Essential HR

We aim to share short, informative posts on current developments and ideas in the HR space that are of practical use to employers and employees alike!

The Essential HR Team wants to make sure you always know what is happening in the world of human resources. Here we provide you with latest news and updates from Essential HR, as we identify them.  This includes our own analyses, summaries of key legal developments month by month, and useful tips for your organisation.


Protecting Wages - complying with the law

Recent law changes have highlighted the need to comply with the Wages Protection Act and it is starting to bite - a Wellington Grocer has had to pay $53,000.

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Paying Annual Leave as you go

A recent Court case has highlighted the need to only pay for leave as you go in certain situations - when your employee is employed fixed term for less than...

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90 Day Trial – Strikes Again

I know we have written about this in the past, but this is a timely reminder.

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Genuine non-monetary rewards

I had a meeting with a client a few weeks ago. I am sure you will be able to identify with this client.

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Minimum wage for salary-earners

Employers need to check that any salaried Employees who are paid under $40,000 p.a are still being paid at least the minimum wage.

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Complying with the Health and Safety at Work Act

This law takes effect on 4 April.  If you have not yet done so, you should update your system.  For effective systems this should not be too difficult - checklist below. You could make it part of an annual review of the system.

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Increase in Minimum Wage Rate 1 April

Minimum wage rates will increase to $15.25 from 1 April (and training rates from $11.80 to $12.20).  This is a 3.5% increase in times where inflation is down at 0.1%.

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New law requires accurate records of hours worked and reduces flexibility in working hours. Plus onerous penalties can be imposed.

Employment Standards Legislation is applicable from 4 April.  It introduces serious penalties for a breach of minimum standards.  Do you record exact hours worked by all staff?  Do you need staff to be available to work just when they are needed or need to cancel shifts at short notice?  Do you need to stop staff taking other jobs?  All are affected.

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Court Supports Non-Solicitation clause

Read this if you are concerned about an employee stealing and using your customer database against you.  Tex Onsite have just been awarded some $110,000 against a previous employee who stole customer information and broke a non-solicitation clause.

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New Health and Safety laws

The new H&S law takes effect from 1 April.  If you don't have a system in place or it hasn't been reviewed for a while, now would be a very good time to sort it. 

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