About the Business Services Wage Assessment Tool

PLEASE NOTE: DSS has requested CRS Australia suspend all BSWAT wage assessment activity until further notice.
The Business Services Wage Assessment Tool assesses productivity as well as competency of employees.

It can be easily applied to a wide variety of jobs in a wide range of industries and is valid and reliable for all employees and between organisations. The competency component and the productivity component are scored separately, with the results combined to determine an overall pro-rata wage rate.

Back to topCompetency assessment 

The competency assessment is comprised of 8 units of competency.

This includes 4 core units against which all workers are assessed, and up to 4 'industry-specific' units of competency that relate directly to the work being performed by the worker.

The industry-specific units are selected from the National Training Framework and assessed in accordance with these requirements.

Not all workers will be assessed against 4 industry-specific units of competency, as their role may be fully described by one or two units. In this case, fewer than 8 units will be assessed, but the wage outcome will be based on a possible score of 8 units.

Back to topProductivity assessment 

The productivity part of the wage assessment looks at how much each worker produces. It compares the worker's output with an industry benchmark or a comparator.

To ensure accurate assessment it is highly desirable that the Australian Disability Enterprise provides productivity data for both worker and comparator as well as the data gathered by the CRS Australia assessor.

A benchmark or a comparator is the expected level of output required of a worker who would be entitled to the full award rate of pay. The level of output is expressed as either the number of units the worker can produce in a set time, or the time it takes to produce a certain number of units or to complete a task. This expected level of output can then be compared to a worker in the Australian Disability Enterprise to find out how productive they are in comparison to workers receiving the full award pay rate.

The benchmark or comparator may be:

  • a non-disabled co-worker 
  • a supervisor 
  • another worker with a disability who is able to perform that particular task to the expected standard 
  • a published standard for a job 
  • the usual output of a machine in industry

More detailed information regarding the productivity assessment is available in frequently asked questions (FAQ).

Back to topScoring and wage calculation 

The competency score (x/8) and productivity score (y%) are combined to determine an overall pro-rata wage rate.

This rate is then applied to the most appropriate level of the most relevant award. It is not assumed that all work is performed at the 'base' level of an award.

An hourly rate is then determined based on the permanent rate of the award. Casual or other loadings must be determined and paid by the employer as applicable.

Back to topThe process of data collection 

Assessors will usually conduct multiple assessments at a site.

Competency and productivity assessments may therefore be conducted over a number of assessment sessions.

This will enable the assessment to be left open for some time and minimises a 'snapshot' effect in the assessment.

The snapshot effect is further minimised if the business service provides productivity data to support the assessment.

In conducting assessments, the assessor will use a variety of data to support their assessment decisions. These will include:

  • direct observation 
  • questioning/interview
  • third party reports from the supervisor/manager

The assessment is supported by a detailed software application that assists assessors to complete the assessment components and calculate the wage correctly. This highlights the specialised nature of the assessment.

The wage tool should not be used by anyone who has not received the appropriate training.

Back to topWhen should I refer a worker? 

  • Initial assessment
    Workers entering employment for the first time, or being assessed using the Business Service Wage Assessment Tool for the first time, should be referred for an initial assessment between 12 weeks and 6 months of starting employment. A worker must have been employed by the Australian Disability Enterprise for a minimum of 12 weeks before being assessed.

    This assessment will remain in effect for three years.
  • Triennial review
    All assessments must be reviewed every three years.

    To enable the reviews to be scheduled for an appropriate time, it is recommended that Australian Disability Enterprise notify CRS Australia of upcoming reviews approximately two and a half years after the previous assessment date.
  • Review - other circumstances
    An employer or worker can request a review before the triennial review date in cases where the worker's circumstances change significantly, resulting in a significant and permanent change to performance.

    It is recommended that multiple workers are assessed at one time, with five workers the desired minimum wherever possible.

Back to topYour privacy 

All personal information collected by CRS Australia is protected by the Privacy Act 1988. Personal information contained within the referral form will only be used for the purpose of this referral and your email address will not be added to a mailing list.

We will not use personal information for any other purpose than to provide wage tool assessment services and will not disclose it, except where authorised or required by law or with your consent. We will not use your email address for any other purpose and will not disclose it, without your consent.

Privacy disclaimer - Information provided in the online referral form is not controlled by CRS Australia.  Although we take all reasonable care with this information, it is the responsibility of the referrer to ensure the accuracy, currency and reliability of the information.

Business services wage tool