Effective job advertising
With such a large number of varied job ads online and in print, if you want to attract the best people you have to make your ad stand out. It is also very important to properly convey your workplace culture in the ad so that you do not have to waste time interviewing inappropriate candidates.
Great job ads are appealing but also honest. If you oversell the job, your new employee will quickly become disappointed. If you undersell, you may reduce the scope or quality of applicants applying.
Make sure to write ads in a way that clearly reflect the personality of your business and conveys a message to your applicants about the type of person that will suit the role. Getting someone who is a good personality fit for your company is equally as important as getting someone with the right skillset. If your ad is reflective of your company, applicants will be in a better position to judge whether or not they should apply.
Include a detailed list of duties that the role entails and the types of skills and qualifications that you are looking for. A little attention to detail in the description can save you a lot of time when it comes to sorting resumes and interviewing candidates. To capture the attention of job seekers attract the right person, ensure your listing includes:
- Job title, description, required experience and benefits.
- Your business’ story, for the applicant to get a feel for your company’s culture.
- Language that highlights the positive aspects of the opportunity.
- Instructions on how to apply and how further communication will be handled.
To give you job posting high visibility for job seekers, post your listing on multiple online platforms. Advertise the job to a careers page on your website, LinkedIn and job boards like Jora and Seek. You may have to pay for certain job boards so research the site that suits your business’ needs before posting.
A deed or an agreement?
The decision on whether to use a deed or an agreement can make a significant difference to the success of a transaction or project. Both document types are used to prepare contractual arrangements, with each having its own benefits. Understanding the differences and making an informed decision can significantly impact the success of a transaction.
An agreement (or contract) must meet the following pre-conditions to be valid and enforceable:
- Each party must have the intention to be legally bound.
- There must be an offer from one party that is accepted by the other party.
- Consideration must flow between the parties.
For a deed to be considered valid and enforceable, it must:
- Be signed, in writing and witnessed by a person who is not a party to the deed.
- Use wording that indicates that the document is a deed i.e. ‘this deed’ or ‘executed as a deed’ and ‘signed, sealed and delivered’ should be used in the execution clauses. The wording in the document must be consistent.
- Be provided to the other party or parties.
- Having supporting evidence that the parties intended the document to be a deed and are bound by it.
The main difference between an agreement and a deed is that there is no requirement for consideration to make a deed binding. This is because of the idea that a deed is intended, by the executing party, to be a solemn indication to others that they truly mean to do what they are planning to do or are doing. A deed is considered to be binding on a party when they have signed, sealed and delivered the deed to the other parties, even if the other parties have not yet executed the deed document.
Each state in Australia has specific legislation regarding the period of time in which a claim or action can be lodged, following the breach of an agreement or deed. A claim following a breach of an agreement must be submitted within 6 years of the breach occurring. The period is longer for those who make a claim following a breach of the terms of a deed. Since the length of time usually depends on the law of each state, it is important to have a jurisdiction clause in your deed or agreement.
Quick fixes to boost email marketing
While email marketing remains one of the most effective platforms for businesses to reach clients on a personal level, it does not always deliver the results you may be after. If you’re finding that email marketing isn’t going as well as you had hoped, here are five simple ways to improve your campaign:
Email automation is one of the most efficient ways to save time and send timely, relevant emails to clients. It is an emailing process which enables businesses to send out specific messages to clients at designated times, instead of spending valuable time sending out individual emails to every client. While automation may sound like an emailing process that detaches businesses from their clients, it can actually help to develop closer relationships as it maintains effective communication and brand awareness.
Experiment with your “from” name:
Low open rates may be attributed to the particular “from” name you are using. If this is the case, it might be a good idea to change the name to a more recognisable one. Seeing “from” information that isn’t clearly related to a person or place that clients know, is often a red flag for individuals who are becoming increasingly wary of email spammers. Make sure your recipients know they’re getting emails from someone they actually asked to hear from by making your “from” information as obvious as possible.
While segmenting an email list by demographics can produce results, it is much more effective to segment subscribers by their behaviour. Send clients targeted messages based on their service or purchase history, send loyalty offers to those who consistently open your emails or re-engagement campaigns to those who never do.
Remember mobile optimisation:
With approximately 53% of emails being opened on mobile devices, using mobile-friendly layouts and graphics will help with continued engagement. If the content doesn’t appear properly on a mobile device, chances are the subscriber will be less likely to open another email. Make sure images do not look stretched or take too long to load and use appropriate ratios on all platforms.
Don’t forget existing customers:
One of the smartest and least expensive ways to find new clients is to utilise your existing ones. Existing clients are a great resource for bringing in new business, especially when they refer their friends or share content from the business with people who would normally be beyond reach.
Succession planning for your SMSF
A mandatory component of managing a self-managed super fund (SMSF) is planning out what will happen to the fund if its trustee were to pass away. While succession planning may not be one of the first responsibilities that comes to mind when managing an SMSF, it is a necessity that can provide certainty and peace of mind for a deceased trustee’s family.
Succession planning can become complex if little or no attention is paid to it on an ongoing basis, but there are ways trustees can ensure the best outcome for both the fund and their family.
One option for a sole member fund is to appoint another trustee. Note that the non-member trustee cannot be the employer of the member unless they are related. This would not be an option for a fund with two members as the available exemptions only apply to single member funds. Those who appoint a family member or close friend must consider first whether they are suitable for a role; running an SMSF requires expertise and knowledge, and appointing someone with limited experience may not be in the best interest of the fund’s future.
Some SMSF trustees may also choose to appoint an enduring power of attorney. An enduring power of attorney is someone who makes decisions on the trustee’s behalf if they become incapacitated or pass away. Common power of attorneys include accountants, financial advisors and lawyers; people who understand SMSF management and the associated challenges. For an enduring power of attorney nominee to be appointed, legal documents, i.e. the succession documents appointing the replacement director, must be in place before the member loses their capacity to be a member.
Another option is to have a binding death benefit nomination (BDBN) in place. Since a person’s superannuation does not make up part of their estate and is therefore not automatically covered by their Will, a BDBN is often a good solution to help with the distribution of super member benefits.
There are alternative strategies that may be more appropriate than an SMSF, depending on your individual financial situation. Investment decisions are best made with the input of an appropriate financial advisor.
Non-compliant payments to workers no longer tax deductible
Businesses can no longer claim deductions for payments to workers if they have not met their pay as you go (PAYG) withholding obligations. This applies to income tax returns lodged for the 2020 income year onwards. Any payments made to a worker where PAYG amounts haven’t been withheld or reported are called non-compliant payments.
If PAYG withholding rules require an amount to be withheld, businesses will need to:
- Withhold the amount from the payment before they pay their worker.
- Report that amount to the ATO.
Businesses will not lose their deduction if they:
- Withhold an incorrect amount by mistake. To minimise penalties businesses can correct the mistake by lodging a voluntary disclosure form.
- Withhold the correct amount but make a mistake when reporting, though mistakes should be corrected as soon as possible.
- Fail to report payments on a Taxable payments annual report (TPAR) or a payment summary annual report (PSAR).
Businesses will only lose their deduction if no amount is withheld or reported to the ATO unless voluntarily disclosed before the ATO examine their affairs.
This measure aims to create honest businesses and owners doing the right thing by their employees. This is part of the government’s response to recommendations from the Black Economy Taskforce.
Businesses that don’t comply with PAYG withholding and reporting obligations may lose the deduction for that payment and face penalties that apply for failure to withhold and report amounts under the PAYG withholding system.
How to write an eye-catching bio
Social media bios are a small window into your company for potential clients. They can show your style, what you do, the promotions you are running or just be a fun read. A well written and thought out bio stands out from those that are lazy, audiences can tell if you treat your bio as an afterthought. The purpose is to get people to want to know more.
There are many different tactics you can use when creating or revamping a bio. It is important to keep in mind what platform you are writing for as some convey specific tones and draw in different crowds. The aim always remains to draw in audiences, so go with a strategy you think will best attract like-minded people.
Know your voice:
Cohesion in a business is vital, there needs to be a clear message on what you are offering clients and how you are approaching them. It is very evident on social media when a business doesn’t know their voice, as content becomes disjointed and doesn’t show prospective clients who the business. Ensure the tone of your bio, post types and captions all lineup, whether that is professional, casual, humorous, etc. is up to you.
Link your accounts:
Most social media platforms have the option to link to a website in your bio, but it is also a good idea to link to your other social media accounts. As long as you are not overfilling your bio section, adding your other social media handles can help audiences to cross platforms, experiencing the different content you provide. This is also a good idea if you have separate social accounts for different elements of the business or support channels.
Content from your bio is searchable, giving you an opportunity to use keywords or phrases to direct traffic to your profile. Strong keywords relating to your industry or product/service offerings are good to strategically place in bios provided they make sense. Filling the space with words purely for searchable purposes may get you clicks but that doesn’t necessarily translate to new clients.
With the majority of social media platforms utilising tags to search, hashtags in a bio can increase traffic and show knowledge of the digital space. Using tags like a common phrase adapted to your company, a promotional tag you are running or your slogan, gives you reach that isn’t always achieved with keywords. Be careful not to overuse hashtags both in bios and posts as excessive tags look unprofessional.
Short-term vs long-term financing
Maintaining healthy cash flow can be challenging; between ongoing expenses and bills, poor cash flow can severely impact your customers, staff and bottom line. Business owners need to understand the differences between short and long-term financing when developing a cash flow strategy.
There are various sources of financing available, with each being useful for different situations. Choosing the right source and mix is key for good cash flow, with financing options often being classified into two categories based on time period: short-term and long-term. To find the right plan for you, determine your needs and then match a financing option to meet those needs.
Short term financing, or working capital financing, looks at needs that arise in relation to financing current assets – for a period of less than one year. Working capital is the funds that are used in the day-to-day trading operations of a business. Short-term financing can help you to pay suppliers, increase inventory and cover expenses when you do not have sufficient cash on hand. Depending on your business’ requirements you might consider using one of the following options;
- Overdraft – extends your cash resources and protects your business’ credit rating.
- Line of credit – funding when you need it that is then paid back when you have surplus cash, offering flexibility, value and control.
- Business credit card – a convenient, fast payment method.
Long-term financing options can help you invest in overall improvements to your business, for a period of more than 5 years. Capital expenditures, such as upgrading equipment, buying additional vehicles and renovating are funded using long-term sources of finance. Businesses can consider using the following options;
- Leasing – structuring a lease to match the useful life of the asset. This will help to preserve your cash and working capital for other uses.
- Term loans – from financial institutions, government and commercial banks. These allow you to accurately forecast your monthly cash flow through regular payments.
Evaluating risks in business
Business owners are faced with constant challenges and tough decisions to make on a day-to-day basis. Risk-taking is often necessary to achieve more in the business, but owners need to make informed choices to avoid potential damages. To manage risk effectively, a proactive stance needs to be taken in identifying and responding to risks before a crisis strikes.
The Australian standard defines risk as ‘the chance of something happening that will have an impact on objectives’. Risks can be hazard-based, uncertainty-based or opportunity-based, with both tangible and intangible items posing risks for your business. Owners may find it easy to list the physical items at risk such as assets and infrastructure, yet neglect intangibles such as injury to staff, loss of important business information, fraud, product recalls, supply chain disruptions and more. It is important for business owners to be aware of the risks they could face in their business.
Calculate your risks:
Making an educated assessment of both the likelihood and potential severity of risks can help prioritise your responses. Once the risks have been identified they should be ranked on the likelihood of occurrence and the severity of consequence it might impose on the business. This risk criteria helps to form a risk rating which can be ranked from low to extreme. The risk rating helps you to determine what situations need more time, attention and resources.
Manage your risks:
Finally, the risks need to be managed effectively. There are four ways of managing risk including avoiding the risk, transferring the risk, reducing the risk and accepting the risk. Avoidance is not always the best or viable solution as there is no way to ever be completely risk free. Transferring is a common way of avoiding damage as the risk is no longer your problem, for example, insurance and product warranties. Reduction of risk comes from a sound knowledge of your business and little things you can do that make a difference. Acceptance is for those owners with experience and a clear mind. Nothing in life is without risk, the business owners who accept this and learn from challenges are the ones who find success.
What to look for when choosing a super fund
Over the course of your life, the contributions made to your superannuation fund can often end up being your greatest asset. Because of this, selecting a super fund is an important decision, choosing a fund with the right investment strategies for you could be the difference between retiring comfortably or not. There are five different types of superannuation fund to choose from but not all options are available to everyone.
Self-managed super funds (SMSFs) are those where the trustee is responsible for managing and making regular contributions to the fund. This option allows for more responsibility in terms of administration, compliance and investment decisions. A lot of work goes into the management and legal requirements of an SMSF so knowledge and understanding of obligations are vital.
Industry funds generally cater to employees from a specific industry although they are open to everyone. Industry funds are not-for-profit, meaning they have historically charged lower fees on average with profits funnelled back into members’ funds.
Retail funds are offered to everyone and are usually run by investment companies or banks. They were developed in the interest of those who were interested in investing and saving for their retirement. Retail super funds offer investment expertise and personal service to their clients, charging a commission for that service. A portion of the profits derived from the activities of retail super funds then goes to the shareholders.
Corporate funds are offered to specific corporations or if you are employed by a particular employer. They often return profits to their members (although they can be retail funds too), offer a wide range of investment options and are low to mid-cost funds if the business is large.
Public sector funds:
Public sector funds are offered to state and federal government employees. They generally include a wide range of benefits, lower fees and allow members to make higher super contributions.
When making comparisons between various super funds, you should look at factors, such as associated fees, benefits you will be eligible for, opportunities to invest and customer service provided by the fund. Also look for any extra benefits, such as the ability to make higher contributions, and how the fund has performed in the past five years.
FBT car parking threshold changes
The ATO has released the Taxation Determination 2019/9, which outlines changes to the fringe benefits tax (FBT) car parking threshold.
The car parking threshold for the year commencing on 1 April 2019 is $8.95. This replaces the amount of $8.83 which applied to the FBT year ended 31 March 2019. The increase has been set by adjusting the previous year amount by a factor equivalent to the movement in the Consumer Price Index (1.3%).
Section 39A of the Fringe Benefits Tax Assessment Act 1986, sets out a number of conditions that must be met before car parking facilities provided by an employer to their employees will be subject to FBT. These conditions include:
- A commercial car parking station is located within a one-kilometre radius of the employer-provided car park.
- The lowest fee charged by the car park operator is more than the car parking threshold.
- The car is parked for more than four hours between 7am and 7pm on any day.
There are circumstances where car parking benefits are exempt from FBT. These exemptions apply to:
- Employers who meet the conditions of a small business entity.
- Institutions of certain research, education, religion and charity.
- Employees with a disability (irrespective of the type of employer).
The small business car parking benefits exemption applies where all of the following conditions are satisfied:
- The parking is not provided in a commercial car park.
- The employer qualifies as a small business with a gross total income for the last income year before the relevant FBT year of less than $10 million.
- The employer is not a government body or listed public company.