With the end of JobKeeper imminent, thousands of businesses across Australia are squinting at the dawn of a post-coronavirus era. A new era set to start on 28 March. There’s no doubt that the operational disruption and disorder caused by the COVID-19 crisis has truly changed how we all live and work. One year on from the pandemic’s global outbreak, business isn’t as it ‘used to be’. But, that doesn’t mean there isn’t cause for optimism and enthusiasm for the future as Australia moves forward with its recovery.
So, to lead your business through the transition from subsidy support to financial independence, we have the following guidance to help you.
1. Analyse your business operations
Take a good look at how your business operates to see if you can reduce costs. Consider your team’s actual transition to ‘COVID-normal’ — be realistic about how quickly (or not) your day-to-day operations will return to a pre-pandemic routine. Are your staff returning to the office full-time; or are they splitting their work time between home and your workplace? What savings can you make based on where your workforce will be conducting their duties? Alternatively, if your business has a store front or retail space – do you need to continue to rent or maintain this? Or can you generate enough income to meet your financial responsibilities from online sales only, therefore reducing your rental obligations?
2. Review your labour and staff requirements
It’s important that you review and determine the size of the workforce you need to run your business right now. Do you need the same level of labour? Or consider the flipside: calculate how much labour your business can afford to determine your immediate operational needs. On another note, it’s essential you understand if you are up to date with your staff entitlements. If you’re not sure, speak to an accounting professional, like Dexterous, who can advise you what your legal responsibilities are.
Another option is to apply for any cash grants or tax deferrals that your business qualifies for in your state. Some examples include:
- Apply for the Jobmaker Hiring Credit Scheme which incentivises businesses to employ young job seekers. Your business can receive payments for any eligible employees you hire from 7 October 2020 until 6 October 2021.
- Investigate if you can take advantage of the Business Events program. This scheme provides delegates, including buyers and sellers, with financial support to attend and participate at exhibitions, conferences and conventions.
- Alternatively, you can find a list of available grants in NSW here.
3. Protect your cash flow
We talk often about the importance of cash flow. Effectively managing your cash flow as a business is essential for survival. With reports of many businesses struggling to pay their own bills, you can limit your exposure to insolvent customers by communicating your payment deadlines effectively before releasing your goods. For example, request a deposit or full payment for services, or reducing your payment deadline for goods.
Get the support you need for success
As leading tax and finance professionals, our team is here to assist and guide you as your business transitions from subsidy-support to financial independence. If you would like to find out more about how we can help, contact your Client Manager directly, call, or email us for an obligation-free consultation here. We look forward to supporting you as your business grows again.