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The Punnet – June 2023

By June 2, 2023Newsletter
The Punnet

What is happening in the world of HR for small businesses?

Minimum Wage Increase Announced for 2023/24

This morning the Fair Work Commission announced that the National Minimum Wage would increase by 5.75% and increase to align with the C13 rate, and the Award Minimum Wage would increase by 5.75% from the 1st of July 2023.

This increase will be effective from the first pay period after 1 July 2023. We highly recommend waiting until the new Award rates are updated for your specific Modern Award, as other changes can be made during the annual review by Fair Work. It is the best way to ensure you don’t miss anything relevant to your business.

This is a significant increase, so now is the time if you haven’t recently reviewed your employees’ salaries to ensure they still meet the minimum requirements.

It is also a great time to check rates for employees that receive a flat hourly rate and are still meeting the Better Off Overall Test (BOOT). Wage theft laws have been implemented in most states. A case in NSW saw a company Director incur a personal fine of $39,000 for underpayment of wages. For further information on how to avoid problems with a flat rate, read our article ‘Are you at risk when paying employees a ‘flat rate’?’.

If you would like one of the Strawberry Seed team to assist you with an audit of your employee wages, please give us a call at (03) 4216 5200 or book a meeting online.

EOFY is closing in fast

How is it almost the EOFY again so soon? Below are tips on a few things to consider early. More tips can be found in our article 5 EOFY HR Questions for Small Business.

Don’t forget to register for our June webinar, which will also focus on everything related to the 1 July increases (scroll down for details).

Increase to Superannuation Guarantee

Effective 1 July 2023, employers must increase the minimum superannuation contribution to employees from 10.5% of “Ordinary Time Earnings” (OTE) to 11%.

Depending on whether an employee’s salary is expressed as inclusive or exclusive of superannuation, it may decrease an employee’s take-home pay or increase costs for the employer. Now is an excellent time to review how this increase will affect your employees carefully.

Is your remuneration inclusive or exclusive of superannuation?

Superannuation is often framed as an add-on to wages. Therefore we say, “Your salary is $60,000 plus 11 % super”.  Every time we use the phrase “plus super, ” we say that remuneration is exclusive of superannuation.

The benefit of structuring pay as exclusive of superannuation is that it makes it easy to compare the pay rates against Award rates, as Modern Awards rates are exclusive of superannuation. It also makes it much easier to implement an increase in superannuation.

Executives and professionals may sometimes have their wages expressed inclusive of superannuation. For example, “The salary is $96,000 inclusive of super” or “$90,000 plus 11% superannuation”.  For this group of employees, their take-home pay will reduce on 1 July 2023.

Now is an excellent time to consider how this impending increase will impact your business. For assistance with this process, speak to a member of the Strawberry Seed team.

Casual Employees and Contractors

Now is also the right time to review your Casual employees and Contractors to ensure they are still classified correctly and have not crept into a regular pattern of work that will put you at risk. If you would like assistance in reviewing your current employment classifications, book some time with one of our team.

15% minimum wage increase for some employees in Aged Care

Direct care and some senior food services employees in the aged care sector will receive a 15% wage increase from 30 June 2023.

This increase applies to eligible employees covered by the following:

  • Aged Care Award
  • Social, Community, Home Care and Disability Services Industry (SCHADS) Award
  • Nurses Award.

It takes effect from the start of the employee’s first full pay period on or after 30 June 2023.

More information can be found on the Fair Work Website, or contact our team for help if this will affect your business.

Upcoming Training and Development

Free Upcoming Webinars 

Award Increase 2023 – What do employers need to know?

The next of our free webinars will be held on the 28th of June 2023, at 7.30 pm.

The 1st of July each year comes with an increase to the minimum wage and Award rates. Other changes, such as the increase in superannuation, are also on the agenda.

We know these changes come with questions from employers, so this webinar is all about answering your queries and concerns, including:

  • What the increase will be for 2023?
  • How to ensure you are still paying correctly if you pay above the award?
  • How to manage annual salaries that are inclusive of superannuation?
  • What else do you need to think about?

As we understand small business people have busy days, we have scheduled this session for the evening (so you can enjoy it with a glass of wine if you wish)!

Bookings can be made here, and please feel free to pass this on to other business owners.

Coming Soon: The topic for the July webinar will be ‘Finding New Employees – The ticks of the trade‘ with our Recruitment and HR Advisor, Kelly Furniss. Click here for more information.

Mental Health First Aid Training

Undetected mental health issues have a long-term negative impact on your staff and the wider workplace. Recognising the signs and symptoms of mental health issues is the first step to supporting an employee or workmate struggling.

Our Principal HR Advisor and Mental Health First Aid Instructor, Frances Orr, is an accredited MHFA trainer who has delivered in-house MHFA training for many clients since 2021.

We now have a regular schedule of public face-to-face and blended online MHFA courses, and we currently have spaces available for courses in June and August.  The public courses allow businesses to send a smaller number of their team to attend the course.

To celebrate our 10th Birthday – we’re offering a special 10% discount on any courses booked in June or August.  Just enter the promo code: birthday10 at the checkout.

Blended Online Workplace Course

The blended online course is split into two components.  In the first component, your team will undertake a self-paced eLearning component (4-6 hours online directly with MHFA).  This is followed up by component 2, two 2.5 hour instructor-led webinar sessions. Each attendee will receive an MHFA manual and a certificate of attendance and can gain mental health first aid accreditation. During this course, we can address current industry issues or concerns you are experiencing in your organisation. This public delivery is limited to 12 participants in each webinar session.

The cost of this course is $250 plus GST for each attendee.

The dates for the upcoming instructor lead webinar sessions can be found here.

Face-to-Face Standard MHFA Course

The face-to-face course is conducted over two full days.  All attendees will receive an MHFA manual and a certificate of attendance and can gain mental health first aid accreditation. During this course, we can address current industry issues or concerns you are experiencing in your organisation. This public delivery is limited to 20 participants; refreshments, lunch, and afternoon tea will be provided.

The cost of this course is $350 plus GST for each attendee.

The dates for the upcoming face-to-face sessions can be found here.

Why is Mental Health First Aid training important?

As a manager or business owner, you will likely have been confronted with mental health issues at your workplace. Do you know how to talk to a team member who’s struggling? Maybe you hold back because you don’t know what to say or worry about saying the wrong thing.

Mental Health First Aid training teaches practical first aid skills to help a team member or co-worker experiencing mental health issues. We’ll teach you how to approach someone struggling, ask the right questions and help them access professional help.

To learn more about our in-house training options, click here or contact Frances for an obligation-free customised quote at

Upcoming Leadership Training Workshops – Melbourne and Sydney

One of our popular HR services is to develop and deliver customised in-house Leadership Training for our clients. However, we realise that not all small businesses are large enough to have a session independently.

Our Leadership Training Workshop is designed to bring together people managers from the small business community to share their experiences and develop their knowledge and skills to be better leaders. This workshop aims to ensure leaders get the most out of their people, improve productivity and reduce organisational risk.

Next Available Workshops

Melbourne – Friday, August 25th 2023

Sydney – Monday, 11th September 2023

Discount codes are available for HR Package clients, and keep an eye out on our socials over the next week for our birthday special!  For more information and details on how to book, click here.



Carli Saw

Author Carli Saw

Carli is a Human Resources professional with more than 20 years of experience across a range of industries and a passion for supporting small business.

More posts by Carli Saw