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Firm Journal

21 January 2021

Things you should do every time you get paid

It can be tempting to treat yourself on payday, but in the long run, planning your spending will be more rewarding. Creating a payday routine will help you pay your bills on time and save more money to put aside. 

The very first step needs to be completed the night before payday. Transfer any funds you have leftover from the previous payday to your savings account. This will allow you to spend less money you consider ‘extra’ and save it for your long-term goals.

The second thing you need to do is pay as many bills as possible, rather than wait till the ‘due date’. As it is, once money comes into the account, a lot of it is earmarked for bills and payments that need to be made, so rather than holding off on them, you should pay them immediately. This will also give you a clear indication of how much money you have.

Finally, creating a to-do list on the day of your payday is an effective method of viewing or planning your expenses. This will give a clear indication of small and large expenses that need to be paid before your next payday. They will also help identify unnecessary expenses or when extra money is being spent when it shouldn’t be. 

These are simple techniques that anyone can apply to get ahead of over-spending on payday. 

How you can improve your company’s shipping department

Effective shipping is essential in a world where online shopping is so popular. Businesses can suffer if their orders are not being shipped on time or if they are not regularly updating their customers. The following are some ways you can improve shipping.

Basics of SMSF investing

Setting up an SMSF fund is the simplest step. Establishing a fund which delivers you consistent returns from your investments is much more difficult. 

Investing successfully involves determining precise goals and picking investments which will effectively achieve those goals. The advantage of SMSFs is that you can build a portfolio which reflects your short-term and long-term goals in response to changing market conditions.

In an SMSF fund, your investment options are:

Before you begin investing, consider what might be the best way to diversify your portfolio. How you portion your investments will depend on your funds, the market, and your goals. Regardless of what your plan is, diversification should be a priority. 

Choosing an SMSF as opposed to an industry or retail super fund provides you with more flexibility, but also with more responsibility. Researching before investing is key if you want the best out of your SMSF. 

Taxation of your unused leave when leaving a job

When your job ends, whether there has been a termination of employment or redundancy you will receive a payment for unused leave. This payment will be taxed differently from your normal income. 

The taxation will vary depending on the reason why you left the job and any unused entitlements that have been accrued over your employment (long service leave or sick leave). 

Lump sum payments that you receive for unused annual leave or unused long service leave are taxed at a lower rate than other income. These lump sum payments will appear on your income statement or payment summary as either ‘lump sum A’ or ‘lump sum B’. 

These payments may also be taxed differently if you lost your job as a result of Covid-19.

14 January 2021

Responding to negative feedback

The internet and social media have made it all too easy for customers to relay their feedback to businesses. This can be a great thing because it shows other customers or potential customers why they should choose your business. 

However, this also means that if a customer has a negative experience, then their public feedback has the scope of preventing future customers. Hearing what these reviews have to say to implement change can benefit your business and responding sensitively to the reviews will help with damage control. 

Follow these steps to construct an appropriate response:

Make sure you do not ignore negative reviews and feedback. Either the review is specific to the customer or they are making a valuable contribution towards how the business can be improved. In order to identify which it is, you should listen to what the customer has to say.

Protecting yourself from super scams

Superannuation is an attractive target for scammers as a significant volume of funds are placed into super funds by Australians. 

There are some straightforward steps you can take to protect yourself from super scams. 

Know the rules

Check your balance and contact details

Stop identity theft

Fuel tax credits for businesses

The government provides fuel tax credits for businesses with a credit for the fuel tax (excise or customs) that is included in the price of fuel used in machinery, plant, equipment, heavy vehicles, and light vehicles travelling off public roads or on private roads.

Fuel tax credits a business receives depend on when the fuel was acquired, which fuel you used, and what it was used for. Since fuel credits change regularly, it is necessary to check rates each time the business activity statement (BAS) is filled out.

Eligibility

7 January 2021

Collaboration to grow business

Businesses can gain a lot from collaboration, regardless of the industry they are in. The following are some reasons why businesses should care about collaboration.

Get inspired

As a business, it is important to build a routine and figure out day-to-day operations. However, this might mean that you stop trying different techniques which could be more efficient. Collaboration could give you a fresh perspective and encourage new ideas and methods you could apply at the workplace. 

Grow your network

Initiating collaboration will help you meet people who share common interests and goals. Building connections will benefit your business and could result in partnerships down the line. 

Educate yourself

Collaboration opens up opportunities to learn from those outside your immediate circle. This can provide you with valuable information that may be helpful for your business which is not otherwise accessible to you. 

Solve problems

Two heads are better than one. Therefore, with collaboration, you may be able to solve problems that were otherwise difficult to solve. This is because collaboration allows people with different expertise and backgrounds to contribute ideas. 

Finding your lost super

Changing of name, address or job can mean that you lose track of some of your super. This means that there is money that belongs to you that is not currently in your super fund. Finding your super will collate your previous lost funds with your current account.

It is likely that your lost super is held by the ATO. Create an account on myGov and link it to the ATO and select ‘Super’. 

Once you have done this, you will be able to see the details of all of your past and current super accounts including any lost or forgotten ones. You will also be able to find funds which have been held by the ATO on your behalf. Further, you will be able to consolidate your super funds into a single fund. 

Once you have found your lost super, remember to conduct research about which fund is providing you with the best returns before you choose which fund to consolidate with. 

Lodging your business activity statement

Businesses that are registered for GST are required to lodge a business activity statement (BAS). These assist in the reporting and payment of:

ATO will automatically send businesses who are registered for an ABN and GST a BAS when it is due for lodgement. 

Businesses are given various options to lodge their BAS:

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