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Minimum Wage Increase – Are You up to Speed?

Published March 12, 2018 (last updated December 2, 2020) -

April 1 will see the minimum wage in New Zealand raised by $0.75. Are you prepared for one of the largest increases in nearly 10 years?

If you haven’t already, it’s time to start preparing for the minimum wage increase on 1 April 2018. As one of the largest minimum wage increases since 2008, it will impact all businesses across all industries, who pay at the current minimum wage.

Those most effected by the 5% hike are small business employers, who will feel the greatest impact as they struggle to offset the costs of the increase. It is a legal requirement to implement the new minimum wage rates, and so it may be time to start looking at how you’re going to make up for the higher costs elsewhere.

What are the new minimum wage rates?

  • adult minimum wage will increase from $15.75 to $16.50
  • starting-out wage will increase from $12.60 to $13.20
  • training minimum wage will increase from $12.60 to $13.20

What do you need to do?

Being fully aware of the wage increases is vitally important to running a business. Your employees must be paid at the least, the minimum hourly wage rate for every hour worked.

If you’re paying staff at the current minimum wage, you need to increase this to the minimum rate from 1 April 2018.

You and your staff can agree to any wage at or above the minimum rate. It’s a legal requirement to have a written employment agreement with all your staff, stating their rate of pay.  If your employment agreements are a few years old, this is a great opportunity to review and update them.

If you have employees on a salary, it is also important to consider if the increase will impact their salaried rate. The Minimum Wage Act 1983 requires that salaried employees are not paid below the minimum wage for any hour of work.

Speak with an expert

Employsure is aware of your obligations to remain up-to-date with any legislation changes and can assist you with your compliance. If you require any advice about the new rate, or any other employment relations matter, speak with an Employsure specialist on 0800 568 012.

About Employsure

Employsure is one of New Zealand’s largest workplace relations advisers to small and medium businesses, with over 5,500 clients. We take the complexity out of workplace legislation to help small business employers protect their business and their people.

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