Not so great was a national nuclear science agency ordered to pay a manager $35,000 for failing to offer her part time work options when she returned from maternity leave.Australian Industry Group chief executive Tim Piper said the Federal Magistrates’ Court imposed penalty should make all employers aware of the need to accommodate workers with families.

“In any case, it makes good business sense to retain existing employees, given the ageing workforce and the high cost of training,” he said.

Access Economics recently told a summit in Sydney that growth in Australia’s workforce would plummet from 170,000 workers a year to only 125,000 for the entire decade of the 2020s.

That means your power as an employee is only going to grow. Remember that next time you are feeling undervalued.

Story by Kate Southam, editor of CareerOne. Go to www.careerone.com.aufor more career related articles. Job hunting and workplace questions can be directed to CareerOne by emailing: editor@careerone.com.au.