June 30th marks the end of the Financial Year here in Australia. The end of the Financial Year can cause great stress to small business owners. With only 4 weeks to go here are some strategies that will help you have a stress free End of Financial Year.
1. Set up your filing for the New Financial Year
The fastest way that you will get ‘out of control’ at the end of the financial year is to not have your filing system set up for the new financial year. Documents will go missing as you wont have anywhere to put them as the current financial years filing system is still needed. This could add many hours onto your Bookkeeping Time, as you will spend it searching for documents that can’t be located in the pile of paperwork.
If you need more information on setting up your filing system then you can read my blog – How to set up a basic filing system.
2. Ensure that you have all your Employee Details entered correctly
Payment Summaries are due within the first two weeks after the 30th of June one of the main reasons they don’t get done on time is that when you go to do them there is information missing and the payroll program you use, wont print them. Spend the next few weeks looking at each of your staff members file in your payroll program and make sure you have all their information entered.
The most common things missing are their Date of Birth, their Tax File Number and their Address. Make sure you check them properly, and then when it comes time to print the Payment Summaries it all flows perfectly.
3. See Your Accountant
It’s never too late to see your Accountant, but the earlier you do it the more time you have to implement the suggestions he makes. When you go see your Accountant take with you your Profit & Loss and Balance Sheet, sit down and talk about where your business is at and what Tax Effective measures you need to make before the end of the Financial Year, or what you have to set up heading into the new Financial Year.
This is the time you also work with your Accountant to set targets for the next financial year.
4. Superannuation Contributions
One of the things you will need to talk to with your Accountant about is your personal superannuation contribution. As a Business Owner you will need to pay your personal superannuation contribution prior to the 30th of June to get a deduction.
One of the most tax-effective ways of building your retirement savings is through personal superannuation contributions. But you need to be careful that you do not exceed your concessional contributions cap. The concessional contributions cap for the 2014/15 Financial Year is $30,000. Make sure you talk to your Accountant before making these types of contributions.
5. Update your Accounting Program
If you are using a desktop Accounting Program, now is the time to investigate if it needs to be updated. When I first started Bookkeeping you only needed to purchase the Accounting Program once and then not worry about it, but for the last 5 or 6 years there have been so many Tax Law changes and Employee Changes that you are having to upgrade you Accounting Program at least at the start of the Financial Year, if not several times during the year.
If you haven’t heard from your Software Company yet, now is the time to seek out if your Accounting Program needs to be updated. Check their website, or email them, but find out if you need to update your program.
If you use an Online Program then the program will automatically be updated and at the very most you will need to update the file only.
6. Make sure you are SuperStream Complaint
If you employ 20 or more employees then you should already be SuperStream Complaint. But if you have 19 or fewer employees then you need to make sure you are SuperStream Complaint by the 1st of July 2015.
What is SuperStream Complaint I hear you ask. Well SuperStream Complaint is a standard that offers a simpler way of making superannuation contributions for many employers. Under the stream you will need to:
- Send all super data electronically
- Make contribution payments electronically
- Link data and money with a unique payment reference number
- Send data and payments on the same day
To become SuperStream Complaint by the 1st of July you may need to:
- Upgrade your software so that it is compliant with the standard
- Get assistance from a Bookkeeper or Accountant who can help you meet the standard
- Get advice from your super fund on how your business can meet the standard – you should have already been receiving information from your super fund but may have been ignoring it. Now is the time to drag out that information and go over it.
7. Do a Budget
Now is the time to do a budget. A budget is an estimate of income and expenses over a period of time, wether that is a few months, twelve months or 5 years.
By doing a budget now for next financial year it assists you to plan your actions for achieving your quantified objectives. It helps measure your performance and it helps to cope with foreseeable adverse situations.