Hospitality New Zealand has applied as a bargaining agent for hospitality employers, willing to negotiate industry pay arrangements under the Fair Pay Agreements Act. Hospitality New Zealand Chief Executive, Julie White said the organisation intends to seek a fair result for all parties.
It will be a challenge for Hospitality New Zealand to do so, with the task of producing an agreement that can improve conditions for staff in the current economic environment at no cost to the industry or customers.
White said that a single agreement would need to cover nine industries, from cafes to clubs, motels to movie theatres, with each industry having specific jobs and working habits.
"The agreement will need to account for the needs of a student doing casual catering work and a full-time resort masseuse, all in the same breath. An FPA for this sector must fairly represent and reward all kinds of workers and not penalise or discourage them for their role or style of work," said White.
An equitable outcome will require significant thought and planning, as an FPA must cover at least 120,000 employees, from bars to luxury brands. If reached, this would be one of New Zealand's most significant pay arrangements, but drafting it up will be timely to avoid unfair outcomes.
"We must also consider the impact any agreement could have on workers, business owners and customers. Higher pay rates and less flexible conditions will mean higher wage costs, which could lead to shorter operating hours, less work for staff, and off-peak surcharges for customers."
"We're committed to making an agreement fair for workers, employers, and the public."