The Legacy of Daniel Andrews: Recognising the Good…

Today the impending retirement of Daniel Andrews – Labor Premier of Victoria…

Study reveals most common forms of coercive control…

Media Release A new study by the NSW Bureau of Crime Statistics and…

Great Expectations from the Summit of the G-77…

By Denis Bright The prospects for commitment to UN General Assembly’s sustainment development…

Imperial Footprints in Africa: The Dismal Role of…

No power in history has exercised such global reach. With brutal immediacy,…

Fascism is unlikely: idiocy is the real threat

The fight against domestic fascism is as American as apple pie. Even…

Murdoch: King Lear or Citizen Kane?

By guest columnist Tess Lawrence It may be premature to write Emeritus Chairman…

"This Is All A Giant Push By (INSERT…

"Beer?" "Thanks" "So what you been up to this week?" "I went on a march…

Dutton reminds us of Abbott, but not in…

Reading Nikki Savva’s The Road to Ruin is a depressing read, because it validates…


If Employers Can Measure Well-Being

By 2353NM

Last September, you might have seen Qantas CEO Alan Joyce receive a pay increase of $278,000 per annum. It seems that Joyce has met or exceeded the performance goals set by his employers and contractually has earned the reward. It does, however, raise a larger question.

Joyce’s pay increase for the year is around 5% of his annual salary, which on the face of it is not excessive in the current environment where government employees are routinely receiving 4% increases. However, there has been plenty of adverse comment on the actions of Alan Joyce. When he is managing the outsourcing to the lowest bidder of some of the services required to get their planes off the ground, regardless of the damage to former employees or the company ‘brand’, not to mention claims of the unreliability of Qantas flights operating to the timetable (if at all), you can understand why his pay increase made headlines.

While the Qantas Board has clearly looked after their CEO’s interests and well-being, they seem to be far less concerned with the well-being of a considerable number of now former employees that have been outsourced and retrenched over the years. It seems the CEO and Board have made decisions based entirely on economics when it comes to the continued employment of thousands of other staff.

Treasurer Jim Chalmers is discussing the concept of promoting ‘well-being’ as a required outcome in the budget process, a position that some, including the Coalition, can’t see any benefit in discussing. But what would you expect? The Coalition drove the Robodebt process that is currently under investigation by a Royal Commission. While the Commissioner is scheduled to report next April, so far there seems to be nothing positive for the former government from the inquiry, with evidence pointing to the relevant ministers, including Scott Morrison, encouraging the implementation of the system despite the concept being flagged as potentially illegal prior to introduction.

Despite this, it seems that the Coalition continued with the introduction of the Robodebt system to save money and perpetuate the myth that all recipients of income support payments were rorting the system to the detriment of the Australian community. In addition, the introduction of income management measures such as the Basics Card and the Indue Card was supported to add more weight to the claim that those on income support would otherwise waste their money and did not deserve our help. As this opinion article in The Guardian suggests, the outcomes are devastating.

The introduction of well-being measurements into the Budget process will assist the government of the day in correctly targeting economic measurements. Most large employers now run surveys of staff on a routine basis that measure to some extent the well-being of staff. From the measurements, employers have some quantifiable information that assists them in ensuring that staff feel valued and as a result more likely to stay in their current position, seek internal promotion from their current role as well as the staff perception of the ethics and practices of the company. Employers can and do also seek input from others on various third-party websites. Obviously measuring well-being also makes economic sense otherwise profit-driven companies wouldn’t bother funding the time and expense required for the work to be done.

If for no other reasons than it is common business practice and there are economic benefits in employers finding out what their employees think, why wouldn’t a government implement similar processes to determine where they can get the best ‘bang for their buck’ when targeting measures to improve the community they are supposed to be supporting? The previous government claimed they wanted government to act more like a business. They also supported programs that targeted electors they thought could be convinced to trade their vote for a new railway station car park, sporting facility, or similar community grant. Fortunately, enough voters didn’t take the bait for it to make a difference at the last election. Yet the same group of politicians are suggesting that finding better ways of targeting support to improve the conditions for those that need some help is a waste of time. In reality, well-being measurements can demonstrate how government assistance is improving lives.

Well-being measurement is a work in progress and undoubtedly there will be mistakes made and blind alleys traversed before the system is perfected. It seriously can’t hurt that the government knows if they have correctly identified and filled a gap in supporting the community — in reality, it’s their job to understand, locate and fill the gaps. After all, we know when income support payments were doubled during the pandemic lockdowns, recipients’ well-being, mental health, and engagement with their communities increased. There’s nothing wrong with that.

What do you think?

Like what we do at The AIMN?

You’ll like it even more knowing that your donation will help us to keep up the good fight.

Chuck in a few bucks and see just how far it goes!

Your contribution to help with the running costs of this site will be gratefully accepted.

You can donate through PayPal or credit card via the button below, or donate via bank transfer: BSB: 062500; A/c no: 10495969

Donate Button


Login here Register here
  1. Keitha Granville

    Pay rises and bonuses for the already super wealthy are completely out of order when the lowest paid in the organisations live under the poverty level.
    Until there is some value placed on the hours and the labour of these at the bottom of the pile, the very workers who provide the profits for their companies, NO higher ups should receive anything extra. They are already paid squillions for the job, that should be it.

    We are still living in the dark ages where the serfs struggle to feed their children and the lords and ladies eat from gold plates.

  2. Phil Pryor

    A Joyce, (the other one, B. Joyce is an unwiped anus even worse) is a thieving, greedy, uncaring, thoughtless foreign object who has come here to squeeze, filtch, grind, grab, betray,.He is basically overpaid and underwhelming, a clot of corporate parasitism.

  3. Clakka

    Bludgers and leaners now reside in the upper echelons of corporations and their feckless shareholders enabled by the rhetoric and devious trickle-down clauses of their bludging and leaning compatriots in the neoliberal polity.

    We have just ditched the very worst example of bludging, leaning government this country has ever seen. And it is absurd to imagine they did not know precisely what they were doing for the corporations riding them for almost a decade. And it is equally absurd to imagine that those corporations and their shareholders (hiding behind the inadequacies of the Corporations Code), forsaking any shred of ethics or morality, pressed for more and more fattening at the expense of an underpaid and disenfranchised workforce and the dragooning of beguiled hopefuls.

    Forget the anachronistic IR statutes and the superfluous and corrupted BOOT, they have been sidelined in the growth to 3.3 million citizens living below the poverty line and mass homelessness. A bloody disgrace.

    It used to be called “commonwealth” (for the general good), from the days where serfs and the like didn’t get a vote, and were less relevant than livestock. It has progressively been rendered to a nomenclature for the differentiation of unaligned States vs those of Great Britain).

    That said, unless we are happy to soon become a wreckage at the hand and by the likes of Britain and the USA, we have to move fast, ditch laid-back and laissez faire and fight again.

    The tag “well-being” seems to be an OK tag. Bhutan’s “Gross National Happiness”, the OECD policies to “foster prosperity, equality, opportunity and well-being for all”, and New Zealand’s “Wellbeing Budget” are well meaning, and to be lauded.

    A fine objective, similar to the objective of “quality”, it can only be codified and re-codified ad infinitum on a basis of fit-for-purpose and longevity, invariably modified in the marketplace on a needs-must and affordability basis. One can only hope that it will be an advance on the instruction that “the meek will inherit the Earth”. How it goes against the immutability of the gains in the market for criminality and the corrupted, is further question.

    Nevertheless, I’m all for it, right now, no time to waste!

    It makes me wonder whatever happened to “keep the bastards honest”?

  4. Canguro

    A serious question. Who are Joyce’s employers? If you’re at the head of the tree, as in, the CEO, then whose above you and rightfully qualified to called your employer? The board? The shareholders? Who?

  5. Gangey1959

    “And the hunger of the many filled the bellies of the few”
    “Weevils in the flour”.
    The Bushwackers, from way back

  6. Clakka

    Canguro, all of those you cited, until of course the escape clauses are triggered.

    I might otherwise say, via a typical contract, the Principal and the Contractor, and the witnesses, and others named, and the consultants and the drafting lawyers (who will claim they act under instruction). But of course there’s Buckley’s of finding out, as all such devices will be referred to as “Commercial-in-Confidence.

    There will naturally be a “force majeure” clause that will allow the poor Contractor freedom from obligation, and the facilitation of massive compensation for loss and damage.

    You can guarantee there will be no suite of provisions and adjustments headed “When times are tough for the Principal’s customers”. No unconscionable toe-cutter would ever sign that!

  7. wam

    There are too many tax avoidance pathways.
    The simple way to fix health is to put the medicare levy on gross income.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

The maximum upload file size: 2 MB. You can upload: image, audio, video, document, spreadsheet, interactive, text, archive, code, other. Links to YouTube, Facebook, Twitter and other services inserted in the comment text will be automatically embedded. Drop file here

Return to home page
%d bloggers like this: