Advertisement



Industry

December 3, 2014

Practical contracts of employment

Recently I wrote about the challenges facing small businesses when hiring and firing staff. Both of these events are critical stages of any employer/employee relationship. However, the most important part of any employment is the bit in between.

Indeed, if you get this bit right, then you usually don’t have to do as much of the hiring stuff, because you have a stable workforce and if you ever have to do the firing, then it can be an easier, less stressful process.

Obviously, an employment relationship is like any other relationship… it is based on trust, mutual respect and open and honest communication. If any one of these three criteria is missing, then the relationship is not a healthy one and is unlikely to survive.  However, employment relationships are very different to other relationships in that the parties to this relationship generally want very different things. Personal relationships are formed when two people share a mutual attraction to each other and partnerships rise out of shared passion and dreams. However, the fact remains (as much as we all don’t want to admit it), an employer is looking for a service from their employees, and the employees are primarily looking for a regular pay cheque.

This fundamental difference of focus is the primary cause for any breakdown in any employment relationship. People can talk until the cows come home about how important lifestyle is to them, that work/life balance is the key to an enduring and stable workforce. What they really mean is that they are prepared to take less money in exchange for non-financial benefits. For what it is worth, I have found that the opposite is equally true … people will put up with a lot if they are being paid accordingly.

It is important to note, however, that just because an employee’s primary motivation for working is a wage, does not mean that they are not a good employee … often it is quite the opposite.

The same goes for employers … Culture is important and in particular, how an employee will interact with and influence a business’ culture, but it is not the primary reason for hiring an employee. An employer’s main motivation for hiring one person over another is that they believe that the successful candidate will give them a better return (i.e. revenue generation and/or expense reduction) on the their investment (i.e. the wage they are paid).

The keys to successfully managing a relationship in which the two parties have different and sometimes competing priorities is to have clear expectations of what each party expects out of the relationship and to communicate those expectations, and more importantly, what is excluded from those expectations. It is a clichéd; however, the saying “you don’t know what you don’t know” is very apt when it comes to employment relationships…

I have, in the past, been very disappointed when an employee (who always arrived 10 minutes late to work) wanted overtime pay when I asked them to work back because we had an emergency.

On reflection, however, I realised that the employee hadn’t really done anything wrong. All they had done was follow the (implied) rules I had created. Let me explain:

1. The contract of employment that I had given to the employee had two relevant clauses in it … one said that they would comply with the work hours I set, and the other clause said that if they were required to work extra hours, they would be paid overtime;

2. Even though I had at the start of the employment said that work started at 8:30am, because I did not say anything when this particular employee started coming in late, I impliedly (and accidentally) changed her start time to 8:40am. The employee (quite reasonably) had expected that if I had an issue with her arriving 10 minutes late, I would have raised it with her. I, however, didn’t raise it, because I had assumed that she would have first asked for permission to come in 10 minutes late. It turned out that she started coming in late as a result of the bus she had to catch to work changing its route.

The point of this story is that the contract of employment is the key I mentioned above. The contract MUST be simple and easy to read and it MUST be a relevant and living document.  Many employment contracts are overly technical and only focus on the start of the relationship (commencement dates and starting wages) and what happens if and when the employment relationship ends (termination clauses, restraint of trade clauses, etc.). These documents often do not provide any assistance to the parties DURING the relationship, which is when such a document should be most useful.

How many businesses get their employees to sign an employment contract, then give them a duties list or position description, then have a policy and procedure on business activities or culture? By having three separate documents, what you are impliedly saying is that the employment contract is not really relevant. This then can cause the parties to not respect it. Remember what I said at the beginning about mutual respect being a cornerstone of any relationship?

Ideally, the contract of employment should be the only document that defines the entire employment relationship from start to finish and INCLUDING during. The employment contract should be the document that both parties can go to at any time as a resource if they are unsure of what to do in a situation. Further, it should be clear to both employer and employee that the contract of employment should be adhered to at all times and if, for any reason, it can’t be, then that is the exception, not the norm, and the parties need to communicate with one another about it. Again, not to sound like a broken record, open and honest communication is another cornerstone of any relationship.

The following are essential guidelines for effectively managing an employment relationship:

1. The contract of employment should be the only document used;

2. The contract of employment should incorporate any position description and “company rules”;

3. As most jobs in the hospitality industry are covered under an award, the contract of employment should incorporate/be based on the relevant award; i.e. no need to replicate redundancy processes in the contract, as these are already mapped out in the award;

4. The contract of employment should be written in such a way so that it is easy for both parties to use it as a resource. In other words, it should be written in the first person and as an instructional manual, not as a theoretical document.

With this in mind, the following are some practical examples of parts of an ideal contract of employment (these are real issues, so feel free to incorporate them into your current contracts):

These are your Hours of Work

Your hours of work are 8:30am to 4.00pm.  You will need to ensure that you arrive at work early enough to get yourself sorted so you can commence your duties at 8:30am. If you can’t commence your duties at 8:30am on the dot, I need you to advise me. I won’t be micro-managing your time.

What Happens when you stop working for us?

While working for me, you will have developed relationships with customers, other employees and suppliers. You will also have had access to information that I have developed over time and which is of value to me. If you take any of this information or use these relationships when you move to another business that competes with my business, this will have a negative impact on my business. Therefore, you promise not to use these relationships or information in any way that would compete with my business. You agree to check with me and get my consent before you want to use any of these relationships or information.

The important thing to remember is to keep it simple. My advice to employers (about employment contracts) is:

1. Draft your own contract from scratch.

2. Start with a job description (what you are employing someone to do and how you want them to do it).

3. Add in what you are going to do for them in return, i.e. pay them!

4. Add to that the company rules (how you want them to behave when doing their job).

5. Finally, if you really need to, add in anything you want them to do or not do, if and when they stop working for you.

Once you have done that, cut it down so that it all fits onto ideally 2 to 2.5 pages. If the contract of employment is more than 3 pages, then it is too long.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Michael Drummond – Director of Corporate Services, Di Bella Coffee.
Michael Drummond is a qualified lawyer who owned his own practice (focused on the hospitality industry) for over 10 years before he decided to enter the corporate world (instead of just consulting to it) by taking on his role at Di Bella Coffee (a position he has held for nearly two years).

 





MPM Advertisment
 
 

 

Piccolo To Go

E. piccolotogocoffee@gmail.com F. www.facebook.com/piccolotogocoffee/ I. www.instagram.com/piccolotogocoffee/ Established in 2007, Piccolo To Go has evolved from coffee carts, cafes, catering at large events & festivals to ...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Cultured Products – Puqpress Automatic Coffee Tamper – White

Puqpress Automatic Coffee Tamper is the latest precision tamping technology that is taking the Australian specialty coffee industry by storm. Our newest self cleaning model eliminates the need for daily cleaning which reduces d...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Castaway Packaging – Helping Roasters Build their Business

The specialty coffee industry has continued to grow, creating more competition and specialised approaches to not only how coffee is sourced and served, but also to how it is packaged. Your packaging is more than just a vehicle ...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 
 

Contact Us

Mailing: PO Box 5728, Port Macquarie NSW 2444 Australia Phone: (02) 6583 7163 Fax: (02) 6583 7169 Email:    
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
Advertisement
 

FIRESTARTER: A Day of Roasting Lectures with Rob Hoos & Roastress Coops

Equilibrium Master Roasters is proud to kick-start your week at MICE with an Inspirational Day of Roasting Lectures presented by SCA Roasters Guild Education Committee Associates Rob Hoos & Roastress Coops at Proud Mary Cof...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Golden Bean Hall of Fame 2017- Fulvio Pagani of Rio Coffee

The hall of fame is all about acknowledging people and businesses which have made a significant contribution to making our industry what it is today. This year accolades go to Fulvio Pagani of Rio Coffee who is such a deserved ...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Record keeping systems: digital or manual?

Having a good record keeping system for receipts and record keeping is vital…   Just starting out in business and trying to decide whether or not to invest in record keeping software? It’s crucial to have a strong record k...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Sean Edwards discusses the Top 10 Global trends in the Café Industry

I personally get to see the best of the best traveling the world visiting thousands of cafés yearly in my role of Head Bean at Café Culture International. I spent several months this year in London, New York and San Francisco...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Cultured Products – Cappucine – Smartfruit

Smartfruit is an all-natural fruit smoothie concentrate. Shelf stable and non-GMO, they can be used to make juice or healthy smoothies. Being 100% natural they contain no added sugar, preservatives, or artificial colourings at ...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

What receipts should you keep as a small business owner?

A good record keeping system can make tax time much easier!   Is that shoebox marked ‘receipts’ under your desk beginning to overflow? Keeping and managing your receipts can be tedious, but as someone who’s self-employed...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Zest Coffee: Flavour creation in PNG turns to Golden Bean Success

Sitting amongst the anticipative crowd we listened attentively as the medal winners of the 2017 Golden Bean Awards were ceremoniously announced. You see, of all the coffees we submitted, our Project Raggiana Lot 1 was a very sp...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Tilly Edwards

Media  The youngest member of the Cafe Culture team, Tilly has been learning and growing within the company for a decade, and is now officially full time. She is a very vibrant and driven professional, with her lifetime of exp...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Cultured Products – Ordermentum – Online ordering on time

Ordermentum is a complete business tool for coffee roasters that handles everything from orders to payments and production. Ordermentum helps thousands of businesses get their orders and payments in on time, every time and elim...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Connor Fox

Business Development Manager Connor is an energetic café industry professional who has worked on the front lines of the coffee industry in the United Kingdom for several years. Constantly striving to find the next BIG thing i...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Australasian Cafe School Upcoming Roastery Cafe Model 5 day course

THE AUSTRALASIAN CAFÉ SCHOOL Gain a comprehensive understanding of the retail café industry and the confidence to open your own successful café. The Australasia Cafe School offers a 5 day course for new and existing business...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Get Roasted Coffee – Online store – Featuring award winning ONA Coffee Finca Deborah

Cafe Culture International are pleased to announce the launch of #GetRoasted coffees. This new addition to CafeCulture.com will feature award winning and outstanding coffees from the Pentair Everpure Golden Bean Coffee Roaster...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Justin Metcalf explains how to keep your cold brew safe

Whether its microbial or pathogen you need to know what this all means to the safety of your cold brew. The sources of microbial contamination can be your water, the containers you are using, your equipment that you’re br...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Cultured Products – Nuvia – A natural sugar replacement

Nuvia Sweetener is a sugar replacement created with the extract of the naturally sweet stevia plant. We source pure, high-quality stevia which has a clean, sugar-like taste. Our delicious, signature sweetener has been specifica...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

SUSHI SUSHI SERVES UP AT AUSTRALIAN OPEN

Leading Japanese food retailer, Sushi Sushi has today (11 Jan) announced it will again be available for players, media and tennis fans to enjoy at Australian Open 2018. For the third year in a row, Melbourne’s favourite sushi...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Pimpin’ Profiles with Anne Cooper

So. you’ve read the books, the websites, tried to follow the information & example profiles presented, & you still can’t produce the results you’re after! Having the awesome opportunity to regularly visit roasters...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Cultured Product: Uniwell4Cafes

Uniwell 4 Cafes Uniwell POS Australia has been providing high quality, purpose built Point of Sale terminals to Australian hospitality venues for over 15 years. The Uniwell4Cafés system combines the latest compact ePOS technol...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 
Di Bella

A Glamorous Di Bella Farewell

Café Culture International had the pleasure to attend the farewell of Di Bella Coffee creators Phillip and Gianna Di Bella in Brisbane in November this year. The night was a magnificent display of emotions and gratitude combin...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Cultured Product: Bondi Chai

Bondi Chai… Bondi Chai, Australia’s most awarded chai latte, cuts through the frustrating “chai haze” for cafe owners and chai drinkers alike. It’s quick and easy to prepare and its award-winning taste and tex...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

China Cafe Study Tour 2018

Attend the #1 Largest China Cafe Expo Over 6 halls of business and competitions Cafe Culture International and Cafe Culture China present: The Expanding Chinese Cafe Market Study Tour Shanghai Hotelex Coffee Expo Where: Shangha...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Issue 47 now online

Cafe Culture Issue #47 Featuring: • The Pentair Everpure Golden Bean wrap up • Product Showcase • Global industry trends • Origin Stories We know our online flipbook is great, but if you prefer a hardcopy in your hand t...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Issue 46

Cafe Culture Issue #46 Featuring: • Australian Cafe Supplier Directory • On the plate recipes • Coffee Origins • Cafés abroad  
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

GIVE YOUR MENU A MAKEOVER AND GET MORE ATTENTION

Capturing the attention of restaurant-goers is difficult in a crowded market, but keeping that attention and building a loyal customer base is even more of a challenge. We spared five minutes with founder of online hospitality ...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

5 HACKS TO CREATE THE BEST BAR TEAM YOU’VE EVER HAD

Sometimes, you walk into other people’s venues and think: how are their staff so well behaved? Why is the place so clean? What are their secrets? Managing a bar isn’t easy. Among juggling stock, budgets, customers a...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

TRENDING CAFES Brisbane & Beyond

Ever been desperate for a good coffee and didn’t know where to go? As a newbie in town or a local who’s in an unfamiliar ‘burb, this can be a serious problem, if you’re the slightest bit fussy about your coffee. Your pr...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Freezoccino – The Trendiest Summer Drinks.

Ready to take advantage of Australian Summer? Here’s the truism- as the outdoor temperature rises, the temperature of what’s in your coffee cup must fall. A flat white at 3.30 pm when the temperature peaks at 35 deg. C ...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

The perfect condiment for your café

Caramelised Balsamic Vinegar Family owned condiment manufacturer – The Food Company, have recently released a 100% Australian Premium Caramelised Balsamic Vinegar to the foodservice market. Using Dark Balsamic Vinegar sou...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Red Roasters – Cafe Review

How refreshing is it to see an amazing cafe when you are travelling that reminds you of back home. Great coffee, amazing food and smart on trend design and a slick fit out. We did not hesitate to enter this vibrant Brighton caf...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Freezoccino – Keeping up your Summer Coffee sales.

Here’s the truism about the Australian Summer – as the outdoor temperature rises, the temperature of what’s in your coffee cup must fall. A flat white at 3.30 pm when the temperature peaks at 35 deg. C doesn’t e...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Changes are coming to GST

Make sure your business is ready from 1 July 2018… From 1 July 2018, the goods and services tax (GST) will apply to retail sales of low value physical goods ($1000 or less) that have been imported to Australia and sold to con...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Water – the mother of tea

I came across a beautiful quote while visiting The China National Tea Museum which is located on the Jilong Mountain in Hangzhou. “Water is the mother of tea, the teapot is its father, and fire the teacher”. Sometimes the r...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

Stoddart – Functional Storage Solutions

Simply Stainless is the world’s leading range of quality modular stainless steel sinks, tables, benches and stainless steel shelving which covers a whole spectrum of industries – from commercial kitchens and laundries for h...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Free online courses to help Australians boost their digital skills

Is there someone in your business who’d like to get better at using computers and technology? Tell them about Be Connected! Be Connected is a new program to help all Australians increase their skills and confidence with digit...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Bare Witness – Cafe Review

Do yourself a favour and check out this new #nicespace located across the bay from the Sydney Olympic precinct. Barista & Cupping champion Franki Shi and John Suh have teamed up to launch this outstanding full service cafe ...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

7 practical tips to help you save water and money in your business

Every drop counts – it’s time to be water wise. Most Australian businesses use water in some form or another—from a Melbourne café washing dishes in the kitchen to a farmer in rural NSW watering their crops. But with wat...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Super Matcha Green Teas – Add health to your menu

Enjoy our exiting new range of four super-healthy Matcha Green tea combinations. Original Organic Matcha Blueberry Matcha Turmeric & Ginger Matcha Vanilla Matcha. Made with the finest shade grown green tea leaves, handpicke...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

The 2017 Pentair® Everpure® Golden Bean Competition Champions

That’s a Wrap Last week the coffee Industry judged and awarded Australia’s and New Zealand’s best coffee roasting business at the 12th annual Pentair Everpure Golden Bean Roaster’s Competition and Conference. The co...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

A chapter from Adore Estate

Above being able to share our blends with more and more people, the café sites we roast coffee for always seem to have a great story to tell, from the time they approach us before opening, to when they come to us and to say th...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Cappuccine introduces Smartfruit – 100% Real Fruit Purees Smartfruit Mellow Mango + Immunity

Cappuccine Australia would like to introduce you to the Smartfruit™ range of all-natural real fruit purees. Brand new and one of a kind, Smartfruit™ mixes were uniquely formulated to perfectly capture the authentic taste of...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

An Outside View of Cafe World

I am still an engineer but if any of you have read my recent article about Melbourne in Lichfield my wife has thrown me into the weird and wonderful world of coffee. Most is positive but I am also hoping to use my own percepti...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

The 2017 Pentair® Everpure® Golden Bean Competition Begins!

PREPARE TO GET ROASTED Excitement is brewing in Port Macquarie as the Golden Bean Team finalise arrangements for what is going to be an epic week of judging coffee at this year’s Pentair® Everpure® Golden Bean Roasters Comp...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Lucky Breezes Through The Grounds

Grand Breezey Masters Final – Press Release November 15 – 2018 There was a strong Breeze in the air in Sydney on Tuesday evening as the Coffee community zoned in to the latte art action at Australia’s best café conce...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Bar Biscotti – Cafe Review

In Sydney, with a new coffee shop popping up on every corner, it’s a delight to walk into one that gets it right. As soon as I walked into Bar Biscotti, I knew I was in for a treat. With a country kitchen interior complemente...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 

 

The Joe Frex Technic Calibrated Coffee Tamper

A coffee tamper is used to compress the coffee grounds into the portafilter basket. To effectively tamp coffee, it is important the coffee is evenly distributed across the basket – this will assist in executing a level ta...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Did you know that registering your business or purchasing a domain name is not the same as trade marking it?

Build your business, protect your brand It’s a common misconception that registering your business or purchasing a domain name is the same as a trade mark. It’s not! To make things a little clearer, we’ve collaborated wit...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 
 

Cafe Pulse – Key Insights and Cafe trends – Soon to be available

This is the ultimate Café Industry “Out Of Home” OOH Australian Café market report that will greatly assist you to better understand the important growth factors that shape this vital expanding café industry.  Ideal for...
by Cafe Culture Mag
 

 




ad