Important Woolworths RT3 Update

April 27, 2023 Woolies

The Union has had many complaints from members about the impact on members workload and rosters in Woolworths Supermarkets with the combination of RT3, as well as changes to operating hours and also standardised labour standards for time to complete tasks contributing to how members feel.

The Union has been taking up each of these issues with Woolworths with ongoing consultation on how to address these problems.

Improvements from Consultation

Nightfill shift lengths – longer shifts available in May

Members raised concerns with the changes to nightfill fill windows and the impact it has had on them.  Many issues have been raised and fixed locally by the Union.  We also raised this as a general problem.  As a direct result of the SDA raising concerns Woolworths has agreed to increase the fill window from May from 3 hours to 5 hours.  The split is also done adjacent to this fill window as well.

This means the fill time will increase from 3 hours to 5 hours, with the split done before this, enabling fillers to receive longer shifts.  Any SDA members working on fill who want longer shifts should let their manager know that you want longer shifts now so that you can get them as soon as possible.

Changes to F&V & Fresh Convenience Operating Hours

SDA Calls for More Hours for Part Timers

Woolworths has changed operating hours in many stores, moving Fresh Convenience fill, fruit & veg set up and Wednesday ticketing from 6am to 7am.  Whilst members total number of hours in their contract was not reduced, it did mean that members working at this time lost an hour of penalty rate pay.  The SDA does not accept this was fair to these workers.  The SDA believes Woolworths should maintain those workers pay.  Whilst Woolworths has not agreed to this, Woolworths has agreed that part-time employees who have lost penalty rates should be offered extra hours of work to make up for this lost pay.

To offset the loss of penalty rate hours, the SDA has pressed that part-time members whose hours moved from 6am to 7am should receive a minimum of an extra half hour work for every shift moved from 6am to 7am to be guaranteed  in their base contract hours.  For example a part-time member who was working 4 shifts starting at 6am who moves to 7am should get an extra 4 x half hour (ie 2 hours) added to their base contracted hours.  Woolworths believes extra hours should be available.  If you haven’t already, all affected part-time members should request additional hours be added to your base contracted hours.  If Woolworths won’t increase your base hours please contact the SDA for assistance.

Trial of rostering breaks properly

Following complaints from members the SDA raised concerns with Woolworths that the new system of rostering and labour standards did not automatically include entitled meal and rest breaks into the roster.  This was causing tension between departments and risks of members missing breaks.

Woolworths has agreed that breaks should be rostered.  A trial is currently underway of automatically including breaks in rosters.  The initial trial is being expanded to include one group of stores in each state before being rolled out more broadly.

All members must receive all of the breaks they are entitled to. It’s the law.

More to do – member feedback is critical

The SDA continues to raise concerns with Woolworths on workload, RT3 and labour standards so that we can improve members working environments.  Thank you to all members who have raised issues so far.  We encourage all members to raise any concerns with workload issues at your store with local management, but where this is not fixed please let the SDA know.

We remind all members you:

  • Should always have time to be able to work safely.
  • Do not rush and miss or shorten breaks including tea breaks.
  • Do not work off the clock or do unpaid tasks.

Your Health and Safety is critical.

If you need help with any of these issues, please contact your SDA Shop Steward or the SDA Office on 07 3833 9500.