Introduction From my understanding of the situation facing Ella, she is a temporary worker who is entitled to some benefits from her place of work. Her job also does not seem to require a lot of training, since as indicated by Carroll et al. (1999, p. 246), the hotel and catering sector does not normally suffer staff shortage because a large number of college students usually look for such type of work. It also seems as if a lot of things about the work are not clear to her.
For example, it seems she did not discuss with her employer before taking up the job on whether she was entitled to overtime compensation or not. It also looks as if though she is entitled to some staff discounts, the company policy on how such discounts are to be used was not properly articulated to her. In view of the quagmire facing her, and especially considering she still needs the job because the money she earns helps her in meeting some of her schooling expenses and the job is also close to home, my advice to her would be as follows: Determine the maximum working hours in the companyThe International Labour Organisation defines overtime as “all hours worked in excess of the normal hours, unless they are taken into account in fixing numeration in accordance with custom” (2004, p.
1). Notably, identifying overtime depends on the company’s setting and does not always have to be linked with compensation. As noted by ILO (2004, p. 1), employees like Ella need to distinguish between unpaid and paid overtime. Ella can start by establishing whether other people working overtime in the organisation are compensated for the same.
This she can do by speaking to some of her co-workers. With her employer, Ella can discuss what is considered “normal working hours” in the organisation, hence establishing what is considered overtime in the company. She should then ask whether the overtime hours are entitled to any form of compensation. If she is not entitled to overtime pay, she could try negotiating for other forms of compensation that ILO (2004, p. 4) states can be considered in place of monetary compensation.
Such include offsetting the overtime hours by adding Ella some days on top of her usual paid off-duty days. This however raises the question: should not Ella have a reason to fear that seeking verification regarding overtime especially considering that she has already received a disciplinary letter for another issue would jeopardise her work? Well, according to Dundon et al (2004, p. 16) employers know the value of “treating employees in a decent way”, since this usually affects the commitment and dedication that such employees portray at work. The term decent in this case refers to the employer’s ability to value the contribution that Ella accords the company, by giving her appropriate answers to her questions.
According to the International Labour Organisation, the 1996 Workplace Relations Act and the 2006 Workplace Relations Regulations stipulate the responsibilities that the private sector employers have towards their Australian employees. Key among the stipulations therein are the legislations that protect employee from unfair dismissal by their employers.