Category Archives: Accounting

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Do You Owe Fringe Benefit Tax For Your Staff Christmas Party and Gifts?

Perhaps one of the most famous accountants in literature is Bob Crachitt of Charles Dicken’s ‘A Christmas Carol’. Ebenezer Scrooge is his boss, a miserly moneylender. He underpays Bob who can’t afford proper health care for the lovable little scamp Tiny Tim, let alone a wonderful Christmas feast.

No one wants to follow in the footsteps of Scrooge at this giving time of year. Because A) getting visited by three Christmas ghosts is scary and B) poor Tiny Tim! As a business owner now is the time to say thank you to your staff for all of the hard work they do throughout the year.

Before you start planning your Christmas party and/or gifts there are a few things you need to consider, such as Fringe Benefits Tax.

What Is Fringe Benefits Tax?

Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) is tax employers pay on certain benefits they provide to their employees – including their employees’ family or other associates. The benefit may be in addition to, or part of, your employee’s salary or wages package.

Only certain businesses are required to pay FBT, so it is best to speak to a trusted accountant or financial advisor to check if it applies to you.

Planning Your Party

If the amount you spend per employee for your party is less than $300 per head it does not attract FBT. So without being an Ebenezer it is important to consider the total cost per person. FBT is an extra tax and most small businesses will avoid paying it.

Planning Your Christmas Gifts

When you provide Christmas gifts, you’ll need to consider a few different components. One is the amount you spend, the type of gift and who the gift is for. Then consider the type of gift. Items such as wine or hampers are treated differently to gifts like tickets to a movie or sporting event. It is also important to consider who your gift is for, there are different rules for employees and clients/suppliers.

The Things Money Can’t Buy

There is an extra benefit of not being a Scrooge. It is important to have a fun time during the holiday season. A kind gesture of a party of gift helps to keep employee morale and loyalty high, resulting in low turnover of staff.

If you have questions about your choice of gift or party for the holiday season, you can have a look at the ATO site or book a free consultation to learn the best option for your business.


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4 Gifts Every Business Owner Wants For Christmas

The days until Christmas are rapidly counting down. Have you thought about what to get for the busy entrepreneur or business owner in your life?

So what does a time poor, driven person need? They need something that will make their life easier. Or, maybe it’s you! Are you are dreaming of presents from Santa that will take all of your cares away? Feel free to share a link to this post with your friends and family. (Hint, hint) Go on, treat yourself!

  1. Peace of Mind with Payroll and Staffing –

This may seem like an impossible fantasy, but with modern cloud-based accounting tools, this is more achievable than ever. Every business owner knows that the ‘silly season’ can quickly become the ‘stressful season’ without careful planning with their staffing. It is important that extra work equates to making more money. One way to achieve this is by keeping on top of accurate accounting for payroll.

We recommend going paperless with employee onboarding for new and casual staff during the holiday period. Ento is a cloudless employee fostering and onboarding system.

Each new hire has the ability to join the team with a digital onboarding experience. It is optimised for mobile so employees can get themselves sorted on a smartphone or tablet. This allows each staff member to become part of your workforce in a way that suits them. This is a gift that any business owner would love to see under their tree at Christmas.

Another way to put a smile on a business owner’s face is getting rid of clunky spreadsheets when scheduling staff. This means less employee phone calls to check the roster or miscommunications in between updates on the document.

Tanda is a rostering and time management app that allows for all of this and more! Tanda is cloud-based, real-time and connects to your point of sale system to capture all your staff’s logged hours. Any registered staff member can clock on and off from any POS terminal. This creates consistency in reporting and all staff are accountable for their hours.

During the holiday rush predicting how many staff to roster per shift can be difficult. In this respect, Tanda is the gift that keeps on giving. Much like Santa, Tanda is always watching! It uses algorithms to predict schedules. This software also has seamless payroll integration, so when it comes time to pay staff, this is one more step a business owner doesn’t have to worry about.

  1. An Online Accounting Subscription

If the business owner you are buying for has been extra good, a subscription to an online accounting system such as Xero, Myob or Quickbooks is the icing on the Christmas cake. Using a cloud-based accounting system that allows for quick reporting, seamless payroll, and budgeting information.

The accounting solutions mentioned above are all great options. If you have questions, it is best to speak with one of Santa’s little helpers, a trusted accountant. If you have any questions we are always happy to help.

  1. A Great Point Of Sale System

A point of sale system is a seamless combination of software and hardware that gives businesses the ability to make transactions and simplify key day-to-day business operations. ‘Simplify’ is the key word in that statement. All business owners smile when they know exactly how much they are selling of particular products or service when they are being sold and what their margins are.

A good point of sale system can help them do that and more! Square is a popular solution on many Christmas lists this year. The free Square Point of Sale app has tools to help good little boys and girls manage sales reports, send receipts via email or text message, integrate with Quickbooks or Xero and manage inventory in real time.

Vend is a homegrown POS solution that is also popular under the tree this year. This app works on iPad, Mac or PC, works offline, can easily add a discount or notes for staff use and provide history on laybys and account sales. Stay off Santa’s naughty list and this could be under your tree this year.

  1. Coffee

Every business owner knows that passion is what drives them and gets them through the ups and downs of business. And the, when passion wears thin, next in line, is coffee. Because Santa loves people who love the environment we recommend getting your favourite business owner a KeepCup or Frank Green reusable cup to keep them fuelled and the environment clean.

And if you or your business owner has been exceptionally good this year you might consider signing them up for a coffee delivery service to ensure they never run out of that dark brown elixir of life.

Start Next Year In The Black

We wish you a Christmas that puts your business in the black. If you or your favourite entrepreneur want to make the most of the holiday season it might be best to invest now. Christmas can come early.

 


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3 Ways For Hospitality and Retail Businesses To Maximise Profits During The Holiday Season

The holiday season is a fantastic time of the year. For most of us, this means food, family and holidays. For those of us in the retail and hospitality sector, it means all this and more. It is a busy time and staffing, wages and stocking can put extra stress on business owners and managers.

We know that problems with increased competition, food waste and changes in food trends are things to be aware of when maximising profits. This makes the busy holiday season critical to ensure that your business stays in the black. We know that your industry is competitive and profit margins can be tight.

We recommend three ways to maximise your profits and keep your sanity.

1. Use A Staff Rostering System

Do not rely on a spreadsheet that relies on people putting in information. Tanda is an integrated rostering and time management app with a few twists to keep things fresh. Tanda is cloud-based, real-time and connects to your point of sale system to capture all your staff’s logged hours.

Tanda’s can sync to your POS to capture all your staff’s logged hours. Staff can clock on and off from any POS terminal, ensuring your staff is accountable and you can track who’s working when.

If you need help with predicting how much staff you will need per shift, Tanda can help there too. The software uses algorithms to predict schedules. This software also has seamless payroll integration, easy employee onboarding and automated award calculators for hospitality Award rates set by Fair Work Australia.

2. Paperless Employee Onboarding

You might need to hire extra temporary staff to cover the workload. Another great option is Ento, a paperless employee rostering and onboarding system. This system has easy ways to onboard casual hires for the busy holiday season.

Your new hires have the ability to join your team with a digital onboarding experience. It is optimised for mobile devices allowing staff to manage every step of their onboarding from a smartphone or tablet. Another bonus is Ento’s digital contracts. Going paperless saves time, reduces errors and eliminates lost documents. Digital signatures allow your new hires to quickly sign all contracts and policies.

3. Start Your Financial Planning Now

October is the time to start planning your December. Speak to a trusted accountant to plan the financial targets you need to hit to maximise your profits during the busy season. Looking at your sales from last year can help project what your upcoming holiday period may look like. Problem areas such as extra staff costs or food waste can be reduced if you start early.

Interested in maximising your profits this December? Now is the time to book in for a free consultation with us.

We look forward to making this season your best quarter yet!


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Stay On Top Of Your Books In The Hospitality And Retail Sectors

Anybody who owns or manages a hospitality or retail business knows how hard it is to stay on top of things like staffing, stock and payment systems — you’re always so busy just keeping the business ticking over. In the following, we highlight the accounting software tools that are available to lighten your load, keeping your books up-to-date and transparent with very little effort on your part.

Accounting Software

The most common issue we encounter with hospitality and retail clients is that there is very little reporting on stock, staff, and profit and loss statements. Rather, business owners and managers in these sectors tend to look at their bank account, and that’s it. This means there is a lack of management of cash flow, which can lead to big issues at tax time, not to mention running out of stock or being under-staffed.

The solution to the above is as easy as investing in an accounting software system, such as Xero, MYOB or Quickbooks. Each system can generate reports on staffing, stock, and payments, and reconcile your books automatically. These systems allow small businesses to keep up-to-date with what’s coming in and going out in real time, giving owners and managers the ability to make informed decisions about staff, stock, and expenditure.

Payment Systems

On top of the above accounting software, there is a range of plugins available that provide specialised oversight and automation of separate aspects of the retail and hospitality sector.

One such plugin is Tyro, which we highly recommend for payments, due to its simplicity and competitive pricing and its ability to integrate with your payment system.

Tyro provides both hospitality and retail businesses with tailored and flexible solutions that recognise the specific needs and variations of each sector. For example, Tyro caters for everything from cafes to bars, to accommodation and retail liquor outlets within the hospitality industry. In terms of retail, Tyro is flexible enough to provide payment solutions to any kind of business, whether it’s a service such as hairdressing, a food store, or a fashion outlet.

Point of Sale

There are a number of other point of sale (POS) systems on the market, many of which target specific industries. Of these, there are three that we would recommend in particular, given their state-of-the-art features, flexibility and integration capabilities.

For retail businesses, we’d encourage you to take a look at Vend. This solution prides itself on being a comprehensive POS system that combines highly advanced technology with ease-of-use. To give you an idea of Vend’s capabilities, here are just two its standout features:

  • Sign in from anywhere at any time: Vend is based in the cloud, so you can sign in and work from anywhere on the globe, easily accessing your sales data, products and reports, even when you’re on your well-earned holiday!
  • Keep selling when the internet goes down: Vend continues to work even when it’s offline and re-syncs your data as soon as the internet comes back on, so you’re never faced with losing a sale or the uncomfortable situation of having to turn customers away.

For hospitality businesses, there are two POS systems that we think offer excellent features and flexibility for cafes, bars, restaurants, accommodation and all things in between. These are:

  • Kounta: A one-stop shop for everything POS for hospitality businesses, featuring the ability for you to customise the system to your exact needs, down to the most minute detail.
  • Square: Not only was Square one of the first POS systems to accept chip and cardless payments, it comes with the free Square POS App that gives you the tools to run every aspect of your hospitality business through your payment software.

If you have any questions about the software solutions mentioned above please get in touch with us at 360 Accounting. We have worked with small businesses in the hospitality and retail space for years and understand your unique challenges.

Book in for your free consultation today!

 

 

 


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4 Things Le Tour De France And Your Accountant Have in Common

You might not immediately think that the most famous cycling race in the world and your accountant have much in common, but we’re here to show you the similarities and how these can benefit your business.

Le Tour De France, Dinard, Brittany, France

  1. Like elite cyclists, accountants train every day
    Not only do accountants have to keep up with constant changes in small business tax and financial obligations, we are always on the look out for the best solutions for our clients. This means we are committed to training on a daily basis, including keeping up-to-date with the latest accounting apps and platforms and how they might improve our ability to provide the best financial advice and services to our clients. Add to this the yearly professional development requirements for CPAs, and you can be assured your accountant is not only fighting fit but also mentally prepared for the challenges ahead.
  2. Accountants are in it for the long haul
    No one takes on Le Tour De France unless they’re committed to seeing it through until the end. The same goes for accountants and our relationship with the businesses we work with. Once we’ve hit the road, we are there beside you through all the twists and turns of a small business, helping you adapt to changing circumstances, taking on the burden of your business bookkeeping, and providing sound financial advice for the long-term. We are committed to seeing that your business not only survives but thrives.
  3. All the best cyclists have a Plan B, and so do we
    Those who follow Le Tour De France know there’s always something that can go wrong that can’t be predicted – the infamous case in 1999, for example, when a photographer jumped out in front of Italian Giuseppe Guerini, who was leading the Alpine climb stage of the race. While the crash wasn’t the most horrific of all time, it does show how even the best can be derailed by the unpredictable. Business accountants are here to prevent the ‘crash’ and get your business back on the road with the minimum of fuss – we always have a Plan B to assist you in dealing with hiccups, such as late payments or cash flow issues. Like Giuseppe Guerini, who went on to win the stage following his encounter with the photographer, your accountant is here to get you back on track and feeling confident in your business again.
  4. Knowing when to leave it to the professionals
    How is this related to Le Tour De France, you might ask. Well, all professional cyclists start out as amateurs and have to learn the ropes from the professionals – a grueling lifestyle by all accounts, and one that only a handful make it through to compete at an international level. The parallel here is, you may be a small business owner, but that doesn’t make you an expert on small business tax or GST or bookkeeping. This is because you are the expert in your industry, which is what you should be focusing on – the day-to-day running of the business. Knowing when to hand over your financials to an accountant is key to a successful small business plan. It may be at the point you need to register for GST, or as your staff, locations and customers grow, or when you need to find ways to reduce your tax liabilities. Whatever stage it is that you find yourself feeling hemmed in by your financial obligations or the demands of growing your business is the time to hand it over to the professionals. After all, business accountants are the elite cyclists of the world of small business financial advice!

If you are at the beginning of your race or reaching your goals around a finish line now might be the right time to book in a free consultation. We are excited to help you on your race of a lifetime!


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Do You Owe Payroll Taxes On Your Contractors or Subcontractors?

Category : Accounting , Bookkeeping , Payoll

There are lots of things to consider as the end of the financial year gets closer. Especially for dynamic businesses where staffing can take a variety of forms.

Contractor or subcontractors are important during busy periods or to cover staff when they are away or ill. Sometimes the line between contract and full-time employment can get blurred.

There are different rules for each state around what constitutes permanent employment. There are some key questions to use as a guide to understanding when a contractor or subcontractor starts looking like a full-time staff member according to employment law.

This can become a grey area, take the quiz below to help you gain clarity!


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Single Touch Payroll (STP) – An ATO initiative to simplify your payroll system

What is Single Touch Payroll?

Single Touch Payroll is a Pivotal moment for both ATO and Employers. It is the biggest payroll reporting change in Australian history for all Employers. STP is a method of reporting Payroll data electronically to the ATO. It will enable employers to report payments such as wages and salaries, PAYG Withholding and Super Information directly to the ATO at the same time when employees are being paid.

Who is affected?

  • STP reporting framework will be mandatory from 1st July 2018 for Business with 20 or more employees. It is important to note that Employer needs to do a headcount by April 1st 2018 to determine if they have 20 or more employees.
  • STP is optional for employers with 19 or less employees as it is not required at this stage, but they can report voluntarily by using updated payroll software.
  • Employers with 19 or less employees have another year to prepare, however from 1st July 2019 employers will need to Start Reporting through STP. This will be subject to Legislation being passed in Parliament.

STP TIMELINE:

To know more about STP and how it may impact your business contact us on 1300 360 749 or click here for contacting a consultant.

 


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Get Organised This Spring

 

 

Spring is here; time to get everything in order, including your books. Spring cleaning is not just about the garage, basement, or bedroom, but also about your business especially the record-keeping process. It does not matter what kind of business you run, bookkeeping can be a tedious messy task. It takes time and effort to make sure records are always up to date. Bookkeeping is not a one-time job – you must put yourself into it every single day to avoid discrepancies, variance, and other potential mistakes. Take this year’s spring cleaning occasion to also address possible issues with your bookkeeping process. Here are some things you can do as a start.

 

  1. Review the recent tax year: it is never too late to tie up some loose ends. Make time to record income and expenditure for the previous tax year; you can do this by finding all business receipts and invoices. If you have not done so, make this a priority. Look for the records everywhere around your desk: drawers, purses, bags, and even your pockets. Record everything you can find on an accounting software or spreadsheet. 
  1. Review your expenses: spring cleaning your books also involves the elimination process of ineffective expenditures. Take a second look at your bank statements as well as all services, subscriptions, or memberships that cost you money. In the event you find one or two services which give no benefits whatsoever, cancel them at once. 
  1. Set up separate bank accounts: using a single bank account for personal and business can make things go wayward pretty easily. It may not be a problem if your personal transactions are limited, but that would not be the case in most situations. Separate business bank account, allows you to keep a check on business-related transactions.

We at 360 Accounting Services are here to help you get organised; get in touch with us by phone 1300 360 749 or by completing the enquiry form here 


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4 Important Tips to Improve Restaurant Business

Category : Accounting , Bookkeeping , Xero

A busy restaurant is hard to manage financially. A restaurant can face a lot of problems in sales, employees and customers. It is important to have bookkeeping of the financial records and manage all the things. With bad financial management your restaurant can go in a loss, even if you are getting a lot of customers in your restaurant or a café.
Here are Important 4 tips that can be useful to manage your restaurant.

1: Manage Cash flow

Cash flow has been always a big problem for restaurants and café businesses.  Poor cash flow can result in the failing of a business. Around 80% of the new restaurants and cafés loses their business because of poor cash flow. The key rule is to have money readily available to cover the urgent expenses. It is important to keep track of the cash flow throughout the year. After keeping track of the cash flow then you need to forecast the budget for your next month expenses and revenues. The previous records can also help in forecasting the cash flow. This forecast will give you an estimate on how to manage the expenses.

2: Organize Payroll

Payroll fluctuations is one of the biggest problems for restaurant business. Employees can join and leave a restaurant which can cause fluctuation in the payroll. Other things such as increase or decrease in food items can also affect the payroll. Just like how you manage a cash flow, you can organize a payroll by using a budget system. Always set a budget before the start of a month or a year for your restaurants. Then record the financial data and analyze it. This will give you an idea on how a system is working and what items are more or less expensive. This will also give you an idea on how many people you can hire next year. You can also analyze the turnover in food costs and wages of the employees. It is important to keep an eye on the essential things in the restaurant, such as maintenance.

3: Have Cloud Accounting

It is a hectic job for small business owner to manage bookkeeping and accounting. Nobody wants to spend hours on bookkeeping. With technology improving day by day, moving your business to cloud is the best solution to manage the financial records. Cloud accounting offers services that can reduce the time of managing bills, invoices, salaries etc. This can be a good way to have a paperless office as everything works online. Cloud accounting offers an efficient and accurate business analysis.

4: Use Accounting Software

Accounting software’s can be one of the best solution for your business. Manual system is inefficient for a growing business. Accounting software can provide many services. It can manage financial records by automating repetitive tasks, which can help in payroll and reporting of the records. The software can efficiently perform tasks to of computing sales, salaries, profits and expenses. It can also perform other services depending on your requirements.

Call us on 1300 360 749 for all your bookkeeping needs


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EOFY Checklist for Small Businesses

Category : Accounting , Bookkeeping

 

With the financial year end approaching, your focus as business owner will have to be divided into two things: to keep the business running as usual, and preparing all documentations for tax time. EOFY accounting requires a lot of paperwork, below is overall checklist for EOFY accounting;

  • Payroll: in simple words, having your payroll documentation ready means you have it checked, reviewed, and updated. By the end of June, all payments for staff and employees should be recorded. As a business owner, you must understand that all employees’ PAYG summaries have to be lodged by July 14; the summary lists all the payments you have made and the amounts you withheld, so the employees can file their own tax returns accordingly.

  • Income: knowing your income for the current financial year allows you to see whether your sales have (or have not) met the targets/budget. Balance sheet must be reconciled so you understand your current position in the business. Comparing sales from previous years will help you understand the trends in your business.

  • COGS: Cost of Goods Sold, or more commonly referred to as COGS, is the cost attributable to production of goods sold by your business. If you are a manufacturer, this is basically the production cost which may include the cost of materials, labour, and even distribution. In general, COGS is the amount of money you spend to get the product in the first place until you sell it; therefore, it also covers indirect expenses for sales force as well. COGS data appears on income statement for you to calculate gross margin.

  • GST (Goods and Services Tax): for most goods and services, GST is at 10%. This regulation applies to most (not all) Australian businesses. If you are small business owner, chances are your company is subject to GST. The rule of thumb is that you need to collect GST from your customers (normally calculated as one-eleventh of actual sale price) and give it to ATO (Australian Taxation Office) every time you lodge BAS. Every business that has GST turnover of at least $75,000 or non-profit organization with at least $150,000 turn over must register for GST.

  • Stock or Inventory: assets and investments are considered inventory. Proper inventory check involves physical verification of quantities and conditions of all the assets and investments you have. The main purpose is to have accurate valuation and audit. It allows you to see what you need for the coming year and establish the stock turnover.

While EOFY can be daunting, it is an essential process that every business needs to undergo. It is all necessary to understand your current position in the market, financial strength you have, and make sure that you comply with the law. To better understand the EOFY accounting, contact 360 Accounting services on 1300 360 749 or fill in our Enquiry form.