csjp logo
Phone: 08 9339 1077 |

Header Please

Older Entries

Government increases cash flow support for businesses

The Australian Government has increased support for businesses to manage cash flow challenges under the ongoing COVID-19 circumstances.

The Boosting Cash Flow for Employers measure announced on 12 March 2020 will be increased to provide up to $100,000 for eligible small and medium-sized businesses. To be eligible employers must have been established prior to 12 March 2020 and have an aggregated annual turnover of less than $50 million and employ workers.

The measure will provide employers with a payment equal to 100% of the tax withheld from wages and salaries. This is a rise from the original 50%, with maximum payments being increased from $25,000 to $50,000 and minimum payments being increased from $2,000 to $10,000.

Employers will receive payments from 28 April 2020 from the ATO as automatic credit in the activity statement system upon lodging eligible upcoming activity statements.

Eligible businesses will be provided with an additional payment during July – October 2020. The payment will be equal to the total amount received under the Boosting Cash Flow for Businesses scheme. For monthly and quarterly activity statement lodgers, these payments will be provided as automatic credit in the activity statement system for each lodgement up until October 2020.

The Government has also introduced the Coronavirus SME Guarantee Scheme to support the flow of credit for small and medium enterprises (SME) by providing a guarantee of 50% to participating SME lenders for new unsecured loans that will be used for working capital. To be eligible, SMEs will have a turnover of up to $50 million and the loans must comply with the following terms:

The SME Guarantee Scheme will still require businesses to repay these loans and approval is subject to regular lending requirements. The Scheme will commence by early April 2020 and be available until 30 September 2020.

Posted on 27 March '20, under business. No Comments.

Business loan vs business credit card

Business loans and business credit cards are the most popular financing options, but there are key differences between the two that you should consider to help you make the right choice for your business.

Business loan
A business loan is a lump sum of money that you borrow. They can be a good option for your business if you require funding for a larger one-off purchase, such as buying new equipment or machinery, real estate, business acquisition, capital investment or refinancing existing debts.

Business loans typically range from $5,000 to $50,000 and can be paid as a lump sum or through multiple set payments. Depending on your bank, you can generally make repayments in monthly or quarterly instalments that are tailored to you and your cash flow.

To get your business loan approved, there is usually a strict approval process you must pass, which can include details such as your business’s financial position and a financial spending plan.

In terms of extra costs, a business loan generally comes with signup fees and late repayment fees. The interest rate for a loan is often lower than a credit card and can be a monthly or annual rate, which typically ranges between 3-10% p.a for secured loans.

Business credit card:
A business credit card is a suitable option if you want funds for short-term needs. Business credit cards are also generally more flexible than a business loan. They usually allow for a limit of up to $50,000 and are often used for working capital, emergency money and smaller ongoing expenses.

In terms of fees, business credit cards typically have a higher interest rate than personal credit cards, however, you only need to pay interest on each month’s expenses. The interest rates are higher than a business loan and can vary between 10-20% p.a. Fees such as annual fees and late repayment fees will apply to business credit cards.

A business credit card also comes with bonus features, such as bonus points for spending, free deliveries, frequent flyer points, complimentary insurance and a reputable company credit score with good use.

Business credit cards can be beneficial in the sense that it offers flexible funding and continuously available money, however business owners should be confident that they will be able to manage the minimum monthly repayments to avoid overdue fees.

Posted on 19 March '20, under business. No Comments.

Tips for incorporating career mentoring into your business

A career mentorship program involves partnerships between employees to develop professional skills and gain industry knowledge. Due to their requirement for a collaborative effort, career mentoring programs are often seen as powerful development tools for cultivating both leaders and employees within a business.

Whether you are a small business owner or a multinational corporate leader, the implementation of a mentorship program will always be profitable for businesses as not only does it create a harmonious workplace culture, it also helps to attract and retain employees.

As straight-forward as career mentoring sounds, there are a few key tips to keep in mind when building a mentorship program for your business:

Make sure your mentoring program is clearly defined:
To create a successful mentoring program, both mentors and mentees should have a concise understanding of their roles and what they would like to gain from the mentorship. By succinctly outlining the purpose of the mentoring program, mentors and mentees are more likely to keep organised and communicate respectfully with the guarantee of mutual rewards.

There should also be short-term and long-term goals established for all parties involved, including the business. These goals could be the narrowing of particular skill gaps or creating a more open workplace culture. By having these goals set in stone, both mentors and mentees and have a clear direction to work towards.

Personalise the match-making process:
Often times, businesses will match a mentor and mentee together depending on their skill-set and position within the company. While on paper, this may appear to be an efficient process, but the lack of chemistry between a mentor and mentee may prove to be devastating for the workplace environment.

As a result, be sure to involve both mentors and mentees in the match-making process and take into account personality traits. You could do this by asking employees to take a personality test to ensure compatibility in career goals, personal interests and preferred communication methods.

Be involved as a third-party:
Lastly, it is the responsibility of the business to check-in on the progress of mentorship programs in order to understand how mentors and mentees can grow together and what improvements can be made to the program. Remember to always refer back to the long-term goals established and consider the feedback provided by mentors and mentees from the program.

Posted on 28 February '20, under business. No Comments.

Are you responsible for unfair dismissal of employees?

If you are a small business employer wishing to dismiss employees, you must do so according to the Small Businesses Fair Dismissal Code, as a breach of the code could result in legal action taken against you. If your business has less than 15 employees, it counts as a small business.

Employees can apply for unfair dismissal if they believe they have been unreasonably dismissed from their job. These cases could include when:

Employees working for small businesses can only apply for unfair dismissal when they have been employed for at least 12 months. If the business had a change of ownership during their employment, then their time with the first employer may still count as service with the second employer when calculating the minimum employment period.

When dismissing an employee, there are three main valid dismissal reasons:

Employers must also adhere to employee entitlements upon dismissal, meaning they must pay:

An employer can make objections to the unfair dismissal claim by submitting an Employer response to unfair dismissal application, or an Objection to application for unfair dismissal remedy.

Posted on 21 February '20, under business. No Comments.

Things to consider before rebranding your business

Rebranding your business can seem like a daunting task, as it can involve a range of arduous tasks such as changing designs, updating clients, retraining staff and changing your marketing strategies.

However, rebranding can be an option for many businesses if:

To make the task of rebranding seem less daunting, consider these tips before starting to help you in your process.

Evaluate your need for rebranding
Make sure that the reason for your rebranding is valid and don’t act on impulse decisions. Rebranding can take a lot of time and resources and can often decrease your business if not done successfully, so it is important that you evaluate if rebranding is right for your business and outline the reasons why. It can be helpful to talk to staff about it to get ideas from people who are also invested in the success of your business.

Plan a budget
Before you rush into rebranding your business, make sure you have the funds to do so. Research and estimate how many resources will go into different areas of rebranding, e.g. marketing, website design, training staff etc. and outline a budget that can help you manage your finances through the process.

Have a strategy
Before you start rebranding, plan out a strategy that will guide you in the process and can increase the chances of success. This will help the process run more smoothly and prevent unexpected challenges that could detriment your business.

Solidify your mission and values
Having a clear understanding of the mission and values you want your business to have going forward can help you make important branding decisions and help build the foundation for your new brand. Having you and your staff on the same page with the business mission and values can improve efficiency and motivation when working on the rebrand.

Posted on 13 February '20, under business. No Comments.

Keeping your virtual team on track

Managing a virtual team can offer challenges that you won’t experience in-person teamwork. It can be harder to schedule meetings, show demonstrations and build connections. However, having a virtual team offers convenience, opportunity and freedom for the team members, so here are some tips to help you make it work…

Define goals and roles
At the start of the project, outline the project goals and objectives so that everyone is working towards the same thing. Delegate roles and obligations to each team member to avoid confusion and overlap. This will keep the team on track despite not physically seeing what each other is up to.

Stay engaged
In-person teams have many opportunities to check in with each other and see each other’s progress. As a virtual manager, it is important to create opportunities to stay in touch with your team, such as having regular phone calls or checkpoint meetings. This will provide your team with regular reminders of work that will help keep them on track and meeting checkpoint deadlines.

Use online tools
While you’ll most likely already be using online messaging tools, there are plenty of other apps and platforms you can also use to improve organisation and productivity. You can search for collaborative tools for things like mind mapping, video calls, sketching, calendars, to-do lists and schedules. These online tools can help your team see each other’s ideas, progress and deadlines.

Create time for casual interactions
Building connections between team members can be difficult with exclusively online work. If appropriate, you can consider creating opportunities for your team to get to know each other on a more casual basis to improve moods and collaboration. If everyone in the team lives very remotely, you can have more relaxed video calls where everyone can introduce themselves and chat as well as work. If the team lives in the same city, consider having in-person meetings and outings.

Posted on 6 February '20, under business. No Comments.

Why you need business interruption insurance

With many small businesses often being the livelihood for their entire families, owners should consider taking out business interruption insurance in order to safeguard against financial loss experienced as a result of incidents such as fire, floods, damage and burglaries.

With statistics showing one in four small businesses would not survive if they had to close their doors for three months, business interruption insurance can get you through a temporary crisis by protecting your cash flow.

Business interruption insurance provides cover against a loss of gross profit and differs from insurance covering business property, equipment and stock. This form of insurance covers the ongoing expenses that need to be paid even if a business is not generating any revenue, like staff wages, supplier invoices, rent or loan repayments.

Business interruption insurance claims can be one of the more tricky types of claims a business can make. Some common issues include:

Posted on 29 January '20, under business. No Comments.

Things to consider before hiring an intern

Hiring an intern can sound like a win-win situation; the intern gets an opportunity to learn and boost their career, you get some extra help generally at a lower wage rate than regular employees. However, it is important to first think about if an intern would be right for your company before you make the commitment.

Consider remuneration:
If an intern is hired in accordance with the law, then they do not always require compensation. Think about what kind of tasks they would do, how much they would work and their academic and professional experience to help you decide on appropriate remuneration. Many companies choose alternatives to regular payment, such as gift cards, free lunches, public transport remuneration or free company products.

Think about resources:
Do you have the time and resources to train and mentor an intern? Often, interns are part of educational programs which means they may also have to commit to their studies as well as the internship. This requires more flexibility as to which days they can work each week, as well as periods they wish to take off to study for exams. It is therefore important to think about if you have enough resources to not become dependant on the intern for certain tasks.

Posted on 22 January '20, under business. No Comments.

The importance of keeping business records

Probably the most important reason behind sound record-keeping is that it allows you to learn and grow from your own business experiences. Keeping your records in check will help you understand the current situations of your business and also project future profit or losses. In addition, good record keeping will also show you where your business needs improvement or re-invention. Here a few records to keep that will prove invaluable in the future.

Financial Statements:
Keeping accurate and up to date financial statements will help you at a time of lending applications. These finances include income statements as well as balance sheets that show assets, liabilities and the equities of your business at a specific date.

Purchases and expenses:
The items you buy and sell to your customers and the costs of running your businesses. Supporting documents for both of these include invoices, email records, credit card slips, cancelled cheques, cash registrar tapes and account statements. These can help you to determine whether your business is improving, which items are selling, or what changes you may need need to make.

Assets:
The properties that you own and use in your business. These records verify information regarding your business assets, such as when and how you acquired these assets. They will also help you to determine the annual depreciation when you sell the assets. Examples of these records include the purchase or sales invoices and real estate closing statements.

Posted on 15 January '20, under business. No Comments.

Closing the office for the holidays

As the holiday season approaches, the workplace often gets more relaxed as things wrap up. However, closing the business for the holidays usually isn’t as simple as turning the lights off and heading home for a few weeks. There is often a lot of preparation and work that needs to be done before everyone leaves the office.

Notify staff:
Giving your staff at least two to four weeks notice of business closing dates will allow them to prepare for the shutdown and organise their workload appropriately. Having reminders through announcements, in-office calendars, emails or signs on notice boards will allow employees to ensure their work is done on time and organise personal events.

Notify other stakeholders:
Important stakeholders such as customers, suppliers or vendors should also be informed in advance of when the business is closed for the holidays to ensure that any services or needs are completed prior to shutdown. Customers can be notified through your business’s website, emails, signs around the business or letters and phone calls for close clients.

Update your security:
If your business has a security team or service, make sure that they are kept updated about your closing dates, as well as an emergency contact list with the owner and key employee details so they know who to contact in the event of a security issue, even when the business is closed. It is also a good idea to ensure that all cybersecurity software is up to date before you leave to prevent hackers and viruses from damaging your assets while you’re away.

Backup data:
Backing up your servers will reduce the risk of losing crucial business assets to hackers, viruses or software malfunction while you’re away. By making backups of your data through tools such as cloud storage or hard drives, you don’t have to worry about coming back to a corrupted system.

Change automated greetings:
If you have an automated answering service for business dealings, consider recording a message letting people know that your business has closed for the holidays. It is also a good idea to detail what dates you will return.

Turn off equipment:
Don’t forget to shut down any equipment that won’t be used throughout the holidays, such as lighting, copiers, computers and kitchen supplies. However, be aware of equipment that shouldn’t be turned off, such as fax machines, security systems, servers and backup systems, and refrigeration units.

Posted on 13 January '20, under business. No Comments.

« Older Entries