Each financial year the Commission reviews and sets minimum wages. This is the research for the Annual Wage Review 2022-23.
Fair Work Commission staff may conduct or commission research as part of the annual wage review. The research program for the Annual Wage Review 2022–23 (2022– 23 Review) was finalised in a Statement on 29 November 2022 following an invitation to interested parties to comment on the draft research program. This page will be updated throughout the review.
In undertaking the research program, a Minimum Wages Research Group is consulted comprising representatives nominated by:
- Australian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (ACCI)
- Australian Industry Group (Ai Group)
- Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS)
- Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU)
- Australian Government
- state and territory governments.
Research to be published for the 2022–23 Review
The following items will be published to inform the 2022–23 Review.
This will follow the format of previous Statistical reports and will be updated throughout the 2022–23 Review as new data are released. Each version of the Statistical report will be available on the Fair Work Commission (Commission) website.
Research reference list
This will follow the format of previous Research reference lists and will include Australian and international literature, such as working papers, journal articles or other types of published reports relevant to the minimum wages and modern awards objectives. The list will initially cover literature published following the Annual Wage Review 2021–22 and be updated throughout the 2022–23 Review.
Outlines of the research reports to be undertaken for the 2022–23 Review are provided below.
A profile of employee characteristics across modern awards
The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ (ABS) Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours (EEH) microdata for May 2021, released in June 2022, includes a variable on the modern award that covers employees. The addition of a modern award variable is new and has not been available in prior releases of the EEH microdata. The research will explore and investigate data that can be provided for public release and aim to present a range of employer and employee characteristics across modern awards. These data can inform the annual wage review by providing additional and more specific information on employees (and their employers) receiving modern award minimum wages.
Budget standards for low-paid families
The Annual Wage Review 2019–20 decision referred to budget standards as one consideration when assessing the needs of the low paid, including a 2017 report by the Social Policy Research Centre at the University of New South Wales that priced budgets in 2013. It was acknowledged from the report that ‘beyond the seven-year time horizon, it is preferable to review and revise. the entire budgets to ensure that items, quantities and lifetimes as well as prices are reviewed and adjusted to reflect changes in community norms and average living standards’.
In recent annual wage reviews, the budget standards from the 2017 report have been updated based on the Consumer Price Index. The research will review and revise the budget items in the 2017 report and expand on the previous report by including feedback from a broader section of the community (both low-paid and middle-income households). A supplementary budget of discretionary items which might be considered expenditures required to participate in Australian society will also be included.
The research will be undertaken by the Social Policy Research Centre at the University of New South Wales.
Material from past annual wage review research is also available.