7-Eleven has taken operational control of two stores because of a failure to meet the workplace rights of the franchisee employees in the stores concerned.
The company accepts that mistakes can and will occur from time to time and, where it is appropriate, those mistakes can be rectified as part of a coaching, warning and breach notice process that is fair and reasonable. However, that process also allows for termination where the circumstances dictate it.
“In this instance, the decision to terminate was taken after an extensive investigation by a team of professionals engaged by 7-Eleven to review a range of materials relating to the operation of the particular stores in question,” 7-Eleven interim CEO Bob Baily said. “This decision was not taken lightly.”
Existing staff at the two stores will be offered ongoing employment.
Mr Baily says 7-Eleven is committed to helping franchisees meet their obligations to staff in a number of ways, including but not limited to:
- Being fully aware of workplace rights and obligations through information and training materials.
- Through updated payroll, timesheet and rostering processes.
- By sharing insights from retail specialists’ payroll audits and working closely with franchisees should there be any actions required to further improve compliance.
The announcement follows the news that the Fair Work Ombudsman has announced legal action against the operators of two 7-Eleven stores in the Brisbane CBD for allegedly underpaying their staff tens of thousands of dollars. The litigations take to six the number of 7-Eleven operators to face court since 2009.
7-Eleven is the subject of a national inquiry by the Fair Work Ombudsman into allegations of systemic underpayments and false record-keeping practices. A final report is expected in the first quarter of this year.