Renae Pitargue, Author at BUSY01 and First Class Accounts Ovens and Murray - Page 3 of 16

All Posts by Renae Pitargue

Employing Casuals? Here’s What You Need to Know About the New Rules

Employing Casuals?

Here's what you need to know about the new rules.

Casual Employment New Rules from March 2021

The Fair Work Act 2009 has been amended to enforce several new rules for employing casual workers.

The Act includes a statutory definition of casual employment, a pathway for casual employees to become permanent, and a Casual Employment Information Statement (CEIS).

Definition of Casual Employee

A casual worker does not have an agreed pattern of work or an advance commitment to ongoing work from the employer. Therefore, there is no consistent or guaranteed work schedule, and the employee is paid an hourly rate plus casual loading according to the relevant modern award.

If you require employees to agree to a regular roster well in advance of scheduled work and rely on them as an integral member of your team, talk to us about whether the employee should be considered a permanent employee. True casuals can choose whether or not to work when you offer them shifts.

Permanent part-time and full-time employees have a set roster of work and a commitment from the employer to ongoing work. For full details of casual employees, visit the Fair Work Ombudsman Casual Employees webpage.

Casual Conversion Pathway to Permanent Employment

Employers of casuals are now obliged to offer casual workers the option to convert to permanent employment after 12 months of employment if the pattern of work has been regular and systematic during the last six months.

Some modern awards already have clauses that allow employees to request permanent work. The Act overrides individual award provisions and means that employers must now actively offer conversion to casual workers who meet the criteria for converting to a permanent position.

If there are reasonable business grounds for not making an offer of permanent employment, the employer must notify casual employees.

Casual Employment Information Statement

Employers must now provide the CEIS to all casual workers upon starting work. You must also continue to provide the National Employment Standards and Fair Work Information Statement. Visit the FWO Casual Employment Information Statement webpage for details and to download the form for your employees.

The CEIS outlines the rights of casual workers to become permanent employees in certain circumstances.

Review Your Casual Workforce

The rules around reasonable business grounds, when employees can refuse an offer, time constraints, and transitional provisions are complex.

First, check your employment contracts to make sure they meet the new definition of casual employment.

Then, put in place a process for assessing casual roles at the 12 month anniversary of the employee start date.

You’ll need to keep detailed records for casual employees to ensure you are complying with the changes.

Talk to us if you’d like assistance with managing your casual workforce payroll.

Payroll Updates

Payroll Updates

Navigating Payroll? We can help keep you up to date on changes this year, including new rules for casuals.

Minimum Wage Increase - 1 July 2021

The national minimum wage increases on 1 July by 2.5% to $20.33 per hour (or $772.60 per week).

The minimum wage increase applies to employees if an award or national minimum wage defines their pay rate.

This year, the Fair Work Ombudsman (FWO) has implemented minimum wage increases to awards in a staggered approach. Most awards increase on 1 July; however, the Retail Award will increase from 1 September, and a few awards will increase on 1 November.

For full details of award increases, visit Fair Work Ombudsman Annual Wage Review 2021.

Changes to Casual Employment

The Fair Work Act has been amended to include a Casual Employment Information Statement (CEIS), a formal definition of casual employment, and a pathway for casual employees to become permanent employees.

Employers must now provide the CEIS to all casual workers upon starting with the employer, along with the National Employment Standards and Fair Work Information Statement.

Visit the FWO Casual Employment Information Statement webpage for details and to download the form for your employees.

For more information about casual employment definition and the options for becoming a permanent employee, visit FWO Changes to Casual Employment to check if you have to offer permanent positions to your employees.

Superannuation Increase from 1 July 2021

The superannuation guarantee statutory rate increases to 10% from 1 July. Your payroll software should automatically capture the changes, but check the rate is correct when you do your first pay runs in July.

Review any agreements or annualised salary arrangements you have with employees that may be inclusive of superannuation.

Single Touch Payroll Finalisation

The ATO recognises the impacts of COVID-19 on the Australian community. If you need additional time, you can complete your STP finalisation up until 31 July.

For an employer with a mixture of both closely held payees and arms-length employees, the due date for end-of-year STP finalisation for closely held payees is 30 September each year. All other employees are due 14 July each year.

Small employers (fewer than 19 employees) that only pay closely held payees have until the payee’s income tax return due date.

Review Your Payroll Systems

The start of the financial year is the best time to review your payroll setup, policies and costs.

Talk to us if you need to implement payroll policies, review payroll costs or update your casual worker details.

And we can help you get the STP finalisation done on time. Getting it right the first time means your employees will have accurate information for their tax returns.

We can also review your pay setup and make sure it’s right for the start of the new financial year.

Let's make a time!

Do you feel like a slave to your business

Do you feel like a slave to your business?

Feeling like a slave to your business implies the loss of control; thinking that you need to be available to your customers 24/7 and that your team can't cope without you.

It can also imply a victim mentality - that this is just what it's like to be a business owner and that it's not something you can change. Maybe Covid had a huge impact on your business and you're playing catch up.

There are lots of reasons why you feel like a slave to your business. In other words, lots of excuses.

The OARBED behaviour model tells us we must act above the line; taking Ownership, Accountability and Responsibility for our actions and the choices we make. Feeling like a slave to your business is a choice.

So, what can you do to stop feeling this way?

How can you get back in control of your business

First, review and update your processes. If customers are contacting you at all hours, put in place a timeframe for responding, e.g. within 24 hour hours, and communicate this with your customers. If cashflow is an issue, review your payment terms and ensure they're being enforced.

Next, if you don't feel like you can trust your team to run your business without you, establish why this is.

Do they need more training and support?

Have you given them the opportunity to step up and take on more responsibility?

Do you need to take on more team members or outsource some tasks?

Whatever your reasons - or excuses - are for feeling like a slave to your business, now is the time to reflect on what it is you wanted your business to deliver to you.

Set goals for what you want your business and personal life to look like in 12 months.

Break these down into 90 day goals and actions to achieve those goals.

Take ownership, accountability and responsibility for regaining control of your business.

Consider the following questions

  • Do you need to start going home on time every night?
  • Do you need to stop accepting work from people who don’t respect your payment terms?
  • Do you need to block out calendar time to respect your health and wellbeing?
  • Do you need to implement 10 strategies to grow your cashflow?
  • Do you need to train and empower your team to take on more responsibility?
  • Do you need more time to plan?

No more excuses - it’s your business, you make the rules, choose not to be a slave!

We can help you be the master of your business - get in touch to find out how.

"Success isn’t a result of spontaneous combustion. You must set yourself on fire."
Arnold Glasgow

What do you want from your business

What do you want from your business?

When you started your business, you probably dreamed about flexible hours and highly profitable, stimulating work.

Ideally, you would’ve adopted best practice and documented those dreams in a succinct Business Plan. Your plan would specify how much cash you need, your role, and the hours you’d be working.

In other words, what your business was going to deliver to you personally as an owner.

But that was all before the world turned on its head and most plans went out the window.

Whatever you previously dreamed of or planned for must be reconsidered due to the impact of Covid.

It’s likely that what you want hasn't changed, it will probably just take longer than expected.

Take the opportunity to reinvent your business to deliver what you want 


Trimming what you need personally from your business for the next year or two will give you the best footing to recover.

Consider the following:

  1. Can you still have the lifestyle you want with less cash strain on your business?
  2. A walk with friends, as opposed to a dinner out, is great for your health and easier on your wallet.
  3. Are there personal costs that can be avoided? Do you need that second takeaway coffee each day?
  4. Can you refinance your personal and/or housing debts to achieve lower interest rates or reduced principal repayments?
  5. Can you spend less on holidays or travel in the next 12 months?
  6. Can you modify your role in the business to reduce stress or workload?
  7. Will these needs be different in the medium term? I.e. can you hunker down for 12-months or until your business’s profitability and cashflow improve?

The best way to reduce the cashflow strain is to revise your personal budget. 

Your budget will identify potential savings you can make and provides a benchmark against which your actual spending can be tracked in the future.

 Your Business Plan and budget can then be built around how your business can deliver the level of personal cashflow you need.

There are no shortcuts here. 

The discipline of personal budgeting with ongoing monitoring of your expenditure is essential.

The good news is that the process is both empowering and enlightening at the same time. You’ll be amazed at where personal savings can be made and will feel much more in control of your business.

Contact us if you need help developing your Business Plan or personal budget.

“You must gain control of your money or the lack of it will forever control you.” – Dave Ramsey

5 signs you’re undercharging

5 signs you're undercharging

Are you undercharging for your services?

It can be hard to tell, particularly if you’re in a niche industry or you’re a contractor. Costs have been rising, so it may be time to rethink your own pricing.

Here are five signs that you might be undercharging:

1. Nobody ever questions your quotes

Do all your new clients accept your quotes or charges without asking any questions, requesting a breakdown or wanting a discount? It’s possible they’re delighted to be getting such a great deal.

2. You run off your feet but you can’t afford to get help

When you’re working yourself to the bone, but there’s not enough money left over to employ someone to help you, your prices are too low – or something else needs to change.

3. Your prices have been the same for two years or more

In most industries, prices increase just slightly each year. Leave your prices flat for too long and you’re not keeping up with the market; make sure you review your fees annually.

4. You’re overbooked

When business is booming and there’s no room for new clients, it’s time to raise your prices.

5. Clients don’t treat you as well as they should

When clients think they’re paying peanuts, they’ll often take you for granted. They don’t see your time as valuable, so they feel free to mess you around.

What should you be charging?

Finding your pricing sweet spot could take a little time. You’ll need to do some research, maybe ask around a little, and find out where your competitors are pitching their rates.

We can help

We work across various industries and therefore may be able to give you some indication of typical fees. So get in touch.

How do you get your outstanding invoices paid?

How do you get your outstanding invoices paid?

Do you dread following up outstanding invoices?

It can be frustrating when you have customers who haven’t paid their invoices. Not to mention the impact on your cash flow.

Getting paid on time is essential to good cash flow. But how do you get paid?

Here are some simple, effective techniques that can help you get your outstanding invoices paid.

Make sure your terms are clear

Write into your terms of service that you will charge a late fee for overdue invoices. Make sure you your customers are aware of your terms of service before you do the work.

Also, we recommend doing a credit check before you do business with a new customer. This can help reduce the risk of late payments and defaults, as well as minimising the need for follow-ups.

Reminders

Often, the payment is a simple oversight. By resending the invoice or sending a simple payment request an outstanding invoice will be paid. Start there, and you might be surprised by how many outstanding invoices are paid.

Better still, set your accounting software up to send automated reminders to customers with outstanding invoices. Talk to us about how to do this.

If the above action doesn’t achieve the desired result, ie your outstanding invoice being paid, it’s time for firmer action.

As uncomfortable as it can be to make a phone call to ask for payment, it can be one of the most effective ways to get paid. Perhaps start with asking are they aware that their invoice is outstanding.

A stronger stance

So, what do you do if your customers don’t respond to your polite requests?

If you have been waiting for payment for months, it’s time take a stronger stance.

This could include:

  • stopping your services until payment is made
  • using a professional debt collector
  • bringing in your lawyer

While you will likely get paid by taking this stronger stance, you do need to consider the potential impact on the relationship with your client. How important is it? Do you want to continue to do business with them? Is it worthwhile continuing to do business with them? 

If you need help managing your outstanding invoices, get in touch for expert support and guidance.

managing finances in your business

Managing finances in your business

Managing finances in your business

When you are busy running a business getting your head around effective financial management can be difficult.

If you get it wrong you could end up focusing on the wrong things that are detrimental to your business.

As a business owner, there are four basic areas that you need to consider when managing finances in your business:

Have a plan

It’s important to have a plan to you understand your business expenses, project your revenue and be able to track your finances.

Having a plan allows you to track and review your profits and losses, outstanding accounts, payroll expenses and more.

You should review your plan regularly so you have a clear understanding of your business financials and are able to forecast accurately.

We recommend using online software, like Xero. Online software helps you keep accurate and up-to-date records and is a more efficient and time saving way to stay across your financials.

Cash flow

We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again. Cash flow is the lifeblood of business.

By understanding and tracking your incoming and outgoing cash (or cash equivalent), you can gain insight into trends over time. This gives you more understanding of, and therefore control of, your cash flow.

And that means you can use forecasting tools, like Futrli, to identify opportunities to make adjustments to help prevent fluctuations in your cash flow.

Debt

If you have debt associated with your business, and let’s face it – most of us do, it’s essential to keep an eye on it.

Borrowing isn’t necessarily a bad thing, but it’s important to make sure the benefits of going into debt outweigh the costs.

On the flip side, if you’re owed money, it’s vital to closely manage unpaid invoices and secure any money you’re owed in a timely manner. Read more about having a watertight accounts receivable process here.

Growth

Growth is great, but it does need to be manageable.

When you are looking at growing your business or taking on new clients, work out if you manage the additional work and how it will affect your current setup. What additional resources, tools, personnel, financial investment will be required? And (like taking on debt), will the benefits outweigh the costs.

Successful financial management isn’t necessarily about the specific decisions you make. It’s about understanding the impact your decisions will have on your business.

Talk to us about the Apps and tools available to help you manage your business finances.

5 ways to improve your cash flow

5 ways to improve your cash flow

5 Ways to Improve your Cash Flow

In our last blog, we discussed ways of managing your cash flow. We know that cash is the lifeblood of any business, so here are 5 more tips to help you improve your cash flow.

 If the cash dries up, problems quickly begin to multiply. By keeping the cash running freely and you can continue to grow your business.

Here are five tips for improving your cash flow:

1. Have a system to manage your debtors. 

Come up with a clear, step-by-step way to handle outstanding accounts. This might include:

  • automated reminders on unpaid emails
  • a phone call or email when the amount has been outstanding for a certain period of time
  • a stop credit on the client when they exceed an acceptable payment time.
2. Be prepared for tax time 

One of the fastest ways to run out of cash is to find yourself short at tax time. Talk to your accountant about tax planning measures you can implement to ensure you can make your compliance and tax obligations. 

3. Try not to dip into business funds for personal spending

It’s always tempting to tap your business account for personal spending. Instead, try to keep them separate. If you’ve over-saved at the end of the tax year, you may be able to draw down a nice bonus. That’s much better than being caught short.

4. Sell old stock

Too much stock? Consider old stock, old furniture, machinery or even stationery: they can all be sold to free up space and provide a small cash injection.

5. Forecast your cash flow

Create a cash flow forecast (we can do this with you) and that will help you monitor and measure the flow of cash in and out of the business.

Need help with forecasting or cash flow management? We’re here for you. Feel free to get in touch.

Managing better cash flow

Managing Better Cash flow

We all know that cash flow management is vital for a growing business. But where do you start?

Here are six steps to managing better cash flow.

6 steps to managing better cash flow

1. Invoicing

Invoicing is a good place to start your cash flow management.

In other words, invoice your customers as soon as your product is sold or your service is provided. The quicker you invoice, the quicker you should get paid. Also consider asking for a deposit up front – especially if you’re a service provider or your product has a high-end price.

As we mentioned, invoicing is only the start of your cash flow management. Here are five other steps you can take to improve your cash flow management.

2. Know your numbers

We understand that not everyone is confident with numbers. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t know your numbers.

Having appropriate accounting software in place, like Xero, will help you always know your cash position. The right software will also help you forecast your cash flow.

Having a good handle on your business numbers will not only help you manage your cash flow, it helps you take advantage of new opportunities.

3. Keep your numbers current

We mentioned having the appropriate accounting software in place. But that software is only as good as the information you provide it. Keep your information up to date so you know the financial state of your business at any time.

If you don’t have the capacity or capability to manage your accounting software, then outsource to a qualified bookkeeper. We will manage your books and provide insights and forecasting so you can better know your numbers and focus on your business.

4. Don’t be a pushover

Make sure your invoices are paid on time and don’t be too lenient with your customers. Keep an eye on your accounts receivable and have an invoicing strategy for any overdue accounts.

You may sometimes need to understand your customers challenges, but that doesn’t mean you should be taken advantage of. Be prepared to act sooner rather than later.

5. Save for a rainy day

Sometimes quick access to cash can make or break your business. Saving for the proverbial rainy day (in other words, building a cash reserve) can provide you with that access if unexpected expenses occur. Or an opportunity arises to invest in your business that’s just too good to pass up.

6. Separate business from pleasure

It’s essential that you keep your business and personal finances separate. Especially if you want to know your business numbers so you can manage and forecast your cash flow effectively.

Cash flow is king

Yes, “cash flow is king” is an expression we hear all the time. And there is a reason for that. Managing your cash flow effectively means that your “cash” serves you and helps you build a successful business.

If you need help managing your cash flow, talk to us.