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Information on Modern Awards

Modern awards

From 1 January 2010 modern awards replace existing awards in most industries.

122 modern awards replace the existing 1700 federal and state awards in most industries.

Modern awards are industry or occupation-based minimum employment standards which apply in addition to the NES.

Modern awards cover all employers and employees who perform work in those industries or occupations covered by a particular modern award. However, modern awards may not apply to some managers or higher income employees (who have an appropriate guarantee of annual earnings of more than $108,300 annually) even if a modern award covers the industry in which they work.

Modern awards contain terms and conditions about:

  • minimum wages
  • overtime and penalty rates
  • types of employment
  • work arrangements (eg. rosters, variation to working hours)
  • hours of work
  • rest breaks
  • classifications
  • allowances
  • leave and leave loadings
  • superannuation
  • procedures for consultation, representation and dispute settlement.

Some modern awards also contain terms about redundancy

In addition, they must also have a flexibility term, which means employers and employees are able to negotiate changes to meet their individual needs relating to issues specified in the clause.

This information comes courtesy of Fair Work Online which is the government resource for the Fair Work Australia Policy.