Individual Flexibility Agreements (IFAs) are fast becoming a good way for agile and growing Employers to best utilise their workforce. The proposed changes by the Abbott Liberal Government are designed to provide greater flexibility with the main change giving Employers and Employees the ability to trade monetary benefits for non-monetary benefits.
Jonathan Mamaril, Principal & Director at NB Lawyers says that these changes will in particular benefit small to medium size businesses that are looking to grow or establish themselves in niche markets.
“If the changes go through as expected IFAs will become an important tool for Employers to stay open for longer or open on Sunday without the need to incur cost blowouts on wages.”
“Employers and employees will need to sit down and talk about what suits both their needs, there may be scope for an employee to leave work earlier on a day during the week to pick up the kids and in exchange overtime rates may not be payable”, Mr Mamaril said.
Although this is a practical solution Mr Mamaril says that the flexibility agreed to still needs to pass the Better off Overall Test (BOOT) and misuse or abuse by Employers may be possible. If enforced correctly however, the proposed changes should provide opportunities for flexibility for Employees to pick up children from school, go to the bank, run personal errands or work from home.
“As long as the IFA passes the BOOT, there will be many creative ways for Employers to further utilise their workforce”, Mr Mamaril concluded.