Could wage underpayment be an issue for your tourist park?

This article was originally published 5 December 2019 and updated 9 November 2022.

Compliance with Fair Work laws is not only a concern for big business. With the complexity of modern awards comes a greater risk of payment or entitlement breaches by employers of any size.

If big companies, with big teams and resources at their disposal, can get it wrong, anyone can.

Compliance should be a focus for all businesses, including accurate record-keeping practices, annual pay reconciliations and if needed, an audit of payroll systems and processes.

Other than a few roles, such as Park Managers, most Tourist Park employees fall under the Hospitality Industry (General) Award 2010.

Park Managers, like all employees in Australia, do have minimum entitlements under the National Employment Standards (NES). Given the wage bracket that Managers typically fall into, the odd numbers of hours worked, weekend and public holiday work and the on-call (on-site) nature of their employment, it is not uncommon for their actual annualised pay for hours worked to fall below minimum NES requirements.

The most common underpayment issues include not paying the correct overtime and penalty rates and classifying staff at the incorrect award level for their role.

In the case of MADE, breaches have resulted in a $200,000 fine in addition to back-payment of some 500 staff. They are also required to engage independent auditors to check pay and conditions every year until 2022.

Prioritising workplace compliance from the outset, including accurate record keeping, can prevent significant issues further down the track.

In any business, large or small, record-keeping is vital to protecting yourself should something go wrong. Record-keeping and pay slip obligations ensure employees receive correct wages and entitlements.

Cloud-based payroll systems such as KeyPay ensure Fair Work compliance by automating all the rules for modern awards, including pay rates and conditions/entitlements.

For a one-stop-shop for your tourist park operations oversight, has a KeyPay integration that allows our team to build tailored, specialised reports for your business. Get in touch to find out more.

To make sure your business is compliant, seek professional advice, visit and review payroll systems and processes.

Contact the BDO Tourist Park team if you’d like to discuss this or any other issue further.