Our most frequently asked questions about having employees. If you cannot find the answer to your question here, then please call our CEC on 0508 462 427.
Who is an employee?
An employee is a person who has agreed to be employed to work for some form of payment under a contract of service. Under an Individualised Funding arrangement, an employee is engaged by the person receiving disability funding (or their nominated agent) to provide them with support.
Manawanui does not employ support workers on behalf of our clients.
I am an employee of a Manawanui client and I have a question about my wages or some other aspect of my employment?
As Manawanui is not your employer, we can’t provide you with advice. If you have any concerns or questions about your wages, then you should speak to your employer. They can contact us for any additional information they need to address your concerns.
What’s the difference between an employee and a contractor?
An employee is a person employed to do any work for hire or reward under a contract of services (commonly called an employment agreement). The hire or reward is almost always a wage or salary.
Employees have all minimum employment rights under employment laws (e.g. the Employment Relations Act 2000, the Minimum Wage Act 1983 and the Holidays Act 2003), such as:
- Paid at least the minimum wage,
- Have holiday and leave entitlements, and
- Have a written employment agreement.
Employees also have extra rights, like the right to take a personal grievance.
Self-employed people can also be called contractors or independent contractors; these terms mean the same thing. A contractor is engaged by a principal (the other party) to perform services under a contract for services (commonly called an independent contractor agreement).
Contractors are self-employed and earn income by invoicing the principal for their services. A contractor pays their own tax (unless they are receiving schedular payments) and ACC levies.
Most employment laws do not cover Contractors. This means they don’t get things like annual leave or sick leave, and they can’t bring personal grievances.
What is a permanent employee (full or part-time)?
These are the most common type of employee. Permanent employees have the full set of employment rights and responsibilities.
Employees have to meet certain criteria to qualify for some employment entitlements, such as parental leave, parental leave payments, annual holidays, sick leave and bereavement leave. There may be small differences between full time or part time employees due to their work patterns.
What is a fixed term employee (full or part-time)?
A fixed-term (temporary) employee’s employment will end on a specified date or when a particular event occurs. A fixed-term employee might be someone who is brought in to replace another employee on parental leave, to cover a seasonal peak or to complete a project.
There must be a genuine reason based on reasonable grounds for the fixed term. You must explain this reason to the employee.
What is the difference between part-time and full-time employees?
Whether you are considered to be part-time or full-time depends on how many hours you have to work. Employment legislation does not define what full-time or part-time work is, but full-time work is often considered to be around 35 to 40 hours a week. You have the same employment rights and responsibilities if you are a part-time or full-time employee.
A full-time permanent employee might be someone working 9am to 5pm, five days a week. An example of a part-time permanent employee is someone who regularly works the same three days a week for eight hours each day, for a total of 24 hours a week.
What is a casual employee?
Employment legislation does not actually define ‘Casual employee’. However, the term often refers to a situation where the employee has no guaranteed hours of work, no regular pattern of work, and no ongoing expectation of employment. The employer does not have to offer work to the employee, and the employee does not have to accept work when offered. The employee works as and when it suits both them and the employer. This can sometimes happen because it’s hard for the employer to predict when they will need someone to work, or when they need the work done quickly. Each time the employee accepts an offer of work it is treated as a new period of employment.
Employment rights and responsibilities also apply to casual employees, but the way annual holidays, sick and bereavement leave are applied can vary for these employees.
My employee is casual and I want to make them permanent, how do I go about doing this?
You can make changes to your employee’s status in the Manawanui Client Web Portal. If you don’t use our online Portal, then you will need to complete an employee change in details form and send it to our Payroll team.
Note that the date for the change to take effect needs to match the start of a pay period.
You will also need to update the employee’s employment agreement to reflect these changes.
How much should I pay my employee?
You agree the rate you are going to pay your support workers with them. However, there is an expectation that hourly rates are reasonable and reflect the employee’s work. For example, if you are engaging a registered nurse to provide advanced care, you would expect to pay that person about the same rates as other nurses, which is more than you would typically pay to a person performing housekeeping duties.
There are specific minimum pay rates for employees in the disability sector based on the Pay Equity Settlement Act which came into effect on 1 July 2017 (see table below). These rates are based on your employees’ qualifications such as the NZ Certificates in Health & Wellbeing or other equivalent qualifications.
A list of equivalent qualifications can be found on the Careerforce website.
If you are paying employees for overnight shifts, or sleepovers, then the minimum wage rate of $16.50 applies. However, Self-employed contractors are not subject to minimum wage rates. Therefore, you can pay them less than the minimum wage if you both agree to this.
|Qualification||1 July 2018
|1 July 2019
(Year 3 & 4)
|1 July 2021
|L0 (no qualifications||$19.80||$20.50||$21.50|
* Qualifications are those recognised by NZQA