The Australian Building and Construction Commission (ABCC) has reached a significant milestone assessing 10,000 enterprise agreements for compliance with the Building Code.

The Code for the Tendering and Performance of Building Work 2016 came into effect on 2 December 2016 and sets out the Commonwealth Government’s expected standards of conduct for all building industry participants working on Commonwealth funded building projects.

From that date, building and construction businesses wanting to tender for Commonwealth funded work were required to comply with the 2016 Code, which focuses on ensuring building work is carried out fairly, efficiently and productively for the benefit of workers, employers and the national economy.

Having a compliant enterprise agreement enables contractors to be eligible to tender for Commonwealth funded work. Knowing they have the appropriate workplace agreement approved by the regulator enables them to submit tenders with confidence and certainty.

Along with promoting an improved workplace relations framework, the Code is also instrumental in protecting freedom of association for workers ensuring they are not subject to discrimination and are able to choose whether or not to join a union free from coercion.

The ABCC has now assessed 10,000 enterprise agreements lodged with it by building industry participants including head contractors, subcontractors, building associations and unions.

The ABCC Corporate Plan sets a key performance indicator for turnaround times to assess enterprise agreements. This forms a key performance indicator for the Agency. The Plan mandates that the average time taken to assess enterprise agreements for compliance with the Building Code 2016 is 1 month.

The ABCC’s recently published Annual Report recorded an average turnaround time for assessments of 2.2 weeks.

The ABCC is committed to reducing red tape and making the tendering process as simple as possible for the building and construction industry.

The development of guidance materials and assessment tools has made it easier for contractors and building industry participants to meet their obligations. This has contributed to a high compliance rate of 80 per cent of draft and registered agreements being assessed as compliant.

ABCC Commissioner Stephen McBurney said the ABCC understands the importance of the building and construction industry for jobs and infrastructure development and has put additional resources and priority into assessing enterprise agreements in a timely manner.

“Our efforts are focused on ensuring employers and their employees can get on with the job of building our economy and delivering public and private infrastructure.

The high number of EAs assessed reflect the strength of Australia’s building and construction sector with construction work covered by the Building Codes estimated at $86.19 billion in value.”

If you’d like to learn more about tendering for Commonwealth funded building work, the ABCC has put together a Tendering for Commonwealth funded building work video to help you understand the process.

Fast facts

  • 10 000 agreements assessed

  • 80% of all draft and registered agreements assessed as compliant

  • Current turnaround time is on average 13 business days

  • 878 individual clauses assessed

  • 85% of all individual clauses assessed as compliant

  • Two-day turnaround time for individual clause assessment


For further information about the code or for assistance visit the ABCC’s website at, or call the hotline on 1800 003 338.