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  1. #1
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    Default Pay discrepancy - unfair?

    A bit of backstory: I was part of a small accounting practice that was recently sold while I was on mat leave (old boss retired). the new boss has purchased the old client fee base and agreed to take on myself and the other accountant. so I have returned from mat leave and am working for the new boss. so far so good.

    at the old practice, the other guy used to work on a contractor basis...he'd invoice the boss for hours worked each week. obviously as a contractor, he was not entitled to annual leave, sick leave etc. his hourly rate was about $60 per hour. he had been working under this arrangement for about 12 years with our previous boss.

    I came on 4 years ago as a salaried employee. my salary was quite a bit less than what this other bloke was invoicing but whatever, he'd been there much longer and was invoicing on an hourly basis.

    under the new boss, we've both come across as salaried employees. him on a casual basis and his hourly rate is $50. I'm permanent part time and my hourly rate is considerably less. I get that the trade off for getting employee entitlements is a lower salary, but this feels unfair.

    I feel as though the new guy has taken us on both as new employees to his practice yet chosen to reflect our old pay levels. the business cards of this other guy and me both have the same job title. yet he is receiving disproportionately more money.

    he's a fair bit older than me but I don't feel like he's that much better. in fact I feel I do a better job.

    am I being unfairly paid here? or am I just feeling hard done by? I've complained about this to dh on a number of occasions and he seems to think it's justified. all I see is yet another pay discrepancy between a male and a female for doing exactly the same job.

    I'm so over it!

  2. #2
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    It may not be linked to gender, it might more be just confusion about how to transition the other guy from a contract to salary.

    How do you know about his salary, is the company quite open about salaries or have you inadvertently come across it?

    If you know because the company is open about it, I'd go to the boss and ask about a payrise based on your capabilities and the value you add, rather than because you're better at your job. Or you could ask what you need to do in terms of upskilling and knowledge to get to a similar salary to him.

    Good luck!

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  4. #3
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    I think I would feel the same as you. I had a replacement come in to cover my mat leave and when I came back to work found out that she was being paid the same as me but not for the same amount or quality of work....it really annoyed me. Especially as when she finished up she just dumped boxes of work in my office with no explanation of what they were or what as to be done with them. She's gone now but will come back again when I go on mat leave again and I know the same thing will happen.

    I get that he's casual but what are the chances of him no longer working for the company? Once something starts to annoy you its hard to stop it.....do you get on well with your new boss? Is it something that you feel comfortable speaking to him about? Would you consider moving to the casual basis with more money or you need the permanence of permanent work?

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    the pay info was ill gotten. at the old joint I found an invoice the boss had printed but left on the printer. at this place, I saw an email with the payslip and opened it. I know, I know, it's sneaky. but it's been bothering me for a while. at the old place I could put it down to how long the other guy has been working there but there feels like no excuse now.

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    He may have negotiated the rate as part of his change from contractor to salaried employee. Is it more than a 20% difference as that is the usual loading applied to a base rate for casual employees. If it's more than 20% then maybe as someone said above talk to your boss about how you can renegotiate your salary.

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  9. #6
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    I am a contractor so understand how it seems unfair. I get paid a lot more than employed staff, and if I changed to salaried I wouldn't reduce my rate. It's never a good position bargain wise to reduce your rate.

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  11. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bel0v3d View Post
    He may have negotiated the rate as part of his change from contractor to salaried employee. Is it more than a 20% difference as that is the usual loading applied to a base rate for casual employees. If it's more than 20% then maybe as someone said above talk to your boss about how you can renegotiate your salary.
    I agree. I don't think it's a gender thing if the casual rate is set at 20-25% more than yours then it is fair as it compensates for getting no annual/sick/long service leave which would work out to at least 7 weeks of pay per year.
    Presumably also as a casual they can let him go at short notice/not guarantee set amount of hours so the extra hourly rate also provides a buffer for that.
    Would you consider moving to a casual arrangement to get the same pay rate? If you put that to them and they still offered you a lower rate then it might be considered gender discrimination but perhaps they genuinely feel the other employee is more talented/qualified/versatile or something.

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    It would depend what the pay discrepancy was. He is casual so gets no entitlements whereas you do. You also have a guaranteed min hours, he doesn't. That's the trade off. Given he was being paid at 60 an hour contracted now is 50 casual, he has taken a pay cut.

    If you are within 25% so getting roughly 37 an hour then I think it's fair.

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    turquoisecoast  (12-09-2016)

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    Casual employees get a higher hourly rate than a permanent employee doing the same job to compensate for the reduced job security, lack of stability, lack of of annual leave, sick leave and other entitlements.

    Would you be willing to give up those entitlements in order to get the higher rate? I wouldn't. Permanent part time is overall a better deal (unless you specifically want the flexibility of casual).

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  17. #10
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    I'm a casual employee and I get a 25% loading on top of my base rate of pay. I have no leave entitlements and no job security. If I want or need to take leave, then I do not get paid. I essentially pay for my own sick days etc. with the extra money I earn. If there's no work, then I get no shifts. Permanent/contract staff get shifts by priority. I could go contract if I wanted the entitlements and security, but I'd be working for the lower rate of pay.

    If this guy is getting more than a 25% loading, then maybe there's something else going on or he's negotiated a better deal. If not, perhaps think about whether you'd be willing to give up the perks of a permanent position. If you WOULD prefer to be casual, then you could always speak to your boss about the possibility.

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