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Optus Retailco, a subsidiary of Singtel Optus, is issuing more than $7.8 million in back payments to underpaid employees across Australia, following an enforceable undertaking with the Fair Work Ombudsman.
Details of the Incident
After self-reporting to the Fair Work Ombudsman in April 2021, Optus Retailco identified underpayments to employees, including retail consultants and store managers, between January 2014 and March 2020 due to inadequate payroll systems and practices.
The underpayments involved base pay, weekend and public holiday loadings, meal allowances, overtime, penalty rates, and leave entitlements. A total of 3744 current and former employees have been affected, with individual payments ranging from $11 to about $34,000.
Court’s Decision and Impact on Victims
Under the enforceable undertaking, Optus Retailco has committed to stringent measures to ensure accurate future wage payments, including further reviews, independent audits, and contrition payments totaling $450,000 initially, plus additional payments based on future findings.