Related topics

Industrial relations refers to the relationship between management and employees in a company. Conciliation, industrial action, stand downs, change in the workplace, and flexible work arrangements all fall under the banner of industrial relations.

Conciliation refers to an informal and private process where a conciliator, usually an employee of the FWC, attempts to assist the employer and relevant employee to reach an agreed settlement.

Industrial action is action that has an industrial character and occurs within the area of industrial disputes and bargaining.

A stand down refers to a situation in which an employer directs an employee to stop performing work for a specified period and does not pay wages to that employee.

Change in the workplace can come in many forms and can occur for many reasons. It can involve restructuring, downsizing, outsourcing, and insourcing

A flexible work arrangementis a modification to an employee’s usual work arrangement that is agreed between the employer and the employee.


Top stories for Industrial Relations


Stand down rights and fire-damaged workplaces

Stand Downs

Amidst this terrible bushfire season, it is inevitable that some workplaces will be disrupted because of damage to premises or machinery. This brings into play the employer’s rights to stand down their employees. Stand down means placing an employee in […]

By Charles Power on January 15th, 2020

Human opinions are a challenge for employers, report states

Industrial Relations

A report from international law firm Herbert Smith Freehills “warns of an unprecedented rise in workplace activism ahead, across all sectors and geographies”. The study is based on a survey of senior executives from 375 large companies, one fifth of […]

By Portner Press on December 4th, 2019

Your questions answered: Can we retract or revise a flexible work arrangement if it doesn’t work out?

Industrial Relations

Q An employee on maternity leave who is due to return has requested flexible/part-time work arrangements on her return, which we are currently considering. I understand the employee is entitled to ask for flexible conditions and that we must give […]

By Portner Press on May 13th, 2019

Your questions answered: Are we obligated to accommodate employees with medical conditions?

Industrial Relations

Q: Are we obligated to accommodate employees with medical conditions?

By Portner Press on March 18th, 2019

Your questions answered: Can we force annual leave on a day of a scheduled strike?

Industrial Relations

Q: Are we able to direct employees to take annual leave on a day that a strike has been scheduled?

By Portner Press on February 20th, 2019

Law protects employee from disciplinary action (even though he was caught on camera!)

Industrial Relations

Can recorded footage be used as evidence to take disciplinary action? This important legal case highlights where the line is.

By Portner Press on January 14th, 2019

Flexible work arrangements model term takes effect on 1 December

Industrial Relations

The Fair Work Commission has finalised the model term for requests for flexible working arrangements.  The model term will be inserted into all modern awards as part of the 4-yearly review of modern awards, which will take effect on 1 December 2018.

By Charles Power on November 23rd, 2018
Balance between work and family life

How to make flexible work arrangements work

Industrial Relations

Any employer who mismanages or refuses a request without proper consideration can face penalties. In the following steps, we demonstrate how you can approach requests for flexible work arrangements.

By Portner Press on November 12th, 2018

$115k fine for 13 breaches of FW Act

Industrial Relations

A recent prosecution by the FWO highlights the importance of properly implementing flexibility agreements to avoid underpaying workers.

By Lauren Drummond on August 8th, 2018

Your question answered: Can we make workers change roles?

Industrial Relations

Q: Can we force employees to move to a role with similar duties and the same wages?

By Jeff Salton on May 28th, 2018