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Industrial relations

It's hard to keep track of the latest rules and regulations from Fair Work. Our team of industry experts can keep you up-to-date on all award and employment obligations.

Industrial relations

It's hard to keep track of the latest rules and regulations from Fair Work. Our team of industry experts can keep you up-to-date on all award and employment obligations.

Employment obligations in the building industry

Industrial relations (IR) refers to the system of employment laws and rules that regulate the rights and obligations of employers and employees in the workplace.

What is the Fair Work Act?

The Australian industrial relations system is governed by the Fair Work Act 2009 (the FW Act). The FairWork Act sets out a number of employment requirements that Australian businesses, including small businesses, need to ensure compliance with.

Some of the particulars the FairWork Act regulates and provides for include:

  • 10 National Employment Standards for employment
  • application of modern awards
  • termination and redundancy
  • operation of unions in the workplace
  • enterprise agreements
  • minimum wages.

What is the Fair Work Commission?

The Fair Work Commission (FWC) is the national workplace relations tribunal. It is an independent body with power to carry out a range of functions.

These include:

  • making, changing and varying ‘award’ terms and conditions and the minimum wage
  • approving enterprise bargaining agreements
  • ruling on industrial disputes, such as unlawful strikes and pattern bargaining
  • termination of employment matters, including unfair dismissal claims and other workplace matters.

Find out more, see Information for Employers on the Fair Work Act


HR Docs


HIA’s library of HR documents have been written by and are regularly updated by a team of specialist industrial relations lawyers.

We offer discounted member rates to prepare:

  • contracts
  • agreements
  • policies and procedures that you need to help manage your employees.

Find out more