Resource Directory

Privacy Law Reforms

New privacy laws, which will replace the current Privacy Act, are expected to come into force in 2020. The purpose of the new law is to promote and protect individual privacy. The new laws will maintain the current information principles’ based framework while updating the law to reflect the needs of the digital age.

One on one meetings and relationship building – networking

One-on-one meetings are such an integral part of the networking experience. Let’s look into one-on-one meetings in more detail and how you can make the most of them.

You can’t Grow Your Business Alone, Here’s Why….

Running your own business is one of the most rewarding things in the world, but it can be tough, especially if you are trying to do everything on your own.  That is why networking should be part of every business marketing plan.  It might seem strange to think that standing around chatting and drinking coffee can supercharge your business, but it can.

Constructive Dismissal

If an employer’s action or inaction makes the situation at work so intolerable for the employee that the employee resigns, it may be considered a constructive dismissal. It can be subject to a personal grievance.

Stress in the Workplace

Workplace stress is not defined by law. It can be caused by a number of things, including: an unreasonable workload; lack of health and safety precautions against hazards; workplace bullying; workplace restructuring; a toxic work environment.  An employer must make sure, as reasonably possible, that health and safety risks in the workplace are identified and managed properly.  This includes workplace stress and fatigue.

Pay Increase for New Parents

From 1 July 2019, the maximum weekly rate of parental leave payments has increased from $564.38 per week to $585.80 per week before tax.  The minimum rate for self-employed persons increases to $177.00 per week, which is equal to 10 hours of adult the minimum wage. Government-funded paid parental leave is intended to support expectant and new parents during some of the first months of their babies’ lives.

Use & Abuse of Sick Leave Entitlement

An increasing number of employers are coming to us with gripes about how their employees are using and abusing sick leave entitlements. There appears to be a prevailing attitude in New Zealand that sick leave is a “right” and that it should be treated almost an extension of an employee’s annual leave.

The 10 Top Issues to Discuss and Document, Before Entering into a Business Relationship

66% of businesses fail. Because of our expertise, we see a lot of these businesses. There are many reasons why a business can fail, and a dispute between the shareholders is one of the reasons which is common. As such, it is important to properly document arrangements between the shareholders before hands are shaken.

Disciplinary Process, The Do’s and Don’ts

Before undergoing a restructure it is important to seek legal advice. If you are considering restructuring and would like to talk to one of our employment specialists then please contact The Engine.

How Targeting on Social Media can Deliver Sales

You wouldn’t interrupt people talking at a café to try and sell them something (unless it was another cup of coffee or a slice of pie). In the same way, people aren’t on social media to be sold goods and services. They’re there to see what their friends are up to, share interesting content, and engage with their favourite brands in social way (that’s where we come in!).

Are You Genuinely Restructuring

This month our employment team has focused on company restructures. No employer wants to face a personal grievance claim, so the head of our employment team has written an article to help you: understand the legal requirements, follow a proper process, recognise the ‘red flags’ and know the appropriate questions to be asking prior to instigating any restructure process.

Employee vs Independent Contractor

The above question is an important one, as the answer dictates your rights, obligations and duties towards your workers. If your worker is an employee, then their relationship with your business is governed by New Zealand employment law and their written employment agreement. However, if they are a contractor, then New Zealand employment laws do not apply to that relationship.

Employee Misconduct: To Suspend or Not to Suspend

When an event happens in the workplace involving potential serious misconduct, the employer may elect to suspend the employee. However, unless a proper process is followed the suspension can back-fire on the employer. The general rule for all employers is that an employer generally has no legal right to suspend an employee in the absences of a statutory or contractual right to do so.

The Silly Season: What are My Obligations as an Employer?

With Christmas right around the corner, employers should be aware of their obligations to their employees. We have compiled a list of issues that employers should keep an eye out for during the silly season. Alcohol in the workplace: under the Health & Safety at Work Act 2015, employers are required to eliminate (or if it is not reasonably practicable to eliminate, then to minimise) risks to the health and safety of their employees.

Trial Period vs Probation Period

Trial periods have been available to employers in New Zealand since 2009. They were originally introduced by the government to reduce the risk to business owners of hiring new staff. The introduction of trial periods coincided with the global financial crisis, and many New Zealand business owners used the trial period to take on new staff, knowing that if it didn’t work out in the first three months the employee could be moved on.

Workplace Bullying

It’s obvious, a PCBU must ensure their workers are safe while at work – but do we really understand the extent of those obligations? The new Health and Safety at Work Act 2015 places important obligations on PCBU’s in relation to their workers’ health. A PCBU has a key duty to provide and maintain an environment for workers that does not risk anyone’s health and safety.

Considerations for the Prospective Franchisee

Franchising in New Zealand continues to grow strongly and there are many examples of successful franchised systems.  A Massey University Study in 2017 demonstrated the growing popularity of franchising in New Zealand. The number of business format franchise systems operating in New Zealand increased from 446 in 2012 to 631 in 2017.

Is Your Business Ready to Franchise

Often people with a successful business are considering a range of options for expanding their business. In evaluating the options, franchising is becoming an increasingly popular option for well-established businesses operating in a local market but wishing to expand regionally or nationally. 

Could your work space be affecting your work pace?

Today’s pace of living and working isn’t slowing down anytime soon. Reliance on resilience is becoming increasingly important as people attempt to manage the impact of work, family and other responsibilities that take their toll on our bodies and our brains.
The impact that the work environment is having on the ability for people to maximise their output is critical to business success.

ACC Levies if you are Self-Employed

ACC provides personal injury cover for all New Zealand citizens, residents and temporary visitors to New Zealand. ACC uses a risk-based classification system where business activities are grouped so the costs of work injuries are fairly distributed among similar businesses. ACC sets levies for each group by comparing costs of previous claims with total earnings within that activity group.

Hiring on Attitude

In uncertain times, it can be tempting to pull back on growth strategies and tighten the reins. While restructuring the business can be seen as an ‘easy’ way of reducing both overheads and staffing risk, it may not necessarily take the business forward.However, by focusing on having the right staff (as opposed to headcount) businesses can continue to thrive, even in tough times.