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JB Hi-Fi’s proactive compliance gets approval from the FWO

Following electronics retailer JB Hi-Fi being found to have underpaid nine of its employees in 2013, it has since signed a Proactive Compliance Deed (PCD) with the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) to ensure its future workplace practices are compliant.

The FWO’s initial investigation identified that time-keeping problems at one of its stores had led to underpayments totalling more than $42,000. JB Hi-Fi resolved the issue without further action needed by the FWO.

After discussions with the FWO, JB Hi-Fi then entered into a partnership with them in 2014, signing a three-year PCD to work on improving its compliance with workplace laws across the business.

In the first year, JB Hi-Fi conducted a self-audit involving a total of 337 employees from 22 of its stores.

It identified and rectified underpayments totalling $1,397 for 15 workers. Individual underpayments ranged from $2.36 to $367.90.

The underpayments had arisen due to time-keeping errors, no underpayments of hourly rates, penalty rates or loadings were found.

Since signing the PCD, JB Hi-Fi has enhanced its manager and staff training and implemented a new online time and attendance system. The company has also appointed employee liaison officers so workers can raise issues directly with its head office.

The FWO has not received any further requests for assistance involving workplace disputes from JB Hi-Fi employees during the partnership with the FWO.

FWO’s Sandra Parker said that this demonstrates the importance of businesses having robust systems in place.

“The measures JB Hi-Fi implemented under the partnership benefit all of its employees and reduce the risk of future workplace breaches occurring in its network,” she said.

“Workplace compliance should be a top priority for all businesses, and we have a range of resources available to help employers comply with their obligations.”

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