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Managing work well being and security obligations for on-hire staff


When you consider the employment relationships concerned in on-hire preparations, it’s straightforward to see how work well being and security duties may slip between the cracks. 

For example, if an organisation engages a labour agency to provide staff for a few of its roles, the on-hire company has duty for the employees’ employment.

Subsequently, is it obligated to make sure these people have protected, wholesome working circumstances? 

However what about the truth that labour rent companies ship their staff away to host organisations’ premises?

The workers will likely be utilizing the host firm’s instruments, following its directions, working with its employees and strolling round its website. For that purpose, shouldn’t the host organisation have the first obligation of care?


The reply is ‘sure’ to each.

Revised mannequin Work Well being and Security (WHS) legal guidelines make it clear that each events share obligations for contractors.

So what does that imply for the on-hire trade? 

On-hire staff 

In Australia, you’ll discover on-hire staff in nearly each trade, from training to undertaking administration and every part in between.

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Reasonably than straight rent an worker, host organisations make use of a labour agency (additionally known as on-hire company, service supplier and so forth) to put one among their staff in a job.

These people are then often known as contractors or on-hire staff.

Though the employee goes to the host organisation’s workplace or website to carry out the duties, she or he stays employed by the labour agency, and often will get paid by that entity.

The on-hire association will be full-time or informal and should differ when it comes to superannuation, taxation, insurance coverage and different employment rights. 

Shared obligations 

The revised mannequin WHS legal guidelines, which apply to all jurisdictions besides Victoria and Western Australia, clarified that on-hire staff are included within the necessities.

It additionally made clear that each the on-hire agency and the host organisation are thought-about individuals conducting a enterprise or enterprise (PCBU) and due to this fact each retain duties of care in direction of these staff. 

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Regardless that Western Australia and Victoria don’t comply with the mannequin WHS legal guidelines, their very own laws displays related stances on the shared obligations of all events concerned.

Importantly, these organisations are all anticipated to cooperate, coordinate and collaborate to make sure staff perceive dangers and greatest practices whereas additionally taking measures to make the working surroundings as protected and wholesome as moderately practicable. 

What on-hire companies can do 

As a result of on-hire companies ship their staff to different organisations’ websites for jobs or prepare for them to do business from home, it might appear tough for them to play an energetic position in securing their staff’ well being and security. 

The laws doesn’t prescribe particular actions that these enterprises must take, however there are a selection of issues to remember.

WorkPro’s free e-book, Work Well being & Security for Contractors in On-Rent, supplies quite a lot of suggestions for labour companies to remember to allow them to develop a strategic, proactive strategy to managing and monitoring WHS for his or her staff. 

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These steps embody efforts similar to: 

  • Totally understanding the trade, host organisation and particular scope of the job 
  • Conducting website assessments on the shopper’s premises 
  • Finishing up on-line induction and WHS coaching with staff earlier than sending them to a shopper 
  • Having staff report on website circumstances 
  • Speaking with the employee and the shopper all through the engagement, particularly with regard to any scope modifications 
  • Establish any dangers and methods to mitigate them, taking motion as far as moderately practicable 

General, the important thing to managing this shared duty is for the organisations concerned to seek the advice of each other, cooperate and coordinate, making security for all staff (on-hire and common) a key precedence.

For added details about what the WHS legal guidelines imply for the on-hire trade and the way companies can proactively handle and monitor the well being and security of their staff, obtain WorkPro’s free Contractors in On-Rent e-book.