As hospitality venues grapple with the potential long-term impacts of COVID-19, including the currently scheduled ceasing of JobKeeper in September 2020, many employers may be re-evaluating their required staffing levels. The ER Department has been fielding many calls from QHA members who are undertaking structural reviews of their business, particularly in relation to staffing levels.

If you are considering making one or more employee positions redundant, it is very important to follow a process that aligns with the definition of a genuine redundancy as per section 389 of the Fair Work Act 2009 (‘FW Act’). Section 389 of the FW Act is reproduced below:

Section 389 - Meaning of genuine redundancy

(1)  A person's dismissal was a case of genuine redundancy if:

(a)  the person's employer no longer required the person's job to be performed by anyone because of changes in the operational requirements of the employer's enterprise; and

(b)  the employer has complied with any obligation in a modern award or enterprise agreement that applied to the employment to consult about the redundancy.

(2)  A person's dismissal was not a case of genuine redundancy if it would have been reasonable in all the circumstances for the person to be redeployed within:

(a)  the employer's enterprise; or

(b)  the enterprise of an associated entity of the employer.

Even though COVID-19 may have had a huge impact on the operations of many employers in Australia, the ability for a dismissed employee to lodge a claim in relation to their employment has not been affected, and it has been reported that the Fair Work Commission has had an increase in unfair dismissal claims of ‘more than 70 per cent’ during the COVID-19 crisis.[1] Employers should still endeavour to follow a genuine redundancy process, to reduce the risk of a successful claim against them.

The QHA has fact sheets on redundancy, and on consultation requirements under the Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2020 (‘HIGA’), which contain detailed information to assist you with undertaking a procedurally fair and genuine redundancy process.

It is important to keep in mind that if the HIGA applies to an employee’s position, it will be a requirement to comply with clause 38 of the HIGA – this clause is titled ‘Consultation about major workplace change’. Additionally, if you are considering making a position redundant where no modern award or registered workplace agreement applies to that position, the ER Department nonetheless recommends that you consult with the employee working in the potentially affected position, as a matter of best practice.

QHA members seeking more information or wishing to discuss a specific employment relations matter are encouraged to contact the Employment Relations Department for a confidential discussion by calling (07) 3221 6999 or emailing

Update to 2020 Public Holidays Fact Sheet

The ER Department has updated its 2020 Public Holidays Fact Sheet to reflect the changed RNA Show Public Holiday for 2020 - as announced by the Queensland Government, it was moved from Wednesday August 12 to Friday August 14. The updated fact sheet can be downloaded from the QHA website under the ‘fact sheets’ tab on the Employment Relations page HERE (member log-in is required).

The Fact Sheet does not contain a full list of regional show public holidays, and QHA members are encouraged to click HERE to check for any relevant regional show holidays applicable to their location, as listed on the Queensland Government website. Certain regional show public holidays have also been varied for 2020.

Award Wage Increase Decision Released


At 10am today the Fair Work Commission’s Expert Panel (Panel) handed down its Annual Wage Review Decision (Decision) for 2019-20.

The QHA can advise that a wage increase of 1.75% will apply to all ADULT modern award wages and to the National Minimum Wage (NMW).

The FWC has determined that the date for increases to modern awards will be delayed for some modern awards due to the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. All awards have been grouped according to the FWC’s position on when the increase should take effect.

Therefore, depending on what modern award/s apply at your workplace, the date of effect will differ:

Award Group  Operative Date
Group 1 Awards 1 July 2020
Group 2 Awards 1 November 2020
Group 3 Awards 1 February 2021


Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2020

For the Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2020, a group 3 award, the 1.75% increase will take effect from the first full pay period commencing on or after 1 February 2021.

Other group 3 awards that the QHA produces wage sheets for are:

  • Hair and Beauty Industry Award 2010
  • Live Performance Award 2010
  • Registered and Licensed Clubs Award 2010
  • Restaurant Industry Award 2020
  • Vehicle Repair, Services and Retail Award 2020


Group 2 Awards

For other modern award wage sheets that the QHA prepares, the following modern award rates will increase from the first full pay period commencing on or after 1 November 2020:

  • Clerks—Private Sector Award 2010
  • Joinery and Building Trades Award 2010
  • Manufacturing and Associated Industries and Occupations Award 2020
  • Miscellaneous Award 2020*
  • Plumbing and Fire Sprinklers Award 2010

* relevant for the national training wage.


National Minimum Wage

For those employees who are not covered by a modern award or agreement covered employees:

  • The NMW employees will increase to $753.80 per week for a full time employee or $19.84 per hour.
  • The increase represents a weekly increase of $13.00 per week or 35 cents per hour to the NMW.

The above NMW increase will affect all employers from the first full pay period commencing on or after 1 July 2020.


What is the Pay Cycle?

With regard to the operative date, where an employer’s pay period commences prior to the date the increase will have effect, for example, on 30 June (using the example for the NMW date of 1 July 2020), the increase provided in the above Decision will not affect wages until the next pay cycle.

This is due to the pay cycle commencing prior to 1 July – the Decision states it applies to a full pay cycle that commences (ie the first day of the cycle) either on, or after, 1 July.

Basically, if your pay cycle starts on Sunday, 1 July or after that date, the above wage increase will apply from that cycle.


New Wages Sheets

The QHA will prepare its wage rates and allowances guides for the modern awards listed in this article and will notify members as they are available.

Please note that the Panel’s decision provides for a percentage based wage increase, however, new wage sheets are not produced by the Panel.

As your industry association, the QHA will undertake those calculations however given the delay with the increases, the updated wage sheets will be made available closer to the relevant operative dates.