Ordinary Hours

In the Aged Care Industry, understanding the intricacies of ordinary hours is essential. As the demand for Aged Care services continues to rise, ensuring fair and transparent rosters is paramount.

Span of hours

The Award has different rules for “day workers” and “shift workers”

The “span” of hours in which a “day worker” may work their ordinary hours are:

  •       between 6:00am and 6:00pm Monday to Friday.


An employee who regularly is rostered to work their ordinary hours outside this spread of hours will be considered a shift-worker.

Hours worked outside the span of hours by day workers must be paid as overtime.

Ordinary hours of work

The ordinary hours of work are 38 hours per week, or an average of 38 hours per week. These hours can be averaged as follows:

  1. 38 hours per week;
  2. 76 hours per fortnight;
  3. 114 hours per 21 days; or
  4. 152 hours per 4 week period.

Ordinary hours of work must be worked either: 

  1. In a period of 28 calendar days of not more than 20 work days in a roster cycle;
  2. In a period of 28 calendar days of not more than 19 work days in a roster cycle, with the 20th day taken as an accrued paid day off (ADO); or
  3. 8 hours on a day shift or 10 hours on a night shift.


Hours worked in excess of this are to be paid as overtime.

Accumulation and taking of accrued days off (ADOs)

Where the employer operates an ADO system (ie employees working 8 hours per day for 19 days but only paid for 7.6 hours a day, and the 20th day being taken as a paid day off), then the following rules apply for full-time employees: 

  1. ADOs must be taken within 12 months of the date on which the first full ADO accrued.
  2. Where an employee’s employment terminates for any reason, accumulated ADOs must be paid to the employee at ordinary rates.
  3. The taking of an employee’s ADO will be determined, by mutual agreement between the employee and the employer, having regard to the needs of the place of employment or sections thereof. Such ADO will, where practicable, be consecutive with their rostered days off. ADOs will not be rostered on public holidays.
Rostered days off

Excluding casual employees – employees should be rostered off for at least two full days in each week, or four full days in each fortnight or eight full days in each 28 day cycle. Where practicable, days off will be consecutive.

Break between rostered periods of work

Employees should be allowed a break of not less than 10 hours between the termination of one shift or period of duty and the commencement of another.

This rest break can be reduced to 8 hours by mutual agreement.

Rosters

Rosters must be provided to employees at least two weeks prior to the commencing date of the roster period (other than for causal or reliving staff).

Roster changes may be made with seven days notice.

Rosters may be altered at any time to enable the service of the organisation to be carried on where another employee is absent from duty due to illness or in an emergency. This does not apply where the only change to the roster is the mutually agreed addition of extra hours for part-time employees.

If you’re unsure about which Award your employees fall under, or how to accurately comply with your relevant Award, speak with one of our experts today to get tailored advice and simplified guidance.

 

How HR Connect can help

If you require assistance with Award interpretation, compliance advice, disciplinary issues concerning staff, HR Connect can help. Our HR Advisors will be able to guide you through each step of the process and provide template documents as part of our subscription packages.

 

 

About HR Connect

HR Connect is one of Australia’s leading providers of HR & workplace safety advice services, designed to help small business owners make confident and compliant business decisions.

 

Disclaimer

The information provided in these knowledge base articles is general in nature and is not intended to substitute for professional advice. If you are unsure about how this information applies to your specific situation we recommend you contact HR Connect for advice. The information in this summary is correct as of August 2021.

This article will change over time, as Modern Award legislation relating to this Industry or Occupation is passed by the Fair Work Commission. Originally published on 20 February 2024.

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