Renae Pitargue, Author at BUSY01 and First Class Accounts Ovens and Murray - Page 13 of 17

All Posts by Renae Pitargue

Collect your debtors faster

Collect your debtors faster

Did you know that you still have to pay tax on your debtors, even if you haven’t yet collected them?

This is because you pay tax on your sales figures, whether you’ve collected the cash or not.

So, how do you collect your debtors faster?

  • 1
    Agree your payment terms at the time of sale
  • 2
    Ensure your customer signs your Terms of Trade before you start the job
  • 3
    Include a guarantee in your payment terms
  • 4
    Invoice as quickly as you can
  • 5
    Ask for a deposit prior to starting the job
  • 6
    Change your payment terms to within 7 days of invoice or on delivery
  • 7
    Send statements religiously at the start of the month
  • 8
    Have someone other than the owner be responsible for collection of debtors
  • 9
    Document any changes to your standard payment terms in writing
  • 10
    Use an integrated payment gateway app
  • 11
    Don’t provide credit to customers who’ve been late payers in the past, and don’t offer more credit to customers with outstanding payments

Don’t procrastinate on your debtors. Establish clear payment terms and ensure you stick to them.

Need help finding an integrated payment gateway app to suit your business? We can help. Get in touch!

“It’s the squeaky wheel that gets the oil.” – Anon

Need help finding an integrated payment gateway app to suit your business? We can help.

Choosing a new business bank account?

Choosing a new business bank account?

A business bank account is an essential requirement for any business. But with so many banking providers out there, how do you know which business account to choose?

The key is to know what you require from a bank account, and to choose a bank that understands the banking, financial and funding needs of your business.

Choosing an account that fits your business needs

Whether you’re a new sole trader or an established limited company, it’s advisable to maintain a clear divide between your personal and business money. So it’s vital to open a business bank account, giving you a separate account to handle your business transactions.

The choice of available accounts can be baffling, with the big corporate banks and high-street providers offering a range of accounts, and new digital challenger banks also adding to the available options for business owners.

When looking for a business account, consider:

  • Bank charges – some banks offer free banking, others will charge you a monthly fee. And most accounts will charge you for things like cash withdrawals, payments in foreign currencies and going into (or over) your agreed overdraft limit.
  • Earning interest – look at the interest rate paid on the balance in your account. The higher the interest percentage, the more money you’ll earn on the cash in your account. The rate is unlikely to be high, but it’s still worth assessing the potential for a return.
  • Overdraft facilities – cashflow can ebb and flow in any business, so an agreed overdraft facility can often be a lifesaver when cash becomes tight. Look at what overdraft is available and what you’ll pay in penalties if you exceed the agreed limit.
  • Access to finance – if working capital gets exceptionally low then you may need to borrow a lump sum of money. If the bank has attractive options for bank loans, invoice financing or asset financing, that gives you and your business more flexibility.
  • Mobile apps and technology – digital is changing the banking sector at an incredible pace, so look at the quality and functionality of the banks internet banking, mobile banking apps and online financial management tools. Many of the emerging challenger banks are digital-only and offer a great online experience for business users.
  • Support and relationship management – the big banks have cut back their bricks and mortar presence on the high street in recent years. Look at whether you’d have access to a business banking adviser, or whether support is all online or done over the phone. A good relationship with your bank is invaluable when cashflow is tight.

Talk to us about selecting your ideal bank account

If you’re in the market for a new business bank account, come and talk to us. We’ll help you understand the key requirements you need from your account, and the banking providers that are most suited to delivering the right flexibility for your business.

We’re here to help you, every step along the way. Get in touch!

New employee welcomed by business team

The true cost of a new employee

The true cost of a new employee

Bringing on another pair of hands?

It can be a big decision to commit to having a new member on the team but the right person will bring in the skills you need to grow the business and give you more time to achieve your goals, even if that is to spend more time with your family!

Before you advertise the role

Spend some time to understand what skills you need in your business to move forward or to strengthen your position in the market. You may decide that the skill gap could be met by training existing staff who have capacity or would be open to a change in job description.

If the role is new

Decide whether you need a full-time or part-time employee and what sort of experience or qualifications the ideal candidate would have. If they need training when they start, consider who will run this and how that will impact timings.

Create a job description

This will help you when it’s time to assess candidates. Try to avoid too many acronyms and internal jargon that won’t make sense to people outside your company.

Finally...

You’ll want to understand the true cost of adding another staff member. Start with average industry salary rates and work out the fixed and discretionary costs involved, including Fringe Benefit Tax, industry insurance and superannuation costs. Include your one off recruitment costs and overheads, as well as the cost of training and any benefits you offer, such as a car park.

The recruitment process provides you with an opportunity to diversify your workplace. And if you hire people facing barriers to employment, you may be eligible for a number of financial incentives available for businesses.

Talk to us about employing someone new.

Employing someone new to help take your business forward is an exciting step. We’ll help make sure that your finances and paperwork is in order before you hire.

Get in touch to see how we can help.

Photo of light bulb with INTEGRITY conceptual words isolated on white

Hold me accountable or else what?

Hold me accountable or else what?

Most business owners understand that the only way to ensure something gets done is to document what is expected, assign it to the right person, and set a due date. But what do you do if the task isn’t done? What are the consequences of this inaction?

Think back to your school days when you had homework... 

Maybe you were super organised and got stuck in as soon as the work was assigned, or perhaps you completed it on the school bus the morning it was due. Either way, why did you get it done? Chances are there were clear consequences set by your teacher if you didn’t complete it - a few whacks with a stick or a lunchtime detention – that’s what we call accountability and consequence.

Unfortunately, many business owners forget these lessons from school. Sure, we set the tasks and actions, assign them to people and, if we’re really good, set a due date. From there, we so often forget to hold the person to account. Very rarely is there a consequence for the person responsible for the task. The consequence for the business owner, however, is ultimately a poorer performing business.

Here’s seven rules to tighten up your accountability:

  • 1
    Ensure at the outset that everyone is clear about why the task is important.
  • 2
    Assign the task to the right person and be available to give support.
  • 3
    Be specific and crystal clear with all communication. Remember, they don’t know what they don’t know.
  • 4
    Ask them to repeat back the instructions, to ensure the message was interpreted correctly.
  • 5
    Set a realistic time-frame and provide delivery instructions and expectations.
  • 6
    Agree on consequences for inaction.
  • 7
    Have quick catch ups to check progress is on track.

Now, ask yourself…

What actions can I take to improve accountability and outcomes for my team? What changes or improvements do I need to make to my planning processes and reporting systems? And most importantly, who is the best person to hold me to account as a business owner? Accountability goes both ways, especially if you want to be an authentic and effective leader.

"Accountability is the glue that ties commitment to the result."Bob Proctor.

closing your business

Closing your business

Closing your business

Are you consider closing your business? Or have you recently sold your business?

If so, do you know what your obligations are regarding your accounts?

If you are closing your business or the business has been sold, you need to get all the data entry up to date, for the final accounts to be completed by the accountant.

This involves reconciling all the bank accounts, loan accounts and managing any outstanding invoices and bills.

You also need to ensure all your employees final pays are processed.

It’s important that your accountant has the details of everything to do with the business sale - the contract and settlement documents etc.

If this sounds like a mammoth task we can help.

As your bookkeeper, we will check if you or your accountant will be cancelling all your relevant registrations such as:

  • Cancelling company and business name through Australian Securities and Investments Commission (ASIC)
  • Notifying the Australian Taxation Office (ATO)
  • Cancelling Australian Business Number (ABN)
  • Cancelling other tax registrations such as Goods & Services Tax (GST)
  • Making GST adjustments on final activity statements
  • Lodging final tax returns
  • Looking at any insurance requirements for the business, such as run off cover (where you are insured for any legal claims that are made after you close your business)

It’s really important that registrations are not cancelled without checking with your accountant first.

Sometimes business goes bad

Sometimes things go wrong, things that can be out of your control or can’t be helped, And the sad outcome of that is that businesses can go bad.

It’s obviously a challenging time when this happens. So, it’s important to understand what is involved.

Firstly, if you’re working with a bookkeeper and accountant, they can often identify when things aren’t going and can try to help you get your affairs in order. Unfortunately, sometimes this isn’t enough, and you have to call in the Liquidators.

The liquidation process will be dependent on your business structure, there are differences in the process for sole traders and companies.

The Liquidator will most likely contact your bookkeeper and accountant to obtain access financial records. Before providing any information, your bookkeeper and accountant should check that you are actually in liquidation. There are scammers out there. This is achieved by searching your company name or CAN on ASIC.

If you are in liquidation, you should also be aware that, as a creditor, your bookkeeper and accountant will most likely only continue doing any further work for you if the Liquidator has authorised the work.

As mentioned previously, liquidation is a challenging time. Understanding what is required of you and your bookkeeper can help ease the pain a bit.

We’re here to help you, every step along the way. Get in touch!

Get on top of time wasters in your working week

Get on top of time wasters in your working week

There are 1,440 minutes in a day and each of us have the same allocated amount. Some people manage to achieve much more than others. So, how can we free up time to help lead a better business and ultimately a happier life?

The top 10 time wasters:


1. Lack of clear goals.

Planning and setting SMART goals provides clarity. SMART = Specific, Measurable, Attainable or Achievable, and most importantly Time-bound. Have your goals documented and visible.

2. A messy desk.

Desk clutter equals mind clutter. Tidy your work-space each day before you leave. Also consider how paperless you are; paper is part of the problem.

3.  Procrastination and shifting priorities.

Avoid unnecessary pick up and put down. Multitasking is a productivity myth. Plan your day carefully and stay focused; don’t deviate unless it’s really necessary.

4. Interruptions (from humans and technology).

Establish ground rules for others, and set yourself clear parameters regarding your technology distractions, e.g. turn off your email notifications and only check emails between tasks. If it’s urgent, they’ll call or tap your shoulder.

5.  Ineffective delegation (and abdication).

Responsibility and doing are not the same. Invest time in creating clear processes and empower others to do more for you. When delegating a task, responsibility still falls on you… and without a clear process, you are setting someone up to fail which will ultimately reflect poorly on you.

6. Ineffective systems.

Mistakes can usually be attributed to ineffective systems. Involve your team to get buy in and LEAN up processes where possible. Eliminate systems that don’t add value; always go back to your purpose.

7. Inability to say 'no'.

We are defined not just by what we say yes to, but what we say no to. Planning helps us to say no to things that don’t align with our purpose and goals.

8. Ineffective meetings.

Every meeting needs a purpose, an agenda and clear objectives. Stick to the agenda, document outcomes and consider which meetings could be replaced with reporting or an online planning tool (such as Trello).

9. Ineffective email use.

Think twice before playing email tennis. Ask yourself: 1.) Is the directive clear? 2.) Is the tone correct? 3.) Is it better to walk five steps to have a conversation?

10. Poor planning.

Effective planning has three key components: a one page plan (with goals, KPIs and required actions), regular reporting to ensure continuous improvement, and accountability.

What are your biggest time wasters? Identify your top 3 and take ownership and responsibility to minimise them today!

"Regretting wasted time is wasting more time." - Anon


Talk to us about how we can help you plan more effectively


Group of business people discuss building a better business.

Building a Better Business in 10 Steps

Building a Better Business in 10 Steps

What are you doing to build yourself a more successful business? There’s no magic bullet, it’s about taking small steps every day to get a bit better than the day before - it all adds up. 

You're in business

Congratulations! That takes courage and commitment. It’s not easy, and at times you might find yourself questioning why you’re even doing it, but you’re here because you had a vision. You decided being in business was a better way to achieve that vision than working for someone else. And, you’re right; you just have to work on it. Good things come to people who hustle.

Continuous development

You’re likely an expert in what you do… maybe you’re a mechanic and know the inside of a car engine like the back of your hand. Or, maybe you’re a fashion retailer who can style anyone. This doesn’t mean you’re an expert at running your business though. It’s hard taking time out of working in your business to work on it. But doing this is essential for its success.

There’s no magical overnight solution to building a more successful business. It’s about taking small steps every day to get a bit better than the day before.

So, what should you do to build yourself a more successful business?

We’ve broken it down into 10 essential steps:

  • 1
    Get clear on exactly what it is that you want
  • 2
    Be open to change and new learning
  • 3
    Define where you are now (warts and all)
  • 4
    Make a plan
  • 5
    Get your organisational structure right
  • 6
    Be a better leader
  • 7
    Be held accountable by someone independent
  • 8
    Build strong networks
  • 9
    Monitor your progress
  • 10
    Keep your well of happiness full

These are the 10 most important things you should be working on to ensure you achieve your goals. Small, incremental changes can have a massive effect on your success.

“Success isn’t overnight. It’s when every day you get a little better than the day before. It all adds up.” - Dwayne ‘The Rock’ Johnson.

We’re here to help you, every step along the way. Get in touch!

Automation can ease your business workload

Automation can ease your business workload

Small and medium-sized businesses are spending on average 120 hours a year on admin tasks, according to recent research into productivity at UK SMBs.

If your people are spending 120 hours wading through tedious and unproductive admin, that’s bad for the business and for your overall efficiency. Fortunately, technology and software automation can go a long way towards automating the low-level admin tasks.

Better productivity through automation

Automation is an important way to ease your business workload, with a host of different business apps and cloud solutions offering ways to automate your admin.

With ‘smart business tools’ increasing in number and choice, software is utilising automation algorithms, artificial intelligence (AI), machine learning and cognitive solutions to help remove the mundane admin tasks from your workflows.

Core processes that will benefit from automation include:

Automated bookkeeping

Just take a photo of your receipts, expenses and invoices and ‘optical character recognition’ (OCR) technology will digitise the output and pull it through into your accounts software. No data entry, no human error and no lost receipts! We can do the rest to ensure your records are accurate.

Automated credit control 

Chasing up debts and late-paying customers takes time. Automated credit control apps track your debtor numbers and automatically sends out customised chaser emails as soon as an invoice is late. This reduces your credit control time, speeds up cash collection and cuts your aged debtor figure.

Automated payment collection

The easier it is to pay you, the faster your customers will pay. Automated card payments and cloud-based Direct Debit solutions allow you to automatically take payment from a customer as soon as an invoice is due. Some solutions will even automate the invoice matching and bank reconciliation process.

Automated reporting and forecasting 

The better your reporting and business intelligence, the easier it is to make informed decisions about your company strategy. Accounting platforms and fintech tools now offer automatic, real-time reporting and forecasting, giving you access to the important numbers and metrics, fast.

Automated digital marketing

Digital marketing is key to raising your brand’s profile. Marketing platforms offer important time-saving ways to schedule and post social media content, or email automation that sends a pre-programmed cadence of emails to specific target audiences within your wider customer base.

Talk to us about embracing the power of automation

If your admin is starting to hold you back, come and talk to us about how automation can pick up some of the heavy lifting as well as giving you the metrics you need for decision making. We can review you business processes and identify the automation opportunities, helping you choose the best apps to drive your business efficiently.

Contact us to discuss your automation opportunities. 

Reporting PAYGW

Reporting PAYGW correctly

Reporting PAYGW Correctly 

PAYG and claiming tax deductions

From July 1 2019, If you don’t meet PAYG withholding obligations for your workers, by not withholding tax from their payments and not reporting it to the ATO, you could lose your tax deduction.

This will apply to income tax returns lodged for the 2020 financial year and beyond.

If you withhold tax from payments to workers, you must withhold the required amount and report correctly to the ATO in order to receive a tax deduction for your business.

PAYG withholding and reporting obligations apply to payments for:

  • Salary, wages and other payments to employees
  • Directors' fees
  • Religious practitioner payments
  • Labour hire arrangements
  • Voluntary withholding arrangements
  • Payments to contractors with no ABN

Withholding rules still apply to cash payments. Similarly, for non-cash payments such as property or exchange of services, withholding rules still apply even if your worker agrees to receive a non-cash payment in place of money.

PAYGW

The payment of PAYGW to the ATO is a separate issue. The new rules are aimed at getting employers to report correctly and on time. Once you have reported an amount to the ATO, they expect payment of that obligation by the due date.

If you make an honest mistake, such as treating an employee as a contactor, you won’t be penalised. You can correct your mistake by lodging a voluntary disclosure

Talk to us

Contact us to review your PAYGW reporting obligations. 

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