Small businesses play a vital role in the economy. We understand the unique challenges you face in meeting your workplace relations responsibilities. We’re here to help you get it right and provide you with information you can rely on.
We have tools and resources to help you keep on top of your workplace relations obligations. We’ve also provided some links to where you can get more information and support from us and other organisations.
If you want to know about the basics of the Fair Work system our Small business best practice guide is a good place to start. It explains minimum employment conditions, record-keeping, pay slips, unfair dismissal laws and other responsibilities.
The Fair Work Handbook (DOC 230KB) is a useful reference guide that summarises your responsibilities under the Fair Work Act 2009, the National Employment Standards, awards and registered agreements.
You can then test how well you know your obligations with our Employer Checklist ( PDF 1.8MB ).
Finding the right pay
Find out about minimum wages, penalty rates, overtime and allowances for your employees and access our online pay rate calculator on our Minimum wages page.
You can also check out our pay guides for pay rates, allowances and common penalties in your industry.
Calculating leave entitlements
Learn about the types of leave employees can take including:
sick and carer's leave
maternity and parental leave.
Calculate annual, sick and carer’s leave using our Leave calculator .
Record-keeping and pay slips
For information on what records you need to keep and what information needs to be on a pay slip, see our Pay slips and Record-keeping pages.
You can also find templates on those pages to help you meet your record-keeping obligations.
Find specialised resources and tips to help you employ the right person for your business on our Hiring employees page.
Managing your workforce
Learn more about:
managing performance and warnings
bullying and harassment
protection from discrimination at work.
Help resolving workplace issues
Find out what we can help with, how we help and where to go if we can’t help at ourHelp resolving workplace issues page.
To make it easier for small business to resolve workplace issues and other business issues, the Australian Small Business Commissioner provides information to help businesses better understand and manage their dispute, including:
an explanation of the five phases of dispute resolution
a checklist to better understand how the dispute started and what the issues really are
tips for putting concerns in writing, including an example letter.
Visit the Australian Small Business Commissioner's website to find out more.
Online learning centre
Our Online learning centre has free courses to teach you skills and strategies to help in the workplace, such as how to have difficult conversations at work. They’re interactive and let you learn at your own pace.
Small Business Helpline
You can call our Small Business Helpline for quick and easy access to workplace relations advice. Contact the Helpline by calling 13 13 94 and pressing option 3.
Newsletter and email updates
To get alerts with information that’s relevant to you sign up for our email update service.
You can also sign up to receive our Newsletter and every 2 months you’ll get information sent to your email account to help you keep up-to-date on issues about employment at the time you need to know.
Subscribing to our RSS alerts is another good way to make sure you’re kept up to date with any changes on our website that might affect your business.
There are other organisations that may be able to help you in managing your obligations including:
the Australian Taxation Office for information about tax and superannuation
your local workplace health and safety body for information about workplace safety and workers’ compensation. Visit our Workers' compensation page for a list of workplace health and safety bodies.