Major enterprise agreements are those with a large public sector workforce such as the public service, nurses, doctors, health professionals and administrators, teachers, police and certain emergency services, and with a salary base of over $1 billion. All other agreements are classified as non-major enterprise agreements.
When negotiating enterprise agreements, departments and agencies must adhere to the wages policy and agreement approval processes outlined below.
A new Wages Policy applies to the Victorian public sector from 17 April 2019. It revokes and replaces the previous wages policy and guidance material.
The enterprise bargaining framework
To support the revised Wages Policy, which applies to the Victorian public sector from 17 April 2019, a new enterprise bargaining framework has also been developed.
Types of enterprise agreements
Types of enterprise agreements are regulated in Division 2, Part 2-4 of the FW Act. There are three types of enterprise agreements that can be made – single-enterprise agreements, multi-enterprise agreements and greenfield agreements.
- Single-enterprise agreements are made between either:
a) one employer and all the employees or classes of the employees (e.g. administrative employees only) employed at the time the agreement is made and who will be covered by the agreement; or
b) two or more employers that are single interest employers and the employees who will be covered by the agreement (single-interest enterprise agreements).
- Multi-enterprise agreements are made between two or more employers that are not single interest employers and all the employees or classes of the employees employed at the time the agreement is made and who will be covered by the agreement. The making of such an agreement must be approved by the Government.
- Greenfields agreements relate to a genuine new enterprise that one or more employers are establishing or propose to establish, who, at the time of making the agreement, do not employ any of the persons who will be covered by the agreement. They are made with one or more relevant employee organisations.
Single-interest enterprise agreements
Single-interest enterprise agreements can be made only if, on application:
- the Federal Minister responsible for employment and workplace relations has made a declaration under section 247 of the FW Act that the employers may bargain together; or
- obtain from the FWC a single interest employer authorisation
When departments and agencies receive union/s request for the making of a single-interest enterprise agreement, they are required to consider such requests and prior to responding forward these requests and their proposed response to the Government (through the CBU) for consideration. In any submission seeking the relevant approval, departments and agencies would be expected as a minimum to specify the following:
- the employers who will be covered by the agreement
- the employees who will covered by the agreement
- the person (if any) nominated by the employers to make applications under the FW Act, if the request for a single enterprise agreement is approved
Reviewed 17 December 2019