Issue 131 - October 2019
According to the simplest definition, the word "agile" means having the ability to move quickly and easily and being able to think and understand quickly.
Given the huge number of publications on the concept, it may seem like it is just another buzzword in today's world of business. However, this is not the case when it comes to agile leadership. In its recent report, the World Economic Forum published a list of top skills required to be successful as leaders in 2020, many of them related to being more agile.
The Agile Business Consortium (the UK based not-for-profit body) released their first white paper on the topic in late 2017. To this day, this document remains to be an extremely relevant guide on how to be agile as a business leader. According to it, the keys to the agile leadership's lie in the concepts of Communication, Commitment and Collaboration and the following nine principles:
- Actions speak louder than words
- Improved quality of thinking leads to improved outcomes
- Organisations improve through effective feedback
- People require meaning and purpose to make work fulfilling
- Emotion is a foundation to enhanced creativity and innovation
- Leadership lives everywhere in the organisation
- Leaders devolve appropriate power and authority
- Collaborative communities achieve more than individuals
- Great ideas can come from anywhere in the organisation?
Agile organisations can thrive in a changing environment and are better equipped to adapt to unpredictable challenges.
To be an agile leader, you may need to change your mindset from reactive to creative and from top-down decision making to empowering autonomous teams within your business.
Change can be difficult but not changing can be disastrous.
Perks For Your Employees That Won't Break the Bank
Retaining good staff is critical to any business but rewarding your employees doesn't have to break the bank. You can provide perks in the form of policies rather than material rewards.
Creating a work environment with non-financial benefits can increase productivity whilst attracting and retaining skilled employees.
An attractive perk that an increasing number of companies offer is flexible hours. Small businesses are often in the best position to offer flexible work arrangements, as schedules tailored for the individual allow work to get done efficiently. This gives employees a healthy work/life balance.
Note also that employees who meet certain conditions defined under the Fair Work Act have the right to request flexible and part-time working arrangements from their employer.
In these situations, an employer can only refuse such a request on reasonable business grounds.
Employees are eligible to request flexible working arrangements in the following circumstances:
- The employee is a parent, or has responsibility for the care of a child who is of school age or younger
- The employee is a carer (within the meaning of the Carer Recognition Act 2010)
- The employee has a disability
- The employee is 55 or older
- The employee is experiencing violence from a member of the employee's family or
- The employee provides care or support to a member of their immediate family or household who requires care or support because they are experiencing violence from the member's family.
Sometimes employees need time off with short notice if something in their personal lives affects their ability to work. Business owners can make a positive impact on employees that are experiencing problems or hardships.
This could be through listening and talking them through their approach to work or providing active support with altered work hours until things have settled down. Looking after an employee in a time of need helps to create a supportive environment and staff are more likely to be loyal and supportive in return.
Having a novelty day weekly or monthly can provide a fun atmosphere and give employees a day to look forward to. For example, you could implement initiatives like a "bring your pet to work" day, assuming that no one is allergic and the pets are sufficiently well trained as to not disrupt the workplace. If your workplace has a dress code, "casual Friday" could be a good way to boost morale at the end of the week.
Labour Hire Licensing Requirements
The Labour Hire Licensing Act 2017 requires anyone who provides labour hire in South Australia to be licensed. The Act was passed in 2017 and came into operation on 1 March 2018. South Australians providing labour hire services were granted a transitional period until September 2018 to obtain a licence, which was subsequently extended until November 2019.
All labour hire providers operating in SA must:
- lodge their licence application by 31 August 2019
- be licensed by 1 November 2019
From 1 November 2019, if you provide labour hire services without being licensed or you
engage an unlicensed labour hire provider in South Australia, penalties may apply. Please note Victoria and
Queensland have similar labour hire licensing requirements. Victorian providers have been given until 29 October
2019 to apply for a license and Queensland providers were required to be licensed by 15 June 2018.
For more information, please visit Consumer and Business Services at www.cbs.sa.gov.au or interstate
Xerocon once again descended upon Brisbane the 9-10th September to connect accountants & advisors with app partners, provide some inspiration for their businesses and update the industry on upcoming changes to the software.
These updates included:
- Automatic payment from Xero for NAB clients –set up the payment in Xero and instead of downloading/reuploading an ABA file into your internet banking, it will automatically be there for you to approve.
- Partnership with Stripe – This allows for quicker customer payments. Autopay allows for a regularly billed customer to enter their details once for automatic payment on an agreed schedule. The stripe data feed will mean you can reconcile these transactions with ease.
- Coming soon – Short term cashflow dashboard to show if a business has any immediate cashflow needs.
- Reiterating their partnership with Hubdoc which is explained further in software corner.
Proposed Extension of the Director Penalty Regime
With the reintroduction of Treasury Laws Amendment (Combating Illegal Phoenixing) Bill 2019 in July 2019, the commissioner could soon be allowed to collect estimates of anticipated unlodged GST liabilities and make company directors personally liable for their company's GST liabilities.
Phoenix activity refers to a company that is deliberately wound up to avoid repaying its creditors (including employees) while a new company is established to perform and operate the same business as that of the company which was wound up (without any of the creditors).
While most directors are not phoenixing, it is important to be aware these changes are not limited to those that are. The Australian Taxation Office has the power to issue Director Penalty Notices (DPNs) in respect of unpaid PAYG withholding tax and superannuation guarantee charge (SGC), and if this bill passes, GST liabilities. This can mean in some cases that a director may be personally exposed for a large majority of the debts of their company.
In many cases, the directors have no choice but to provide personal guarantees to obtain credit from financiers and suppliers. This means it is very important that directors know what they have personally guaranteed and also that they are made aware that they are personally liable for PAYG withholding tax and SGC.
New company directors should always conduct some due diligence in respect of the unpaid liabilities of the company before consenting to be appointed.
If it looks like your company is going to struggle to meet their obligations, it is always best to seek advice early. If you are looking for advice you can contact us here.
Power BI Summit
From the 21st to 23rd of August, three of our team attended the Microsoft Power Platform Summit held in Melbourne.
It provided great insight into how the business world is changing; from task automation with 'Microsoft Flow' to powerful data analytics with Power BI.
The lesson learnt was that data is all around us, and, if properly harnessed, it can be used to gain a meaningful insight into a business. Data can be a driver for smart decisions and processes.
We look forward to the opportunities of putting these products into practice as there is great value to be had for our clients.
What is it?
Hubdoc is an online software add-on which makes the gathering, storage and processing of receipts & invoices easy.
How Hubdoc differs from other providers in this area is that it can automatically pull in bills and statements from various providers in one secure hub without the need for upload.
You can also submit your data using various other methods, including forwarding supplier invoices to a dedicated email address, scanning the invoices yourself to that same email address, or utilising the smartphone app which allows you to take a photo and upload directly on your phone or tablet. Once uploaded, Hubdoc's systems will extract the key information, including supplier name, date, payable amount and any GST, and once the data is extracted can then be submitted directly into your accounting software, saving you the hassle of re-keying this data.
The transaction in your accounting software includes a PDF scan of the invoice which will assist in document storage management and review of transactions at a later date.
- Reduced manual processing
- Automated processes to bring invoices into your accounting software
- Reduced processing errors
- Storage facility for your invoices on the cloud for you to access from anywhere
- $27.50 per month, or $13.75 through a Hubdoc partner
Congratulations to Calibre One on recently winning the SA/NT Telstra Partner of the Year Award.
Congratulations to Jessica Arabia, Director/Mortgage & Finance Broker from Finance Prospect who won the CAFBA's South Australian Female State Champion Award.
Congratulations to Troy Kalleske who was recently installed as a Councillor on the Barons of Barossa Grand Council.
Congratulations to PetRescue Ltd on their 15 year anniversary.
Congratulations to Geoff Schell and the team at Ray White Clare Valley for being awarded the "Top Regional Office" in SA at the recent Ray White SA-NT Awards.
We welcome Ryan Braund who recently joined us as a junior accountant.
Congratulations to Catherine Zarantonello and Bailey Nisbett for recently graduating from university.
Congratulations to Georgia Lang, who along with her team the Scotch Old Collegians on recently winning the D4 Football Grand Final.
Congratulations to Jonty Scharenberg and the Glenelg Football Club on winning the SANFL Grand Final.
Congratulations to Matthew Merrett on winning the Dean Bailey Award, Adelaide's best development player in 2019 in the SANFL.
This month Brentnalls SA is supporting:
Christmas Party For Special Children
A charity giving children with special needs the opportunity to gather and share the magic of the Festive Season with a group larger than their immediate circle of family and carers.
In Memoriam - Ian Collins
The Partners and staff at Brentnalls SA are deeply saddened by the passing of Ian Collins. Ian is well remembered as a genuine gentle soul and he was a much respected and valued member of the Brentnalls SA family.
Ian was Craig Farrow's (Chairman/Partner) first manager at Peat Marwick Mitchell & Co (now KPMG). Ian then joined John Crouch (Partner) and Craig at Hincks and Smith. Ian came across to Brentnalls SA when it was founded in 2000. Ian retired from Brentnalls SA in December 2010.
Meet Harrison Cansdell
I joined Brentnalls SA as a junior accountant in July 2017 while studying a Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting) at the University of Adelaide. I plan on completing my university degree next year before beginning my studies to become a Chartered Accountant.
Working at Brentnalls has enabled me to develop relationships with not only my workmates but also clients who I have been able to help with their business needs and I love this aspect of my job.
I enjoy spending time with my family and friends, playing and watching sports, and getting the opportunity to travel. I recently took place in a short exchange program to France through university and am keen to see more parts of the world in the future.