There are 3 types of Members of the Fair Work Commission:
The head of the Commission is known as the President. The current president is a judge of the Federal Court of Australia and also carries the title 'Justice'.
Commission Members are involved in the broad range of Commission work.
Expert Panel Members are only involved in specific functions. There are currently 2 Expert Panels – one responsible for the Commission’s annual wage review functions, the other responsible for determining the default superannuation list for a 4 yearly review of modern awards.
Commission Members are appointed by the Governor-General of Australia on the recommendation of the Australian Government of the day.
The Fair Work Act 2009 requires that those appointed to the Commission have appropriate knowledge or experience in relevant fields such as workplace relations, law, business, industry or commerce.
Current Commission Members come from a diverse range of employment backgrounds including the law, unions and employer associations, human resources and management, and the public service.
Expert Panel Members must have knowledge or experience in one or more fields specific to their panel (ie for annual wage reviews: workplace relations, economics, social policy, or business, industry or commerce; and for superannuation fund reviews: finance, investment management, or superannuation).
The work of the Commission is administered through a panel system overseen by the President.
In general, each panel has a Panel Head and a number of other Commission Members, and is responsible for work in a number of set industries.
There are also panels dealing with unfair dismissals, organisations (which deals with work relating to unions and employer associations registered under the Fair Work (Registered Organisations) Act 2009) and anti-bullying.