Merivale will reassess its business operations after its WorkChoices-era enterprise bargaining agreement (EBA) was terminated by the Fair Work Commission on Monday 21 January 2019.
The agreement, which expired in 2007, has now been terminated by the Commission in response to action taken by hospitality industry union United Voice, which acted on behalf of two former employees.
After both Merivale and United Voice made submissions to the Commission, it was agreed the EBA would be terminated on 4 March 2019, providing the Sydney hospitality stalwart with time to transition to the new agreement. Merivale, which operates more than 70 venues across Sydney and employs more than 3000 staff, will use the period to re-evaluate its operations due to the scale of the changes.
In a statement, the company said “Given the differences between the operation of the two systems, and the functional adaptations required by this transition, there will be a number of administrative and operational changes for Merivale and its staff. Merivale will continue to deliver exceptional product and service across all of its venues and will remain a workplace of choice for our staff.
“Based on a sensible agreement with United Voice and yesterday confirmed by the Fair Work Commission, Merivale’s current Collective Agreement, which sets out the terms and conditions of employment for many of our staff, will reach its end date on 4 March 2019. From this date, our staff will transition to the relevant awards.”
Merivale confirmed it is committed to remaining a lead employer in the sector despite any changes, with all business adaptations made in order to meet the conditions of the new award arrangements “part and parcel of operating a successful business.”
A spokesperson for the company clarified the review would “focus on updating operational arrangements to reflect the new award conditions, by way of example, an assessment of shifts and rostering arrangements in certain venues at certain times/days of the week, how staff can move between venues within shifts and how we can accommodate many casual staff who have individual shift requests that the new award doesn’t contemplate or allow.
“To be clear, these are in-venue administrative and operational reviews and are not assessments as to the ongoing financial viability of any individual Merivale venue or the business as a whole.”