This article will guide you through the best practice steps on installing and implementing our pre-built award or EBA. Managed Awards is a feature of the Advanced plan, so check your subscription before completing this. This article may be used as a checklist when installing the award for the first time.
You should read this article in conjunction with the article relevant to the specific pre-built award or employment agreement you wish to install. A full listing of help articles for each award and employment agreement can be found here.
The following steps are required to install and configure a Pre-built Award:
- Install the Pre-Built Award
- Public Holidays
- Disable specific rules not required (optional)
- Review the rule set period date
- Customise pay rates, leave and conditions (optional)
- Configure the employee
- Tag the employee
- Choose the most appropriate work types for an employee
Installing the Pre-built Award
- To navigate to the list of award packages, go to Payroll Settings > Manage Awards. Select the award you would like to install by clicking the install button. If the award that you are after is 'unavailable', click the 'Express Interest' button in order to receive an update when then award is released.
- Click the 'install' button to begin and accept the terms and conditions. Depending on the size and complexity of the award you are installing, the process may take 5-10 minutes.
- Once installed, you will receive a new set of pay categories, leave categories, work types, rule sets, pay rate templates, leave allowance templates, expense categories and employment agreements. All of these can be found by reviewing the payroll settings area. Each separate screen will generally have a drop down box where you may select to review the award based pay categories as separate from your own custom pay categories.
The system will provide an up to date set of State and Federal public holidays in each business, automatically. Local/regional and company authorised (e.g. picnic days) public holidays will need to be added manually.
Set up requirements for public holidays
For public holidays to function, the following steps must be taken:
- Configure the state for your locations
Checklist for importing public holidays
- Assign each location a state in payroll
- Manually add public holidays for custom holidays not listed in and assign each location a state.
Setting up the public holiday calendar
The settings for Public Holidays can be accessed and updated by clicking on the "Payroll Settings" tab on the payroll dashboard, the "Public Holidays" option is under the "Business Management" heading (Quickbooks users - from the Employees tab, select Payroll Settings, then choose Public Holidays from the list under Business Management).
This screen allows you to:
- Manually add public holidays - click on required date on the calendar to add public holiday - please check for all government and regional public holidays not listed and add them in manually if required and assign a state to this location in payroll.
Configuring the State on Locations
All public holidays operate at either the state level or at the specific location level. It is important to set up the state information on locations in the system.
Please note that if the state is configured on a higher-level location, it will be used for any nested locations (unless they also specify a state).
To configure the state for locations:
- Go into payroll settings, then to the 'Locations' menu
- Hover over a location and click 'edit'
- Select the state that the location is associated with
- click Save
For further instructions on setting up a public holiday calendar, Click here to go to the support article (opens a new window).
Disabling specific rules
Depending on your specific circumstances, there may be rules in the rule sets which may not be applicable. A common example of this is the auto meal break rule, which automatically adds in a meal break after a certain length of time without a meal break. If you are content with your staff entering their breaks for each shift, you may like that rule to be disabled. To do this, head to Payroll Settings > Rule Sets, select the award from the drop down menu.
- Click the box under 'Disabled Rules' and you'll see a list of the specific conditions. Awards will generally include a clause which refers back to the award / EA clause to assist in understanding their application.
- Select the name of the rule you'd like to disable and then save your changes. This rule will now be skipped from how your timesheets are interpreted.
- Repeat steps 1 and 2 for each rule set which requires modification.
A detailed set of instructions on disabling rules can be found here.
Setting the rule set period date
The rule set period is used by the rules to decide different shift periods. For example, if you interpret overtime over a 4 week period, you can set the date for when the initial 4 week period should end. If you pay weekly, you can set the day of the week that the rule set should base the number of hours worked in a week from. The same could be said for a fortnightly pay period. You should use extreme caution before changing the rule set period as we may write a fixed number of hours in the rules which will no longer make sense. E.g. if overtime was hours worked > 152 hours over 4 weeks, and we changed to weekly, it would read >152 hours per week. The help article specific to each award will make mention of whether it is appropriate to change the rule set period. Please review and test for any impact on changing the rule set period.
To customise this, head to Payroll Settings > Rule Sets, select the award from the drop down menu and:
- Select the appropriate option from the 'Rule Set Period' drop down menu
- Change the day or date accordingly
NB: Don't always assume that the rule set period should be the same as your pay schedule. For example, you may pay weekly but overtime should be assessed over 4 weeks as per the award. The appropriate setting in this case should be 4 weeks rather than weekly. Refer to the relevant award or employment agreement for the most appropriate setting. Where there is flexibility on this, it is best to keep the date or day that the rule set period ends to be the same as your pay schedule, to avoid, for example, overtime being applied half way through your working week.
Customising pay rates, leave and conditions
You may need a modified version of the award template to use. This might include adding site allowances for your unique locations, paying a higher rate and relaxing some pay conditions, adding, removing or modifying existing pay conditions or changing leave types. Generally when you make changes to either a rule set, pay rate template or leave template (or add in your own) we recommend also creating a new employment agreement that incorporates these new templates.
Any new templates you create for internal purposes will not be updated when there are updates to an award package e.g. annual rate increases. You will need to manage these yourself manually.
We have a good video resource which steps through common examples of modifying award templates and best practice approaches for doing so.
Configuring the employee
Once the business has been properly configured, we can begin adding employees to the award or modifying existing employees to be part of the award.
When adding an employee for the first time using the employee wizard, the majority of settings can be found in the 'employment details' screen (the third screen of the wizard. After the employee has been created, you can review and modify these settings in the payrun defaults screen for that employee.
- First select the name of the award from the "award" drop down menu
- Next, select the name of the employment agreement you'd like to apply. Employment agreements correspond with the classifications, levels or grades which are set out in the award or agreement you have installed. You may need to refer to a copy of the award or agreement to ensure you are assigning the correct level to the correct role.
- Based on what you select, many of the fields will pre-populate for you. If the employment agreement progresses based on the employees age e.g. junior rates, the system will use the date of birth field to determine the employees age and the appropriate pay rate template to be applied. Alternatively, if the employment agreement relies on "Anniversary date" e.g. the start of an apprenticeship, the date a qualification was received, a separate field will appear asking for that particular date
In both cases, the pay rate template will be initially chosen and automatically progress the employee through the various pay rates as these key dates expire without you needing to amend it. You can retrospectively change these dates e.g. change and anniversary date to speed up an apprenticeship and the pay rate will update accordingly.
- Complete the remaining fields. The number of hours per week should be filled in, and 38 is generally the correct answer (rather than 0) if you are not sure (e.g. a casual employee). Adding 0 here may cause all shifts to be treated as overtime as all are above 'standard hours'.
- Choose an appropriate leave template. These are generally specific to the state the employee will be working from and tailored for settings such as long service leave contingent and entitlement periods.
- Finish setting up the employee and once completed, click on the employees details to move on to customising the employee further for the award or EA.
Tagging the employee
Employee tags are used frequently in award packages. These generally represent conditions specific to one employee. For instance, an employee who might be a first aid officer may receive an allowance under an award. We use tags to identify these types of conditions, and when selected, the employee will then receive that allowance per hour worked (based on a pay condition in the rule set).
Tagging is a very powerful feature. Each award template has a unique set of tags that is meaningful to that template only. To ensure you do this correctly and have considered all of the various conditions, review the help article specific to that award. Search the knowledge base for the award code or award name to find help on specific tags and work types. You can find a full list of our Award and EA help articles here.
Information on adding a tag to an employee can be found here.
Customising work types and shift conditions for the employee
Work types and shift conditions are a way of describing the kind of shift being worked, or conditions specific to that shift. For instance an employee who chooses a work type called "work below 0 degrees" may receive an allowance in the rule set for working with this disability. While the award template will provide you with work types specific to your employee, some may or may not be relevant to the employees role. You can decide in each case whether the employee has the work type available for selection.
Go to Employee > Select the employee > Work types. Any which are not grey are available to be turned on or off. If they are on, they will be available to be chosen when the employee is entering a timesheet, or clocking on or off using Clock Me In.
If there is a greyed out work type which you do not want, you'll need to first modify the work type in payroll settings > work types and change the settings so it is not being automatically enabled for a particular employment type. Then you can return to the employee section and untick that work type.
Once again, it is useful to review the help article specific to your award so that you will be able to interpret the work types appropriately. It may also be the basis of a guide or cheat sheet you can provide to your employees to assist in gaining an understanding of how to complete a timesheet.
Once these steps have been completed you are now ready to have very streamlined and automated payroll while maintaining your compliance. We will update award templates from time to time and you'll see a notification on the dashboard page when logging in, prompting you to install the update.
If you have any feedback or questions please contact us via firstname.lastname@example.org