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Portable Long Service Authority - Quarterly return process with spreadsheet

A step-by-step guide for completing your quarterly return using the spreadsheet

Guide to: quarterly return process, using the upload spreadsheet.

Quarterly Return Overview

The Portable Long Service Authority’s Quarterly Return can be submitted to the Authority in two ways. They are:

  1. uploaded as a spreadsheet in the Portal
  2. direct data entry into the Portal

The choice of which method to use is dependent on personal preference. For Employers with more than 30 Workers the return process is in most instances simplified by using the spreadsheet.

This document explains the uploaded as a spreadsheet in the Portal method of submitting a Return and discusses the most common errors and offers solutions to resolving these issues.

  • Step 1 – Log into the ‘Employer Portal’ at the Portable Long Service Authority Website
  • Step 2 – Click blue pending return number
  • Step 3 – Click 'Export/Import' in top left
    Note: If you don’t have this option, contact the Authority on 1800 517 158 to have access enabled.
  • Step 4 – Click on ‘Export to Excel’ to generate the upload spreadsheet
    Note: You can also download instructions from the Return page (see below in yellow)
  • Step 5 – The downloaded spreadsheet appears at the bottom of the page
  • Step 6 – Open and save the file to a new location
    Note: If this is the first time you have downloaded a Return, it will not contain any information and you will need to populate the Return with worker information. The worker Member ID will be allocated once uploaded.
  • Step 6b – Your 2nd Return
    Note: Any subsequent Return that you download will contain current workers data including Member ID.
  • You only need to add current information, hours, ordinary pay, termination, LSL taken or comment.
  • Step 7 – Complete the spreadsheet
  • Step 8 – Click 'Browse' to upload the completed spreadsheet
  • Step 9 – Resolve any Validation Issues
    If there are any errors in the Return spreadsheet a ‘Validation Issues’ prompt will appear describing the issues within the Return.
  • Step 10 – Click ‘Commit Import File’ to commit the Return.
  • Step 11 – Click ‘OK’ to proceed
    Note: The Return progresses to an additional data validation check. Resolve any issues.
  • Step 12 – ‘Commit Return’ to proceed or ‘Edit Return’ if there are errors present
  • Step 13 – Edit changes as required

Warning Messages

‘Ordinary Pay not specified - Discrepancy reason is required.’

This warning may appear when entering Worker hours and the Ordinary Pay cell is empty. If this occurs enter ordinary pay amount and error message should disappear.

If the message does not disappear add the Ordinary Pay and select a discrepancy reason.

‘Hours/Ordinary Pay not within threshold - Discrepancy reason is required.’

This warning will appear if the portal detects a variation greater than 25% between the Ordinary pay being entered in the current return and the Ordinary Pay in the previous period. This is designed to alert users to potential incorrect data entry.

If the variation is correct add a discrepancy reason.

  • Step 14 – ‘Close’ to save changes
  • Step 15 – Click ‘Edit Return’ or ‘Commit Return’ as required
    Clicking the ‘Commit Return’ button submits the completed Return for processing.
  • Step 16 – ‘Return Submission alert’
    Click ‘OK’ to submit Return
  • Step 16 – Return Status
    Once a return has been committed the ‘Return State’ will change colour. Orange indicates that the Return is ready for payment and Red means the Return is under review by the Authority staff.
  • Step 17 – Payment
    • An invoice will be automatically generated when a Return moves to orange committed state
    • An invoice can be created via ‘Print PDF’ in the Returns or Transactions pages.

Common faults

Fault Cause
Export/Import Tab not appearing in Returns window Upload not enabled in back office. Call the Authority on 1800 517 158 to enable

Upload not working

Unusual file browser

Duplicated Workers Not downloading a new return at the end of each quarter
Upload not working Created own worksheet, extra or missing columns
Fails to upload

Extra worksheet in Return

Unknown error Formulas or macros in Return
Unknown error Dollar signs in pay column
Error indicated in hours column Column cannot be blank. Must contain a value or a zero
Error indicated in a blank row Text or character in remote area of spreadsheet
Incorrect upload code Refer to portal for correct codes

Upload codes

Column Name Mandatory Expected Value Instructions
Member ID No PLSA Member Number Leave blank for new members
Payroll ID No Your payroll reference
Salutation No Appropriate Code Enter one of: Mr, Mrs, Miss, Dr, Ms, Prof
First Name

Middle Names No
Surname Yes
Gender Yes Appropriate code (M, F, or O) Enter one of: M (Male), F (Female), O (Other)
Date of Birth Yes dd/mm/yyyy
Employment Type Yes Appropriate code (e.g. Full, Part
or Cas)
Enter one of: Self (self employed), Full (full
time), Part (part time), Cas (casual)

Mandatory Expected Value Community Services Cleaning Security
Yes Appropriate Code Enter one CODE.
CSAM - Admin & Managerial
CSCH - Community and Home Care
CSCD - Community Development and Support
CSLS - Community Legal Services
CSCC - Crisis counselling
CSDS - Disability Services (non-NDIS)
CSDA - Drug and alcohol services
CSEC - Early Childhood Services
CSES - Employment Services
CSFS - Family support services
CSFV - Family Violence Prevention and Response
CSFM - Financial and Material Assistance
CSHH - Housing and Homelessness Services
CSMR - Migrant and refugee support services
CSNDIS - NDIS Welfare Services
CSNH - Neighbourhood houses
CSO - Other Community Services
CSPS - Personal and Support Services
CSYS - Youth services
Enter one CODE.
CC - Carpet cleaning
CCA - Cleaner, commercial areas
CMA - Cleaner, mixed areas
CO - Cleaner, other
CPA - Cleaner, public areas
CCS - Cleaner, shopping centres
CFP - Cleaning and sanitisation of food processing areas
CGR - Graffiti removalist
CHP - High pressure cleaning
CH - Housekeeper
CSP - Swimming pool cleaning
CWG - Window and gutter cleaning
Enter one CODE.
SB - Bodyguard
SCC - Crowd controller
SGC - Guarding cash in transit
SGP - Guarding property
SI - Investigator
SMC - Monitoring centre operator
ST - Private security trainer
SA - Security adviser
SEIR - Security equipment installer or repairer
SO - Security other

Column Name Mandatory Expected Value Instructions
Worker Type Yes Appropriate Code Enter one of: WORK (worker), APPR (apprentice), CONT (contractor, self employed), WDIR (working director)
If left blank, will be set to default value of WORK
Start Date Yes (for new
workers only)
dd/mm/yyyy Enter date worker became eligible for the scheme within your
business. Start date must be equal to or greater than 1 July
Hours Yes Number Hours to be credited to each worker. No more than 4 decimal

Period Pay



Ordinary pay received by each worker. No more than 2 decimal
places. No symbols (e.g. ‘$’).


Appropriate Code

Enter one code of: Yes or No

Termination Date

Yes (if worker
during period)


Date worker ceased eligibility for scheme within your business.
Date must be within return period.

Termination Reason

Enter one of: TERM - Termination, RES - Resignation, RTRNCH - Retrenchment
PC - Project Completed, ILL - Ill Health/Incapacity, RET - Retirement
DTH - Death

Column Name Mandatory Expected Value Instructions
Comment No No more than 1024 characters
Mobile No (Preferred) 10 numbers beginning with
Insert ' (apostrophe) before a mobile or phone number to retain leading
Phone No

10 numbers commencing with area code

Insert ' (apostrophe) before a mobile or phone number to retain leading

Email No (Preferred)
Address Line 1 Yes (for new workers only)

Note, worker contact details cannot be amended for existing workers using export/import process

Address Line 2 No
Address Line 3 No
Suburb Yes (for new workers only)
State Yes (for new workers only)
Postcode Yes (for new workers only)

Terminating a Worker

To terminate a Worker:

  1. click Edit Return, then click on the three vertical dots
  2. click Terminate
  3. enter Termination date and reason

For further information about portable long service visit Link , call 1800 517 158 or email

Reviewed 29 March 2021

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