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About the campaign


The Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) undertook a compliance monitoring campaign (the campaign), which focussed on businesses in the ACT that were previously subject to an audit and found to be non-compliant.

Committed to creating a culture of compliance with Australian workplace laws, the FWO undertakes education and compliance campaigns to assist businesses comply with workplace laws.

The campaign was initiated due to high levels of non-compliance found during the previous FWO activities, namely:

  • national hospitality industry – wave 3 campaign: - 71% non-compliance rate in the ACT
  • national hair & beauty campaign - ACT had a non-compliance rate of greater than 50%
  • northern ACT regional campaign - 43% non-compliance rate
  • ACT restaurant industry audit program - 59% non-compliance rate.

For this compliance monitoring campaign, 80 businesses previously found to be non-compliant with workplace laws were audited with the following results:

  • 64 (80%) businesses were compliant with record-keeping and pay slip requirements
  • 59 (74%) businesses were paying their employees correctly
  • 48 (60%) businesses were compliant with all requirements
  • $31 087 was recovered from 18 businesses on behalf of 120 employees
  • 17 formal cautions, eight infringement notices and one compliance notice were issued
  • two litigations were filed.

What we did

Fair Work Inspectors (Inspectors) audited businesses in the ACT that had previously been found to be non-compliant. Particular attention was paid to those businesses that were previously subject to enforcement action, such as receiving a formal caution or being issued an infringement notice.

Inspectors obtained a sample of time and wage records and assessed compliance with the Fair Work Act 2009 (the Act), the Fair Work Regulations 2009 (the Regulations) and the applicable award or agreement.

Where breaches were identified, Inspectors determined the most appropriate compliance and enforcement outcome based on the reasons for the non-compliance.

The most common modern awards applicable to businesses in the region were:

  • General Retail Industry Award 2010
  • Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2010
  • Restaurant Industry Award 2010
  • Hair and Beauty Industry Award 2010
  • Building and Construction General On-Site Award 2010.

As part of the campaign, businesses were provided with information and resources to help them comply with their obligations under Australian workplace laws. In particular, businesses were provided with the online resources freely available on the FWO website, including pay rates, hiring employees, My account and online training courses.