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A Proactive Approach

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How businesses can navigate a path forward.

The Australian economy is currently dealing with the extensive impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, and around the country businesses of all types are seeking to negotiate its immediate and ongoing effects.

Industry will have to collectively adjust to the new economic and social reality, and businesses will need to position themselves as best as possible in the coming months in line with local, state and national planning and initiatives.

In doing so, businesses need to be realistic about their financial situation, and to keep up to date with the latest developments, including any government assistance they may potentially be eligible for.

A Look At The Financial Perspective: Steps For Businesses

In addressing the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, it is now more important than ever for businesses to exercise tight control over their finances, adjusting and redirecting spending when necessary.

Undertaking a thorough review of your business’ finances can help to shed light on the sorts of actions you should be taking, and can contribute to keeping operations running smoothly in both the short and long term.

As advised via the business.gov.au website, there are a range of measures businesses can take when it comes to carrying out a financial review, including:

  • Set up a cash flow statement – tracking all money flowing in and out of a business, helping to identify any reduction in cash flow early on
  • Talk to creditors – potentially helping to prevent late penalties, and get information about any hardship provisions they may have
  • Create a budget – providing insight into how to direct your money where it’s most needed, helping to prioritise any debt, make business decisions and get finance
  • Learn about tax support – relief is being provided by the ATO for certain tax obligations for taxpayers affected by the COVID-19 outbreak on a case-by-case basis

It is important for businesses to take a proactive approach when considering these and other measures, and acting early could help prevent potential future issues.

Of course, if in doubt about what sort of financial measures you should be taking, it is worthwhile seeking out expert advice.

Government assistance for businesses The federal government has introduced a range of measures to assist businesses in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, designed to deliver both short-term support and address its ongoing economic impact.

For instance, one of its main initiatives is the $130 billion JobKeeper payment, designed to help keep Australians employed.

As advised via business.gov.au, JobKeeper is designed to help impacted businesses, accessing a subsidy to continue paying their employees, providing eligible businesses $1,500 per fortnight per eligible employee until September 27, 2020.

Under another federal government initiative, business.gov.au advises that small businesses (employing fewer than 20 employees) that employ an apprentice or trainee may be eligible for a wage subsidy of 50 per cent of their wage paid from January 1, 2020 to September 30, 2020.

Meanwhile, around the country state governments have also taken steps to  support businesses – and, in line with your specific circumstances, it is worthwhile looking into what sort of assistance your business may be eligible for at both a federal and state level.

The good news is that there are plenty of small business advisory services available, and it is certainly worthwhile utilising resources such as business.gov.au to determine what free and low-cost services are available in your area.

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