Minimum wage increase – what you need to know

The Fair Work Commission annually reviews the minimum wage. They evaluate whether award-covered workers will receive a wage increase or not. This year, the Commission unanimously approved a 2.5 per cent increase on all award rates.

The 2.5 per cent increase means the new national minimum wage will be increased to $20.33 per hour before tax. The increases will roll out in three stages. Effective from 1 July, all modern awards will receive the minimum wage increase. However, retail award workers will have to wait for 1 September 2021.

Other retail trade areas will have to wait until 1 November 2021 for the increased changes. These areas include hospitality award, travelling shows award, fitness award and more. The full award list can be viewed here.

These new updates and changes can be challenging to keep up with. That’s why we are here to help you navigate the ever-changing landscape of business legislation, without the fuss.

What is the minimum wage?

The minimum wage is the lowest income that an employer can pay to their employee. This was introduced under the Fair Work Act 2009. For most employees, the minimum wage is set by the award covering the industry they work under. You can review rewards for your business/employees here.

The minimum wage refers to the amount of pay an employee receives before tax is removed. There are different types of minimum wages depending on employment type, age, or work capacity. These include:

  • Apprentice and trainee pay rates,
  • Junior pay rates, and
  • Employees with disability pay rates.

Why is this increase needed?

Australian workers need higher wages, not lower. While battling through the global pandemic, many Australian workers have been unable to work. If they have been lucky enough to keep their job, many may have lost significant amounts of work hours.

The minimum wage in Australia helps workers that need it the most.  Especially those in highly impacted sectors, such as hospitality and retail.

Australia once had one of the highest minimum wages in the world. However, now they currently no longer rank in the top 10 countries.

Keeping up with legislative changes can be difficult, not to mention timely and unnecessarily expensive. AccountCom has you covered to make this process easy, so you can ensure you’re employer and employees have a strong understanding of wage entitlements.