include:

 Establish and foster sound relationship between workers and management by safeguarding their

interests.

 Avoid industrial conflicts and strikes by developing mutuality among the interests of concerned

parties.

 Keep, as far as possible, strikes, lockouts and gheraos at bay by enhancing the economic status of

workers.

 Provide an opportunity to the workers to participate in management and decision making process.

 Raise productivity in the organisation to curb the employee turnover and absenteeism.

 Avoid unnecessary interference of the government, as far as possible and practicable, in the matters of

relationship between workers and management.

 Establish and nurse industrial democracy based on labour partnership in the sharing of profits and

of managerial decisions.

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 Socialise industrial activity by involving the government participation as an employer. 11

Discuss the organisations objectives with relevant people to ensure you are aware of them and

can focus on them whilst working. Unless you understand the objectives of an organisation you

cannot become part of the team nor contribute to the implementation any procedures effectively.

11

http://www.yourarticlelibrary.com/industries/industrial-relations-ir-concept-scope-and-

objectives/35430

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SUMMARY

Now that you have completed this unit, you should have the ability to manage employee

relations.

If you have any questions about this resource, please ask your trainer. They will be only too

happy to assist you when required.

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REFERENCES

“Create a GANTT Chart Using Excel,” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

http://www.smartsheet.com/blog/gantt-chart-excel,

“Determine Root Cause: 5 Whys, iSixSigma.com,” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

http://www.isixsigma.com/tools-templates/cause-effect/determine-root-cause-5-whys/,

“Fair Work Act 2009, Australasian Legal Information Institute (austLII),” n.d. Web. 05 May.

2019. http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/num_act/fwa2009114/,

“Fair Work Commission – Various Pages, Commonwealth Government of Australia,” n.d. Web.

05 May. 2019. https://www.fwc.gov.au/,

“GANTT Charts,” Ganntt.com, n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019. http://www.gantt.com/,

“How to do a Cost Benefit Analysis: A 3-Minute Crash Course,” User: Wilymanager, n.d. n.d.

Web. 05 May. 2019. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Qt8HNNWIV-c

“Manage Role Changes in Your Business, State Government of Victoria,” n.d. Web. 05 May.

2019. http://www.business.vic.gov.au/hiring-and-managing-staff/staff-management/change-

management-procedures-and-role-change,

“PEST Analysis, Mind Tools Ltd,” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_09.htm

“SWOT Analysis, Leadership Victoria,” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

http://www.leadershipvictoria.org/docs/plugin_swot-template ,

“Worksafe Victoria – Various Pages, State Government of Victoria,” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

http://www.worksafe.vic.gov.au ,

“Trade Unions – LAWSTUFF.” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

.

“Enterprise bargaining – Fact sheets – Fair Work Ombudsman.” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

.

“Workplace Gender Equality Act 2012 | The Workplace Gender …” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

.

“Industrial Relations Court of Australia.” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

https://www.fedcourt.gov.au/about/courts-and-tribunals/irca

“Australia’s workplace relations laws.” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

https://www.jobs.gov.au/australias-national-workplace-relations-system

“Fair Work Commission.” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019. https://www.fwc.gov.au/about-us

“Industrial Relations (IR): Concept, Scope and Objectives!” n.d. Web. 05 May. 2019.

http://www.yourarticlelibrary.com/industries/industrial-relations-ir-concept-scope-and-

objectives/35430

http://www.smartsheet.com/blog/gantt-chart-excel

Determine the Root Cause: 5 Whys

http://www.austlii.edu.au/au/legis/cth/num_act/fwa2009114/

https://www.fwc.gov.au/

http://www.gantt.com/

http://www.business.vic.gov.au/hiring-and-managing-staff/staff-management/change-management-procedures-and-role-change

http://www.business.vic.gov.au/hiring-and-managing-staff/staff-management/change-management-procedures-and-role-change

http://www.mindtools.com/pages/article/newTMC_09.htm

http://www.leadershipvictoria.org/docs/plugin_swot-template

http://www.worksafe.vic.gov.au/

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https://www.jobs.gov.au/australias-national-workplace-relations-system

https://www.fwc.gov.au/about-us

Industrial Relations (IR): Concept, Scope and Objectives

Industrial Relations (IR): Concept, Scope and Objectives

SIMULATED BUSINESS – Sim’s Hardware

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Table of Contents

BUSINESS PROFILE ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… 5

Organisational Overview ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 5

Vision Statement ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 10

Vision Statement ………………………………………………………………………………………………………. 10

Australian Hardware Organisation Chart ……………………………………………………………………… 1

1

Risk Management Plan ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 1

2

POLICIES, PROCEDURES, PROCESSES …………………………………………………………………………… 18

Armed Robbery Procedures ……………………………………………………………………………………….. 18

Customer Feedback Questionnaire …………………………………………………………………………….. 20

Customer service standards……………………………………………………………………………………….. 21

Dealing with

customer

complaints ……………………………………………………………………………… 22

Department Sales Report …………………………………………………………………………………………… 2

4

Department Sales Report …………………………………………………………………………………………… 25

Safety ……………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 26

Fire and evacuation procedures …………………………………………………………………………………. 29

Staff and customer accidents …………………………………………………………………………………….. 30

Employee behaviour standards ………………………………………………………………………………….. 32

EEO policy………………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 37

Incident Report Form ………………………………………………………………………………………………… 39

Opening and Closing the Premises ……………………………………………………………………………… 40

Work Attendance ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… 41

Pay rates and bonus schemes …………………………………………………………………………………….. 42

Performance appraisals …………………………………………………………………………………………….. 44

Performance Appraisal Form ……………………………………………………………………………………… 46

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Policies dealing with Theft …………………………………………………………………………………………. 5

3

Customer’s property …………………………………………………………………………………………………. 56

Dealing with cash, credit, cheques and EFTPOS ……………………………………………………………. 60

Dealing with cash holding and banking procedures ………………………………………………………. 64

Returns policy ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 64

Staff general security ………………………………………………………………………………………………… 66

Stock control policy and procedures …………………………………………………………………………… 67

Stock handling ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 69

Store pricing policy …………………………………………………………………………………………………… 70

Coordinating stocktake ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 74

Stocktake sheet ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 79

Shrinkage sheet ………………………………………………………………………………………………………… 80

Discrepancy sheet …………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 81

Mark-down Worksheet ……………………………………………………………………………………………… 82

Store Safety Policy and Procedures …………………………………………………………………………….. 83

Store Security Policy and Procedures ………………………………………………………………………….. 93

Staff Induction Checklist ………………………………………………………………………………………….. 113

Recruitment and Selection Policy ……………………………………………………………………………… 115

Procedure: To make a complaint ………………………………………………………………………………. 116

Grievance Policy ……………………………………………………………………………………………………… 117

System to monitor sales performance ………………………………………………………………………. 118

COMPANY DOCUMENTS ………………………………………………………………………………………….. 126

Head Office Financial Management Policies and Procedures Manual ……………………………. 126

Financial Performance 2016-2017 …………………………………………………………………………….. 139

Statement of Financial Position Ending FY2017 ………………………………………………………….. 140

Australian Hardware Marketing Plan 2017 ………………………………………………………………… 141

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Business Plan ………………………………………………………………………………………………………….. 165

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BUSINESS PROFILE

Organisational Overview1

With 138 stores and approximately 10,000 staff across the country, Sim’s Hardware is one

of Austraila’s largest hardware retailers.

Sim’s Hardware provides a wide range of products at competitive prices for the purpose of

home improvemen

t

Sim’s Hardware has been a part of the Australian retail landscape from last man

y

decades.

What is now known as Sim’s Hardware opened its first store under the name of Sim’s Home

Goods in George St Sydney. Sim’s Home Goods initially specialised in the manufacturing and

sale of small household furniture. The business quickly expanded from one to four stores

across Sydney’s northern and western suburbs. The stores employed the equivalent of 60

full-time staff by the beginning of 1928. All of which were either family

members

or friends.

In 1930, the midst of the Great Depression, the demand for Sim’s Home Goods began to

decline. Over the next three years, the business closed three of the big stores.

In 1941, declining consumer demand in conjunction with the onset of World War II again

brought Sim’s Home Goods to the brink of closure. The business immediately initiated a

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change process that included re-training the existing manufacturing and sales staff and

modifying the company’s supplier relationships and equipment to cater for new contracts.

This sustained the business through the war years.

In the early 1950s, the business was repositioned; this time to benefit from the housing

boom by supplying wood and other hardware items. The business was re-named Sim’s

Hardware and an expansion program commenced that took the business into all states over

the next 10 years.

The business has continued to expand to now have 138 stores and approximately 10,000

staff across the country.

Products

Employment

We aim to be innovative with the benefits we offer to help staff achieve the right balance

between work and life. These benefits include:

 Flexible working options such as job sharing, off-site work, transition to retirement

and career break

 Purchased leave of up to an extra four weeks annual leave can be purchased

through salary sacrifice

 Carer’s, compassionate and personal leave is available to care for sick family

members

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 Flexible leave to fulfil defense service duties

 Parental and adoption leave options for when your family grows

 Special purpose leave to enable our people to undertake activities in the community

 Educational assistance and study leave to assist further education and development

 Carer’s services for children, elderly parents or relatives

 Employee assistance program offering counselling services for people and their

families

 Recognition scheme and leadership development programs

 Competitive remuneration including performance bonus structures and income

protection insurance

 Employee share plan to assist employees to become part owners of Sim’s Hardware

.

Community

Sim’s Hardware works in partnership with local community groups and sports clubs to help

fundraising activities. We provide opportunities for local clubs and organisations to run

produce stalls on Saturday mornings outside our stores.

We also provide discounts for materials being purchased for the construction or

maintenance of community facilities by community organisations.

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Environment

Sim’s Hardware has a commitment to minimising our environmental impact by:

 using resources wisely;

 ensuring our suppliers operate sustainably and ethically;

 encouraging and educating customers about environmentally friendly alternatives;

and,

 focusing on appropriate waste management principles.

We consider social, economic, cultural and environmental risks and benefits into our

business decision-making.

Stores

With over 130 stores nationwide there is bound to be one near you.

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Mission Statement

Sim’s Hardware provides the best quality hardware, homewares, garden supplies and

building materials from Australia and the world.

Sim’s Hardware is committed to providing customers and tradespeople withvalue through

everyday low prices, product quality, expert service, community engagement and

environmental responsibility.

Vision Statement

Within five years, Sim’s Hardware will lead the hardware and home-improvement market in

Australia.

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Sim’s Hardware Organisation Chart

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Risk Management Plan

Sim’s Hardware is committed to the effective management of risk, which is central to the

continued growth and profitability of the company. The purpose of this policy is to ensure

that:

● appropriate systems are in place to identify – as much as is reasonably possible and

practical – risks that the company faces in conducting its business

● the potential impact of identified risks are understood and appropriate limits are set to

assist in the management of exposures to those risks

● responsibilities are delegated to manage the identified risks

● assurance is provided as to the effectiveness of the risk management system and risk

controls

● any changes to the company’s risk profile are monitored and disclosed.

This policy covers all risks that could have a material impact on the company, including

those related to:

 people

 assets

 objectives

customers

 reputation

 the

environment

The Chief Financial Officer (CFO) is accountable for:

● identification and management of risks including risks in relation to all significant

investment decisions

● appointing the system owners, through whom appropriate systems and procedures for

the identification, reporting and management of risks are developed, implemented,

maintained and reviewed

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● provision of reports to the board on performance in relation to identification, assessment

and management of risks, including environmental risk.

Risk Management

Store managers are accountable for:

● the development, implementation, maintenance and review of appropriate policies,

procedures and systems for the management of all risks within their area of responsibility

● providing assurance that the systems of risk management and internal control within their

area of responsibility operate effectively in all respects.

The Chief Risk Officer at each store is accountable for:

● demonstrating, through a program of assurance and review, the effectiveness of, and

compliance against, those systems used to identify and manage risk

● providing an effective system for assurance, at six monthly intervals, from employees with

specific delegated responsibilities under this policy

● the provision of an appropriate insurance program

● the identification of material changes to the company’s risk profile and recommending

their disclosure

All managers, supervisors and employees are responsible for:

● taking all reasonable and practicable steps to perform their responsibilities delegated

under this policy and the related systems and procedures.

Reporting

For the approval of Sim’s Hardware annual financial reporting, the Chief Financial Officer

states to the board in writing that:

● the declaration provided in accordance with s295A of the Corporations Act 2001 is

founded on a sound system of risk management and internal control and that the system is

operating effectively in all material respects in relation to financial reporting risks.

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The CFO provides a report to the board indicating:

● the effectiveness of the company’s risk management and internal control systems in

relation to business risks

● the effectiveness of the company’s risk management and internal control systems in

relation to environmental and triple bottom line related risks.

Risk Management Strategy and Plan

Introduction

Sim’s Hardware recognises that risk management is an essential component of good

management practice and is committed to the proactive management of risks across the

organisation. The strategy is designed to:

● identify, evaluate, control and manage risks, including environmental risks

● ensure potential threats and opportunities are identified and managed

● inform store management, partners and staff members about their roles, responsibilities

and reporting procedures with regards to risk management

● ensure risk management is an integral part of planning at all levels of the organisation.

Guiding Principles

Sim’s Hardware is committed to achieving its vision, business objectives and quality

objectives. This will be achieved through the proactive management of risk at all levels of

the organisation. Sim’s Hardware acknowledges that embracing innovative ideas and

practices carries with it risks, but that these are identifiable and measurable and therefore

capable of being subject to realistic risk mitigation processes.

Responsibility and Authority

Store managers/partners have responsibility for ensuring that risk management is in place.

Managers/partners have the responsibility of reviewing the Risk Action Plan (outlined in the

table at the end of this document) on a monthly basis.

Staff support and implement policies approved by the partners.

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Key risk indicators will be identified, closely monitored and action taken where necessary,

by all employees of Sim’s Hardware.

LRES Training Management Pty Ltd

Risk Management Framework

This framework encompasses a number of elements that together facilitate an effective and

efficient operation, enabling Sim’s Hardware to respond to a variety of operational,

financial, commercial and strategic risks. These elements include:

● Policies and procedures: A series of policies underpin the internal control process.

● Reporting: Decisions to rectify problems are made at regular meetings of the partners and

store management.

● Business planning and budgeting: The business planning and budgeting process is used to

set objectives, agree on action plans and allocate resources. Progress towards meeting

business plan objectives is monitored regularly by the partners. Contingency planning is

undertaken as required.

● Risk management review: The partners are required to report monthly.

● External audit: The final audit of financial statements is controlled by an externa

l

chartered accountant who provides feedback to the partners.

Definitions

Risks are identified on a scale of likelihood of occurring in the next 12 months and assigned

an impact or consequence of the risk as high, medium or low. High includes either a

significant shortfall of around 40% in achieving budget or a significant reduction in ability to

function. Medium includes either a shortfall of budget of between 10% and 20% or some

reduction in function, and low indicates minor reductions in achieving budget or minimal

reduction in performance.

Risk Management Action Plan

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POLICIES, PROCEDURES, PROCESSES

Armed Robbery Procedures

Our company policy is to provide a safe and healthy working environment. Do not attempt to

be heroic: your life is worth more than any amount of money.

However, in the event of a hold up the following procedures must be followed:

 Remain calm and quiet

 Stand still and do not make any sudden movements

 Obey the offender’s

instructions

 Do not draw attention to yourself, and speak only when spoken to

 Avoid direct eye contact and do not stare at the offender

What to do immediately after the offender has left the scene:

 Arrange first aid assistance

if required

 If possible, note direction and means of departure, not putting your self at risk.

 When safe to do so advise security and the Manager who will ring the police 000 and

contact head office

The Manager will seal off the area where the event took place

 The Manager in charge will ask all witnesses to remain until the police arrive and

you

will be allowed to your notify parents and family, should you be required to remain

in the store

The Manager will complete the appropriate forms

Store safety tips

 Do not chase offenders

 If safe to do so observe the dress and physical appearance of the offender

 Assess the offenders’ height against a display stand, post or doorway

 Do not attempt to answer a ringing telephone

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 Do not attempt to delay the departure of the offenders; as soon as they leave you

are safe

 Do not discuss the incident with other employees until you have spoken with the

police.

 Do not drive a vehicle immediately after a hold up due to possible shock affecting

you

 Do not touch anything as evidence could be destroyed

 We recommend any trauma counselling that is offered by management

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Customer Feedback Questionnaire

Dear customer,

We value your comments about the kind of service you received while shopping in our store.

To help us to serve you better, your responses and suggestions guide us in making key

decisions regarding store operations.

1 Are our sales staff always friendly and helpful?

If No, please suggest some changes you would like to see in the future.

_____

__________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________

_______________________________________________________

 Yes

 No

2 Are you satisfied with how our sales are processed in terms of speed,

accuracy and the handling of credit or debit cards?

If No, please suggest some changes you would like to see in the future.
_______________________________________________________
_______________________________________________________
_______________________________________________________

 Yes
 No

3 Are you impressed with the store’s presentation in terms of access in

aisles and at stands, cleanliness, lighting and signage?

 Yes
 No

4 Are you satisfied with our range of merchandise?  Yes

 No

5 How many times have you visited this store before today?  1-5

 6-10

 11-15

 More

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6 Which age group do you belong to?  15-25

 26-35

 36-45

 Over 45

Thank you for taking the time to help us to try and improve our service to you.

Your name (Optional): ___________________________________ Postcode: _______

Male

Female

Customer service standards

Customer service policy

Excellent customer service is our number one priority and we expect customers to be

treated with respect. Staff members at all times should do whatever it takes to create a

happy and satisfied customer.

Remember the first impression is very powerful.

Once this has been formed, it takes a long time to change it.

Greeting the

customer

Welcome all customers with “Good morning/afternoon” and with a genuine smile and a

spontaneous approach. Call customers by their name wherever

possible.

Always use eye

contact, good body language and use facial expressions. Then leave the customer to view

store merchandise for a short while before re-approaching.

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Making the customer welcome

In a friendly professional manner, always let the customer know you are there to help. If

you are busy with another customer, advise the customer you will attend to them shortly or

ask another staff member to assist them. By starting a genuine conversation with a

customer you are showing an interest in them and their needs. Asking open questions is a

positive way to keep the conversation flowing.

Product knowledge

All staff members will be correctly trained in all product knowledge, as customers expect us

to educate them and inform them. It is crucial to understand the features and benefits of

each garment and explain to the customer how to care for the item e.g. dry clean only, hand

wash, the need for a water proofing spray.

Farewell the customer

Your farewell statement should be warm, friendly and genuine. You should always include

the words “Thank you. Let me know how the outfit went. Enjoy your day.”

Always invite the customer back to the store. Your excellent customer service will always

make a difference. If you reinforce the customer’s purchase and make the customer feel

good about the item they have purchased, then the customer will leave feeling satisfied

with their purchase instead of wondering did they really need it.

Good customer service is about doing a lot of little things better and about providing

something different and fun to experience.

Dealing with customer complaints

It is a challenge to convert an unhappy customer to a satisfied customer. Most customer

complaints can be resolved at store level, and by following our Company’s three step

procedure, it can be done.

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Step 1: Manage the emotion

Listen to the customer

Show that you are listening by using eye contact. If need be, take notes. Never interrupt the

customer while they are explaining the problem. Assure the customer you can help them.

Empathise with the customer. Put yourself in the customer’s shoes and show you

understand and support them. Use statements such as “I understand your frustration

sir/madam and I am sure we can resolve the problem.”

Apologise

Always apologise for any inconvenience and assure the customer that you or another staff

member can help them. If you do not feel confident, call for your Supervisor. Do not make a

scene.

Step 2: Negotiate a solution

Identify the problem by agreeing with the customer’s complaint. It is paramount all staff

members are correctly trained and have a sound knowledge of store policies and

procedures, specifically the returns and refund policy.

Assist the customer or refer the matter to the Supervisor, who will take the customer to the

Supervisor’s desk. Ask what they would like to see happen, rather than what they want you

to do about it. Don’t let the customer force you into a quick decision.

Step 3: Commit to action

Be positive when resolving a customer’s complaint. Focus on the problem and don’t dwell

on what went wrong. Determine a solution which is acceptable to both customer and the

Company.

Some solutions available are refund, exchange or a credit note. If a resolution cannot be

found at your level, it is Company Policy that a Supervisor attends to the customer.

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Points to remember when dealing with angry customers are:

 The customer is always right

 Always remain objective while a customer is being abusive

 An angry customer should be dealt with quickly and quietly and away from other

customers

Department Sales Report

Department: ____________________Month: ___

Monda

y

Tuesda

y

Wednesda

y

Thursda

y

Frida

y

Saturda

y

Sunda

y

Tota

l

Week

1

Targe

t

Actual

+ / –

Week
2

Targe
t

Actual
+ / –

Week
3

Targe
t

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Actual
+ / –

Week
4

Targe
t

Actual
+ / –

Supervisor: ________________________________________

Equipment security

Our store has purchased equipment to make the company more efficient and professional.

Equipment is a valuable asset and it is the Supervisor’s responsibility to ensure the

following

rules are adhered to:

 Equipment is serviced on a regular basis

 Staff members are encouraged to treat equipment with respect

 All staff are appropriately trained in the use of equipment and associated

occupational health and safety issues

 Equipment is used in appropriate manner and not for personal use

 All equipment should be stored in a locked cupboard

 Keys are held by the Supervisor at all times

 Equipment is not left lying around as theft could occur

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Safety

Occupational Health and Safety Commitment

At The Store, working together, we aim to provide both our staff members and our

customers with a safe and healthy environment. A safe working environment is not

something that just happens -we all have to make it happen.

What is Occupational Health and Safety (OH&S) Legislation?

Occupational Health and Safety Legislation aims to protect the health, safety and welfare of

people at work. It lays down general requirements, which must be met at all workplaces.

The Legislation covers self-employed people as well as employees, employers, students,

contractors and visitors.

The company will at all times provide a safe working environment

To do this we will provide:

 A safe and healthy working environment for all our employees, contractors, visitors

and customers

 A written safety policy

 Encouragement for all staff members and employees to help maintain and improve

the health, safety and welfare of all employees

 On-going safety training for all employees

 Rehabilitation for injured workers

 Safe entrances to and from the building

 Safe equipment and working methods, including appliances, tools and a safe system

of

work

 Arrangements for ensuring the safe use, handling, storage and transport of

equipment and substances

The supervisor’s role

Your supervisor will:

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 Ensure the overall safety off employees and company property under his/her control

 Ensure that no task will be undertaken if health and safety standards are

compromised

 Ensure that all company rules and procedures are adhered to at all times

The employee’s role

As an employee we expect that you will:

 Follow all workplace policies related to safety

 Practice safe work habits

 Use protective equipment and clothing properly

 Know emergency

procedures

 Not willingly place at risk the workplace health and safety of yourself or others

Safety Committee

Our Safety Committee meets the first Tuesday of each month. We have found this is one of

the most effective ways of involving employees in maintaining and improving health and

safety standards in

the workplace.

Our committee guidelines adhere to the OH&S Act.

The basic company guidelines are:

 A committee must be established where a workplace has 20 or more people

 The committee should consist of no more than eight people

 At least one department manager or supervisor should be a member of the

committee

 Committee members should consist of one employee from each department

 Meetings should be documented and conducted each month on a set day

 All safety issues should be discussed during safety meetings and acted upon

 Two safety inspections must be conducted each month prior to meeting

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If you want to join the Safety Committee, please contact your store manager.

OH&S Resolution Strategy

If you become aware of an issue within your work environment that is unsafe, you should

try and rectify the problem if safe to do so before it causes an injury.

You should

assess whether you can fix the problem yourself safely. Never endanger yourself or others

under any circumstances.

If you cannot fix the problem report it to your OH&S representative, Supervisor or

Manager.

Fixing safety issues as they arise will provide a safe environment for our employees to work

in and our customers to shop in.

Accident prevention

To prevent accidents we must always maintain:

 Safe Equipment: Use the right tool for the job and check equipment for faults before

use. If unsafe, tell the appropriate person

 Safe Environment: Inspect floors regularly for spillage of liquids or produce, and

stack shelves safely. Clean all spillages and use appropriate signs

 Safe Behaviour: Only use the equipment that you have been trained to use. Never

endanger yourself, customers or other employees

Workers compensation

All employees are entitled to claim workers compensation if they suffer a work related

illness or injury. If an injury occurs you must:

 Inform your manager or supervisor immediately and they will arrange medical

treatment

 Complete an incident or accident report and get your supervisor to sign it

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Workers compensation forms are available from your manager

Fire and evacuation procedures

If you see a fire or emergency:

 Stay calm and make an assessment of the situation

 Assist any person in immediate danger if it is safe to do so

 Notify your Store Manager

 Ring emergency services on the phone number 000

 Make an announcement over the PA system that there is a problem and request all

customers to leave goods and purchases and vacate the store in an orderly manner

### Show a map of emergency exits.

Fire wardens or a responsible member of staff should:

 Direct all customers to the nearest safe exit

 If safe to do so, secure cash and shut down computers

 Proceed to your assembly area until the emergency is over

 Inform premises on either side of the building about emergency

 Account for all staff

Company responsibility:

 All staff are trained in the fire and evacuation procedures

 A fire warden is always on staff

 All fire equipment is checked regularly by the local fire department

 Fire alarm is working properly

Your responsibility:

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Know the fire drill procedures

Be aware of the location of portable fire extinguishes, hose reels, emergency exits and the

location of your store’s assembly area

First Aid facilities and assistance

As part of our commitment to promote a safe and healthy working environment, we

encourage staff members who would like to become a first aid attendant to do so. To apply

you need to have been in our employment for more than 3 months. For more information

please contact your manager.

Staff and customer accidents

If you have an accident at work you should:

 Seek First Aid if necessary

 Report the accident to your store or department manager, whether you are injured

or not

 Fill out incident or accident report

 Take steps to avoid repetition of the accident

### Refer to Incident and Accident report

If you see a customer who has had an accident you should:

 Remain calm

 If possible, move injured person to a safe place

 If unable to move, make the person as comfortable as possible

Arrange for first aid assistance to attendant the accident

 If needed, phone the ambulance

 Ensure the store or department manager is informed immediately

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 Seek any friends or relatives of the injured person who may be shopping with the

customer

 Never admit that the accident was the fault of the store or make promises to any

customer

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Employee behaviour standards

Our aim is to look professional for our customers and make them feel comfortable when they

visit our stores.

Employees’ dress code

All staff are required to present themselves in a professional manner for their employment

roles. Staff member’s appearance is a reflection of our company’s image. Uniforms will be

supplied but it is up to the staff member to make sure all uniforms are cleaned and pressed

prior to commencement of shift. In some circumstances protective clothing is supplied and

must be worn according to company policy.

Cleanliness

Normal standards apply including bathing, the use of deodorant and keeping fingernails and

hands clean.

### For more information refer to Food Handling and Hygiene manual.

Hair

Should be neatly trimmed and combed hair. Long hair must be tied back

Moustaches are permitted, but must be neat and clean; sideburns should be neatly

trimmed.

Footwear

All staff must wear blue/black solid, closed footwear to protect their feet from injury.

Caps and aprons

Caps and aprons must be worn at all times for hygiene purposes.

Name badges

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Name badges must be worn during your shift.

Jewellery and cosmetics

We appreciate that everyone is an individual but we as a team need to give a professional

image to our customers. When at work, please do not wear anything that might offend our

customers such as loud hair colour, body piercing, etc.- Conservative use of cosmetics is

permitted, however nail polish and false nails are not allowed.

For safety reasons jewellery must be minimal and conservative. Body piercing and tattoos

must be covered during your shift. This is for health and safety and food safety reasons.

Smoking

Smoking is not permitted in any area of the store. A smoke free policy covers all buildings at

all times.

Alcohol and other drugs

Under no circumstances must you start your shift under the influence of drugs, alcohol or

any illegal substances.

While on the premises it is also unacceptable to sell or consume alcohol or other drugs, or

illegal substances. Breaking of this rule will result in instant dismissal and possible police

notification.

Grievances and discipline

Our store promotes the idea of open communication in a non-threatening atmosphere.

However in a corporate environment a certain level of conflict is inevitable. The key to

effective resolution is that any grievance should be dealt with as close to its source as

possible.

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Grievance resolution procedures

The employee’s role

Everyone in the store has the responsibility and the right to solve any problems or

grievances if they occur. Create open communication channels and ensure that the

workplace is free from discrimination.

Discuss any complaint or grievance in a clear and logical way by following the correct

procedural steps:

 Employees shall notify the supervisor or manager in writing and state the remedy

sought

 Take the complaint to the manager if the complaint involves a supervisor

 Reasonable time limits must be allowed for discussion at each level of authority

 While procedures are being followed, normal work must continue

The supervisor’s role

As a supervisor you have a responsibility to develop trust and mutual respect, therefore all

matters concerning grievance and discipline should be treated in a professional manner and

in the strictest of confidence.

Procedural steps:

 Be assertive and ensure the problem is solved in a reasonable matter; be fair, non-

discriminating and make sure you have all the facts before discussion commences

 Allow reasonable time limits for discussion. Listen actively to employee complaints

and grievances in an empathetic manner and reassure the employee that complaints

will be resolved

 Attempt to resolve the conflict by discussing the problem with all parties close to the

dispute

 Encourage each party to state the problem and have both parties work together to

find a solution

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 The supervisors must provide a response to employee’s grievance if the matter has

not been resolved

If a resolution is not achieved refer the matter to the Manager

The manager’s role

Arrange for a further meeting between all parties to try to resolve the dispute. If the dispute

can not be resolved at this level, as a last resort the following options are available:

Procedural steps:

 All employees and employers have the right to be represented by an industrial

organisation

 Employ a professional mediator or counsellor

Disciplinary action

Termination of employment

Misconduct by an employee will result in 2 verbal warnings being issued, then a written

warning, which will be signed by Management and the employee.

The written warning will be kept on file for a period of twelve months and should the

company need to issue another warning, the employment will be terminated.

On termination of employment and within 7 days of the termination date, you will receive

your wages, along with any holiday pay that you are owed.

Misconduct

Once employed with the store you must comply with our conditions of employment. If you

fail to do so you may be terminated or issued with a verbal or written warning.

Acts of misconduct are:

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 Creating general disharmony among employees

 Verbal abuse of employees

 Abusive language, swearing or offensive behaviour

 Frequent absentee and lateness without explanation

 Refusal to follow instructions

 Not following the dress code standard

Instant dismissal

In some circumstances, unacceptable behaviour may include wilful misconduct. In such

situations employees will face instant dismissal without notice.

The following actions may result in instant dismissal:

 A serious breach in OH&S procedures

 Committing a criminal offence at the workplace

 Giving unauthorised discounts

 Sexual harassment or discrimination of customers or employees

 Committing sexual acts on the premises

 Causing of any harm or intentional abuse to any employees or customers

Under no circumstances may you start your shift under the influence of alcohol or other

drugs, or any illegal substances.

While on the premises it is also unacceptable to sell or consume alcohol or other drugs, or
any illegal substances.

The store will not tolerate theft of any kind, whether it be money or stock. If you are caught

with any of these in your possession you will be dismissed immediately and police action will

be taken.

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EEO policy

Our aim is to create a harmonious and enjoyable work environment for all employees. We

all have a duty to prevent discrimination in the workplace. Our aim is to identify and

eliminate discrimination. Failure to obey this policy could mean instant dismissal.

Anti-discrimination and equal

opportunity

We have a commitment to prevent discrimination in the workplace. The Anti-discrimination

and equal opportunity laws make it generally unlawful to discriminate against a person

because of:

 Religious p

reference

 Gender or age

 Physical impairment and condition

 Sexual preference

 Racial or ethnic background

 Marital status

 HIV/AIDS, hepatitis and other infectious diseases

 Pregnancy and family responsibility

 Sexual harassment

Under Federal and State laws, sexual harassment in the workplace is unlawful.

Our company will not tolerate harassment of any kind. Failure to obey this can lead to

instant dismissal.Conduct doesn’t have to be deliberate or intentional to amount to sexual

harassment if it is unwelcome.

Sexual harassment is verbal, written or physical behaviour of a sexual nature that is

unwelcome and uninvited.

Some examples are:

 Offensive comments, jokes or gestures

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 Persistent leering or staring at you or your body

 Flashing

 Patting, pinching, fondling

 Intrusive enquires into your private life

 Jokes about someone’s appearance body shape, etc.

Affirmative Action

Our affirmative action program is to seek the right person for the right job. We strive to

ensure equal access to promotion, training and development opportunities, and all other

aspects of employment to all classes and groups of individuals. We have a number of

affirmative action programs.-For more information please contact your supervisor.

39 | P a g e

Incident Report Form

When did the incident occur?

Date: _____ / ___ / 20____ Time: ____: _______ AM /PM

Who was involved? (Please tick one or more boxes)

Office staff Store staff Customer Contractor Other

Was anyone injured? Yes No

Name of person injured:__________________________________________

Address:

__________________________________________________
__________________________________________________

Phone: Day: _____________ Night: ____________ Mobile: ____________

Was there a witness? Yes No

Witness details (Please tick one box only)

Office staff Store staff Customer Contractor Other

Name of witness: _____________________________________________

Address:
__________________________________________________
__________________________________________________
Phone: Day: _____________ Night: ____________ Mobile: ____________

What type of incident was it?

Minor injury Assault Trauma Vandalism

Break and enter Robbery Theft Other

Were the police contacted? Yes No

Where did the incident occur?_______________________________

What happened?

____________________________________________________________

____________________________________________________________

Describe the injury or damage

____________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________

What type of treatment was used?

____________________________________________________________

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____________________________________________________________

What immediate action did staff members take?

____________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________

I agree that this information about the incident is true.

Signature of injured party _________________________ Date____________

Who is reporting this incident?

Name: ________________________________________________

Position: ________________________________________________

Follow up actions taken:

____________________________________________________________
____________________________________________________________

Signature of reporting party________________________ Date: _____/____/_____

Opening and Closing the Premises

For the safety of yourself and others please follow these opening and closing

procedures.

Opening the store

On arrival, please enter through staff entrance and sign in.

 Secure your belongings in your locker

 Sign for keys and count float in

cash office

 Secure your float in the cash register

 Make sure all windows and doors are open and customer entrances are open and

clear of obstacles

 Vacuum the floor if

needed

 Turn on all equipment eg radio, air conditioning

 Turn on lighting

Closing the store

All staff must leave before closing procedure is started

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No friends or relatives allowed during closing procedure

Alarms will be activated by the Supervisor and security officer and all keys to be handed in to

the security officer and signed off in the key register

 Ensure that only the appropriate lighting is left on

 Check all toilets, fitting rooms and do a quick run around to make sure no one is left

in the store

 Make sure all doors and windows are closed

 Make sure all equipment is turned off eg radios, air conditioning

 All registers clear and cash taken to the cash office

Note: If your car is parked in a dark place make sure a security officer accompanies you to

your vehicle.

Cash office security

After hours security is responsible for managing and maintaining building security

Keys to the office are provided to all executive staff and to other staff members, as the

occasion requires

Doors must be kept locked at all times

Two people must always be present when opening the safe and counting money.

Work Attendance

Punctuality

All staff are required to be in their working area ready to commence at the start of their

shift.

Please use the toilet, put your bags away and have a drink before commencing your shift.

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Public holidays

If you are rostered on a shift the day before or the day after a public holiday and you call in

sick, a doctor’s certificate must be supplied. This means if a public holiday falls on a Monday

and you call in sick on either the Friday or the Tuesday a certificate will need to be supplied.

Probation period

All new employees will be on a three-month probation period. During your probation period

there will be monthly reviews. At the end of the probation period a meeting will be

organized for the employee, Dept. manager/supervisor and branch manager to discuss your

progress.

Absence forms

If you know you are going to be absent, you are obliged to phone in or have someone else

phone in before your start time on each day of non-attendance.Absence of more than three

consecutive days without notification may be considered abandonment of your job and may

result in instant dismissal.

Pay rates and bonus schemes

Pay rates

All staff members will be paid the award wage as stated by the Department of Industrial

Relations and covered under the award in each State. Furthermore, all staff members are

entitled to the following penalty rates:

 Overtime

 Weekend and late night penalty rates and loading

 Public holidays

For more information regarding awards, refer to Industrial Relations website in your State.

43 | P a g e

Staff members requiring additional hours

A memo will be distributed to all staff members one month prior to peak trading e.g.

Christmas, Easter or extended trading hours, to advise staff of additional hours available.

Please advise your Supervisor in writing if you are interested in additional hours.

Staff members who require a variation to the forthcoming roster e.g. annual leave, rostered

day off, or sick leave, should complete a Roster Variation Form, which is available from your

Supervisor.

The Supervisor who allocates the roster will take all requests into account, but it is not

always possible to please everyone. Preferences are given to employees who have been

with the company the longest.

Bonus schemes

The store recognises excellence in sales achievement and offers incentives to continue

enhancing sales performance in the future. Bonuses will be awarded to staff members who

achieve individual sales targets.

Monthly targets

Staff members are set achievable sales targets. Bonuses are paid as

follows:

Sales assistants 2

%

After 2 years of service 2.5%

Supervisors 3%

Bonuses are calculated as follows:

Employee A:

Sales target for the month was $25,000. Achieved amount was $30,000. Therefore $5,000 x

2% = $250.00, less the appropriate tax.

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All bonuses will be paid on the seventh day of the following month.

Performance appraisals

Motivating the Sales Team

One of the keys to motivate your team is to identify their individual strengths and

weaknesses. This is done by way of a Performance Appraisal conducted by the Supervisor

every three months.

Once individual strengths and weaknesses are identified, the Supervisor can:

 assist with improving weakness through training

 direct staff members to tasks that enhance strength and reward staff members

strengths.

When the Performance Appraisal has been completed, it is reviewed and kept by Personnel

Department.

Performance Appraisal begins with the job description, tasks and competencies. Use these

as the criteria against which key objectives will produce a performance judgement. The job

description provides the clear and definitive standards required for objective measurement.

Key points to successful performance appraisals

Staff need to be made aware of the appraisal system. It should never be a surprise. They

should know:

 why they are being appraised

 what they will be appraised on

 how the appraisal will be carried out

 how it will help them

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What use is made of the result?

 To be effective, the appraisal should produce a positive, creative and learning

situation.

 The appraisal is used for development rather than blame.

 An important function is the creative aspect i.e. new targets, plans and goals need to

be set.

 It is the Supervisor in conjunction with the Personnel Department to provide help in

setting new goals to gain commitment from staff to work towards achievement of

the agreed goals.

 An appraisal is a valuable tool for the Personnel Department to identify strength and

weakness as well as prepare a training strategy to enhance and address the

development needs of staff members.

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Performance Appraisal Form

Employee’s name: _______________________ Supervisor ____________________

Position Held: ___________________________ Time in Position: ________________

Period Appraised: ________________________ Position Status: FT / PT / CAS

Key:

O = Outstanding

H = Highly Proficient

S = Satisfactory

N = Needs improvement

Instructions:

Rate yourself on each of the areas by circling the applicable appraisal key letter.

Make any necessary comments in the space after each section.

The appraisal covers all areas of your job function.

The form has been designed to bring out your strengths and development needs. It will be

discussed with your Supervisor.

This appraisal is personal and

confidential.

Future Objectives (complete this part in the discussion phase of your appraisal)

A ____________________________________________________

Action Date: ______/_______ /__________

B ____________________________________________________

Action Date: ______/_______ /__________

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C ____________________________________________________

Action Date: ______/_______ /__________

D ____________________________________________________

Action Date: ______/_______ /__________

A Sales, service and promotion of products and services Employee Supervisor

Shows a friendly nature and provides efficient service

to customers

O H S N O H S N

Provides accurate and helpful advice on products and

services available

O H S N O H S N

Actively sells and promotes all products and services O H S N O H S N

Actively sells additional merchandise at every

opportunity
O H S N O H S N

Comment: _______________________________________________________________

________________________________________________________________________

B Processing of sales transactions and procedures Employee Supervisor

Follows procedures for all transactions O H S N O H S N

Operates register correctly O H S N O H S N

Maintains cash security and follows cash handling

procedures
O H S N O H S N
Comment: _______________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________

C Complaint handling Employee Supervisor

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Handles complaints confidently and effectively O H S N O H S N

Knows level of authority O H S N O H S N

Comment: _______________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________

D General Employee Supervisor

Maintains a neat and tidy appearance at all times O H S N O H S N

Shows punctuality and reliability O H S N O H S N

Requires little supervision with work assignments O H S N O H S N

Demonstrates decisive, practical and reliable decisions O H S N O H S N

Shows good listening skills and speaks clearly and

concisely

O H S N O H S N

Demonstrates awareness of others’ needs and is a

good team player

O H S N O H S N

Willing and able to accept greater responsibilities O H S N O H S N

Awareness to show regard for health and safety issues O H S N O H S N

Always looking to improve procedures and processes O H S N O H S N

Takes every opportunity to develop own skills O H S N O H S N

Comment: _______________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________

Major strengths

What areas of my job description do I excel in? _________________________________

________________________________________________________________________

Development needs

What specific areas of my job should I work towards improving my understanding or level of

skills? __________________________________________________________________

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________________________________________________________________________

Particular training or retraining I need to complete_______________________________

________________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________

Supervisor’s comments ____________________________________________________

________________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________

Employee’s signature: ________________________________ Date: __/____ /____

Supervisor’s signature: _______________________________ Date: __/____ /____

Point of Sale Questionnaire

Department: _________________________ Staff Member: ____________________

Date: ________________ Conducted by: _____________________________

Level of service

What time period elapsed before the salesperson acknowledged the customer?

 1 – 5 seconds 6 – 10 seconds  11+ seconds

What was the salesperson’s first communication?

no greeting at all / customer made first contact

a simple acknowledgement e.g. “Hi”

 an acknowledgement and greeting

Did the salesperson apologise for any inconvenience as customers lined in a queue?

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 Yes No

Was the correct amount charged for the goods purchased?

 Yes No

Did the salesperson offer any additional merchandise or service?

 Yes No

Did the salesperson mention any promotion or specials?

 Yes No

Did the salesperson enter the sale into the system without error?

 Yes No

Cash sale only:

Did the salesperson

call the amount tendered by the customer?

 Yes No

get change before placing amount tendered in cash drawer?

 Yes No

count back the change to the customer?

 Yes No

pass the change directly into the customer’s hand?

 Yes No

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Card sale only:

Did the salesperson

process the sale efficiently using electronic or manual methods?

 Yes No

give the customer the correct copy of the receipt?

 Yes No

pass receipt (& pen if appropriate) directly into customer’s hand?

 Yes No

pass back the card using the customer’s name?

 Yes No

Were the customer’s goods placed in a bag or wrapped appropriately?

 Yes No

What was the salesperson’s farewell?

no farewell simple farewell e.g. “Thanks”  farewell plus parting comment

Staff appearance

Is the salesperson wearing approved uniform or appropriate clothing?

 Yes No

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Is the salesperson clean and tidy?

 Yes No

Is the approved name badge being worn?

 Yes No

General

Are promotions current?

 Yes No

Have all old promotional materials been disposed of?

 Yes No

Are all store facilities operational? (If not, report immediately)

 Yes No

Are customer complaints handled accordingly?

 Yes No

Comments and overall impression:

________________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________
________________________________________________________________________

Signature: ____________________________________ Date: _____________

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Policies dealing with Theft

Preventing theft

Shop lifting is a huge cost to our business and must be reduced where possible. It is our

company policy that with the proper training you can prevent shoplifting before it happens.

Keep an eye on anyone acting suspicious, be alert and watch out for the signs. All staff must

be on the lookout for all acts of dishonesty and all incidents must be reported to the

Manager.

Our company policy is to prevent theft by the RGD method

R: Recognise suspicious behaviour

G: Good customer services

D: Danger spots and times

Recognising suspicious behaviour

Shoppers who loiter in an area for a long time

Persons shopping in a group who split up but maintain eye contact

Groups of school children with large bags

 Shoppers who avoid a staff member’s attention

 Shoppers who wear unusual or bulky clothing

Good customer service prevents theft

Through good customer service there are ways to reduce the risk of shoplifting.

The preventive measures our company follows are:

 Always count the number of items customers take into the change room (company

policy is

no more than three items)

 Always count the number of items when the customer is leaving the change rooms

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Check customer and staff bags

Acknowledge customers on entering and leaving the store

Always offer customers assistance if they are wandering around

 Look for customers watching you and ask if you can help them

Check that all lighting is turned on and working

Ask customers holding goods if they would like to pay for them

 Make sure counter displays are fully stocked

Always keep cupboards locked that should be locked

Always keep the staff room door closed

Always keep your staff lockers locked

Danger spots for theft

Always maintain a clear view across the shop and have no hidden areas that may provide an

easy opportunity to conceal merchandise. Areas of the store which are most likely to attract

thieves are:

Displays near exits

Change rooms

Toilets

Unlocked doors

End of aisles

Danger times for theft

Shoplifters are most likely to steal during danger times so be alert and remember RDG.

Keep

your mind on the job during these times:

 Late night and Saturday mornings

 Holiday periods when store has busy peak times

Opening and closing times of the store

 Staff changeovers

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 While attending to fitting room, lay-bys, changing displays, restocking and while

using a

ladder

As a preventive measure, the store safety policy states that three limbs must be on the

ladder at all times and a second person must support the ladder. That way they can also be

keeping an

eye out for any suspicious behaviour.

Apprehension of shoplifters

Be aware as shoplifting can happen unexpectedly. Apprehension of shoplifters should be the

last resort. Our store policy is prevention is easy and a far more effective approach.

False accusation or wrong apprehensions may leave our store open to charges.

If you suspect a customer of stealing, try to encourage them to purchase the item by using

statements such

as:

 Would you like to purchase that item (use the name of the item if you know what

they have taken)

 You can pay for that item at the register when you are ready

 Do you know we have a lay-by system?

If the customer has left the store and has not paid for the goods, use the following

statements:

 I am sorry but I think you have forgotten to pay for that item

 Did you know you have not paid for the item in your possession?

Procedure if apprehension must occur

Alert another staff member to contact security by calling extension 71

Inconspicuously follow the accused if it is safe to do so

Never accuse the customer of stealing or touch them in any way

Ask the customer to accompany you to the security office

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If customer refuses to wait for security to arrive, inform security of the following

details:

 Which direction they went

 Description such as what they wearing, nationality, anything that stands out, eg

tattoos, facial

markings, hair colour and length

What they were carrying

What you suspect they stole

A note of where the goods were concealed

If they drove away, give a good description of the car, egcolour or registration if possible

Inform your Manager of all the details of the event and fill out a loss or apprehension report

immediately

Reporting theft

Our company policy is to follow all legal obligations so remember, when filling in a report,

never exaggerate. Never accuse or use discriminatory language (age, race, sex, etc) and

don’t make judgements about why they have stolen or the situation they are in. Shoplifting

is a criminal offence and has to be dealt with according to the law.

When filling in the report, stick to the facts and keep all answers simple and clear.

Describe the facts, what you saw, where it happened, when it happened, what you did,

what happened then and what was said.

Customer’s property

What is the Bag Check Code of Practice?

The Bag Check Code of Practice is a joint initiative of retailers and the Department of

Consumer Affairs and has been developed as a compromise between the interests of

privacy, retail and consumer groups.

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The purpose of the code is to provide principles and practices in relation to property checks

so that shoppers and retailers can approach the situation with knowledge of their rights and

obligations.

Our customer property policy adheres to the principles of the Code of Practice.

Our policy

Our store conducts property and bag checks in an attempt to control theft. All staff are to be

trained in the property and bag check procedures and be aware of the store’s legal position.

Legal position

The store must notify customers of its intention to conduct property checks. A prominent

notice that clearly sets this out must be displayed at a point where customers can see it

prior to entry.

Store policy

Signage is prominently displayed at entrances to our stores establishing entry conditions,

which includes:

All bags and property will be checked when leaving the store

All school bags will be checked when leaving

the store.

All shopping trolleys and prams will be checked upon leaving the store

Staff are encouraged to ask students to leave their school bags with security at the front

entrances.

The store’s right to conduct property and bag checks

Legal position

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A customer who enters our store does so under licence. The shopkeeper may make that

entry conditional upon showing bags, trolleys, prams, cartons, parcels and containers for

checking.

Store policy

Personal handbags will not be checked unless larger than a sheet of A4

paper.

Legal position

Staff members who forcibly conduct a property or bag check against a customer’s will, may

have committed an assault.

Store procedures

All customers upon leaving the store should be requested to open their bags or property for

inspection either at the register or the customer exit point.

Requests should be courteously made so as to minimise the degree of intrusion.

The employee should request that the customer personally open the bag.

There should be no direct physical interference by the employee.

Where a view of the bag is obstructed by a large parcel, trolley, pram, coat or similar item,

the employee may request the customer to remove the obstruction but should not touch

the obstructing item.

Dispute Procedures

Legal Position – A Shopper can refuse to allow a property/bag check. Employee’s needs to be

absolutely certain that the shopper has committed an offence in order to detain or search

the shopper’s processions.

Store Procedures

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The employee should not under any circumstances enter into a dispute with the customer

over a request to check bags or a suspected theft

Under no circumstances will the employee attempt to forcibly restrain the customer or

interfere with bags or property

If any dispute arises the employee should immediately summon the store Supervisor

The Supervisor will explain the conditions under which the customer entered the store. If

the customer again refuses to offer the bags and property for checking, the Manager may

ask the customer to leave the store and not return or summon a Police Officer

In summary, it is paramount that all Supervisors understand the rights and obligations of

customer’s property.

Rights and Obligations of Customers

Rights

Customers have the right to know before entry that the store conducts property/bag checks

Right to refuse interference with your person, property or with your bags. Checking means

that staff can look and not touch.

Under the Property Code the store has agreed not to check a personal handbag unless it is

larger than the size of a sheet of foolscap paper

Obligations

Having entered the store knowing that property/bag checks are conducted, customers have

accepted the store’s right to ask you to open you bags for checking.

IMPORTANT NOTES

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Customers whom refuse inspection of their property/bags can be asked to leave the store

and not return.

The Supervisor/Security Officer will only hold a customer and call the police where the

employee is sure that an offence has been committed.

If an employee forcibly detain you or forcibly searches your goods, and you have not

committed an offence, you are entitled to complain to the management or the police or

consult your solicitor to determine what legal rights you have.

If you feel that the Property Code has been breached, you should contact the Retail Traders

Association in your state.

Dealing with cash, credit, cheques and EFTPOS

Correct handling of payments during sales transactions (cash, cheques, credit cards and

EFTPOS) is important to minimise losses through fraud or theft. Errors by staff can include:

 Giving the wrong change

 Incorrect pricing

 Discounting incorrectly

 Not checking goods properly

We realise that occasionally people make mistakes and the possibility of a shortage in our

cash registers does exist. For this reason you will not be required to make up shortages.

However, this is a serious matter so if you regularly have significant cash shortages, you will

be notified and cash register procedures will be

reviewed.

Cash register procedures

 Always count your float in the cash office.

 Never use another staff member’s cash register.

Always cash up your own register

 Total the sale and advise the customer the total amount.

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It is essential that you enter the amount the customer gives you to ensure the change

required is recorded and shown on your register.

 Place the notes or chequeson the cash drawer. Do not put in the register at this

stage.

 Make up the change.

 Count the change back

to the customer.

 Place the amount tendered into the appropriate compartments of the drawer.

 Close the cash drawer.

Failure to follow cash register procedures will result in disciplinary action

Cash handling security procedures

 Supervisors need to watch for signs of cash theft. Some signs are staff who use the

no-sale

button often or are working out of the drawer and have excessive over-rings.

 Store policy is never open the drawer and give change. If a customer complains

about change given, record customer details. At end of day if the till does not

balance, the supervisor will contact the customer. Never take the customers word.

No unauthorised persons are permitted behind the counter for any reason.

 Never leave your cash drawer open or the register open for any reason. Notify the

cash

office when you require a cash pick up.

 Cash is never to be counted in view of the public. Office staff and a security member

will collect cash and it will be counted in the cash office.

 Security measures and procedures should never be discussed with anyone other

than the Manager.

Cheque transaction procedures

Bounced cheques cost our company valuable profits. A cost is incurred to the company

when

a cheque is returned.

The following procedures are important for our store:

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 Make sure the correct company name is used.

 All corrections must be initialled by the customer.

 Cheques should be signed in front of the Supervisor.

 Make sure cheques are marked Not Negotiable with the correct date and amount

 Ensure writing is in black or blue pen and never RED.

Our store does not except post-dated or ‘cash’cheques (that is, cheques made out to ‘cash’).

 You must phone for authorisation for cheques over $100.

 All interstate and overseas cheques must be authorised by telephone.

 Verify that words and figures match.

 Verify that the signature on the cheque matches the

identification used.

Identification can be either passport or drivers license

Record on the reverse side of the cheque address, phone number, license number and

identification used.

Credit card transaction procedures

The risk of credit card fraud is on the rise as over half the store transactions are paid for

using credit cards. Although we have an electronic system in our store, sometimes there

may be a system failure or default with the card from a damaged card. Manual procedures

must then be used.

Manual credit card procedures

Ensure sales voucher is filled in correctly.

Check card has not expired.

Check the name on the card matches the person using the card.

Verify the signature.

Ensure all information has been entered on all copies of the sales voucher.

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Ensure the correct amount is written on the docket.

Credit card purchases must be over $20.

No cash out can be given on credit card transactions.

For all transactions over the $150 floor limit, you must phone for authorisation.

Check the card against the stolen card list. If the number appears on the list, retain the card

and telephone the bank. They will advise what to do.

Electronic EFTPOS and credit card procedures

 Check that the card has not expired.

 Verify correct amount and circle Approved.

 Initial the credit card slip.

 Check the customer’s signature.

 Ensure the customer receives the correct copy.

Cash out can be given on EFTPOS but cannot exceed $200.

Purchases must be over $20.

End of shift procedures

Fifteen minutes before your shift ends, a Supervisor will complete a reading on your register

and EFTPOS machine.

At the end of each shift, it is your responsibility to take your cash drawer to the Cash Office.

In the presence of Cash Office staff or a Manager, the sales assistant will count and reconcile

takings.

The float amount will be left in the cash drawer.

All takings and reconciliation from register are to be placed in a security pouch with a seal a

signed by the sales assistant.

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All takings and floats will then be deposited into the safe.

Cash Office staff will re-count all takings and float.

Dealing with cash holding and banking procedures

Cash holding security procedures

 Access to the safe is only available to Manager. The combination to the safe is kept

confidential.

 For security reasons, the following must be adhered to:

All cash is kept in the safe at all times

 A Manager and a staff member must be present to open the safe. There must always

be two people present.

 The safe register must be completed whenever opening or closing the safe. Ensure

the safe register is filled in correctly with date, time, and reason.

 To open the safe enter the combination and insert the Manager’s key.

 All money placed in the safe must be in pouches with reconciliation forms or banking

slips.

Banking procedures

 Cash Office staff handle all banking procedures.

 The safe is opened by the Manager and all cash is counted.

 A banking deposit slip is then completed.

 A security firm collects all money three times per week.

Returns policy

Our returns policy means customers can shop at our store, knowing that with a receipt, we

can offer convenient repairs, exchanges and refunds, provided goods are:

Returned within six week from date of purchase

 In as-new order and condition

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Identification must be supplied. Acceptable ID includes any document or card with the

customer’s name, address, signature and preferably a photograph, eg a driver’s licence.

With a receipt

Customer can easily bring the goods back with a receipt to the service desk for a repair,

exchange or refund.

Without a receipt

If a customer has misplaced the receipt, the store can offer a repair or exchange if the goods

were purchased in-store, with acceptable ID. However, the store is not obliged to give a

refund if proof of purchase cannot be provided.

This service is in addition to customer’s statutory rights to return faulty merchandise for

repair, exchange or refund.

When can a Supervisor refuse a refund?

In these cases we do not refund or exchange:

 Where a customer wants to change goods because they are cheaper elsewhere.

When a fault was made known to the customer at the time of sale.

When the customer has caused the item to fail.

The service desk is to complete a refund form and refer all refunds to their supervisors for

approval.

Supervisor’s duties

Check that all requirements of the refund policy are met.

Establish with the customer why goods are not required or satisfactory.

Check date of purchase with receipt and condition of goods.

Check the refund form is completed correctly and sign the Supervisor’s section.

 Check the customer’s identification.

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 Present customer with a cash or credit refund.

Sales targets formula

Sales targets are set based on a formula which takes into account previous trading patterns

and actual hours worked. Each employee is allocated a monthly target to achieve based on

this formula.

Team rewards

Team dinners will be awarded to Departments that achieve sales targets. It is the

Supervisor’s responsibility to motivate their team members to achieve these targets. One

percent of the overall Department sales target will be deposited into a social fund.

Salesperson of the Month

All employees of the month receive a store gift voucher to the value of $50. Their photo is

placed in the staff room and on a public noticeboard and they are given a special award

badge.

Staff general security

Giving away products

You may be asked by customers and friends to give away merchandise but at no time should

you give away products. Giving away products is a very serious offence and a breach of store

policy and will lead to disciplinary action.

Procedures for staff purchases

After 3 months of employment a discount card will be supplied to all staff members. This

will entitle you to a 12% discount on all goods. This is for employee use only and not to be

abused and will be monitored.

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All staff purchases must be made before or after your shift. If you wish to make a staff

purchase see your Supervisor who will document the purchase. A check seal sticker must be

placed on all items purchased before your shift.

Staff holds: are permitted for 24hours and will be kept at the supervisors counter.

Staff lay-bys: are permitted with the same conditions as customer lay-bys.

Property

It is company policy that all bags must be available for inspection by the security officer or

Manager if requested. Staff are permitted only to enter and exit the store through

designated staff entrances. All emergency exits are alarmed and employees must only enter

if there is an emergency.

Lockers

Lockers are provided for all staff to keep their personal effects in while at work. It is each

individual’s responsibility to make sure their locker is locked

Valuables

Do not bring valuables to the store, as the store will not be responsible if they go missing

Stock control policy and procedures

Inventory control

The store has clearly defined policies and procedures in place and it is the Supervisor’s

responsibility to ensure inventory control is efficient, as loss of stock and damages result in

a loss of

profit.

The buyer’s role

 Forecast sales and budget orders

 Keep up-to-date with trends

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 Order merchandise

 Ensure a variety of merchandise

 Understand the target market

 Monitor stock levels

Supervisor’s role

It is the Supervisor’s responsibility to train staff members in the correct procedures for

receiving stock.

 Minimise shrinkage (theft and waste)

 Control the level of mark-downs

 Monitor stock levels

 Monitor fast and slow sellers to avoid sell-outs

 Coordinate stocktake and prepare reports for Management

 Ensure all merchandise is correctly priced, following Company procedures

 Monitor re-order levels for fast selling merchandise

 Liaise and communicate with the buyer over the sales performance of stock

 Inform all staff of new product lines and price changes

Staff member’s role

 Check the load

 Check delivery records and procedures

 Check the quantity and quality at delivery

 Check the quantity and quality after delivery

 Store the stock securely

 Deal with damaged and missing stock after delivery

 Inform Supervisor of any damaged or missing stock

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Stock handling

Stock handling and storage of goods

Care must be taken in the storage of goods to ensure against damage and theft. A

fundamental part of your supervisory duty is to ensure the personal safety of your staff

members, and to provide a safe working environment. For more information, refer to the

Safe Work Practices Manual. A few issues relating to the safe handling of stock are:

 All fire exits and fire extinguishers should be kept clear of stock for easy access in

case of an emergency

 Stock is to be stacked to prevent it from falling on staff members and customers

 There should be at least 30cm clearance above stock and around fire extinguishers

 Empty pallets should not be stacked too high and are to be laid down flat and not

stored on their sides

Be aware that poor manual handling accounts for the majority of accidents in the retail

environment

Stock safety

Stock needs to be placed in security areas and put away as soon as possible. Store

procedures are to handle stock in the following manner:

 Special items, such as handling stock, must be stacked in the appropriate way and

hung on the appropriate fixtures

 Fragile items should not be stacked on other stock or on high shelves

 Perishable items must be stored at the specified temperature to keep them fresh

e.g. milk and frozen foods

 Flammable items should be kept clear of heat or combustible materials

 Storage for hazardous items must follow manufacturer’s storage and handling

instructions

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Stock re-orders

Although our Company has a Stock Controller and Buyer, the Supervisor still plays an

important role in monitoring stock controls. Our policy is to always try and avoid the

situation of stock out by frequently communicating with the buying office. By doing this, all

staff members can be aware of planned promotions, target markets and be informed of new

stock items and trends for the new season.

An empty looking store or an overcrowded store will impact badly on sales.

 Re-stock shelves and display stands from stock in reserve

 Fax or email all order requests to the buying department with an order number

 File order forms in due date order

 Place orders on a regular basis; weekly or more often if required

 Supervisors are responsible for re-ordering all standard stock lines.

The buyer handles all other items, which are known as specialty lines.

Store pricing policy

The Store’s image is up to date, stylish merchandise. The type of customer our store attracts

is more image-conscious than price-conscious.

Our merchandise is medium- to high-priced, however, our emphasis is on supplying a wide

selection of quality merchandise as well as providing excellent customer service.

Furthermore, our store is known for our end of season mark-down sales where merchandise

is cleared at bargain prices.

Considering this, the purpose for a store pricing policy is for prices to reflect and fit in with

the store image, so that prices are competitive and most importantly, the store makes a

profit.

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Mark-up and profit margin policies

Mark-up and profit margin polices are confidential to Management, the Stock Controller,

Buying Department and selected Supervisors.

There are two key elements to consider when developing a pricing policy. These are mark-

ups and margins.

Price Points are to be as follows:

Below $1: to be priced in even multiples of 10c, 20c, 50c, 70c, etc.

$1 and $2: as even dollar amounts $1 and $2

Over $2: prices should end in .95c so $3 becomes $2.95, $5 becomes $4.95 and $10

becomes $9.95

Over $30: revert to even dollar amounts $1 below the $10 multiples. So $50 becomes $49,

$70 becomes $69, $100 becomes $99 etc.

Mark-up

Mark-up is the amount added to the cost price of merchandise to give a selling price that

meets profit requirements. All items are to be marked up 150% of their true cost price.

The cost price should be multiplied by 150% and added to the cost price. For example:

Cost Price Mark-up Selling price

$10 150% $25 rounded to price point of $24.95

$20 150% $50 rounded to price point of $49

$50 150 % $125 rounded to price point of $125

$100 150 % $250 rounded to price point of $249

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Profit margin

Profit margin is the estimated gross profit that would be achieved by selling goods at full

selling price. It is calculated by deducting the cost of goods sold from the selling price. For

our store to be viable, a profit margin of 60% needs to be achieved.

$25 – $10 = $15 profit.

To convert this to a %, use the formula below:

((selling price – cost price)  selling price)  100 = Profit Margin

(($25 – $10)  $25)  100 = ($15  $25)  100 = 0.60  100 = 60%

It is important to understand that marking up merchandise 150% will only achieve a 60%

profit margin. If merchandise is sold for less than the recommended selling price for reasons

such as stock losses, mark-downs, shrinkage etc., the overall gross profit is reduced.

Some elements that contribute to the level of profit margin and mark up are:

 cost price

 freight

storage

 wages

 rent

Supervisor’s role in mark-downs

All supervisors should be aware of the reason for mark-downs. Remember unwanted stock

takes up valuable space and costs our store valuable profits. It is the supervisor’s

responsibility to keep an eye out for slow-moving stock and suggest strategies to rectify the

problem. Supervisors must keep good records so that Management can keep track of what

is being marked down.

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When should supervisors mark-down merchandise?

Merchandise is to be marked down at the end of its selling season or if it is slow moving,

obsolete, damaged or priced higher than that of our competitors. It is preferred mark-

downs are planned for holiday programs or special events.

Benefits of mark-downs:

 Increase the traffic flow of customers

 Increases the sales of other merchandise in store

Procedures for Mark-downs

 Supervisors must carry out a weekly inspection of merchandise in their department

and fill in report of slow moving merchandise and suggest mark-downs figures

 Mark-down sheet is sent to the Stock Controller for approval and sign same

 Once the mark-down sheet is approved and signed by the Stock Controller, it is the

Supervisor’s responsibility to inform all staff members of the price mark-downs to

prevent embarrassing situations of staff members quoting old prices to customers

 The mark-down sheet is to be filed in the mark-down book, which is kept under the

counter for easy reference to all staff.

Supervisors have permission to discount up to 15% on any items that are damaged or

stained without permission from the buying office. However it must be recorded on the

mark-down sheet. It is important for shrinkage and profit records that these are recorded

accurately.

A Mark-down Worksheet is attached later in this document.

The Supervisor should carry out spot checks to ensure:

 All staff mark merchandise with the correct price and are following store policy

 All price tags and tickets have been changed

 Staff or customers are not fraudulently changing mark-downs

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Price marking

Price marking is a critical area, which, if not properly controlled, can cause major problems

with

customers.

 All price tags are to be attached to the inside label of clothing garments.

 Never insert plastic tags through the garments.

 Other merchandise price tags are always to be placed on the right-hand corner of

the item.

 When a price is reduced, over stamping the old label with the mark-down price is

permitted.

 When the price goes up, all of the old label must be removed without fail.

 The price of merchandise on sale is correct and clear to the customer.

Coordinating stocktake

Stocktake is the physical count of stock that is in the store at a certain period of time being a

true measurement between the physical stocktake figures and the book stock.

Supervisor’s role

Preparation

Preparation and supervision are the key to a successful stocktake. Supervisors need to keep

updated. Give staff members clear direction and training of the store’s procedures. Tasks

should be allocated to staff members. Furthermore, all tasks on the stocktake preparation

checklist must be carried out.

Rosters

It is the Supervisor’s responsibility to consider budget allocation and time constraints.

Always ensure extra staff are rostered on to attend to customers’ needs during this period.

Stocktake is only to take place outside normal trading hours. If time constraints allow, finish

stocktake before 10am.

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Supervisor’s responsibilities

When in progress:

 Allocate tasks in a logical order to ensure efficient progress and good end results.

 Stocktake should be completed in the shortest possible time.

 Issue staff members with stock sheets and direct them to appropriate area to count.

 As a control measure, carry out random spot checks on staff counting and recording

procedures to ensure that tasks are completed.

On completion:

After the stocktake has been completed for a certain area, another staff member carries out

a spot check. It is Company procedure to choose five fixtures from an area and complete

their own stocktake.

These records are then compared with the original stocktake documentation and, if there is

a discrepancy, a report is compiled.

Discrepancies must be investigated and reported when preparing accurate reports for

Management. (Discrepancy Report attached)

Stocktake checklist

 Preparation and supervision is the key to successful stocktake. All Supervisors are to

ensure all tasks are carried out before commencing a stocktake

 Develop a concise set of instructions that can be used. Explain how to carry out

stocktaking to a new staff member

 Design a roster, allocate group members areas of responsibility

 Conduct a price check of tagging and bar code of fixtures

 Be aware of cut-off points for orders, deliveries and shelf filling. Plan a cut-off day or

time that these activities are carried out

 Ensure lay-bys are put aside and follow up and record any stock out of store on loan

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 Design a floor plan of the department where all fixtures are labelled and numbered

for easy identification. Numbered stock sheets are allocated to correct staff

members

Discrepancy reports

Obvious discrepancies to identify:

 Mark-downs that are not recorded for known shrinkage e.g. damage and theft

 Incorrect registration of mark-downs and transfers in and out

 Stock in the wrong position on fixtures for example, in reserve areas, above eye

level, on display, in drawers or closed bins

 Bar code for an item that does not correspond with fixture bar code

 Invoices or credits input incorrectly

 Staff incorrectly counting or pricing items

Stocktake staff training

It is the Supervisor’s responsibility to ensure all staff members are trained in the correct

procedures. The following instructions will make a good starting point for training staff.

To ensure a successful stocktake, please observe the following instructions:

 Your Supervisor will issue you with the appropriate stocktake sheets

and direct you to the area you will be

counting.

 You must count each fixture as a separate unit because each has a

separate stocktake sheet.

 Every fixture is numbered and this number appears on the top-right

hand corner of the stocktake sheet.

 You must count each shelf from left to right, starting at the top shelf

and working your way down to floor level.

 You must not interfere or talk to other staff members when they are

counting.

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 You must not leave your fixture in mid count.

 You must always count from physical stock to the stocktake sheet to

minimise counting errors

 You must make sure the fixture bar code corresponds with the

product bar code.

 Your supervisor will carry out random spot checks for quality control.

Our Company has developed a coloured tagging system as a communication tool to ensure a

successful and accurate stocktake.

 Green stickers indicate that all items are checked and correct.

 Red stickers indicate there is a problem with the count or the bar code needs

investigating.

 Yellow stickers indicate counting is in progress and a Supervisor is to be called for

clarification.

 Blue stickers indicate second count has occurred.

Preparing accurate reports

When the physical count has been completed and recorded on stock sheets, stock sheets

need to be collated and put in fixture numerical order. Check that all addition, cross

calculations and totals are correct. Keep an eye out for obvious discrepancies. After

investigating any obvious discrepancies and reporting, it is the Supervisor’s responsibility to

collate into a report as follows:

Computer Data

Department Name:

Sales figures:

Stock level computer print out for the department:

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Previous stocktake results for comparison:

Manual Data

Stocktake sheet for actual stock figures for the department:

Shrinkage sheets, mark-down sheet and a discrepancy report:

Shrinkage report

Our store allows for 3% shrinkage in our budget as we realise mistakes will happen.

However, effective stock control can minimise shrinkage. If you neglect control of shrinkage,

you may be out of a job. It is the Supervisor’s responsibility to ensure all shrinkages are

recorded correctly on the shrinkage sheets.

Possible valid reasons for shrinkage:

 Goods expire or go past their Use By date.

 Thefts sometimes occur.

 Items are wrongly priced.

 Goods sometimes are accidentally damaged.

 Display items get damaged or soiled.

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Stocktake sheet

Fixture number:

Product

reference

Quantity Price

Total

quantity

Total

value

167929  $1.55 15 $23.25

723496  $2.45 4 $9.80

235782  $6.55 45 $294.75

1122341  $7.45 2 $14.90

Staff member: _________________________________________

Supervisor: ____________________________________________

Date: ____/____/____ Time: ____:____AM/PM

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Shrinkage sheet

Description Ref No Dept Qty Price

New

Price

Reason Total

loss

Gardening Gloves 4702 7 1 $12.95 $7.95 Damaged $5.00

Staff member: _________________________________________
Supervisor: ____________________________________________

Date: ____/____/____ Time: ____:____AM/PM

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Discrepancy sheet

Area Fixture/

Item

Description Price Original

count

Recount Variance

Socks

I/N:

2891335

Scheurich 14 x

12cm Royal

Shine Indoor

Pot

$11.95 20 17 3

Staff member: _________________________________________
Supervisor: ____________________________________________
Date: ____/____/____ Time: ____:____AM/PM

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Mark-down Worksheet

Fix-ture

No.

Product Brand Size Bar Code Qty Price Mark-

down

%
New

Sale

Price
I/N:

2012170

Hume

Doors &

Timber

Flush

Door

Hume 2040 x 820

x 35mm

Primecoat

Honeycomb

97341249907 11 $29.95 25% $22.95

Staff member: _________________________________________
Supervisor: ____________________________________________
Date: ____/____/____ Time: ____:____AM/PM

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Store Safety Policy and Procedures

Supervisor’s responsibility

Supervisors are accountable for the working environment under their control and for

ensuring all staff members are given equipment, information and instructions necessary to

ensure a healthy and safe work environment. Supervisors should ensure that individuals

maintain a high level of awareness when it comes to health and safety issues and encourage

all staff to carry out safe work practices by reporting any faulty equipment immediately.

Employees’ responsibility

Employees are expected to take reasonable care with regard to the health and safety of

others at the work place and to co-operate with the employer in ensuring a safe and healthy

work environment. Employees must report potential or health and safety hazards to their

Supervisor using the correct reporting procedures.

The store aims to provide both our staff members and our customers with a safe and

healthy environment. A safe working environment is not something that just happens: you

have to make it happen!

Accident prevention

All employees are to be conscious of the factors that contribute to store accidents.

These factors include such things as:

 Slippery floors from oil, chemical or other dripping substances

 Electrical equipment with frayed cords

 Using ladders incorrectly by not having three limbs on the ladder at all times.

The key to accident prevention is for all staff and management to always maintain:

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Safe environment: inspect your work area regularly for dangerous objects that people could

trip or fall over

Safe equipment: check equipment for faults before use and always use the correct tool for

the job

Safe behaviour: perform your duties in a safe manner and only use equipment you have

been trained to use.

Always remember Prevention is better than cure and you should:

 Constantly be on the look out for potential hazards

 Never endanger yourself or others for any reason

If you identify a potential hazard take immediate action to prevent an accident occurring

First aid treatment

The store’s safety policy is for all Supervisors to be trained in First Aid Procedures and be

able to remain calm and deal with any emergency situation if it arises.

First Aid boxes are located in every department behind the Supervisor’s desk, cashier’s

office and staff room.

If an accident does occur, and medical attention is needed, you must advise the Supervisor

as soon as possible. Furthermore, if a customer or non-employee has an accident, it is very

important that they are happy with the attention and first aid treatment they are receiving.

Be sympathetic and caring to the person involved, but most importantly, do not admit fault.

For information on recording an accident, refer to your Induction Handbook.

It is extremely important that you make sure after using any medical equipment that it is

cleaned and you have told the Supervisor on duty what was used, so he or she can restock

the First Aid kit. If you can handle the problem, do so, but if not, see your First Aid Officer in

the workplace.

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If an emergency situation arises, the following steps should be followed:

 Remain calm and assess the situation

 Ensure the scene is safe for you, others and the casualty

 Work as a team

 Delegate a responsible staff member to keep other customers away from the

incident

First aid treatment for non-electrical burns

 Remain calm and assess the situation

 Put out the flame

 Use plenty of cold water for at least ten minutes or until the ambulance arrives, if

needed

 Call 000 for an ambulance

 Do not apply creams, ointment or lotions

 Do not break blisters

 If the patient is in shock, place him or her in the recovery position

First aid treatment for cuts (incisions and lacerations)

 Remain calm and assess the situation

 Ensure you do not come into contact with the patient’s blood; wherever possible,

use gloves

 Check the wound for any foreign matter

 Apply pressure to stop any bleeding

 If necessary, call 000 for an ambulance

 Do not use adhesive dressing

 Immobilise and elevate the injured limbs if injuries permit

 Do not apply creams or lotions; only use saline lotion if it is available

First aid treatment for sprains

 Remain calm and assess the situation

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 Ask a responsible staff member to keep the area clear so no one else slips

For the pain:

 Use an ice pack

 Elevate the sprain

 Arrange for someone to assist the customer in getting any further medical treatment

if required

Spillages

Our Company has provided a non-slip floor surface to help minimise the risk of slipping or

falling. There are two main types of spillage: liquid or dry. When you cause or note a

spillage, your responsibility is to prevent an accident occurring by attending to the area in

the appropriate manner until the floor is safe to walk on again.

 Guard the spillage to prevent staff members or customers slipping

 Ask a nearby staff member to obtain Caution Wet Floor signs and place one at each

end of the spillage

 If no one is close by, place a carton or trolley over the spillage

 Check to see if the spillage is chemical, which may require special cleaning

 Obtain cleaning equipment and clean the floor ensuring every trace of the hazard is

removed

 Dry any wet areas

 When the floor is completely dry, remove the signs and place them back in to

storage

If a staff member cannot deal with a hazard, you should immediately report to the

Supervisor on duty.

Safe work practices

Always remember with safe work practices: Prevention is better than cure. You should never

endanger yourself or others.

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It is every staff member’s responsibility to play their role in ensuring their work place is a

safe and healthy place to work, and that set standards are met in accordance with

Occupational Health and Safety issues and store policy. All staff members in our store are

responsible to bring work place hazards to the Supervisor’s attention if you cannot deal with

it yourself.

Employees who follow in safe work practices will dramatically reduce the risk of an accident

occurring. Should you have any concerns with safety issues, it is a good idea to report them

to the Store Safety Committee.

Safe manual handling

It is essential that all staff members follow the Manual Handling Code of Practice.

Any manual handling which requires a staff member to exert force to lift, lower, push, pull,

carry or otherwise move, can be at a potential risk of injury. Retail staff will be involved in

manual handling tasks every day. It is important to be aware of the potential for accidents

and know how to prevent them. Being aware and practicing the correct manual handling

techniques will enable you to work accident and injury free.

To prevent or reduce injuries, we need to identify, assess and control manual handling risks.

In our store, these risks relate to our work methods as well as the design of our work areas.

Refer to the Safe Manual Handling manual for more guidelines to assist you in maintaining a

safe work environment. Supervisors are to encourage staff members to follow the

guidelines for safe manual handling as well as attend regular training sessions held by an OH

and S representative.

Broken glass

Broken glass should not be picked up by hand. Always use a dustpan and brush and dispose

of in a safe manner. If there is no recycling bin, then wrap the broken glass in newspaper.

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Hair

Hair must always be tied back securely and the hairnets and caps supplied are to be worn at

all times when handling food.

Footwear

Suitable footwear helps prevent slips and falls by providing better grip on floors. So, for your

safety, closed in rubber sole shoes are a must in case of an accident.

Protective clothing

Always use all supplied protective equipment and clothing. This equipment is provided for

not only your protection, but for your safety as well. This includes wearing suitable footwear

and uniform for your particular job. Where required, protective clothing is supplied and

must be worn to protect yourself against injury.

This clothing was designed with staff safety in mind, does not restrict movement, and allows

loads to be carried close to the body. If you are spending a long time in the freezer and cold

rooms, use the freezer jackets provided, which are on the hook outside the door of the

freezer.

Gloves

Protective gloves are supplied to protect your hands from cuts, abrasions and extreme

temperatures. To ensure safe handling of food from the oven or freezer, gloves must be well

fitting and not worn through. Mesh gloves are to be worn on your non-dominant hand when

slicing or cutting meat and using the slicing machine.

Aisles and passageways

Always ensure aisles and passageways are free of rubbish, boxes and merchandise, as we

must provide a safe and convenient environment for our customers and staff members at all

times. Never leave cleaning equipment in aisles. Always remember to tidy as you go.

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Use of equipment

Some of the equipment in your department may be dangerous if used incorrectly. Do not

use equipment until your department Supervisor has shown you how to use it effectively

and safely.

You must sign an acknowledgment form that you have read The Work Safe Practices for

your department. It is your responsibility to use equipment correctly.

If you notice any damaged or faulty equipment, report it to your Supervisor so a tag can be

placed on the item. Never put yourself or others at risk by trying to fix faults. If you see a

piece of equipment with a tag, do not attempt to use it.

Carton cutters

The most common piece of equipment used in all departments is the carton cutter. Carton

cutters are also one of the major sources of injury.

When using a carton cutter, follow these simple rules:

 Always keep the blade sharp and cut away from your body

 Make sure fingers or other body parts are not in harm’s way

 Be careful to avoid damage to yourself or stock – always keep your eyes on your

work

 Always retract the blade after use

 Do not leave carton cutters unattended in the selling area

Ladders

Safety steps and ladders should be used whenever you have to reach above head height to

perform any of your tasks:

 Check the steps and ladders are in good condition before use

 All ladders should be adequately supported at the base

 Do not use a ladder on a wet, slippery, or uneven surface

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 The person using the ladder must always have 3 limbs on the ladder at all times

 A second person should support the ladder

 Never climb higher than the third rung from the top of the ladder

 Always work within easy arms reach from the ladder

 Ladders should be stored away when not in use

Dangerous goods and hazardous substances

Dangerous goods and hazardous substances are goods and chemicals that can cause harm

or injury to one’s health. Our store provides Material Safety Data Sheets (MSDS). These

contain information describing the product’s safe handling instructions, health hazards and

first aid procedures.

Dangerous goods are items, which are explosive, flammable, corrosive, chemical reactive,

combustible, toxic, radioactive or infectious. These substances come in many forms, for

example cigarette lighters, pool chlorine and fire lighters. A coloured diamond on the

packaging can usually identify these products.

Hazardous substances are liquids, solids, vapours, gas, fumes and dust. These all have the

potential to cause harm or injury to one’s health. Some dangerous goods are also hazardous

substances, for example oven cleaner. Colourful writing and warning pictures can identify

these goods.

Safety audits

It is a requirement of our store to carry out regular safety audits to assess any possible

problems or hazards in the workplace. These audits are carried out on a weekly basis.

Employees should inform their Supervisor or Manager of any hazard or safety issue they

have come across. When recognising a hazard, Supervisors are to carry out inspections of all

areas in their specific department with employees identifying everything that could possibly

be harmful. Information gained from carrying out an inspection is essential for ensuring the

workplace is safe and assists in recognising training needs.

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By using a checklist to identify risks, Supervisors will be able to recognise safety factors such

as:

 What moves

 What substances you work with

 What equipment you use

 How and where you use these things

 The way you do things

 Cleaning, maintenance and repairs.

Potential hazards

Avoiding hazards, such as the following, will not only eliminate potential risk, but also

ensure that in case of a more serious problem, quick and safe evacuation can be carried out

in an emergency:

 Floor hazard in spills and boxes left lying around

 Bad lighting, damaged equipment, fixtures and fittings

 Trolleys, ladders or shelving not put back in correct place

 Stock that has been packed away or stacked incorrectly

Risk control

To be able to provide a healthy and safe work environment, our store must have the

following process:

 Identify hazards in the workplace

 Assess risks that may result from a hazard

 Control those risks

For more information on risk control, please refer to the Maintain Store Safety brochure.

OH and S issue resolution

What procedures should you follow if you notice an OH&S issue in your store?

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Communication is important, and staff should be trained in the following procedures:

 Advise customers of hazards by using signs for example, an Out of Service tag)

 Whenever possible remove the hazard completely

 Know who to approach to repair the hazard

In any case the supervisor or Store Manager must be informed

Some OH and S issues are a spill of a chemical, faulty piece of equipment, faulty playing

equipment or broken furniture. Remember to always follow safe work practices as

Prevention is better than cure, and never attempt to use any piece of equipment with an

Out of Service tag.

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Store Security Policy and Procedures

Our aim

The Store insists on the highest level of security to prevent theft and insure a safe working

environment for staff members and customers alike.

Staff general security
Giving away products

You may be asked by customers and friends to give away merchandise but at no time can

you give away products. Giving away products is a very serious offence and a breach of store
policy and will lead to disciplinary action.
Procedures for staff purchases

After three months of employment a discount card will be supplied to all staff members.

This will entitle you to a 12% discount on all goods. This is for employee use only and not to

be abused and will be monitored.

All staff purchases must be made before or after your shift. If you wish to make a staff
purchase see your Supervisor who will document the purchase. A check seal sticker must be
placed on all items purchased before your shift.
Staff holds: are permitted for 24hours and will be kept at the supervisors counter.

Staff lay-bys: are permitted with the same conditions as customer lay-buys.

Property
It is company policy that all bags must be available for inspection by the security officer or

Manager if requested. Staff are permitted to enter and exit the store only through

designated staff entrances. All emergency exits are alarmed and employees must only enter
if there is an emergency.

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Lockers
Lockers are provided for all staff to keep their personal effects in while at work. It is each
individual’s responsibility to make sure their locker is locked
Valuables
Do not bring valuables to the store, as the store will not be responsible if they go missing
Equipment security

Our store has bought equipment to make our company more efficient and professional.

Equipment is a valuable asset and it is the Supervisor’s responsibility to ensure the following

rules are adhered to:

 Equipment must be serviced on a regular basis

 Staff member must treat the equipment with respect

 All staff must be appropriately trained in the use of equipment and associated

occupational health and safety issues

 Equipment must be used in an appropriate manner and not for personal use

 All equipment should be stored in a locked cupboard

 Keys are to be held by the Supervisor at all times

 Equipment must not be left lying around as theft could occur

Visitors and contractors access

For insurance purposes all visitors and contractors must fill out their details in the Visitors

Register before carrying out their business in the store. They must report to the office on

arrival where they will sign the Visitors Register, be issued with a security badge and

informed of their access to various locations within the store. Security will be notified to

escort visitor to required location.

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Deliveries

The receiving bay must be locked at all times. All deliveries are received through the

receiving bay and never the front entrance. All goods must be received either by the store

person or a department Supervisor and signed for after checking the delivery. This is one of

the main places where theft can occur so extra vigilance is called for.

Armed robbery procedures

Our company policy is to provide a safe and healthy working environment. Do not attempt

to be heroic: your life is worth more than any amount of money.

However, in the event of a hold up the following procedures must be followed:
 Remain calm and quiet
 Stand still and do not make any sudden movements

 Obey the offender’s instructions

 Do not draw attention to yourself, and speak only when spoken to
 Avoid direct eye contact and do not stare at the offender
What to do immediately after the offender has left the scene:

 Arrange first aid assistance if required

 If possible note direction and means of departure, not putting your self at risk.

 When safe to do so advise security and the Manager who will ring the police 000 and
contact head office
The Manager will seal off the area where the event took place

The Manager in charge will ask all witnesses to remain until the police arrive and you will be

allowed to your notify parents and family, should you be required to remain in the store

The Manager will complete the appropriate forms

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Store safety tips

 Do not chase offenders.

 Observe the dress and physical appearance of the offender but only if it is safe to do

so.

 Assess the offender’s height against a display stand, post or doorway.

 Do not attempt to answer a ringing telephone

 Do not attempt to delay the departure of the offenders because the sooner they

leave, the sooner you are safe.

 Do not discuss the incident with other employees until you have spoken with the
police.

 Do not drive a vehicle immediately after a hold up as it is possible that you could be

affected by shock.

 Do not touch anything as important evidence could be destroyed.

We recommend that you take up any company offers of trauma counselling.

Opening and closing the premises

For the safety of yourself and others please follow these opening and closing procedures.
Opening the store

 On arrival, enter through staff entrance and sign in.

 Secure your belongings in your locker.

 Sign for keys and count your float in the cash office.

 Secure your float in the cash register.

 Make sure all windows and doors are open and that customer entrances are open

and clear of obstacles.

 Vacuum the floor if needed

 Turn on all equipment such as radios and air conditioning

 Turn on lighting

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Closing the store

All staff must leave before closing procedure is started.No friends or relatives are allowed

during closing procedure.

 Ensure that only appropriate lighting is left on.

 Check all toilets, fitting rooms and do a quick run around to ensure no one is left in

the store.

 Make sure all doors and windows are closed.

 Make sure all equipment such as radios and air conditioning are turned off.

 Ensure that all registers are cleared and the cash is taken to the cash office.

Alarms are to be activated by the Supervisor and security officer and all keys are to be

handed to the security officer and signed off in the key register

Note: If your car is parked in a dark place ensure that a security officer accompanies you to

your vehicle.
Cash office security

After hours security is responsible for managing and maintaining building security.

Keys to the office are provided to all executive staff and to other staff members, as the

occasion requires.

Doors must be kept locked at all times.

Two people must always be present when opening the safe and counting money.

Policy for dealing with cash, credit, cheques and EFTPOS

Correct handling of payments during sales transactions (cash, cheques, credit cards and

EFTPOS) is important to minimise losses through fraud or theft. Errors by staff can include

giving the wrong change, pricing, discounting incorrectly, not checking goods properly.

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We realise that occasionally people make mistakes and the possibility of a shortage in our
cash registers does exist. For this reason you will not be required to make up shortages.

However, it is a serious matter if you frequently have significant cash shortages. You will be

notified and your knowledge of cash register procedures will be reviewed.

Cash register procedures
 Always count your float in the cash office.
 Never use another staff member’s cash register.

 Total the sale and advise the customer the total amount.

It is paramount to enter the amount the customer gives you to ensure the change required is

recorded and shown on your register

 Place the notes or cheques on the cash drawer; do not put it in the register at this

stage.
 Make up the change.
 Count the change back to the customer.
 Place the amount tendered into the appropriate compartments of the drawer.
 Close the cash drawer.
Failure to follow cash register procedures will result in disciplinary action
Always cash up your own register
Cash handling security procedures

Supervisors need to watch for signs of cash theft. Some signs are staff that use the no-sale

button often or are working out of the drawer and have excessive over-rings.

Store policy is never open the drawer and give change. If a customer complains about

change given, record the customer’s details. At the end of the day, if the till does not

balance, the supervisors will contact the customer. Never take the customer’s word alone.

 No unauthorised person is permitted behind the counter for any reason.

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 Never leave your cash drawer or the register open for any reason. Notify the cash

office when you require a cash pick up.
 Cash is never to be counted in view of the public. Office staff and a security member

will collect cash and it will be counted in the cash office

 Security measures and procedures should never be discussed with anyone other

than the Manager

Cheque transaction procedures

Bounced cheques cost our company valuable profits. A cost is incurred to the company when

a cheque is returned.

The following procedures are important for our store and must be used:

 Ensure that the correct company name is written on the cheque.

 All corrections are initialled by the customer.

 Cheques should be signed in front of the Supervisor

 Make sure cheques are marked Not Negotiable with the correct date and amount.

 Ensure writing is in black or blue pen never RED.

Our store does not except post-dated or cash cheques

 Telephone for authorisation for cheques over $100.

All interstate and overseas cheques must be authorised by telephone

 Verify that words and figures match

 Verify that the signature on the cheque matches the identification used

Identification can be either passport or drivers license. On the reverse of the cheque record

the customer’s address, phone number, license number and identification used.

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Credit card transaction procedures

The risk of credit card fraud is on the rise, as over half the store transactions are paid for

with a credit card. Although we have an electronic system in our store, sometimes there

might be a system failure or a damaged card. Manual procedures must then be used.

Manual credit card procedures

Ensure the sales voucher is filled in correctly

Check that the card has not expired

Check the name matches the person using the card

Verify the signature

Ensure all information has been indented on all copies of the sales voucher

Correct amount on docket

Purchases must be over $20.00

No cash can be given on credit card transactions

For all transactions over the $150.00 floor limit, please phone for authorisation

Check card against stolen card list, if the number appears on the list, retain the card and ring

the bank (The bank will advise what to do)

Electronic EFTPOS /Credit Card Procedures

Check card has not expired

Verify correct amount and circle approved

Initial credit card slip

Check signature

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Ensure customer receives the correct copy

Cash out can be given on EFTPOS

Cash cannot exceed $200.00

Purchases must be over $20.00

End of Shift Procedures

Fifteen minutes before your shift ends a Supervisor will complete a reading on your register

and EFTPOS machine.

At the end of each shift it is the staff member’s responsibility to take the cash draw to the

cash office

In the presence of cash office staff or a Manager the sales assistant will count and reconcile

taking

The float amount will be left in the cash drawer

All takings and reconciliation from register are to be placed in a security pouch with a seal a

signed by the sales assistant

All taking / float will then be deposited into the safe

Cash office staff will re-count all takings and float

Cash Holding – Security Procedures

Access to the safe is only available to Manager (the combination is confidential), for security

reasons the following must be adhered to:

All cash is kept in the safe at all times

A Manager and a staff member must be present to open the safe. (Always two people

present)

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Then safe register must be completed whenever opening or closing the safe. Ensure the safe

register is filled in correctly with date, time, and reason

To open the safe enter the combination and insert Manager key

All money placed in the safe must be in pouches with reconciliation forms or banking slips

Banking Procedures

Cash office staff handle all banking procedures

Safe is opened by the Manager and all cash is counted

A banking deposit slip is then completed

A security firm will collect all money three times per week

Policies dealing with Theft

Preventing Theft

Shop lifting is a huge cost to our business and must be reduced where possible. It is our
company policy that with the proper training you can prevent shoplifting before it happens.
Keep an eye on anyone acting suspicious, be alert and watch out for the signs. All staff must
be on the lookout for all acts of dishonesty and all incidents must be reported to the
Manager.
Our company policy is to prevent theft by the RGD method

R Recognise suspicious behaviour

G Good customer services

D Danger spots/times

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Recognising Suspicious Behaviour.

Shoppers who loiter in an area for a long time
Persons shopping in a group who split up but maintain eye contact
Groups of school children with large bags

Shoppers who avoid staff member’s attention

Shoppers who wear unusual or bulk clothing

Good Customer Service Prevents Theft

Through good customer service there are ways to reduce the risk of shoplifting. The

preventative measures our company follows are:

Always count the number of items customers take into the change room (company policy is

no more than three items)

Always count the number of items when the customer is leaving the change rooms

Check customer and staff bags
Acknowledge customers on entering and leaving the store
Always offer customers assistance if they are wandering around

Look for customers watching you, ask if you can help them

Check that all lighting is turned on and working
Ask customers holding goods if they would like to pay for them

Top up counter displays so they are fully stocked

Always keep cupboards locked that should be locked

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Always keep the staff room door closed
Always keep your staff lockers locked

Danger Spots

Always maintain a clear view across the shop and have no hidden areas that may provide an

easy opportunity to conceal merchandise. Areas of the store, which are most likely to

attract thieves, are:

Displays near exits
Change rooms
Toilets
Unlocked doors
End of aisles

Danger Times for theft

Shoplifters are most likely to steal during danger times so be alert and remember RDG. Keep

your mind on the job during these times:

Late night/Saturday mornings

Holidays periods when store has busy peak times

Opening and closing times of the store

Staff changeovers

While attending to fitting room, laybuys, changing displays, restocking and while using a

ladder

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As a preventative measure Store safety policy states 3 limbs must be on the ladder at all

times and a second person must support the ladder, that way they can also be keeping an

eye out for any suspicious behaviour.

Apprehension of Shoplifters

Be aware as shoplifting can happen unexpectedly. Apprehension of shoplifters should be the
last resort. Our store policy is prevention is easy and a far more effective approach.

Approaches to avoid apprehension

False accusation or wrong apprehensions may leave our store open to charges.
If you suspect a customer of stealing, try to encourage them to purchase the item by using

statements such as:

Would you like to purchase that item,(use name if you know what they have taken)

You can pay for that item at the register when ready, eg basketball

Do you know we have a lay-buy system

If the customer has left the store and has not paid for the goods, use the following
statements:

I am sorry but you have forgotten to pay for that item eg basketball

Did you know you have not paid for the item in your possession, eg pram, bag, basket

Procedure if apprehension must occur
Alert another staff member to contact security by calling extension 71

Inconspicuously follow the accused if safe to do so

Never accuse the customer of stealing or touch them in any way

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Ask the customer to accompany you to the security office

If customer refuses to wait for security to arrive, then inform security of the following

details:

In which direction they went

Description, what they wearing, nationality, anything that stands out, eg tattoos, facial

markings, hair colour and length
What they were carrying
What you suspect they stole
A note of where the goods were concealed
If they drove away, give a good description of the car, egcolour or registration if possible

Inform your Manager of all the details of the event and fill out a loss/apprehension report

immediately

Reporting of theft.

Our company policy is to follow all legal obligations so remember when filling in a report

never exaggerate. Never accuse or use discriminatory language (age, race, sex, etc) and
don’t make judgements about why they have stolen or the situation they are in. Shoplifting
is a criminal offence and has to be dealt with according to the law.
When filling in the report, stick to the facts and keep all answers simple and clear.
Describe the facts, what you saw, where it happened, when it happened, what you did,
what happened then and what was said.

Customer’s Property

What is the Bag Check Code of Practice?

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The Bag Check Code of Practice is a joint initiative of Retailers and the Department of

Consumer Affairs and has been developed as a compromise between the interests of

privacy, retail and consumer groups. The purpose of the code is to provide principles and

practices in relation to property checks so that shoppers and retailers can approach the

situation with knowledge of their rights and obligations. Our customer property policy

adheres to the principles of the code of practice.

Our Policy

Our store conducts property/bag checks in an attempt to control theft. All staff are to be

trained in the Property/Bag check procedures and aware of the stores legal position

regarding this matter.

Legal Position – The store must notify customers of its intention to conduct property checks.

A prominent notice that clearly sets this out must be displayed at a point where customers

can see it prior to entry.

Store Policy – Signage is prominently displayed at entrances to our stores establishing entry

conditions, which includes:

All bags and property will be checked when leaving the store

All school bags will be checked when leaving the store; (Staff are encouraged to ask students

to leave their school bags with security at the front entrances.)

All shopping trolleys and prams will be checked upon leaving the store

The Store’s Right to Conduct Property/Bag Checks

Legal Position – A customer who enters our store does so under licence. The shopkeeper

may make that entry conditional upon showing bags, trolleys, prams, cartons, parcels and

containers for checking.

Store Policy – Personal handbags will not be checked unless larger than a sheet of foolscap

paper.

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Legal Position – Staff members who forcibly conduct a property/bag check against a

customer’s will, may be liable for assault.

Store Procedures

All customers upon leaving the store should be requested to open their bags/property for

inspection either at the register or the customer exit point

Requests should be courteously made so as to minimise the degree of intrusion

The employee should request that the customer personally open the bag

There should be no direct physical interference by the employee

Where a view of the bag is obstructed by a large parcel, trolley, pram, coat or similar item,
the employee may request the customer to remove the obstruction but should not touch

the obstructing item

Dispute Procedures
Legal Position – A Shopper can refuse to allow a property/bag check. Employee’s needs to be
absolutely certain that the shopper has committed an offence in order to detain or search
the shopper’s processions.
Store Procedures
The employee should not under any circumstances enter into a dispute with the customer
over a request to check bags or a suspected theft
Under no circumstances will the employee attempt to forcibly restrain the customer or
interfere with bags or property
If any dispute arises the employee should immediately summon the store Supervisor

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The Supervisor will explain the conditions under which the customer entered the store. If
the customer again refuses to offer the bags and property for checking, the Manager may
ask the customer to leave the store and not return or summon a Police Officer

In summary, it is paramount that all Supervisors understand the rights and obligations of
customer’s property.

Rights and Obligations of Customers
Rights
Customers have the right to know before entry that the store conducts property/bag checks
Right to refuse interference with your person, property or with your bags. Checking means
that staff can look and not touch.
Under the Property Code the store has agreed not to check a personal handbag unless it is
larger than the size of a sheet of foolscap paper
Obligations
Having entered the store knowing that property/bag checks are conducted, customers have
accepted the store’s right to ask you to open you bags for checking.

IMPORTANT NOTES

Customers whom refuse inspection of their property/bags can be asked to leave the store
and not return.
The Supervisor/Security Officer will only hold a customer and call the police where the
employee is sure that an offence has been committed.

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If an employee forcibly detain you or forcibly searches your goods, and you have not
committed an offence, you are entitled to complain to the management or the police or
consult your solicitor to determine what legal rights you have.
If you feel that the Property Code has been breached, you should contact the Retail Traders
Association in your state.

Returns Policy

Our returns policy means customers can shop at our store, knowing that with a receipt, we
can offer convenient repairs, exchanges and refunds, provided goods are:
Returned within six week from date of purchase

Goods must be in new order and condition

Identification must be supplied. (acceptable ID includes any document or card with your

name, address, signature and preferably a photo, eg a drivers licence)

With a receipt
Customer can easily bring the goods back with a receipt to the service desk for a repair,
exchange or refund.
Without a receipt
If a customer has misplaced the receipt, the store can offer a repair or exchange if the goods

were purchased in-store, with acceptable ID. However, the store is not obligated to give a

refund if proof of purchase cannot be provided.

This service is in addition to customer’s statutory rights to return faulty merchandise for
repair, exchange or refund.

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When can a Supervisor refuse a refund?
In these cases we do not refund or exchange:

Where a customer wants to change good because they are cheaper elsewhere.

When a fault was made known to the customer at the time of sale.
When the customer has caused the item to fail.
.
The service desk is to complete a refund form and refer all refunds to their supervisors for
approval.

Supervisor’s Responsibilities

Check that all requirements of the refund policy are met.
Establish with the customer why goods are not required or satisfactory.
Check date of purchase with receipt and condition of goods.
Check the refund form is completed correctly and sign the Supervisor’s section.

Identification is to be checked by the Supervisor.

Supervisors then present customer a cash or credit refund.

Supervisor’s Audit Roles

In summary, Supervisors play an important part in implementing store security. The three

main areas of concern are: vendor theft, customer theft and employee theft. It is the

Supervisor’s responsibility to carry out regular audits to help prevent loss. The types of

audits required are random spot checks of cash, stock, employees and regularly perform

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follow-up phone calls for refunds to customers. Further, to discourage visitors or friends

visiting staff members during work times, restrict access to the stock room, and always

make sure the back door is locked.

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Staff Induction Checklist

This checklist is used to guide the induction process for new employees. Once the induction

checklist is completed, both the supervisor and new employee should sign-off as it is

completed. The completed checklist will form part of the new employee’s training records.

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Recruitment and Selection Policy

This Recruitment and Selection Policy establishes guidelines for the recruitment and

selection of Sim’s Hardware staff.

Sim’s Hardware aims to attract and employ the most suitable person for the position who

will support the organisation’s values, culture and goals in order to achieve its strategic

directions. Recruitment and selection of staff at Sim’s Hardware will comply with all legal

requirements, and with relevant equal opportunity, human resource management

principles, policies and guidelines adopted by the organisation.

This policy applies to all fixed-term, part-time and full-time appointments.

Principles

The following principles guide decision-making in relation to recruitment and selection of

staff to work at Sim’s Hardware.

● The aim of the recruitment and selection process is to appoint the most suitable person to

the position.

● Recruitment and selection will be informed by Sim’s Hardware’s

strategic directions and priorities and will take place following an evaluation of the need for

the role given the staffing requirements to achieve these directions and priorities.

● Recruitment and selection will be guided by requirements of relevant legislation and other

relevant human resource management policies in use by Sim’sHardwaresuch as equal

opportunity and anti-discrimination policies.

● Recruitment and selection processes will be conducted on the basis of fair, equitable and

respectful treatment of all

applicants.

● Positions will be advertised on a range of sites including print and web media (where

appropriate), which are most likely to maximise the field of suitably qualified applicants.

● Appointments will be made in open competition from the widest field of applicants

attracted by both internal and external advertising.

● All appointments will be made on the basis of careful and consistent application of the

principle of merit and adherence to the key selection criteria and requirements of the

position as outlined in the position description.

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● Recruitment and selection processes will be transparent, consistent, professional and

timely. Accountability will be achieved by recruitment and selection processes being open

and subject to appropriate scrutiny and review, having regard to the confidentiality of the

applicants.

● All recruitment and selection processes will be conducted so as to ensure the

confidentiality of the applicants and to preserve the integrity of the process.

● Decision-making is the responsibility of the store general manager or as delegated.

Responsibilities relating to this policy

Offers of employment are made by the store manager or a person delegated by the owners

to make the decision of employment.

The Store General Manager is responsible for the operation, development and continuous

improvement of this policy and for providing information about all legal aspects of the

contract.

Procedure: To make a complaint

If you believe you are being, or have been, discriminated against, sexually harassed or

bullied, you should follow this procedure.

1. Tell the offender the behaviour is offensive, unwelcome, and against company policy and

should stop (only if you feel comfortable enough to approach them directly, otherwise

speak to your manager). Keep a written record of the incident/s.

2. If the unwelcome behaviour continues, contact your supervisor or manager for support.

3.If this is inappropriate, you feel uncomfortable, or the behaviour persists, contact another

relevant senior manager. Employees may also lodge a complaint with the Australian Human

Rights Commission, or the Fair Work Ombudsman.

Employees should feel confident that any complaint they make is to be treated as

confidential as far as possible.

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When a complaint is received by a manager/owner, the manager/owner will listen to both

sides of the story separately, taking written notes for documentation purposes. You should

check these notes carefully, where required, before agreeing on the accuracy of the notes. A

further investigation will only take place if agreed upon by the manager and complainant.

If, after investigation, management finds the complaint is justified, management will discuss

with the complainant theappropriate outcomes which may include:

●disciplinary action to be taken against the perpetrator (counselling, warning or dismissal)

●staff training

●additional training for the perpetrator or all staff, as appropriate

●counselling for the complainant

●an apology (the particulars of such an apology to be agreed between all involved).

Grievance Policy

Sim’s Hardware supports the right of every employee to lodge a grievance with their

manager if they believe a decision, behaviour or action affecting their employment is unfair.

An employee may raise a grievance about any performance improvement action taken

against them.

Where a grievance may contravene Sim’s Hardware’s equal employment and opportunity

(EEO) policy or where the grievance constitutes bullying, discrimination or harassment, the

grievance should be resolved in accordance with the procedures outlined in the Anti-

discrimination policy outlined in the Wollongong General Operations Manual.

We aim to resolve problems and grievances promptly and as close to the source as possible.

When necessary, Sim’s Hardware will escalate a grievance to the next higher level of

authority for more discussion and resolution, and continue escalating it to the level above

until it is resolved.

Managers will do their utmost to action grievances objectively, discreetly and promptly. Be

aware that grievances that are misconceived, vexatious, and lacking substance may result in

disciplinary action being taken against the employee lodging the grievance.

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Procedure

1.The employee should try to resolve the grievance as close to the source as possible. This

can be informal and verbal. At this stage, every possible effort should be made to settle a

grievance before the formal grievance process starts. If the matter still can’t be resolved,

the process continues and becomes formal.

2.To start the formal grievance, the complainants must fully describe their grievance in

writing, with dates and locations wherever possible and how they have already tried to

settle the grievance.

3.The person/s against whom the grievance/complaint is made should be given the full

details of the allegation/s against them. They should have the opportunity and a reasonable

time to respond in writing before the process continues.

4.A manager should have a discussion with both parties in an effort to resolve the grievance

at the workplace level.

5.If the grievance still can’t be resolved, refer the matter to the most senior manager for

consideration and a final decision. A grievance taken to this level must be in writing from

the employee.

Should the issue recur, a review may be undertaken at any stage thereafter by the most

senior manager or owner. Further reviews may be held if required.

System to monitor sales performance

It is the Supervisor’s role to promote excellence in customer service, achieve sales targets

and monitor performance of their Department. Supervisors should ensure data is recorded

correctly so customers receive quality service and your store makes a profit. Supervisors

need to monitor and evaluate selling systems in order to see the big picture and improve

the strategy where necessary.

A supervisor’s three key functions are:

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 Implementation of store sales policies and procedures

 Monitor the achievement of sales targets

 Provide feedback and rewards

Step 1: Implementation of store sales policies and procedures

Identify store policies and procedures related to selling

It is the Supervisor’s responsibility to ensure all policies and procedures which relate to

selling are understood and followed. All staff members are to be trained accordingly. Our

store manuals which relate to selling are:

 Customer Service Standards, which include dealing with customer complaints and

greeting the customer.

 Selling, which includes approaching the customers, establishing the customers

needs, presenting of merchandise, dealing with objection, selling related items (add

on sales), closing the sale.

 Store Security Procedures, dealing with preventing theft and apprehension of

shoplifters, point of sale transactions dealing with cash register procedures, credit,

cheques and EFTPOS, refunds, returns, exchanges and repairs.

Monitoring staff selling performance

To ensure customers are satisfied with our service, and sales targets are met, in accordance

with store policy and procedures, it is essential that the Supervisor monitors staff members

at point of sale area for:

 Implementation of store sales policies and procedures.

 Accurate data entry (incorrect information put into the system can affect the stock

processes such as ordering and stocktake results, as well as lead to poor sales and

adverse customer perception)

 Efficient sale processing of goods through the point of sale area (service and selling

quality is essential)

 Appropriately matching customer needs to product and services.

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 Processing returns should include the reason for the return to determine whether

the problem is with the stock (faulty), or staff member sold the inappropriate stock

to the customer.

 Store customer service and selling techniques are implemented.

Monitoring customer service is a critical factor in identifying deficiencies and making

improvements.

Evaluating staff selling performance

Our store has devised two ways to evaluate staff selling performance. The evaluation needs

to look beyond the sales result and into the area of procedural performance. The Supervisor

should regularly monitor performance in this area and provide necessary feedback to staff.

 Point of Sale Questionnaire: to be completed by the Supervisor on individual staff

members at least once a month (see attached)

 Customer Satisfaction Questionnaire: is an informative way of measuring service

quality. Place at information stands throughout the store and encourage customers

to complete and return to the store.

Remember the Point of Sale area is often the last contact a customer has with our store and

last impressions count. The Point of Sale area provides opportunities to reinforce our store

image, advertise services, sell add ons and display coordinates.

Just because the store is achieving sales targets, it doesn’t necessarily mean that everything

is working well. The target may have been achieved because of a hard sell approach by

some staff members. The impact of this can be detrimental on return custom and sales will

reflect this in future months.

Step 2: Monitor the achievement of sales targets

Monitor sales staff

It is the Supervisor’s role to report staff performance, evaluate areas and identify where

further training is required to maximise profit. A sense of balance is required to keep staff

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members happy, customers satisfied, reaching sales targets and achieving required profit

margins. To carry out the above, procedures must be followed.

Setting sales targets

It is the responsibility of an accountant to allocate sales targets, which are then approved by

Store Manager and passed onto Department Supervisors. Department sales targets are

formulated based on previous trading patterns of the store. Each Department is given a

monthly sales target and it is the Supervisor’s responsibility, on a daily level, to ensure

targets are being met.

Recording of sales targets

Supervisors need to evaluate sales results as well as selling systems. Our store has a

computerised system which updates all sales information based on daily sales. Supervisors

have computer password to assess the Department sales targets and any individual sales

targets. Sales results should be circulated by superiors during staff meetings. It is the

Supervisor’s responsibility to print out daily sale sheet, file in appropriate folder and

complete store sales target sheet. A Sales Performance Chart is updated daily and displayed

on a staff noticeboard. (see Department Sales Report attached)

Measuring sales performance

Our store measures sales performance in dollar terms and customer satisfaction. An

indication of dissatisfied customers could be from returns and complaints.

Our Company’s procedure for informing staff members of their sales performance are as

follows:

Performance Reviews: carried out on a monthly basis. Supervisors will complete Point of

Sale Questionnaire.

Performance Appraisals: carried out every three months.

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Staff Meetings: Supervisors are to hold monthly staff meetings to improve communication

with staff members and reinforce sales targets and achievements. Recognising and

monitoring good service performance reinforces their behaviour. Good individual

performance should be discussed with all staff members at these meetings. Further staff

meetings can provide a forum for open and positive discussion of grievance.

Training Sessions: Our Personnel Department provides monthly training sessions to enhance

sales performance. Supervisors must attend as an opportunity of being able to refine and

improve any changes with staff members. The advantage of monthly training sessions is to

practise changes by using role plays, ensure understanding of revised or new policies and

procedures.

If sales targets are not being met by staff members, personnel will offer and carry out

 Workplace coaching (one on one)

 Individual counselling

To improve sales performance, staff members are encouraged to improve their customer

service skills with signage posted in various locations in the store.

Step 3: Providing feedback

Feedback to management

Supervisors are required to report to Management as follows:

 Daily: Department Sales Sheet (takings)

 Weekly: Sales Performance Report

 Monthly: Sales Performance Report

It is of paramount importance that these reports are completed correctly and indicate:

 The Sales targets for the month

 Reason for not achieving sales targets or reason for exceeding sales targets

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 Action you plan to take if an individual or your department’s sales targets were not

achieved.

 Feed back and rewards to be provided to staff for exceeding targets.

The reasons for achieving or not achieving sales targets need to be indicated. Take

appropriate action if staff member or Department sales targets were not achieved and

provide feedback to staff members for exceeded targets.

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Providing feedback to staff members on sales performance

Supervisors must review results staff members are achieving and give appropriate feedback.

Recognising excellence in achievement of sales targets is motivating for staff members, and

provides incentive to continue enhancing their sales performance in the future.

Recognising achievements can take a number of forms. The simplest is by personally

congratulating individuals and teams on their performance. The biggest reward one can

sometimes get is a pat on the back for a job well done. Tangible forms of reward our

Company offers are bonuses, team dinners or gift vouchers.

Our Company offers a number of incentives for staff members who achieve sales target.

They are:

 Sales Employee of the Month

 Team Member of the Month

 Award for Outstanding Customer Service.

As a Supervisor, please nominate your staff member for these awards to the Personnel

Department. Please see bonus schemes for more

information.

Poor performance

Giving feedback on poor performance is sometimes harder to do than giving positive

feedback. We need to look not only at why sales targets were not met, but what remedies

we can apply to improve performance. There are a number of strategies we can implement

to support sales staff that are experiencing performance problems. Some ideas are:

 Counselling

 Training

 Coaching

 Job aids

Remember, when giving feedback to enhance a staff member’s performance, wherever

possible, give them an opportunity to improve.

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Furthermore, as a Supervisor, the Personnel Department’s Human Resources Manager is

your support. For any staffing matters, please do not hesitate to contact them for assistance

regarding any staff member especially in the area of poor performance.

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COMPANY DOCUMENTS

Head Office Financial Management Policies and Procedures Manual

Sim’s Hardware Financial Management Policies

Financial Management Policy

Sim’s Hardware promotes a best practice approach to all aspects of its operations.

Sim’s Hardware values ethical and compliant practices and the highest level of service to all

stakeholders.

All facets of financial management will reflect the

following:

● all activities will be conducted ethically

● all activities will reflect the company’s strategic goals

● all activities will be undertaken to achieve the key goals and financial benchmarks

identified in the annual business plan.

All activities will comply with the following where applicable:

● Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC) operating and reporting

requirements

● Australian Accounting Standards (AAS)

● relevant state and federal

legislation

● relevant state or federal government contractual requirements.

All procedures will be designed to support the successful operation of Sim’s Hardware’s

operation and services.

Financial Reporting Policy

Reports should provide analysis of all income and expenditure, balance sheet and cashflow

items in relation to the endorsed budget by the board of directors.

Budgeting Policy

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All budgets are prepared at the direction of the Finance, Audit and Risk Management

(FARM) Committee (chaired by Chief Financial Officer) and must respond to business and

strategic goals.

Cash Control and Investment Policy

All investments must be endorsed by the board of directors and be subject to reviews and

recommendations from the Finance, Audit & Risk Management (FARM) Committee.

All money received is to be banked by the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) or delegated

authority in a timely manner.

Bank accounts are to be monitored by the CFO to ensure there are sufficient funds to meet

daily operational requirements. If there is excess money in the Business Operating Account

the CFO is to arrange for this to be transferred to the Investment Account.

If funds are low in the Business Operating Account the CFO is to transfer an amount from

the Investment Account into the Business Operating Account.

Credit Policy

All activities undertaken in collection must endeavour to minimise bad debt.

All activities undertaken must comply with federal and state legislative requirements

relating to PAYG employees, WorkCover and modern award conditions.

Fixed Asset Policy

Management of assets must comply with Australian Accounting Standards. The assets of the

company must be maintained to ensure maximum usage.

Taxation Policy

All activities must comply with taxation law including maintaining tax exemption status.

Insurance Policy

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Insurance coverage must protect the company against any loss or liability in relation to the

following:

● business assets

● public liability

● workers’ compensation

● professional indemnity

● director and officer liability.

Invoice Policy

Accounts receivable

● Invoices need to be in the accounting system by the end of each month to provide

accurate accounting information.

Accounts payable

Sim’s Hardware’s terms of payment are 30 days from date of invoice.

All invoices need to be verified, job numbered and approved by the authorising staff

member and the CEO. The assistant accountant is responsible for inputting all invoices for

the month into Sim’s Hardware’s accounting system to ensure accurate accounting

information.

Cash Receipts Policy

Payment for a product or service can be made in the following way:

● electronic funds transfer

(EFT)

● credit card

● cheque.

The payment terms for all products and services are 14 days from date of invoice.

Project Expenditure Policy

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● Project funding must cover all project costs including fixed costs, management,

administration, coordination costs and direct project costs.

● All project activity must be reported upon bimonthly by the CFO for reporting to the

FARM Committee and board.

● All project contracts are signed in accordance with the procurement policy.

● All projects, upon signing of contract, will be formally established in the Sim’s Hardware

accounting system by the assistant accountant through completion of the project number

and budget.

● All expenses related to projects will be job and account coded by the project managers

and then entered by the assistant accountant into the Sim’s Hardware accounting system.

● The project manager will verify and approve all projects under their responsibility. The

CEO, CFO and or Director will sign all payments and requisitions to ensure the amounts

reconcile prior to payment.

● Project managers must operate within project budgets at all times.

● Project managers must confirm all verbal commitments in writing and have it approved by

the CEO and

CFO.

Sim’s Hardware Financial Management Procedures

Full disclosure of the processes and procedures are essential to the financial report’s

credibility. Information should be disclosed in a way that enables the Finance, Audit and Risk

Management (FARM) Committee and external auditors to attest to its reliability.

Management Accounts

● The CFO has the overall responsibility for preparing the monthly and quarterly

management accounts for the FARM Committee and the board of directors. The CFO has

responsibility for compiling quarterly management reports from stores (currently 138

stores).

● The management accounts are to be available for review by the FARM

Committee and board members prior to board meetings.

● The management accounts are to be prepared using Australian Accounting Standards and

with regard to the Australian Income Tax Act 1986 and Corporations Act 2001.

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● The management accounts are to be prepared from the Sim’s Hardware accounting

system Accounting package with detailed working papers of reconciliation.

This includes a reconciliation of all balance sheet items and ensuring the accuracy of these

items.

● Accrual accounting is used throughout the reports except for the cash

flow

statements.

● Monthly and quarterly management accounts should include an operating statement with

year to date results, a detailed balance sheet and cash flow statement.

● The profit and loss account should detail the budget year to date, actual results year to

date and variances year to date.

● Notes should explain any significant variances that the board should be aware of for

decision-making.

● The CFO needs to ensure the end of month reports are completed by the 15th of the

subsequent month.

End of Month/Quarter Checklist

Note: Management accounts are given to CEO and FARM Committee monthly and

quarterly.

1. Adjust all previous month’s/ quarter’s accruals where required.

2. Update depreciation schedule and record journal in Sim’s Hardware accounting system.

3. Prepare all standing journals for accrued income, amortised expenses and liabilities.

4. Ensure all project-related income/expenses are reconciled.

5. Analyse prepayments and record expenses accordingly.

6. Ensure all payroll is finalised and reconciles for month prior to closing quarter end

accounts.

7. Check that all invoices for payment have been entered into the creditors sub-ledger for

the period.

8. Review creditors to ensure no adjustments required.

9. Review debtors sub-ledger to ensure no adjustments required.

10. Ensure that bank statements reconcile to general ledger.

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11. Ensure that all payroll clearing accounts are reconciled, e.g. PAYG, EFTs, superannuation

and salary sacrificing payments.

12. Annual leave liability entries to be reconciled and journalised.

13. For projects that have not been completed, the unexpended funds are recorded in the

balance sheet as liabilities.

14. Reconcile all balance sheet items.

15. Reconcile GST reports to the balance sheet and quarterly BAS returns.

16. Prepare operating accounts, including actual results and YTD (year to date) budget.

17.Material unfavourable variances and abnormal items should be noted in the accounts

and reasons noted for FARM Committee.

18.Ensure that all working papers are clear and concise for audit. File to be labelled clearly

with a copy of the operating accounts, balancesheet, profit and loss account and cash flow

statements.

19.Deliver and discuss company’s results with FARM Committee. Should budget not be

expected to be achieved in any area, this must be highlighted to the FARM Committee.

Budgeting Procedures

● The annual budget should be finalised prior to the commencement of the new financial

year. If considered necessary, the budget may be subsequently adjusted.

● The annual budget (1 July –30 June) must be prepared as directed by the FARM

Committee, board of directors and CEO.

● It is the responsibility of the CFO to prepare annual budget parameters including revenue

and expenditure, staffing, administration and resource implications.

● The initial annual budget estimates should be based on the current expenditure

projections to end of year plus relevant wage increases, revisions to employment awards

and contracts, and an assessment of the projected increase in operating expenses.

● Expected interest rates and investment options should be evaluated and projections

prepared.

● All fixed costs should be reviewed and projected for the twelve month period including

rental premises, insurance, cleaning, office equipment etc.

● All taxes and legislative costs to operate, must be considered including audit costs.

● All annual budget working papers must be documented, including:

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○ assumptions

○ papers from the board advising strategic plan and business plan

○ papers from the CEO to support projected numbers and costs.

● The annual budget will be finalised and submitted to the FARM Committee and board of

directors for approval.

● The annual budget for the next financial year should be presented to the board of

directors.

● The CFO is responsible for monitoring the organisation’s expenditure, reviewing the actual

and budgeted expenditures, and reporting on the progress of such expenditure.

Project Budgeting

● All project budgets must be developed by project managers in collaboration with, and

approved by, the CFO before finalisation of the annual budget.

● The CFO will allocate each approved project budget a number code, and this will also

become the project identification code across all Sim’s Hardware systems.

● Project managers are responsible for ensuring projects do not run over budget; that

deliverables meet contractual obligations;

that the sign-off of invoices, and the provision of the signed invoice to the assistant

accountant for processing.

Preparation for Annual Audit

● A review of all year end balances in the balance sheet and operating statement must be

undertaken.

● All balance sheet general ledger accounts are reconciled. This would

include examining in detail:

○ The bank reconciliation –including sighting a copy of the bank statement.

○ Petty cash reconciliation – ensuring the amounts reimbursed balance with the nominal

balance to be held.

○ The debtors accounts – including any amounts not contained in aged debtors report. This

will also include analysis of amounts outstanding greater than 30 days with reports on

action taken.

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○ Examine asset register to ensure there are no obsolete items being depreciated (e.g.

obsolete computer hardware/upgraded software applications).

○ Ensure that pre-paid expenses relate to future periods and are recorded in the balance

sheet.

○ Review the creditors report to ensure all expenses are current and credit notes have been

processed where applicable.

○ Ensure that all expenses are included as accrued expenses if the amounts have not been

included in the accounts payable ledger.

Examine accrued expenses to ensure liability had arisen at balance date (i.e. sight

documentation).

○ Ensure that all contingent liabilities are raised.

○ Examine payroll reports to ensure wages/deductions/superannuation and taxation

balances in the clearing accounts.

○ Examine leave liability reports to ensure provisions are correct and current for period

including long service leave which is accrued after five years

service.

○ Ensure that a liability is raised for any net project funds which have not been expended at

closing date. A net result should not appear in the general profit and loss.

● The following financial management systems should be checked in particular:

○ Payroll – Check the direct payments report to ensure no additional employees or collusion

between staff members.

○ Payroll– Check that amounts paid are recorded in payroll system correctly.

○ Payroll– Ensure that PAYG reconciles.

○ Payroll – Ensure that all third party payments for packaged employees are currently

recorded for fringe benefits tax (FBT) liability where applicable. The FBT incurred by this

expense, should reduce the cash residual of the package payable to the employee (if stated

in the employment contract).

○ Payroll – Ensure that no terminated employees are on current payroll, excepting

employees who have been subsequently re-engaged on a casual basis.

○ Accounts payable – Ensure that the authorisation procedure is being followed. Ensure that

all goods and services paid have been received.

○ Accounts payable – Test data to ensure expense classifications are correct.

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○ Accounts receivable – Ensure that invoices are being raised correctly, sight source data.

○ Accounts receivable – Ensure that all payments are being matched correctly and banked

promptly – ensure no delays to cash flow.

○ Accounts receivable – Examine unpaid accounts and action taken – give advice and assist

where necessary. Attempt to identify any clients who show signs of becoming slow payers

(e.g. timing between payments becoming greater or unwilling to be bound to terms of

payment).

Potential bad debt cases should be identified as soon as possible to minimise the amounts

that could be lost.

○ Ensure that all asset registers are up-to-date by comparing the written down values with

the general ledger.

○ Ensure all accrued interest on term deposits or interest on loans is reflected in the

accounting records.

○ Ensure taxation and statutory compliance is being met.

● A review of WorkCover policies will be made by examining the working papers supported

by source documentation such as payroll reports, contractors creditors file (if applicable)

and FBT returns (if applicable) – estimates for future periods.

● A review of the annual payroll will be made by examining the working papers supported

by source documentation such as payroll reports and cash/EFT entries to staff, payments to

the ATO, payments to superannuation funds and other deductions made.

● A review of the FBT return will be made by examining the working papers supported by

source documentation such as payroll reports and salary packaging arrangements, and

general ledger reports.

● All internal audit checks should be applied at year end to ensure information presented to

external auditors follows the Australian Accounting Standards. A detailed working paper file

of all reconciliations and copies of source documentation (where applicable) are included.

● The end of month checklist should be examined to ensure all month end work is being

reviewed.

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Accounts Receivable Procedure

● Cheques and cash should be deposited in a timely manner by the assistant accountant or

CFO.

● Ensure that all credit card payments are processed within 24 hours of receipt.

An invoice/receipt with the EFT Machine payment receipt needs to be mailed to the client.

● Monies received needs to be recorded in the deposit master file and reconciled with the

bank statement on a bimonthly basis.

● Follow the collections procedure(below) to obtain any overdue funds.

Collections Procedures for Tradespeople

● Ensure that all credit terms are printed clearly on all invoices and agree with the

customers’ contract for terms of business.

● The collection procedure is:

○ Net payment is required with 14 days from invoice date. Beyond 14 days, further

collections procedures are enacted.

○After 30 days –issue a duplicate invoice with a reminder notice

○After 45 days –contact the debtor by telephone and record on

the Sim’s Hardware collections database all relevant information such as the person spoken

with and any agreed action

○After 60 days –issue a letter of demand and retain a copy.

Ensure that the following items are included in the correspondence:

–Claim the debt owed by the debtor.

–Give the debtor sufficient details to identify the debt.

–Allow the debtor a reasonable time to respond (14 days).

–Indicate that if the payment is not received within the time stated that the debt will be

passed onto Sim’s Hardwaredebt collection agency for further demand and/or possible legal

action.

–After90 days –All debtors are passed onto the debt collection agency and no sales orders

will be accepted by the sales officersuntil the debt has been paid.

–All accounts at 90 days and over are to be kept at a maximum of 5% of total receivables.

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●The FARM Committeehave authority to approve write-off on any one debt.

●Any changes to the procedures outlined above must be authorised by the FARM

Committee.

Accounts Payable Procedures

●Payments will be made for invoices authorised by the appropriate project manager or

senior manager.

●Statements are not to be paid; they are to be used for reconciliation purposes only, except

where a statement and invoice are combined.

● Allcheques will show the payee’s name in full and be crossed (except petty cash) and will

be signed by two signatories.

● All EFT payments will be authorised by the CEO and CFO.

● Petty cash will be reconciled whenever a cheque is required to be drawn or each month. A

receipt must be present for each and every disbursement.

● All payments should be made under terms of business and the credit time utilised to the

company’s advantage.

● All invoices must be job coded and approved by the appropriate manager.

● All current month invoices must be entered into the system prior to end of month to allow

for the expense to be captured for end of month reporting and cash flow calculations by the

CFO.

● The cut-off date for month end processing is as advised by the CFO.

● All corrections to invoices entered in a previous month (e.g. incorrect amount, GST code,

account allocation, invoice cancellation) must be brought to the attention of the assistant

accountant, prior to processing.

● The accounts payable is to be reconciled each month end.

Payroll Procedures

● It is the responsibility of the CFO or delegated authority to confirm all conditions of

employment including:

○ basis of employment (full-time, part-time, casual)

○ annual remuneration

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○basis remuneration calculated, i.e. inclusive of superannuation, leave loading, other

benefits

○ leave entitlements including loading provisions applicable/not applicable

○ choices available in packaging –if any

○ terms of notice required

○ superannuation

○ Date of commencement.

●It is the responsibility of the CFO to ensure that all employment declarations,

superannuation forms and trainee indentures are completed and lodged.

● All payments are to be made by EFT to the employee’s nominated bank account on a

fortnightly basis.

● Requests by terminating employees for group and/or separation certificates must be

provided promptly.

● All payroll transactions are to be entered into Sim’s Hardware accounting system. No

wages are to be paid in cash and all payments must be recorded.

The payroll payments report is to be reconciled to ensure that all group certificates agree

with wages paid for the year.

● Should a payroll amount not be received by an employee, firstly check payments

deducted on payroll reports.

Request a copy of the employee’s bank statement as evidence the payment has not been

deposited. Ensure that the pay has not been returned to the

company.

Contact the bank to report the error and to run a trace on the lost funds.

Pay employee again as soon as possible. Ensure that the credit for pay when it is located is

recorded to ensure cash paid agrees with wages recorded.

● The payroll area is not to disclose to other parties information of a private nature. Should

a lending organisation require income information, the CFO may only confirm the amount

paid as wages or other details where the lending organisation has already been supplied

with this information by the employee.

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Fixed Assets Procedures

● All fixed asset expenditure must be within the board’s annual budget.

● Any additional expenditure over $200,000 must have authorisation from the FARM

Committee.

● All assets must be recorded in the fixed asset register and financial accounts.

● All disposals must be at a fair market price.

Discounts on disposal must be approved by the Chairperson and FBT must be paid.

● All assets are recorded in the asset register with a code relating to the assets’ location and

description.

● An audit of fixed assets must take place annually by the CFO.

● All assets must be kept in good condition and be productive. Non-productive fixed assets

could be reducing funds that could be earning interest.

● A copy of the fixed asset register must be kept offsite.

● The level of insurance cover should be reviewed annually.

● A depreciation schedule must be maintained monthly using the straight line method to

expense depreciation over each asset’s expected useful life.

Tendering and Purchasing Procedures

All employees must adhere to Sim’sHardware ’s procurement policy and procedures.

Insurance Procedures

● The CFO is responsible for ensuring the following insurance policies are current:

○ business assets

○ public liability

○ indemnity cover for directors and employees

○ WorkCover for employees and paid Directors.

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Financial Performance 2015, 2016 and

2017

2015

(

Figures in $

millions)

2016

(Figures in $
millions)
2017
(Figures in $
millions)

Sales

Less COGS

3,600

(1,800)

3,800

(1,900)

3,500

(1,750)

Gross Profit 1,800 1,900 1,750

Less SG&A

expenses

(1,080) (1,140) (1,050)

Less depreciation (100) (100) (100)

Earnings before

interest and tax

620 660 600

Less interest expense (23) (26) (28)

Pre-Tax Income 597 634 572

Cumulative Pre-Tax

Income (NOL)

597 1,230 1,802

Taxes 239 253 229

Pre-Tax Income 597 634 572

Less taxes (239) (253) (229)

Net Income 358 380 343

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Statement of Financial Position Ending FY2017

Balance at the end of

reporting period

(Figures in $ millions)

Cash 958

Inventory 110

Accounts receivable 264

Total Current Assets 1,332

Gross property, plant & equipment 700

Less accumulated depreciation (300)

Total Assets 1,732

Accounts Payable 88

Bank notes payable 62

Total Current Liabilities 150

Long term debt 200

Shareholder’s equity 1,382

Total long-term debt and shareholder’s equity 1,582

Total Liabilities 1,732

Sales 3,500

Less COGS (1,750)

Gross Profit 1,750

Less SG&A expenses (1,050)

Less depreciation (1,050)

Earnings before interest and tax 600

Less interest expense (28)

Pre-tax income 572

Cumulative pretax income 1,802

Taxes 229

Pretax income 572

Less taxes (229)

Net Income 343

Plus depreciation 100

Less increase in inventory 73

Less increase in accounts receivable 174

Plus increase in accounts payable (58)

Cash flow from operations 632

Less investment (100)

Cash flow from operations and investments 532

Plus net new equity capital raised –

Less dividends paid –

Plus net new long term debt –

Plus net new borrowings (7)

Cash flow from operations, investments and finance 525

Beginning cash balance 432

Ending Cash balance 957

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Sim’s Hardware Marketing Plan 2017

1.0 Executive Summary

Sim’s Hardware was founded by Percy Greenwright in 1921 and was known as Sim’s Home

Goods until 1952. In 1982, Sim’s Hardware, seeing expansion opportunities but requiring

investment capital, restructured and relaunched as a public company. It was floated on the

Australian Stock Exchange in September of that

year.

The Greenwright family has retained a controlling interest in the company since its

founding. At present, Percy Greenwright’s great grandson, Holden Greenwright, performs

dual functions of chair of the board of directors and CEO.

Sim’s Hardware owns and operates 138 warehouses throughout Australia, with plans to

continue expanding at the rate of 2–3 stores per

year.

At a Glance –Sim’s Hardware

●Location: Sim’s Hardware stores are located all around Australia in

themajor cities and in the larger regional centres.

●Design: (Has been described as having a ‘Bunnings feel’crossed with elements of

international home design show). Large, open-plan warehouse, but suggesting excitement

of trade fair containing displays of latest and best Australia and the world has to offer in

home design; realistic and interactive, mock-up displays of installed products to provide

visual and tactile sense of design quality, aesthetics and luxury attainable for customer’s

home; product experts at every display or booth; otherwise, no-frills, no-nonsense decor

exhibiting sustainability features, such as water tanks, recycling bins, and solar arrays, for

example, in plain sight.

● Size: 15–20,000 m each location on 2–4 hectare sites.

● Employees: Approximately 10,000 across Australia.

● Types of transactions: Retail (point-of-sale) and account (trades customers).

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According to the company mission, Sim’s Hardware provides the best of Australia and the

world in quality hardware, homewares, garden supplies and building materials to Australian

consumers and tradespeople. Sim’s Hardware is committed to providing customer value

through everyday low prices, product quality, expert service, community engagement and

environmental responsibility. According to the Sim’s Hardware vision, within five years,

Sim’s Hardware will lead the hardware and home –

improvement market in Australia.

Key strategic directions:

● increase sales revenue and gross profit

● maintain or increase market share

● control direct and indirect operational costs

● maintain superior product and service quality standards

● establish reputation of Sim’s Hardware as socially and environmentally responsible

company.

Marketing objectives include:

● to position Sim’s Hardware as a provider of top quality, brand name hardware and expert

service at attractive price points

● increase foot traffic to 1,000 people per day per store (from 800)

● increase website traffic to 20,000 visits per day

● drive sales and revenue growth in line with financial goals

● establish good will within our target market so that seven out of ten people rate Sim’s

Hardware as socially and environmentally responsible.

This marketing plan has been prepared to ensure marketing activities are coordinated with

company strategic directions to achieve company mission, vision and values.

This marketing plan comprises of:

● a situation analysis to identify market characteristics and key strengths and weaknesses of

the business relating to meeting consumer demand

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● a marketing strategy to identify marketing objectives, leverage strengths, target key

segments effectively, and position Sim’s Hardware to achieve the company mission and

vision

● a detailed budget of marketing expenditure for the year

● a section on control of marketing activity, which includes milestones for achievement of

marketing objectives and contingency planning.

The 2013 financial year represents an important opportunity for Sim’s Hardware to refocus

on core market segments and differentiate its product and service offering, setting the

foundation for future revenue growth.

2.0 Situation Analysis

2.1 Market Summary

Sim’s Hardware has undertaken extensive market research.

Information on the market and the attributes of targeted customers has been sourced

through:

● market research purchased from private consultancies (Action

Marketing, IBISWorld)

● marketing research undertaken by Sim’s Hardware and Action Marketing on targeted

customer groups –information collected at point-of-sale; through website traffic

monitoring; social media monitoring; interviews; focus groups; and surveys.

2.1.1 Market Analysis

The profile for anSim’s Hardware customer consists of the following geographic,

demographic, and behaviour factors:

● Geographic

○ our customers live in Australia, generally within 50 km of a major city or regional

population centre.

● Demographic

○ male and female, ages 20–60

○ full-time employment

○ an average income of $60,000.

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● Behaviour factors

○ own home/mortgage or long-term rent and/or own or manage trade business

○ tech literate

○ moderately price sensitive

○ value style and luxury

○ value convenience

○ value quality

○ value customer service

○ value customer experience

○ value ethical and sustainable practices.

Numbers of customers estimated to be up to seven million people.

See target market segments

for more detailed information on specific attributes.

2.1.2 Market Needs

The basic market need is for an extensive range of quality hardware and homeware s at

reasonable prices able to be accessed conveniently.

Consumers also demand expert and efficient service and socially and environmentally sound

business practices.

According to market research, Sim’s Hardware seeks to provide the following benefits to

represent value to their customers.

● Selection: A choice of popular national brands.

● Convenience: Conveniently located warehouses; e-commerce options.

● Accessibility: Street-level premises, wheelchair accessible. All reasonable accommodation

made for persons with disability or special cultural needs.

● Customer service: Sales employees need to be knowledgeable or expert or able to locate

such sales staff quickly and efficiently.

● Competitive and appropriate pricing: All products/services will be competitively priced

relative to our hardware/home-improvement

competition.

● Ethical and environmentally responsible business practices: Sim’s Hardware products are

sourced through sustainable sources.

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Packaging is kept to minimum. Advertising is electronic, or if printed, printed on recyclable

material where possible. Triple bottom line reporting is publicised and available to

customers.

2.1.3 Market Trends

The following market trends exist for Sim’s Hardware’s target market:

● Demand for product quality: Customers expect products to be of the highest quality

and be fault-free and fit for purpose.

● Demand for product innovation: Customers expect new products with innovative features

such as, for example, easy -peel wallpaper or paint that indicates coverage. Information on

new products introduced into European and North American markets is readily available

and Sim’s Hardware is expected to keep up with a world-class product range.

● Demand for service quality: Customers are increasingly aware of products and highly

critical of inexpert advice or service. Customers expect efficient, expert service.

●Demand for environmental sustainability: Customers are increasingly aware of the

environmental impact of consumer goods and expect companies like Sim’s Hardware to

conduct business operations in an environmentally responsible manner and to stock green

options where possible.

● Demand for social responsibility: In addition to environmental responsibility, consumers

are increasingly demanding that the activities of businesses such as Sim’s Hardware should

contribute positively to local community and also promote social equity both within

Australia and within source countries for products.

● Expectation of immediate access to information on products, services, promotions,

discounts, company practices and policies: Customers have expectations that information

should be readily available to potential customers through internet sources such as websites

and social media.

● Distrust or scepticism towards more traditional, wide-casting media such as newspapers,

television and radio: Delivering promotional messages through electronic social media and

word-of-mouth to specific groups of consumers –represents an increasingly popular,

effective and cost-effective method of reaching specific target markets. Consumers targeted

in this way are more likely to identify Sim’s Hardware products and services with positive

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qualities they attribute to electronic social media such as trustworthiness, personalisation,

responsiveness, immediacy, and ‘coolness’.

2.1.4 Market Growth

Market research indicates that the hardware/home -improvement market will continue to

grow. According to IBISWorld market research, in 2012, the average Australian household

was expected to spend $2,554 on home renovations and improvements . This figure was

expected to increase by 4% over the next few years to reach $2,651 per household by 2017–

18.

2.1.5 PEST Analysis

Political environment

The political environment includes legislation and government legislative direction.

Relevant legislation may include, for example:

● Privacy Act 1988 (Cwlth)

● state-based anti-discrimination Acts

● Australian Securities and Investments Commission Act 2001 (Cwlth)

● Competition and Consumer Act 2010, including the Australian Consumer Law (ACL)

●Corporations Act 2001(Cwlth)

●A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax Administration) Act 1999(Cwlth)

●Income Tax Assessment Act 1997(Cwlth)

●Fair Work Act 2009(Cwlth)

●state-based OHS (occupational health and safety)/WHS (work health and safety) legislation

●packaging and labelling laws

●increasingly stringent environmental laws.

The last two types of legislation may be particularly important for Sim’s Hardware’s business

and marketing activities. As noted, sustainable business practices are becoming more

important to customers. More stringent packaging laws may allow Sim’s Hardware to

highlight its environmentally sustainable approach to business.

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In a similar way, environmental legislation may allow Sim’s Hardware to promote its low-

impact approach to advertising while also disadvantaging the competition, which may need

to alter their practices to comply.

Finally, Sim’s Hardware anticipates that the Australian Government’s focus in future

legislative direction and fiscal policy will be centred on promoting growth in the face of the

continuing international debt crisis, poor growth and subdued consumer confidence.

Economic environment

Interestingly, sluggish growth and moderate increases in the Australian unemployment

figures may present an opportunity for hardware and home-improvement retailers such as

Sim’s Hardware. This opportunity exists despite other retailers suffering from low consumer

confidence, poor sales and overseas competition,

particularly through e-commerce.

Hardware retailers have benefitted from the sense among homeowners that now is the

time to choose renovation and home improvement rather than selling and moving to a

renovated house.

According to IBISWorld, the trend towards home improvements is linked to the increase in

residential housing prices, which is due to the housing shortage, easier access to finance and

government incentives, amongst other factors. If current trends continue, the industry is

expected to grow by 23% over the next five years to reach $14.2 billion in 2016–17

Social environment

Consumers are increasingly aware of the impact of business activity on local community.

Consumers demand that the business consider the impact of its activities and work to

promote healthy community involvement.

Moreover, consumers are increasingly aware of working conditions in other countries and

increasingly want to contribute to better social and economic outcomes globally.

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Consumers are also concerned about the environment. Sim’s Hardware will endeavour to

promote itself as environmentally and socially responsible and conduct business operations

accordingly. In this way, Sim’s Hardware will offer value to the socially and environmentally

aware consumer and position itself as a leader in social

and environmental responsibility.

Technological environment

Internet, information, and social networking technologies continue to evolve and provide

new challenges and opportunities for marketing. Sim’s Hardware will continue with its

effective use of its website to promote and sell products and social networking to reach its

target markets.

2.2 SWOT Analysis

The following SWOT analysis captures the key strengths and weaknesses of the company,

and describes the opportunities and threats facing Sim’s Hardware.

Strengths

● excellent staff, highly skilled at sales, product demonstrations and explaining product

features

● great locations

● product offerings that meet or exceed competitors’ offerings in quality and innovation

● strong marketing budget

● consistent brand recognition across Australia

● 8% market share

● secured real estate to limit growth of competitors

● e-commerce developed with online store for most products.

Weaknesses

● high cost of sales associated with environmental and socially responsible choices

●low customer loyalty to brands.

Opportunities

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●strong market potential. A significant percentage of the target market still not visiting

Sim’s Hardware on a daily basis

● extension of business hours

● expansion of e-commerce

● new partnerships with suppliers of innovative suppliers

● opportunity to bulk buy and reduce prices through economies of scale

● opportunities to market and differentiate Sim’s Hardware on the basis of training, product

range, product innovation.

Threats

● competition from new entrants into market, especially e-commerce

● uncertainty of worldwide economic climate and impact on Australian spending

● growth of international e-commerce (exacerbated by strong Australian dollar)

● potential lack of prime locations for large warehouses where Bunnings has already

secured prime real estate.

2.3 Competition

Competition

Note: Sim’s Hardware currently enjoys an 8% market share

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2.4 Service Offering

Sim’s Hardware will endeavour to recruit service staff with a proven record of customer

service.

Where skills and knowledge are inadequate, Sim’s Hardware will commit to training and

retraining staff to achieve a level of customer service which distinguishes us from the

competition.

In addition, Sim’s Hardware will provide ongoing training to hone customer service skills,

develop staff and promote retention of skilled staff.

As service is seen to be an important expectation across targeted market segments,

promotional activities will highlight the skill and knowledge of our staff.

2.5 Keys to Success

From a marketing perspective, it will be important to work to maximise the promotional

impact of Sim’s Hardware strengths, while seizing the opportunity to increase custom and

market share.

Sim’s Hardware will need to effectively position itself as distinct from the competition, or,

where directly comparable, as offering better value.

Key differentiators will be:

● service and staff product knowledge

● product range

● product innovation

● retail space and experience.

Promotional activity will need to highlight our value proposition and be distributed in a way

that both appeals to our target market and underscores our stated commitment to social

and environmental responsibility.

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On the other hand, resources will need to be utilised in the most cost-effective way to reach

customers given cost pressures. Threats may be minimised through positioning Sim’s

Hardware correctly to offset the impact of competitors’ marketing activities.

3.0 Marketing Strategy

Sim’s Hardware takes a two -pronged strategic approach to marketing characterised by

product and service differentiation along with select targeted marketing activities. Market

research has indicated a growing hardware and home improvement market, particularly for

our unique offering. Consequently, Sim’s Hardware does not need to capture market share

from competitors to grow; we focus on underscoring our difference and growing our

customer base within our specific target markets.

Sim’s Hardware does not actually compete on price and simply ensures that its prices are

not undercut severely by competitors. As former CEO and Chairman Eric Greenwright once

remarked: ‘We don’t sell really cheap hammers. You can by a cheaper hammer elsewhere.

We sell the singular experience of buying just the right tool for today’s needs’. Sim’s

Hardware’s approach may be described as a hybrid of a differentiation strategy and a

segmentation strategy. Because Sim’s Hardware’s strategies have evolved over time, to

arrive at our present, mixed approach, Henry Mintzberg’s emergent model may also be seen

to

apply.

Because of Sim’s Hardware’s unique customer experience, we are different from our

competitors: we sell better, more innovative products; we know more about our products;

we showcase our products’ lifestyle benefits. Sim’s Hardware perceives its target markets to

be most, but not all, Australians. Our customers are slightly more affluent, slightly more

demanding, or have their

own trade customers with these attributes.

Marketing activities within our marketing mix will continue to set the foundations for

achieving the company vision of building and maintaining the Sim’s Hardware brand and,

within five years, leading the hardware and home-improvement market in Australia. Sim’s

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Hardware will lead not so much by directly capturing market share from competitors but by

exploiting a large market which is not catered to by our competitors.

To this end, marketing budget has increased to $100 million. This money will be spent in

targeted campaigns to achieve business and marketing objectives.

3.1 Mission

Sim’s Hardware provides top-quality hardware, homewares, garden supplies and building

materials to Australian consumers and tradespeople. Sim’s Hardware is committed to

providing customer value through everyday low prices, product quality, expert service,

community engagement and environmental responsibility.

3.2 Marketing Objectives

● to position Sim’s Hardware as a provider of top quality, brand name hardware and expert
service at attractive price points

●increase foot traffic to 1,000 people per day per store (from 800)

●increase website traffic to 20,000 visits per day

●drive sales and revenue growth in line with financial goals

●establish good will within our target marketso that seven out of ten people rate Sim’s

Hardware as socially and environmentally responsible.

3.3 Financial Objectives

●generate at least $300 million in sales per month

●minimum 10% increase in gross profit income each year

●reduce the overhead per store through cost control

●decrease the cost of sales.

3.4 Target Marketing

To meet the needs of all segments, Sim’s Hardware offers top-quality products, everyday

low prices, expert

service, community engagement and environmental responsibility.

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The market has been divided into three target markets or segments: Home improvers; DYIs;

tradespersons (owners and managers of small to medium sized businesses and individual

contractors).

Attributes of target segments as well as specific value propositions appear under the

headings that follow.

Home improvers: ‘I’m on the move up’

According to market research undertaken by Action Marketing, the estimated size of this

segment is potentially as much as 3 million people.

The profile of a customer within this segment is:

● aged between 20 and 40

● fun and active

● fashion and trend conscious

● travel internationally and domestically

● luxury moderately important

● single or young family (increasingly may be single-parent, or gay couple)

● single, professional female

● income over $50,000

● moderately price-sensitive but may see higher price as indicator of quality

● moderately sensitive to service quality

● sensitive to peer influences

● consider themselves socially and environmentally responsible

● Prefers local and Australian products but will not compromise on price or design quality: ‘I

like to see Australian leading the world in design quality!’

● very concerned about rising energy prices; worried about impact of carbon tax

● moderately to highly concerned about the environment

● technologically literate: users of online social media

● read home improvement magazines occasionally

● watch free-to-air TV and, increasingly, Pay TV.

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Value proposition: Sim’s Hardware helps you save money with the best of Australia and the

world in quality hardware and home improvement products. Let our experts show you how

smart, sustainable living can enhance your active lifestyle.

DYIs: ‘I’ve arrived’

According to market research carried out by Action Marketing, the estimated size of this

segment is potentially as much as 2 million people.

The profile of a customer within this segment is:

● aged between 35 and 60

● fashion and trend conscious

● young to established family (increasingly may be single-parent, or gay couple)

● single professional female

● family activity, holidays and education highly important

● travel internationally and domestically

● luxury moderately to highly important

● income over $70,000

● highly sensitive to product quality

● moderately price sensitive

● sensitive to peer influences

● may consider themselves socially and environmentally responsible

● prefers local and Australian products but will not compromise on price or design quality: ‘I

want my kids to feel proud of quality Aussie design!’

● very concerned about rising energy prices; worried about impact of carbon tax
● moderately to highly concerned about the environment
● technologically literate: users of online social media
● read home improvement magazines occasionally

● watch free-to-air TV and increasingly Pay TV.

Value proposition: Sim’s Hardware gives you access to the best of Australia and the world in

quality, sustainable hardware and home improvement products. Let our experts show you

how you can provide your family with the benefits of green, resort-style living.

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Tradespersons

According to market research undertaken by Action Marketing and Sim’s Hardware, the

estimated total potential size of this market is 1.5–2 million people, including independent

contractors and small to medium sized business owners.

The profile of a customer within this segment is:
● aged between 35 and 60

● owner or operator of trade business

● highly sensitive to product range and product quality

● sensitive to price

● income over $60,000

● prefers local and Australian products but will not compromise on price or design quality to

suit clients: ‘My clients prefer Aussie products, but not at any cost’

● customers and clients are very concerned about rising energy prices

● moderately to highly concerned about the environment
● technologically literate: users of online social media

● read trade magazines

● watch free-to-air TV and, increasingly, Pay TV.

Value proposition: Sim’s Hardware lets you offer your clients the best of Australia and the

world in quality, sustainable renovations and home improvements on any budget. Let our

experts show you how we can support you as you grow your business.

3.5 Positioning

Sim’s Hardware is a competitively priced hardware and home-improvement supplier. Sim’s

Hardware consumers who appreciate high-quality, innovative products will recognise the

value and unique offerings of Sim’s Hardware.

For target segments, Sim’s Hardware positions its product offering as per the following:

● Product: Sim’s Hardware supplies consumers and trades with high quality and world class

innovative products. To differentiate on product, Sim’s Hardware actively seeks Australian

and

international suppliers who can fulfil requirements for both consistent quality and

exceptionally innovative solutions. Our competition, on the other hand, focuses on a more

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mass appeal. The competition’s customers expect a level of quality consistent with the

lowest prices possible.

●Price: Sim’s Hardware prices its products to stay within the range of prices offered by

competitors. Sim’s Hardware offers a range of discounts and incentives for trade customers.

Sim’s Hardware does not collude with competitors on pricing but does not seek to undercut

competitors. Such a pricing strategy is intended to maintain margins and signify higher

quality and brand prestige. While not seeking to pay more, our customers will generally risk

paying a little more for truly unique offerings and to ensure quality and expert service.

● Service and customer experience: Consistently high level of fast and friendly service

provided by skilled and experienced staff in an exciting and interactive environment. Service

is a key differentiator of Sim’s Hardware’s offering.

Onsite and offsite service will be delivered as per customer needs and expectations in line

with the Sim’s Hardware market positioning as a premier service. For

details see Sim’s Hardware customer service policy and charter.

● Social and environmental responsibility: Social and environmental responsibility is also a

key differentiator of Sim’s Hardware’s offering.

As with some competition, Sim’s Hardware stores use recycled rainwater collected in tanks

for use on plants. Sim’s Hardware also recycles extensively. Sim’s Hardware also sponsors

community and sports events and provides support for charities. The business actively

promotes awareness of the social and environmental activities of Sim’s Hardware thorough

media campaigns.

Unlike our competition, however, Sim’s Hardware promotes its active research into

improving its environmental and social performance. Sim’s Hardware has committed to

public and detailed triple bottom line reporting and associated performance goals.

See business plan for sustainability plan.

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In addition, our products reflect our commitment to the environment and Sim’s Hardware

customers can expect to find our product range includes world-class green technology.

Where our competition has ‘hedged their bets’, Sim’s Hardware has fully committed to

supporting environmentally responsible living. Marketing to specific segments will broadly

follow the positioning strategy outlined above, but will be tailored, where needed and

applicable, to meet the specific requirements of those segments.

3.6 Strategy Pyramids

All marketing activities are coordinated with company strategic directions to achieve

company mission, vision and values. Sim’s Hardware’s key strategic directions (from

business plan) are:

● increase sales revenue and gross profit
● maintain or increase market share
● control direct and indirect operational costs
● maintain superior product and service quality standards

● establish reputation of Sim’s Hardware as socially and

environmentally responsible company.

Sim’s Hardware marketing objectives and operational tactics have been developed to

support the key strategic directions. The marketing objectives are:

● to position Sim’s Hardware as a provider of top quality, brand name hardware and expert
service at attractive price points
● increase foot traffic to 1,000 people per day per store (from 800)

● increase brand recognition and awareness of value proposition

● drive sales and revenue growth in line with financial goals
● establish good will within our target market so that seven out of ten people rate Sim’s
Hardware as socially and environmentally responsible.

Marketing activities are intended to provide the most benefit (in terms of achieving

strategic directions) for the least cost. See marketing expenditure section for details on

marketing costs.

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See the marketing mix section below for specific tactical/operational approaches to achieve

marketing objectives.

3.7 Marketing Mix

In general, through an integrated marketing mix, the marketing strategy will seek to

maintain and build customer loyalty and brand recognition. The marketing strategy will also

aim to demonstrate the value of shopping at Sim’s Hardware to each target market.

Sim’s Hardware’s marketing mix is comprised of the following approaches to pricing,

distribution (place), advertising/promotion, product and people.

Pricing

Pricing is intended to position Sim’s Hardware as similarly priced to its competitors. This

pricing strategy is intended to both increase revenue and underpin Sim’s Hardware’s

message of higher quality. Our target market should feel confident that they would not be

able to get the same combination of customer service and quality product for a lower price

from competitors through any channel.

Place

Sim’s Hardware warehouses are bright and functional. Warehouses are designed to

facilitate easy location of products and services. No-frills, no-nonsense decor exhibits Sim’s

Hardware’s sustainability features, such as water tanks, recycling bins, and solar arrays, for

example, in plain sight.

Coming to our warehouses is a unique experience for customers. Warehouses are designed

to capture the excitement of an international trade show containing displays of latest and

best Australia and the world has to offer in home design. Enticing mock-up displays of

installed products provide visual and tactile sense of design quality, aesthetics and luxury

attainable for customer’s home. Local and Australian products feature strongly in the mix of

displays. Displays are updated monthly.

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Sim’s Hardware also actively promotes e-commerce and distributes a range of products

through its partnership with Australia Post. Sim’s Hardware positions itself as the easiest

and most convenient access to the products our target markets need or expect in the least

amount of time possible.

Promotion

The core message that Sim’s Hardware will seek to communicate to potential and existing

customers is that Sim’s Hardware offers a superior customer experience and superior

products. Sim’s Hardware is committed to providing customer value through everyday low

prices, product quality, expert service, community engagement and environmental

responsibility. For any inaccurate trend predictions, promotions will be required to move

stock that is at risk of becoming obsolete.

This basic message will be communicated through a variety of methods.

● Trade publications

Sim’s Hardware will advertise in a range of national and local trade publications, including

Landscape Manager Magazine, Plumbing Connection Magazine, Australian National

Construction Review,and The Australian Woodworker magazine.

●Paper flyers

Despite concern for the environment amongst target groups, paper flyers remain an

important way to reach our customer. Sim’s Hardware will continue to use paper flyers until

alternative electronic methods such as direct email and digital catalogues are customers’

preferred method of receiving information. Sim’s Hardware will continue to monitor

customer response to this method. Meanwhile, flyers will be printed on recycled material as

per the Sim’s Hardware environmental policy.

● Advertising in local magazines

A common attribute of all target market segments is that they value their local community.

Sim’s Hardware will therefore place regular advertising in local magazines deemed to appeal

to target segments.

Sim’s Hardware will also advertise in national publications such as,

Home and Garden, Grand Designs Australia, and Renovate.

●Encouraging articles and reviews in local media

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Sim’s Hardware will attempt to get articles and reviews in local magazines. These can

include information on new products and design trends and environmental practices, etc.

Sim’s Hardware will regularly provide local media with press releases to encourage use of

our content.

●Direct mail/email to local businesses

Sim’s Hardware uses direct email/mail campaigns to local businesses to communicate

directly with the trade segment. Additionally, marketing research undertaken by Sim’s

Hardware indicates that trades prefer flyers delivered to their business mailing address/

inbox.

● TV (Free-to -air and pay) According to Action Marketing, TV remains an important method

of reaching our customers. However, wide-casting TV advertising is diminishing in

importance and so Sim’s Hardware will focus advertising on lifestyle shows and dedicated

Pay TV lifestyle channels.

● E-commerce/website

Sim’s Hardware will continue to build its online presence through regular updating and

review of its website. It is anticipated that as expansion plans proceed, the ability of

potential customers from a wider geographic area to access online information and perform

transactions will become increasingly important. Promotional messages may include

discounts and information on special promotional days.

● Online presence, advertising and social networking

Sim’s Hardware will encourage existing customers to interact with Sim’s Hardware and

other potential customers to receive loyalty rewards and discounts. As marketing research

indicates, consumers targeted through online social media are more likely to identify Sim’s

Hardware with the positive qualities they attribute to electronic social media such as

trustworthiness, personalisation, responsiveness, immediacy, and ‘coolness’.

Sim’s Hardware will ensure that promotional messages are prominent and accessible online.

Sim’s Hardware will also use YouTube to place positive messages with the potential for viral

marketing.

Sim’s Hardware will continue to place targeted, search-related advertising with

advertising

platforms such as Google, Facebook, etc.

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Product and service

Despite the temptation to lower costs through sourcing lower-quality products, Sim’s

Hardware must always ensure the highest possible quality products to remain consistent

with our brand. Word of mouth on slipping quality or service standards may severely

undermine the marketing strategy.

People

A key aspect of Sim’s Hardware’s marketing strategy is its people. Sim’s Hardware will

continue to train its staff so they both offer the service expected by the market and become

effective good will ambassadors for Sim’s Hardware.

3.8 Product Sourcing

As market research identifies unmet customer needs, Sim’s Hardware will continue to offer

new and innovative offerings to position the company as being responsive to customer

requirements. Sim’s Hardware will actively seek new suppliers and form partnerships to

deliver innovative, top-quality products.

Product sales are monitored to gauge market response to menu items.

3.9 Market Research

Market trends need to be accurately predicted to ensure that stores stock the most desired

product range for the evolving needs of customers. Service needs and other needs relating

to components of the marketing mix will also need to be anticipated. Product life cycle

needs to be predicted so that stock in stores is sufficient to support sales initially but over-

stocking – which would give rise to a large accumulation of outdated product – is avoided.

Access to ongoing market research will be achieved through regular research activities

carried out by Action Marketing and Sim’s Hardware.

See the implementation milestones section for specific research activities.

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The Marketing General Manager, Elizabeth Madden, will manage market and marketing

research and liaise with Action Marketing. Customer feedback and suggestions are readily

sought for

improvement of marketing activities.

4.0 Marketing Expenditure

This section will provide information on budget expenditure for the current and previous

financial years.

4.1 Marketing Budget Compared by Year

Expenses 2015

Figures in $

millions

2016
Figures in $
millions
2017
Figures in $
millions

Paper flyers 12 11 10

Magazine and trade

publication

advertising

14 12 10

Media promotions 5 5 5

Free to air TV 15 20 15

Pay TV 10 15 20

Social media 1 3 5

Emails, e-catalogues 1 2 3

Website advertising

and maintenance

3 5 10

Online advertising 3 5 10

Goodwill and

sponsorships

3 4 5

Research 3 5 7

Total 70 87 100

5.0 Controls

5.1 Implementation

Milestones

The following milestones identify the key marketing activities.

Milestones

Marketing General Manager, Elizabeth Madden, will manage most marketing activities,

including market and marketing research and liaise with Action Marketing.

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5.2 Contingency Planning

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Business Plan

Business Plan Summary

The Business

Business name: Sim’s Hardware Ltd

Business structure: Public company since 1982

ABN: 4000000000

Business location: Sim’s Hardware is headquartered in Melbourne, Victoria.

The business owns and operates 138 stores throughout Australia.

Date established: 26 January 1921.

Products/services: Sim’s Hardware supplies hardware and home improvement products and

provide expert advice and service.

The Market

Target market: The market has been divided into three target markets or segments: Home

improvers; DYIs; tradespersons.

Marketing strategy: Sim’s Hardware takes a two-pronged strategic approach characterised

by product and service differentiation along with select targeted marketing activities.

The Future

Vision statement: within five years, Sim’s Hardware will lead the hardware and home-

improvement market in Australia.

Strategic directions for FY2015: The Sim’s Hardware strategic directions are:

● increase sales revenue and gross profit
● maintain or increase market share
● control direct and indirect operational costs
● maintain superior product and service quality standards

● establish Sim’s Hardware’s reputation as a socially and environmentally responsible

company.

The Finances

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Sim’s Hardware operations and investment activity are financed through reinvested profits

from previous years’ operational activities and investments.

Business details/history

Sim’s Hardware was founded by Percy Greenwright in 1921 and was known as Sim’s Home

Goods until 1952.

In 1982, Sim’s Hardware became a public company and was floated on the Australian Stock

Exchange.

Sim’s Hardware owns and operates 138 stores throughout Australia, with plans to continue

expanding at the rate of 2–3 stores per year.

Product and service offering

Sim’s Hardware supplies products in the following categories to general and trade

customers:

● timber

● hardware

● tools

● paint

● housewares

● outdoor

● garden.

Wherever possible, a number of different models and brand names will be available to

ensure that customers will find a product of choice.

Service offered will include expert advice from suitably qualified sales staff.

Registration details

Business name: Sim’s Hardware Ltd

Trading name(s): Sim’s Hardware Ltd

Date registered: 1 July 1982

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Location registered: Melbourne, Victoria

Business structure: Sim’s Hardware is a public company, listed on the Australian Stock

Exchange. As such, it is bound by relevant company law under the Corporations Act 2001.

ABN: 4000000000

GST: Registered for GST

Organisational Chart

Business premises

Business location/s

Sim’s Hardware stores are located around Australia in the major cities and in the larger

regional centres. In areas experiencing growth in population and significant growth in

residential building, the demand for products sold by Sim’s Hardware is considered likely to

grow. These areas are targeted by Sim’s Hardware for either expansion of any existing

stores or the building of a new store if none exists.

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Key personnel

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Recruitment options

Sim’s Hardware will deploy targeted advertising in trade magazines and online using

organisation such as Seek. Sim’s Hardware will undertake an investigation of competitor

wages and seek to match or better.

Training programs

Sim’s Hardware will offer a range of ongoing training options to meet business requirements

and develop staff skills:

● sales training

● technical training in product areas

● managerial and leadership training

● environmental training

● community sensitivity training

●health and safety training

●support or subsidies for external training, including TAFE and tertiary education.

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Skill retention strategies

Sim’s Hardware will focus on training and development opportunities for existing staff.

Performance management will focus on individually tailored development goals in line with

business expectations Sim’s Hardware will undertake investigation of competitor wages and

seek to match or better if viable from a budgetary perspective.

Products/services

Market position

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Sim’s Hardware is a competitively priced hardware and home-improvement s supplier. Sim’s

Hardware consumers who appreciate high-quality, innovative products will recognise the
value and unique offerings of Sim’s Hardware.

Product

Sim’s Hardware supplies consumers and trades with high quality and world class innovative

products. To differentiate on product, Sim’s Hardware actively seeks Australian and

international suppliers who can fulfil requirements for both consistent quality and

exceptionally innovative solutions. Our competition, on the other hand focuses on a more

mass appeal for ‘tried and true’ products. Their customers expect a level of quality but will

compromise for the lowest prices possible.

Price

Sim’s Hardware prices its products to stay within the range of prices offered by competitors.

Sim’s Hardware offers a lowest price guarantee to consumers and a range of discounts and

incentives for trade customers.

Sim’s Hardware does not collude with competitors on pricing but does not seek to undercut
competitors. Such a pricing strategy is intended to maintain margins and signify higher
quality and brand prestige. While not seeking to pay more, our customers will generally risk
paying a little more for truly unique offerings and to ensure quality and expert service.

Service and customer experience

Sim’s Hardware offers a consistently high level of fast and friendly service provided by

skilled and experienced staff in an exciting and interactive environment. Service is a key

differentiator of Sim’s Hardware’s offering. On-site and off-site service will be delivered as

per customer needs and expectations in line with the Sim’s Hardware market positioning as

a premier service. For details see Sim’s Hardware customer service policy and charter.

Social and environmental responsibility

Social and environmental responsibility is also a key differentiator of Sim’s Hardware’s

offerings.

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As with some competition, Sim’s Hardware stores use recycled rainwater collected in tanks
for use on plants. Sim’s Hardware also recycles extensively. Sim’s Hardware also sponsors
community and sports events and provides support for charities. The business actively
promotes awareness of the social and environmental activities of Sim’s Hardware thorough
media campaigns.
Unlike our competition, however, Sim’s Hardware promotes its active research into
improving its environmental and social performance. Sim’s Hardware has committed to
public and detailed triple bottom line reporting and associated performance goals.
In addition, our products reflect our commitment to the environment and Sim’s Hardware
customers can expect to find our product range includes world-class green technology.
Where our competition has ‘hedged their bets’, Sim’s Hardware has fully committed to

supporting environmentally responsible living.

Anticipated demand

Market research indicates the demand for hardware and home improvement products will

continue to grow. According to IBISWorld market research, in 2012, the average Australian

household was expected to spend $2,554 on home renovations and improvements. This

figure was expected to increase by 4% over the next few years to reach $2,651 per

household by 2017–18.

Pricing strategy

Sim’s Hardware will maintain an average mark-up on purchase price of 35%. A review of this

strategy will be undertaken every six months to assure that gross profit remains within

target parameters set by the organisation.

In addition, if Sim’s Hardware price is identified by a customer to be above a competitor’s

price then price will be reduced to match the price offered by the competitor. Customers

are encouraged to offer documented proof in the form of competitors’ advertising material

or written quotes.

Value to customer

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To meet the needs of all segments, Sim’s Hardware offers top-quality products, everyday
low prices, expert service, community engagement and environmental responsibility.

Growth potential

Sim’s Hardware sees opportunity for growth through capture of market share and

increasing revenue through targeted marketing to Desired segments. According to

IBISWorld market research, if current trends continue, then revenue in the areas of

hardware and home -improvement is expected to grow by 23% over the next few years to

reach $14.2 billion in 2017–18.

Insurance

Even if current market share is maintained, Sim’s Hardware expects to capitalise on the

general growth of the market with the opening of 2–3 warehouses per year over the coming

four years.

Workers compensation

Sim’s Hardware provides workers compensation for employees in accordance with

legislative requirements.

Product liability

Sim’s Hardware has product liability insurance to $15 million.

Business assets

Sim’s Hardware fixed and current assets are insured to current value.

Legal considerations

Relevant legislation may include, for example:
● Privacy Act 1988 (Cwlth)
● state-based anti-discrimination Acts
● Australian Securities and Investments Commission Act 2001 (Cwlth)
● Competition and Consumer Act 2010, including the Australian Consumer Law (ACL)

● Corporations Act 2001(Cwlth)

● A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax Administration) Act 1999 (Cwlth)

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● Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 (Cwlth)

● Fair Work Act 2009 (Cwlth)

● state-based OHS (occupational health and safety)/WHS (work health and safety)

legislation

● packaging and labelling laws

● increasingly stringent environmental laws.

Operations

Process

National marketing campaigns, warehouse look and feel, marketing mix, policy, preferred

suppliers and strategic directions are set by the board of directors and senior management.

Strategic directions set at the national level cascade to individual warehouses and are

reinterpreted by general managers to match local conditions at the store level. All staff KPIs

and targets for performance management reflect national and store strategic directions.

Each Sim’s Hardware store is run in most operational respects as an independent business.

Each store generally buys stock from approved suppliers; however, where appropriate,

store general managers have discretion to buy products to suit local market conditions.

Store general managers hire and train local staff and have wide discretion to participate in

community events and sponsorships.

Suppliers

Current Sim’s Hardware preferred suppliers are:

● Ace Consultants

● Action Marketing

● Australian Garden Furniture and Nursery

● Australian Timber Yards

● Australian Plumbing Supplies

● CoffeeVille

● National Homewares.

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Sim’s Hardware will endeavour to maintain good relations with suppliers through regular

owner level contacts as required.

Sim’s Hardware suppliers provide credit terms of 30 days, to which Sim’s Hardware will

strictly adhere.

In addition to maintaining good relations with current suppliers, Sim’s Hardware will

continue to identify new sources of products that will appeal to the evolving needs of

targeted segments. All suppliers to Sim’s Hardware are subject to regular audit by quality

assurance staff to ensure that they meet the standards outlined:

These standards include:

● financial viability

● control and continual improvement of processes to restrain costs

● awell documented and traceable quality system

● respect for the environment

● responsible control of remuneration for own employees and any sub-contractor

employees.

Plant and equipment

A detailed asset register of plant and equipment purchased and maintained by each

individual warehouse is maintained by the Operations General Manager and Store General

Manager.

Sim’s Hardware also maintains a detailed registry of fixed assets such as real estate held by

the company. This registry is the responsibility of the Chief Financial Officer of the company.

Inventory

Inventory for each warehouse is the responsibility of the Operations General Manager and

Store General Manager. Sim’s Hardware stock is tracked through its in-house enterprise

resource management (ERM) system.

Trading hours

Sim’s Hardware trades 7 days a week, 6am to 8pm.

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Communication channels

Customers are encouraged to contact us through email or Facebook. A telephone number is

provided on our website.

Payment types accepted

Sim’s Hardware accepts cash and all major credit cards and debit cards. EFTPOS is available

in all warehouses.

Credit policy

Sim’s Hardware has 30 day credit terms for approved tradespersons.

Memberships and affiliations

Sim’s Hardware is a member of the following organisations:

● Hardware Industry Working Group (HIWG)

● The Hardware Association of New South Wales (HANSW)

● The Housing Industry Association (HIA)

● The Master Builders Association (MBA).

Sustainability plan

Environmental/resource impacts

Sim’s Hardware packaging, waste and use of resources may impact the environment.

Community impact and engagement

A key component of the Sim’s Hardwaremarketing strategy is to communicate our

commitment to the environment and community.

Sim’s Hardwarewill engage with the community through our website and Facebook

campaigns to raise awareness and seek feedback.

Risks/constraints

Risks include high cost of sustainable packaging and potential opportunity cost of

environmental practices such as energy reduction. Staff may also be unaware of Sim’s

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Hardware strategic directions with regard to economic and social responsibility and may

need additional training.

Strategies

Sim’s Hardware will conduct monthly environmental audits and review. Sim’s Hardware will

also seek community engagement and feedback through media channels such as our

website and Facebook page.

Action plan

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The Market and Strategic Approach

Sim’s Hardware takes a two -pronged strategic approach to marketing characterised by
product and service differentiation along with select targeted marketing activities. Market

research has indicated a growing hardware and home improvement market within Sim’s

Hardware’s target markets. Consequently, Sim’s Hardware does not need to capture

competitors’ market share to grow; we focus on emphasizing our difference and growing

our customer base within our target markets.

Sim’s Hardware does not compete on price and simply ensures that its prices are not

undercut severely by competitors. As former CEO and

Chairman Eric Greenwright once remarked:

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‘We don’t sell really cheap hammers, you can by a cheaper hammer elsewhere. We sell the

singular experience of buying just the right tool for today’s needs’.

Sim’s Hardware’s approach may be described as a mix of a differentiation strategy and a

segmentation strategy. Sim’sHardware’s strategies have evolved over time, so to arrive at

our present, mixed approach, Henry Mintzberg’s emergent model may also be seen to

apply.

Because of Sim’s Hardware’s unique customer experience, we are different from our

competitors: we sell more innovative products; we know more about our products; we

showcase our products’ lifestyle benefits.

Sim’s Hardware customers are slightly more affluent, slightly more demanding, or have their

own trade customers with these attributes.

Market research

Market trends need to be accurately predicted to ensure that stores stock the most desired

product range for the evolving needs of customers.

Service needs and other needs relating to components of the marketing mix will also need

to be anticipated. Product life cycle needs to be predicted so that stock in stores is sufficient

to support sales initially but over-stocking does not give rise to a large accumulation of

outdated product.

Access to ongoing market research will be achieved through regular research activities
carried out by Action Marketing and Sim’s Hardware.

See the implementation milestones section for specific research activities. Marketing

General Manager, Elizabeth Madden,will manage market and marketing research and liaise

with Action Marketing. Customer feedback and suggestions are readily sought for

improvement of marketing activities.

Marketing objectives and sales targets

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Marketing objectives are:

● to position Sim’s Hardware as a provider of top quality, brand name hardware and expert
service at attractive price points

● increase foot traffic to 1 ,000 people per day per store (from 800)

● increase website traffic to 20,000 visits per day
● drive sales and revenue growth in line with financial goals
● establish good will within our target market so that seven out of ten people rate Sim’s
Hardware as socially and environmentally responsible.

Sim’s Hardware sales targets are:

● $3 .7 billion annual sales

● Average $27 million per store.

The macro environment

Political environment
The political environment includes legislation and government legislative direction.

Relevant legislation may include, for example:
● Privacy Act 1988 (Cwlth)
● state-based anti-discrimination Acts
● Australian Securities and Investments Commission Act 2001 (Cwlth)
● Competition and Consumer Act 2010, including the Australian Consumer Law (ACL)
● Corporations Act 2001(Cwlth)

● A New Tax System (Goods and Services Tax Administration) Act 1999 (Cwlth)

● Income Tax Assessment Act 1997 (Cwlth)
● Fair Work Act 2009 (Cwlth)
● state-based OHS (occupational health and safety)/WHS (work health and safety)
legislation
● packaging and labelling laws
● increasingly stringent environmental laws.

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The last two types of legislation may be particularly important for Sim’s Hardware’s business
and marketing activities. As noted, sustainable business practices are becoming more
important to customers. More stringent packaging laws may allow Sim’s Hardware to
highlight its environmentally sustainable approach to business.

In a similar way, environmental legislation may allow Sim’s Hardware to promote its low-
impact approach to advertising while also disadvantaging the competition, which may need
to alter their practices to comply.

Finally, Sim’s Hardware anticipates that the Australian Government’s focus in future
legislative direction and fiscal policy will be centred on promoting growth in the face of the
continuing international debt crisis, poor growth and subdued consumer confidence.

Economic environment

Interestingly, sluggish growth and moderate increase

in the Australian unemployment figures may present an opportunity for hardware and

home-improvement retailers such as Sim’s Hardware. This opportunity exists despite other

retailers suffering from low consumer confidence, poor sales and overseas competition

particularly through e-commerce.

Hardware retailers have benefitted from the sense among homeowners that now is the

time to choose renovation and home improvements rather than selling and moving to an

already renovated house.

According to IBISWorld, the trend towards home improvements is linked to the increase in

residential housing prices, which is due to the housing

shortage and easier access to finance and government incentives, amongst other factors. If

current trends continue, the industry is expected to grow by 23% over the next five years to

reach $14.2 billion in 2016–17 .

Social environment

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Consumers are increasingly aware of the impact of business activity on the local community.

Consumers demand that businesses consider the impact of their activities and work to

promote healthy community involvement.

Consumers are also becoming more aware of working conditions in other countries want to

contribute to better global social and economic outcomes.

Consumers are also concerned about the environment. Sim’s Hardware will endeavour to
promote itself as environmentally and socially responsible and conduct business operations
accordingly. In this way, Sim’s Hardware will offer value to the socially and environmentally

aware consumer and position itself as a leader in social and environmental responsibility.

Technological environment
Internet, information, and social networking technologies continue to evolve and provide
new challenges and opportunities for marketing. Sim’s Hardware will continue with its
effective use of its website to promote and sell products and social networking to reach its
target markets.

Our customers

Sim’s Hardware’s customers span a wide range of the community and include tradespeople

and the general public. Many of these require little assistance, if any, to purchase product

whereas others rely heavily on the advice they can get to purchase product. Sim’s Hardware

encourage customers to come to their stores to take advantage of the service offered and

ensure that they will purchase all the items and equipment needed for a particular job.

In addition there is a growing number of online customers who are able to determine their

needs from the information they obtain from the Sim’s Hardware website. Continual

upgrade of Sim’s Hardware’s web site is required to counter existing and emerging

competitors. Some of these competitors most certainly will begin to sell online as a major

strategy to attract customers.

Key differences between our customers and customers of the competition:

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● our customers value quality more than price

● our customers require expert, knowledgeable service

● our customers are tech literate

● our customers demand sustainability

● our customers dream style and luxury.

Customer demographics

The profile for anSim’s Hardware customer consists of the following geographic,
demographic, and behaviour factors:
● Geographic

○ Our customers live in Australia, generally within 50Km of a major city or regional

population centre.
● Demographic
○ male and female, ages 20–60

○ full -time employment

○ an average income of $60,000.

● Behaviour factors
○ own home/mortgage or long-term rent and/or own or manage trade business

○tech literate

○moderately price sensitive

○value style and luxury

○value convenience

○value quality

○value customer service

○value customer experience

○value ethical and sustainable practices.

Numbers of customers estimated to be up to 7million people. See target market segments

for more detailed information on specific attributes.

Target segments

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The market has been divided into three target markets or segments: home improvers (3

million); DYIs (2 million); tradespersons – owners and managers of small to medium sized

businesses and individual contractors(up to 2 million).

Customer management

Sim’s Hardwarewill communicate with customers through mass media TV and magazines;

trade magazines; targeted direct mail; and social media campaigns. The company will

encourage feedback through email and social media and will highlight positive company

responses to feedback in marketing messages.

Sim’s Hardwarewill work to develop its strict customer service and product quality

standards and incorporate these into employee handbooks.

The micro environment: S.W.O.T. analysis

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Our competitors

Competitor details

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Advertising and sales

Sales and marketing objectives

● To position Sim’s Hardware as a provider of top quality, brand name hardware and expert

service at attractive price points.

● Increase foot traffic to 1,000 people per day per store (from 800).

● Increase brand recognition and awareness of value proposition.

● Establish good will within our target market so that seven out of ten people rate Sim’s

Hardware as socially and environmentally responsible.

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Sales and distribution channels

The Future

Vision statement

Within five years, Sim’s Hardware will lead the hardware and home-improvement market in
Australia.

Mission statement

Sim’s Hardware provides the best quality hardware, homewares, garden supplies and

building materials from Australia and the world. Sim’s Hardware is committed to providing

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customers and tradespeople with value through everyday low prices, product quality, expert

service, community engagement and environmental responsibility.

Strategic directions for FY2018

● Increase sales revenue and gross profit.

● Maintain or increase market share.

● Control direct and indirect operational costs.

● Maintain superior product and service quality standards.

● Establish reputation of Sim’s Hardware as socially and environmentally responsible

company.

Action plan

Please note: This table does not include sustainability or marketing activities as they are

listed in the sections above.

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The Finances

Key objectives and financial review Financial objectives

1. Generate at least $300 million in sales per month.

2. Minimum 10–15 % increase in gross profit income each year.

3. Control fixed costs through disciplined growth.

4. Maintain COGS (cost of goods sold) at 50% of gross revenue.

Finance

Sim’s Hardware operations and investment in fixed assets are financed through reinvested

profits from previous years’ operational activities and investments.

Assumptions

The financial tables on the subsequent pages are based on the assumptions listed below:

● The unemployment rate in Australia remains at under 6%.

● Steady or moderately falling interest rates continue to underpin business and consumer

confidence.

● Growth across the economy proceeds at a modest 2–3%.

● Demographic and immigration trends for Australia continue.

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