JobKeeper and COVID Support Has Ended, so Now What?
The job seeker, job keeper and cash flow boost initiatives were the life lines that many businesses needed to see them through 2020. But now that we’re about to embark on a new financial year, many businesses are feeling unsupported, and faced with the reality that now their success is solely in their own hands.
The 2021-2022 financial year is going to be one of the toughest years for business, as the market will correct itself. By that I mean that businesses that are not viable will face the decision to close the doors permanently, while others will look for opportunity and take on a new direction. Whichever category you find yourself identifying with, here is a list of things that you can do now that government support for covid has ceased.
Seek New Opportunity
If COVID has significantly impacted your business or your industry then maybe the time to look for new opportunities is now. If you want to continue in the same business or industry, look for new innovative ways to serve your customers. A good place to start would be to contact previous customers and ask them if they were to buy from you again, how could your business help them the most.
If you feel called to step into a new direction, above all else be kind to yourself. Many people dream of starting businesses and never actually take action, and that person is not you. You actually gave it a go and got started – which is actually the hardest part! This is an achievement to be proud of regardless of your decision on what to do next. There are no failures in life, only learning opportunities. No one could have predicted what 2020 delivered, not even the biggest, most profitable well-established businesses, and there was not one business that was left unimpacted.
Small business grants are the way that the government will show up and support industries and sectors of the market that they feel need help the most. Grants will be announced and released on the government website Grant Connect and will be distributed after an application and approval process.
Individual states also are offering limited grants to support businesses that have been impacted in individual states. a list of links to those websites are here:
If you have found yourself in with a pile of business debt loading up the time to act is now. Pause or cancel any unneeded expenses or subscriptions, so funds are not drained from your bank account or charged to your credit card unnecessarily as you ponder your next move. In general, creditors would rather have some money than no money, and if you find yourself in a position where you owe a lot of money then the first action to take is to contact the creditor let them know your situation and try to work out a payment plan or ask for extended payment terms. Nothing beats good old-fashioned communication.
Closing a Business
If you decide that it’s time to close your business here are some practical steps to take.
If you have any outstanding lodgements with the ATO it’s best to get them up to date. Eligibility around a lot of the government support delivered in 2020 was in favour of those with updated tax lodgements. If you find yourself in a position where you might be eligible or need government support in the future, you wouldn’t want something as silly as having an overdue tax lodgement holding you back.
If you have any business registrations such as an ABN, GST or PAYGW, then you can cancel them by contacting the Australian Business Register.
If you reported a business loss in your tax return, these losses will be carried forward to future returns to be offset against the same business, should you decide to operate again in the future. If you do not operate your business again, then you may never actually get any tax benefit from these losses.