Both ends of the pay spectrum are under the Federal Government's spotlight, with a draft bill set to target the disclosure of executive pay, while another is seeking job security for contract workers.
The Federal Government will release a draft bill that would require executives to return wrongly paid bonuses and force companies to reveal the take-home pay of chief executives.
A spokesman for the Parliamentary Secretary to the Treasurer, Bernie Ripoll, says the bill is expected to be tabled early next year after public consultation.
The Australian Shareholders' Association (ASA) says the proposed laws would give disgruntled shareholders a sense of justice.
ASA chief executive Vas Kolesnikoff says many executives receive a bonus even though the business they run is performing poorly.
"After a strategic review, Leighton's had to write off $1 billion on some of their construction projects," Mr Kolesnikoff said.
"This would have been after $1 billion or more was recognised as income or a benefit to the company over the prior years, on which executives and the CEO would have been remunerated in terms of a bonus." The director of the Centre for Corporate Governance at UTS, Thomas Clarke, says executives and boards have concocted increasingly complex justifications for large annual pay rises.
Mr Clarke told PM the process has become an "elaborate ritual".
"Executives are currently complaining - and so are boards - that the business of executive remuneration has become horrendously complex and is taking up more and more of their time," Mr Clarke said.
"But the truth is that it's actually executives themselves, boards and executive consultants that have made this whole process infinitely more complex than it was 20 years ago, when executives simply received a basic pay." 'Secure employment' Meanwhile, federal Greens MP Adam Bandt has introduced a private member's bill to address job insecurity for employees of large companies.
The amendment to the Fair Work Act is intended to create a way for employees on casual and rolling contracts to move to full-time or part-time employment with leave entitlements.
Under the proposal, such workers may be able to ask their employer for secure employment, and if they refuse, the workplace umpire, Fair Work Australia, could issue a "secure employment order".
Mr Bandt says small businesses will be exempt from the rules, but larger employers must be held to account for their use of temporary contracts, so workers can plan their lives.
"This is affecting the big decisions people make in life, like whether to get a mortgage, whether to get married, when to have kids," Mr Bandt said.
"And Australia is a particularly bad offender in this regard - only Spain has more temporary workers than Australia."