Weekly Digest – 15 April 2020

The Easter break this year was certainly different than any of us would have experienced before. For many, given the disruption over the past few weeks, it was a perfect time to take a breath and recharge.

We continue to adjust to staying home as much as we can, working remotely or in adjusted environment, and gathering any information we can to assist with our temporary “normal”.  It is pleasing to see the downward trend of the Coronavirus across Australia and let’s hope that continues as we all keep our distance and follow the guidelines to stay safe.

The government has released a range of financial stimulus packages to support small business which we have been reporting on each week via our newsletters and blogs. Many other businesses are providing support and doing what they can to help business owners keep the lights on and maintain sanity during these strange days. In this weeks wrap up we are talking about JobKeeper and what happens next, Mandatory Code of Conduct for Commercial Tenancies, Cashflow, Cyber Security and included are some resources you may find helpful as well.

JobKeeper update

In case you missed it, the government passed legislation for the $130 billion JobKeeper payment last week. Steve has put all of the information together in a structured blog with everything you need to know about JobKeeper, the criteria and how to apply. Click here for all the detail – some points in brief below.

The ATO’s website has a dedicated spot to enrol and apply for the JobKeeper payment from 20th April onward. The website has details of the steps you (or your registered tax professional) can take to enrol for the JobKeeper payment.

Please be aware, you are required to continue paying at least $1500 to each eligible employee per JobKeeper fortnight (the first JobKeeper fortnight is the period from 30 March to 12 April).

You also have to ensure you meet eligibility requirements and notify your eligible employees. Your employees will have a notice to complete and return to you by the end of April (if you want to claim from April).

Note: you cannot pay your employees less than $1500 per fortnight and keep the difference.

There’s an 8-step process you need to complete, which you can find here. Please get in touch with us if you would like to chat through this.

It’s worthwhile checking your bank account details in the MyGov portal for your business and update them if necessary.

Mandatory Code of Conduct for Commercial Tenancies

Last week, Prime Minister Scott Morrison announced some new measures for landlords and tenants under a mandatory Code of Conduct for commercial tenancies.

The code will apply to tenancies where the tenant or landlord is eligible for the JobKeeper program, those that are in financial distress. This code includes “good-faith principles” where landlords must not terminate the lease or draw on a tenant’s security and likewise, tenants must honour their lease.

You can find more details here.

Are you worried about cashflow?

If you’re worried about your cashflow, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us. We will do all we can to help you implement cash management processes and forecasting techniques to help. There are also some finance options available to you as well. Facilities may be provided quite quickly, so just ask if you need some help and we’ll work out what’s best for you.

Protect yourself

The government warns there has been an increase in cyber activity around COVID-19. Often these criminals are trying to steal personal information and banking details and will sometimes try to get you to install software. This website has some good tips to keep your information safe.

Helpful resources

LinkedIn has made a number of courses aimed at small businesses free til June. These courses cover topics including marketing, managing remote teams, self-care, and financial planning.

Zapier has been all-remote since it started, and in this article, co-founder Wade Foster explains how the company relies on teams, tools, processes to make it all work.

Managing a remote team requires a different mindset and a different understanding of each employee’s situation. This post from Lighthouse has 31 questions and helpful context for better management of remote teams.

This pandemic won’t last forever, but it’s likely that businesses will be different afterwards. This article in Harvard Business Review has ideas for preparing your business for the post-pandemic world.

Futurist and founder of XPRIZE Peter Diamandis discusses three things he’s hopeful about and three things that small businesses should do to prepare for what comes next.

Fee-Free NSW TAFE Courses

NSW TAFE is offering fee-free courses in conjunction with the NSW government. To be fully subsidised, you must live or work in NSW. You can find the eligibility requirements and courses available on their website.

Time for some good news!

An anonymous donor has gifted every household in a small US town with gift cards from local businesses, including a grocery store, restaurant and coffee shop. Buying a gift card to redeem later is a nice way you can support your local cafe, restaurant or other struggling business.

Thank you

That’s it for this week. Thank you for your continued support and patience as we work to wade through government packages, announcements and updates each week. Please get in touch if you have any questions. We are in this together.