Farm Labour


Type: PDF
Knowledge level: Introductory

Farm Table says:

Employing someone? Read this first to make sure you have everything in place.  Handy little factsheet!


For an efficient farming system, a proper process of hiring, selecting, and inducting employees must be taken into account carefully. This GRDC factsheet provides some important information to assist farmers in the process of employing of a new employee.

The factsheet covers some aspects of the recruitment, remuneration, legalized employment agreements and probationary review, and induction. It includes full-time, part-time and casual employees.

The key points are:

  • Recruitment starts with interviewing. The interview can be done after preparing a job description, key selection criteria and relevant questions to the job. The questions must help the employer to accurately identify the personality and capability of the applicant. Then, the final selection of the appropriate applicant follows which is based in the semi-structured point scoring system from the key selection criteria
  • Remuneration is discussed during the recruitment process. It includes cash (wage or salary) and any non-cash (fringe) benefits. The remuneration should comply with the relevant award for the farm business.
  • 10 legislated National Employment Standards include (1) maximum weekly hours; (2) flexible working arrangements requests; (3) parental leave and related entitlements; (4) annual leave; (5) personal/carer’s leave and compassionate leave; (6) community service leave; (7) long service leave; (8) public holidays; (9) termination and redundancy pay notice; and (10) the Fair Work Information Statement.
  • Induction procedure and checklist helps the assurance that everything is covered and the employee has useful resources during their early employment. The process includes employee introduction to the manager and other staff members, informing about their task and equipment, giving practical and basic details on the job, making them familiarize to machinery, and discussing the workplace health and safety (WH&S) policy or manual
  • Probationary period and review is the practice of discussing the initial employment period and highlight improvement after 3-6 months of the work. Sometimes, a dismissal for the employee can be made but this can be only executed after the first 12 months on the job
  • Employer should keep records for each of his/her employees. This record contains basic and important information about the employee for future relevant reference.
2013 - Australia - GRDC
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