What is Customer Service – Leigh Barker MWC Group

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Customer service is the support offered to customers before, during and after they purchase or use your products. Customer service is integral to maintaining client relationships which is the key to continuing revenue thus many businesses endeavour to increase customer service levels to generate a positive perception of the business as a whole.

A successful business will recognise the importance of providing outstanding customer service which can mean the difference between retaining or losing a customer thus customer service should be a one-stop endeavour for the customer and proactively following up the customer to ensure they are fully satisfied is a smart move.

Customer service representatives of a business must be accessible, knowledgeable and courteous with good listening skills and the ability to compromise to reach a solution in particular since the introduction of technology such as smartphones where customer service will increasingly be centred on the mobile experience.

No matter the size of a business good customer service must be at the heart of the business model thus improving customer service skills can lead to greater customer satisfaction and while it can take extra time, resources and money, good customer service can generate positive word of mouth for a business to grow and prosper.

Customer service can increase customer loyalty. Increase how often customers uses your goods and services which in turn increases the amount of money a customer spends in your business.

In general, customers are willing to pay for a better experience thus good customer service experiences will benefit the bottom line.

Disclaimer: Prepared by Leigh Barker MWC Group, Accountant, Portfolio Finance, Gordon, West Pennant Hills and Tangible Assets. Note that all content of this blog is general in nature and is not financial or investment advice thus anyone intending to apply the information to practical circumstances should seek professional advice to independently verify their interpretation and the information’s applicability to their particular circumstance.

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What is a Travel Allowance? – Leigh Barker MWC Group

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A travel allowance is an amount paid to employees to compensate for out of pocket expenses incurred on behalf of the employer while you travel for work. In the main a travel allowance will cover such expenses as accommodation, food, drink, transport, laundry and telecommunications.

A travel allowance is paid to an employee who is travelling on business and is not thought of as living away from home. Generally, an employee travelling for business is not accompanied by their spouse or children.

While a travel allowance is considered to be assessable income which may attract PAYG withholding, any expenses incurred on meals and incidentals may be deducted against the allowance on the proviso that it meets the criteria.

Every year the Australian Tax Office (ATO) releases a tax determination listing all reasonable amounts that can be paid as a travel allowance covering accommodation, meals and incidentals.

Thus, when the amount claimed by an employee for a domestic travel allowance does not exceed the ATO’s reasonable allowance amount there is generally no requirement to substantiate the claim by providing either written evidence or a travel diary. If the expenses associated with the travel allowance exceed the reasonable travel allowance set by the ATO it would wise to retain documentary evidence to substantiate the expense. Conversely, claims for overseas expenses must be substantiated through written evidence inclusive of a travel diary.

If the travel allowance does not appear on the payment summary the allowance is not included in the return and in this instance, there is no ability to claim any deductions.

Please note: Prepared by Leigh Barker MWC Group , Accountant, Portfolio Finance, Gordon, West Pennant Hills and Tangible Assets. Note that all content of this blog is general in nature and anyone intending to apply the information to practical circumstances should seek professional advice to independently verify their interpretation and the information’s applicability to their particular circumstance

What is an Electronic Service Address – LEIGH BARKER TANGIBLE ASSETS

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An electronic service address (ESA) is a unique identifier used by a Self-Managed Superannuation Fund to receive SuperStream data. An electronic service address is not an active email address it is an alias comprising a uniform resource locator (URL) or internet protocol (IP) of a message provider.

An electronic service address is akin to a digital post office established to receive data from employers through SuperStream. Employers only remit contribution remittance advice information via the electronic service address and all contributions money is remitted directly to the self-managed superannuation fund bank account.

An electronic service address can be obtained from either a Gateway Service, a bank, a tax agent, an accountant, or a self-managed superannuation fund administrator. The provider of an electronic service address will

* Issue an active electronic service address
* Receive contributions messages sent to a self-managed superannuation fund from employers
* Transfer employer contribution messages
* Ensure that all technical requirements for interacting electronically across the superannuation network in accordance with the ATO’s electronic data messaging requirements for gateways
* Once provided to an employer the service will deliver superannuation transaction messages via a secured electronic distribution network to a nominated email address

For a self-managed superannuation fund to receive contributions, the following information is to be provided to employers

* Australian Business Number (ABN)
* Bank account details (BSB, account number, account name)
* Electronic service address (ESA)

Thus providing the employer knows the self-managed superannuation funds Australian Business Number (ABN) and Electronic Service Address (ESA) the employer can send SuperStream data.

Please note: Prepared by Leigh Barker Tangible Assets, MWC Group, Accountant, Portfolio Finance, Gordon and West Pennant Hills. Note that all content of this blog is general in nature and anyone intending to apply the information to practical circumstances should seek professional advice to independently verify their interpretation and the information’s applicability to their particular circumstance

What is a Trust – Leigh Barker MWC Group

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A trust is a business structure whereby the trustee conducts a business on
behalf of the beneficiaries. As a trust is not a separate legal entity, a
trustee must be appointed.

A trustee can be an individual or a company whereas a beneficiary can be a
person, a company or the trustee of another trust. The trustee will manage
investments, maintain records, and manage assets and distributions. The
overriding duty of a trustee is to adhere to the terms of the trust deed and
to act in the best interests of the beneficiaries.

A trust is established by a formal deed that outlines how the trust is to
operate. The trust deed defines the relationships between the trustee and
the beneficiaries and sets out the duties and powers of the trustee.

A trust distributes on an annual basis all profits to the beneficiaries who
pay tax individually and provided that all profits are distributed a trust
does not pay tax.

A trust structure has both advantages and disadvantages and without
identifying any specific type of trust they are generally seen to be

  • Asset Protection
  • The ability to pass wealth from one generation to the next
  • A reduction in liability where a company acts as trustee
  • The expense of establishing and administering
  • The inability to distribute losses
  • The limited life of the trust deed

Prior to deciding on a business structure seek professional advice from an
accountant, solicitor or business advisor to ensure that the structure
selected meets your personal circumstances and business objectives.

Please note: Prepared by Leigh Barker MWC Group, Accountant, Portfolio
Finance, Gordon, West Pennant Hills and Tangible Assets,. Note that all
content of this blog is general in nature and anyone intending to apply the
information to practical circumstances should seek professional advice to
independently verify their interpretation and the information’s
applicability to their particular circumstance.

What is a Sole Trader – Leigh Barker MWC Group

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Where an individual operates a business as the sole person they are
generally referred to as a sole trader.

Becoming a sole trader is the simple and relatively inexpensive. A sole
trader has full control of all assets, makes all business decisions, is a
low cost structure and has fewer reporting requirements.

A sole trader has many characteristics, some of which are listed below

  • Unless a business name is required, set up costs are negligible
  • Administration is generally limited to bookkeeping and accounting
  • A sole trader retains all the profits of their business
  • A sole traders financial information is kept private
  • A sole trader is legally responsible for all aspects of the business
  • A sole trader is personally liable with unlimited liability

A sole trader business model is most popular with tradesman and specialist
service providers prior to commencing business as a sole trader

  • determine if any form of authorisation or registrations are required
    from regulators or local authorities
  • consider managing the business separately by operating from a
    separate bank account
  • ascertain if business insurances are required or desirable
  • find suitable premises to operate from within

As a sole trader business grows it is relatively easy to change this form of
business structure or to close a business operating as a sole trader.

Prior to deciding on a business structure seek professional advice from an
accountant, solicitor or business advisor to ensure that the structure
selected meets your personal circumstances and business objectives.

Please note: Prepared by Leigh Barker MWC Group, Accountant, Portfolio
Finance, Gordon, West Pennant Hills and Tangible Assets,. Note that all
content of this blog is general in nature and anyone intending to apply the
information to practical circumstances should seek professional advice to
independently verify their interpretation and the information’s
applicability to their particular circumstance.