04 Apr 2019

FLOW: Forensics, technology and the future of legal services 02: Enterprise bargaining agreements

Enterprise agreements negotiations are a time-consuming process involving large amounts of legal review and complex financial modelling. What if there were a way to bring the financial modelling and legal analysis together in one place to test the impact of each enterprise condition?

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Clayton Utz communications are intended to provide commentary and general information. They should not be relied upon as legal advice. Formal legal advice should be sought in particular transactions or on matters of interest arising from this communication. Persons listed may not be admitted in all States and Territories.


So our clients with enterprise agreements are generally either the head of HR or the head of a legal department.  They often have the job of briefing the C suite or the CEO or the Director General of the business or Government Department that they're working with in relation to what's happening with the enterprise agreement and what it's going to cost and what it's going to look like moving into the years that the enterprise agreement will cover.  What they have found time and time again is that in working with the CFOs they develop incredibly complex excel spreadsheets which model the cost of different scenarios within an enterprise agreement and they often get lost or corrupted and our clients struggle to get accurate reflections of the cost of the enterprise agreement to present to their bosses in a really succinct and easily understood way.   So I worked closely with our FTS team to develop what we called our enterprise agreement productivity and costs dashboards.  What they do is they put together particular visual representations of costs be it via pie graphs or bar graphs and presents a number of levers that you can pull to develop different scenarios to model different combinations of options for an enterprise agreement so that you can show a CEO or a boss or a manager what it is going to look like as a complete picture moving through the entire agreement. 

Using our analytics platform we've developed tools for calculating the cost of the various enterprise agreement conditions and model the impact of proposed enterprise agreement clauses  your business so you can develop the best negotiating position based on the facts  We use payroll information, timesheets, leave information and external data sets for your industry to deliver actionable strategic insights that can be used to make informed and evidence based financial models.  Various levers that impact bargaining are identified.  You are able to view the impact of implementing certain conditions and run what if scenarios with a combination of various clauses and levers.  Instead of relying on gut feel we model costs and employee productivity on your data to create a financial model that can be used. 

Data and productivity research is used to quantify impact to employees' productivity and the cost to the business.  All dashboards and visualisations can be configured depending on the information that you require.  The tool can be accessed through any modern internet browser and can be used in negotiations to brief internal staff or to provide information to the other side. 

The feedback that we've had from clients is that this is just gold, one of the Universities that we've used it with said to us it was a complete game changer, she has been able to walk in and brief her Vice Chancellor in a really clear and easy manner about different options in terms of a 1% pay rise versus different leave that you could incorporate and the way in which you might trade off certain conditions to put together packages.  The clients love it, we love it and it's a really lovely tool to use.