Maree Duffy is worried about more mistakes.
Maree Duffy is worried about more mistakes.

Health workers' pay missing

MAREE Duffy is concerned that Queensland Health’s new “$40 million” payroll system will again “muck up” and more staff won’t be paid next week.

The new system failed to deliver for some employees in its first week of operation, last week.

“It’s one big failure,” she said.

Ms Duffy — the Australian Workers’ Union Organiser for Gympie and South Burnett — said so far six Queensland Health employees from the Gympie Hospital’s operational stream, that she represented, had come forward saying they hadn’t been paid since wages were due last Wednesday.

And there have been reports of other hospital staff from all over the state also missing their wages.

Ms Duffy said new processes designed to fix disputes had been followed and still the wages hadn’t been paid, six days after they were due.

“I am concerned they haven’t fixed it and staff will be putting in rosters next week and there are two public holidays (and more people may miss out on pay).”

Yesterday she couldn’t find the words to describe just how large the wages bungle was.

Its “embarrassing employees”, Ms Duffy said of the mistake.

“Employees can’t pay for their petrol and food and some can’t pay their rent,” she said.

“Queensland Health has no contingency plan.”

Ms Duffy said as far as she knew there was no trial run of the new pay system to work out the bugs before the old system was taken off line and that was careless.

A woman, who works at the Gympie Hospital, was no longer able to cope without her wage, she said, and a man who was in dire straights received some pay yesterday after she fought for his wage.

While another woman needed to cash in all the 20 cent pieces she had saved to pay for petrol to get to work.

Queensland Health has now said they will pay dishonour fees staff incurred from not being paid on time.

But Ms Duffy encouraged all staff to check their entitlements to make sure that there were no discrepancies.

Queensland Health’s Deputy Director-General Corporate Services Division, Michael Kalimnios, said staff was working “around the clock” to address incorrect staff pays, following the introduction of a new payroll and rostering system across the department.

Mr Kalimnios, said the new system had caused some non-rostered staff to be paid incorrectly.

“A payroll migration of this size was complex, as 74,000 employees on 13 different awards and 13 agreements throughout Queensland needed to transfer to the new system,” he said.

Mr Kalimnios said he wished to apologise to staff and acknowledged this was a significant issue.

“The major issue has been with staff whose pay needed to be adjusted during this pay fortnight. These staff will be given priority in Queensland Health’s daily payroll updates,” he said.

“Due to the commencement of the new system, 140,000 adjustments had to be made in five days, as opposed to the normal 14 days.

“As a result, some pay adjustments for casuals or those whose rostered hours changed were not processed,” he said.

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