You will all know that the minimum wage is set to increase, if you haven't already done so now is the time to start preparing to ensure your staff are paid correctly once the increase takes effect on 1 April.  If you have employees on the minimum wage you will need to ensure that your budget is recalculated to account for the increase - you'll be paying out more in wages.

The new minimum wage rates are;

  • Adult - $16.50 an hour
  • Starting out - $13.20 an hour (up from $12.60)
  • Training - $13.20 an hour (up from $12.60)

Adult minimum wage 

The adult minimum wage applies to all employees aged 16 and over who aren’t starting-out workers or trainees, and all employees who are involved in supervising or training other employees. 

This is the minimum wage most widely used by Kiwi businesses of all shapes and sizes. 

Starting-out wage 

The starting-out wage applies solely to workers aged between 16 and 19 and who are entering the workforce for the first time. 

Starting-out workers are:

  • Aged 16-17 and have worked for you for less than six months.
  • Aged 18-19 and have been paid a specified social security benefit for six months or more, and who haven’t yet completed six months continuous employment with any employer since they started being paid a benefit. After six months continuous employment with a single employer, they must be paid at least the adult minimum wage rate.
  • Aged 16-19 and required by their employment agreement to undertake industry training for at least 40 credits a year to become qualified.

Training minimum wage

The training minimum wage applies to employees aged 20 years or over who are completing recognised industry training involving at least 60 credits in order to become qualified.

Employing school-age workers

There is no minimum wage for employees who under 16 years of age. If you employ under-16s, you must not let their work get in the way of attending school.

For more information on the minimum wage please visit www.employment.govt.nz