Annual Award Movements for 2020

The Fair Work Commission has advised that will be a wage increase of 1.75% of the National Minimum Wage.

The Fair Work Commission has delayed the date for increase to some modern awards as a result of the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Awards have been split into 3 groups. Each group of Awards has a different increase date:

Group 1 Awards – 1.75% increase effective 1st July 2020

  • Frontline Heath Care & Social Assistance Workers
  • Teachers and Child Care
  • Other Essential Services

Group 2 Awards – 1.75% increase effective 1st November 2020

  • Clerks—Private Sector Award 2010
  • Joinery and Building Trades Award 2010
  • Manufacturing and Associated Industries and Occupations Award 2020
  • Miscellaneous Award 2020
  • Plumbing and Fire Sprinklers Award 2010

Group 3 Awards – 1.75% increase effective 1st February 2021

  • Hair and Beauty Industry Award 2010
  • Live Performance Award 2010
  • Registered and Licensed Clubs Award 2010
  • Restaurant Industry Award 2020
  • Vehicle Repair, Services and Retail Award 2020

What Pay Period does the increase take effect? 

The above award increase will affect all employers from the first full pay period commencing on or after the date effective.

Where an employer’s pay period commences prior to the date the assigned date of increase (ie. 29th June for group 1, effective 1st July 2020), the increase will take effect from the beginning of the next pay cycle.

Salaried or Annualised Wages People

All employees on Annualised Wages or Salaries must be reviewed annually. Now it is a condition of many awards for employers to check their pay is ‘Better Off Overall’ compared to the Award and what they would have received by working their typical work pattern, for their Pay Classification, if they were paid wages and all applicable loadings and penalties.

Award Updates and Employment Agreements

The Fair Work Commission has been busily working to update many of the 2010 awards. Some Awards have already been finalised and now include “2020” in their title. Some other changes have been implemented. But the major effect is the change of Award title (year 2020) and that some clause’s being re-numbered and would alter the meaning of the Employment Agreement if referred to numbering of clauses.

Employers who have had these award changes could do either of 2 options:

  1. Provide all affected employees a letter informing of this change and confirm they are employed under the 2020 Award and to read their Employment Agreements in relation to the headings not the clause numbers; or
  2. To prepare new letters of offer for affected employees.


If you would like assistance with developing Fair Work Compliant Letters of Offer/ Employment Agreements, please call Hellen Ryan, Principal Consultant, phone: 0429 410 991 or

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