Australian Retail Wage Theft.
Yet again this topic is in the news. This time it’s Coles who are accused of it. I am not qualified in any type of accounting or financial aspect of payroll. Nor am I up to speed on income tax details, but as an observer working in the retail sector it appears to me that the payment laws are just too complicated to correctly comply with.
All these cases we keep hearing about are big national brands. They are the ones who are disclosing their own mistakes and saying that they will pay everyone back. We’re not hearing about company directors who have been ripping off their workers and skimming money. They are all saying it was a genuine mistake. We’re not hearing that once they pay back the money owed the company will be broke. They have the money to pay it back.
These companies are all using tertiary qualified and very experienced teams of people in their payroll departments. It’s not the work experience kids who have been making these mistakes. If the qualified specialists can’t understand the rules and laws, what hope have they got?
The government is quick to implement new laws that company directors will go to jail in the future. I don’t think that will accomplish anything except fill our already overloaded court system with more cases.
The answer is that the rules and laws need be simplified so that companies can get it right the first time.