Failing to meet workplace responsibilities can have serious consequences for an employer. If that employer is part of a franchise, these consequences may be felt by the entire brand.
As a franchisor, you can take practical steps to assist your franchisees to meet their responsibilities and minimise the risk to your brand.
Access to sound and accurate advice
Franchisees that employ staff need to know their rights and responsibilities under the national workplace relations laws. They also need to know where to go for advice.
As a franchisor, you can assist by:
- providing franchisees with information about their rights and obligations under the national workplace relations laws. You can download our free Employer Obligations Guide below, and use it in your business’ operations manual, or as a standalone resource for franchisees
- training franchisees about their rights and obligations under the national workplace relations laws. You can download our free franchisee training resources below, to use during induction and training sessions
- engaging appropriately qualified human resources / industrial relations personnel to train, update and assist franchisees
- arranging corporate memberships with an employer association, or special rates with a professional adviser. This may help franchisees access reliable and cost effective advice
- purchasing HR / IR systems or software to help your franchisees achieve consistent and compliant workplace practices. There are a number of different products available
- providing franchisees with templates that show them what to do. You might share materials prepared for the business by a qualified advisor, or inform franchisees about our free templates (including pay slip templates)
- helping franchisees calculate the right rates of pay. This may involve a centralised time keeping and payroll system, sharing current pay rates prepared for the business by a qualified advisor, or directing franchisees to our online pay tools.
Regularly monitoring that your franchisees are complying with the national workplace relations laws will mean you are better placed to see and address issues before they become a problem.
Before implementing new monitoring activities, franchisors should check what their franchise agreement or business structure allows them to do and adhere to any applicable privacy obligations.
As a franchisor, you could monitor compliance by:
- conducting periodic audits of employee pay slips and leave records to ensure franchisees are meeting their record-keeping obligations
- providing franchisees information and tools to conduct ‘self-audits’ and requiring franchisees to report back the results
- assisting franchisees to resolve workplace disputes with employees
- providing an anonymous enquiry / complaint service for employees, so they can feel comfortable about raising concerns about their employment
- requiring franchisees to notify the franchisor of employee complaints and / or Fair Work Ombudsman investigations or audits
- encouraging franchisees to understand and actively cooperate with Fair Work Ombudsman investigations or audits.
Reviewing your business systems
You can promote and support compliance within your business by:
- keeping franchisees regularly updated about their obligations under the national workplace relations laws and how they can get help
- negotiating an enterprise agreement for your franchise business. This can create clarity and consistency about conditions of employment across the business
- ensuring your franchise agreement contains terms requiring franchisees to comply with the national workplace relations laws
- checking that your franchises’ business modelling takes into account the costs of lawfully employing adequate numbers of staff.
National Franchise Program
The National Franchise Program is a free tailored service we offer to assist franchisors interested in promoting fair and compliant workplaces in their franchise business.