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July 2016
 

Westpac Otago Chamber of Commerce Business Awards 
 

The aim of these awards is to help people focus and promote their business, and to present them with the opportunity to gain recognition for their achievements.

Entry is free and you can nominate any Otago-based business, including your own.

For entry forms and further information, click here


Audit service changes

As a firm, these types of engagements represent only a small fraction of our client base, and in light of ongoing changes to relevant professional standards, do not warrant the required investment in staff and processes.

Traditionally this work has been performed for Not for Profit community organisations at discounted rates. We are working with these organisations to find alternative audit providers. To further assist these groups, we will, at no cost, assist with the preparation of financial statements and liaise with the new auditor.

For employers - clearer record keeping required 
 

From 1 April 2016 new employment standards legislation reinforces employer obligations to keep accurate employment records and produce them when requested by a labour inspector.

Good record keeping protects the employer in the case of a dispute and ensures that an employee’s entitlements are correctly met.

The key requirement in the new legislation is that employers should be able to produce a record of the number of hours worked by employees each day in a pay period, and the pay for those hours. This should be in an easily accessible format on request from an employee or from a labour inspector. Employers will have flexibility as to what form this record takes.

Try these top tips:

  • Keep updated records — employers must record details on a daily basis as required by the changes
  • Keep  files for long enough — businesses must keep details for at least six years
  • Maintain accurate information to be able to accurately calculate pay for leave or a final payment when an employee resigns
  • Keep a clear description of all roles to help with performance management
  • Ensure you supply detailed and accurate records when you outsource your payroll
Employment contracts are now a legal requirement

Creating an employment agreement is an important step when hiring staff. It’s a legal requirement to have a written agreement for each person you employ — just a handshake, or other informal contract, is not enough.

A written agreement is also a great foundation for an employment relationship. Both you and your employee know where you stand. And if there is a disagreement, you both have rights and protection under the law.

Follow the steps in this Employment Agreement Builder to create an agreement for each of your employees. You can tailor your agreements to fit each role and the needs of your business.

 


Need investment advice?


Peter Ashworth is an authorised financial adviser (AFA) with NZ Funds based in Dunedin. The firm has a long association with Peter, who acts for a number of our clients and we regularly partner with him in presenting seminars on financial planning and investment. Peter writes a monthly Managing Funds column for the ODT, seeking to provide readers with an insight on how topical investment matters may be affecting investors and their situation. He also outlines his thoughts on how investors can deal with the challenges presented to them.

Brain not wired for investment success

An "a-ha moment" happens to many people at certain points in their professional lives. This is the moment when you gained a material insight into an issue that is central to your working role. My "a-ha" moment" occurred in 2007 as I read a research study titled 'Quantitative Analysis of Investor Behaviour.

Read more

 

Not for Profit organisations - new reporting standards

Many people who donate or who are thinking about donating to charities want reassurance that the organisations they are interested in have a genuine commitment to do good for the cause they stand for.

As a not for profit organisation, it is important to be open and transparent about where your income came from and what you did with it. To assist with this, the External Reporting Board has introduced New Reporting Standards.

There are four different reporting tiers based on annual operating expenditure. This allows smaller charities to prepare financial statements on a simplified basis and also include non-financial information which helps you to tell the story of your charity in a way that financial information alone cannot.

We encourage you to watch the video and review the information available on the Charities Services website to make sure you understand what is required from you and to contact us if there is anything you don’t understand or need help with.

 
Free Yard Safety test

Farmer fighting for his life last night after being "maliciously" gored in an attack by a cattle beast” is not the news anyone wants to hear. There is no doubt that Cattle Yards are a dangerous place on the farm ranking second on the list with ACC.

Te Pari see hundreds of yards each year in their travels so have decided to do something to help ensure your safety.

Te Pari’s new website www.yardsafe.co.nz is designed to help you access the safety of your cattle yards. The site has 15 thought provoking questions that helps the user to identify dangerous areas in your yards and then will email you a simple 1-page report that gives a priority ranking to issues identified. The site is free to use and also contains useful links to H&S information provided by the government and other industry providers.

On April 1, 2016 the new health and safety laws which governs all workplace (and farm) related injuries have taken affect – and if you’re the owner or manager – you’re liable. So don’t let dangerous yards cost you! Do the test now at www.yardsafe.co.nz

 
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