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  • 22-Aug-2018 18:52 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Are you a business that can add value across the social services sector and/or enhance partnerships to alleviate poverty and inequality in NSW? Join NSW Council of Social Services (NCOSS) through NCOSS Connections to work with communities to support people that are experiencing poverty and inequality.

    NCOSS Connections brings together businesses, not-for-profit organisations and government to work together towards a NSW free of poverty and inequality.

    We are looking for businesses with aligned values who are seeking to:

    - Provide high quality, targeted services / products ( IT, Marketing, Financial, Professional Development, etc) to our not-for-profit members to help build the capacity of the social sector and/or

    - Connect to stakeholders across the social services and/or government sectors to explore possible collaborations that will alleviate poverty and disadvantage across NSW.

    How We Connect

    In 2015 NCOSS played an integral part in the development of the $1.1 billion Social and Affordable Housing Fund (SAHF). Through consultations, workshops and networking events, NCOSS Connections brought together key stakeholders including representatives of the social sector, community housing providers, consumers, developers, investors, social housing finance advisors and urban planners for opportunities to collaborate. Through key networking events and participation in a bespoke broker workshops, NCOSS was able to assist in brokering partnerships and in the development of strong and innovative proposals to tender for SAHF Phase 2 funding.

    Join NCOSS Connections to link with leaders across the social services and government sectors and gain access to advocacy and policy expertise around social issues affecting NSW.

    NCOSS Connections Member Benefits:

    - Align your business with a trusted brand and the peak body for the social sector;

    - Unique opportunities to engage with government and social sector leaders;

    - Promote your product and/or service offerings both targeted at not-for-profit organisations and more generally;

    - Validate your brand as a leader in Corporate Social Responsibility

    Let’s connect for greater social impact!

    Contact us today to discuss how you can be a part of the journey to advocate, collaborate and mobilise for change to end poverty and inequality in NSW.

    For more information contact: Susie Saba | Business Development Manager | E: | P: 02 8960 7918 | M: 0407 780 787

  • 21-Aug-2018 17:55 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Book now for Northcott’s 23rd Annual Cricket Gala Dinner.


    Thursday 8 November 2018


    Sydney Cricket Ground


    6pm: Pre-dinner drinks presented by Terry Shields Toyota

    7pm: Dinner in the Noble Dining Room

    11pm: Dinner concludes


    Individual $295 inc. GST

    Table of Ten $2,950 inc. GST

    We hope you can join Northcott for a great event that is attended by over 400 corporate guests, attracts past and present cricketers and importantly raises funds for recreational and social activities for children and adults with disability so they can achieve their goals!

    Click here to book now 

  • 21-Aug-2018 16:48 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    By Future City Minds – Western Sydney

    When it comes to Western Sydney growth, some exciting statistics get bandied about:

    • Home to 47% of Sydney’s population
    • An estimated 200,000 new jobs expected by 2020
    • A projected 1.9% population growth each year over the next 20 years

    The results that came out of the survey we conducted, tracking the responses from 2,895 Australian professionals were just as interesting:

    • 64% believe that in the next five years, Western Sydney has the potential to progress economically to the level of a large city like Sydney or Melbourne
    • 65% of Western Sydney professionals would prefer to work outside the CBD over working within it
    • 91% of professionals in the region would like to change their jobs to work closer to home given the right opportunity

    What all these statistics confirm, is that Western Sydney should be the focus for businesses. But don’t just take our word for it.

    As part of our Future City Minds series, we gathered a team of seven true Western Sydney advocates, across different industries, age groups and cultures. There’s the head of a local law firm. The leader of a co-working space. A founding partner in a property investor. Serial entrepreneurs. And a champion of women’s employees.

    Up for discussion were hiring tactics and niche opportunities – ways to spread your HR spending in clever ways, and smart tactics around retention and marketing. It’s a way of building a tool-kit for you to negotiate the road to a real Western Sydney dream: and our way of investing in being a part of that dream.

    These interviews, coupled with the results of our Australia-wide survey, can be downloaded as a report by clicking on the link below:

    Download the free Future City Minds report now!

  • 21-Aug-2018 15:22 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Written by John Spender, Director of Business Advisory at William Buck Chartered Accountants and Advisors

    Australian advanced manufacturers, have the power to contribute to the growth of the economy and be competitive on the global stage through sophisticated business processes, involving innovation and technology.

    Small to Medium Enterprises (SME’s) are in the best position to excel in advanced manufacturing because their size makes them agile; allowing them to be more flexible, innovative and take more risks. However, their barriers to long term growth are their lack of planning and organising.

    The Industry 4.0 era is one of automation and data exchange, with new markets, new products, new technologies and new ways to manufacture existing goods.

    For an SME to succeed in Industry 4.0, the question manufacturers need to ask is, where do we want to go and how do we get there?

    The answer is reliant on two key factors:

    1. Assessing practical areas of business management - namely strategy

    2. Utilising grants to help develop their strategic plan and increase budgets.

    Getting strategy right – redefine the long-term

    Technology is an ongoing strategic negotiation which challenges businesses to evolve rapidly. The rapid pace of change means business owners are working in compressed time frames making it harder to plan.

    A common misconception is that planning isn’t relevant in the changing environment. However, more than ever a business needs a strategic plan, because it presents a vision for the future and without it, there’s no direction or accountability. It also makes an organisation more responsive and provides clear focus by outlining objectives with actions.

    The key difference that plans of the past and plans of today have, are that owners need to redefine what long-term is.

    While historically a long-range plan was approximately ten years, today business owners should not be forecasting a period any longer than 2-3 years. It’s also best to divide the strategy into manageable stages.

    This is a good timeframe to create a framework with achievable goals and when used in conjunction with monitoring tools such as a balanced scorecard, enables a business to see areas that need improvement. A strategy should also carefully align with budget, cashflow and forecasts.

    Today’s manufacturers are experiencing the benefits and challenges of new interconnected and intelligent manufacturing technologies and system changes such as automation. In last year’s Making Western Sydney Greater report, 88% of Manufacturers in Western Sydney believed that automation would be good for their business, with 65% believing it would displace more jobs than it creates by 2030.

    Technology is having a huge impact on the industry and businesses, leading to increasing profits, changing workforces and driving efficiencies. Companies of all sizes are realigning their business and operational models to take advantage of new, disruptive technologies. Those that thrive and succeed in this space, will be the ones who can distinguish between what is new and what is useful.

    Getting ‘buy-in’

    What’s the point of getting ‘buy-in’? While it’s one thing to have a plan in your head, an owner / executive must write it down so that they can share their direction and in doing so the organisation can rally around. Having a strategy sounds straightforward but a well understood and executed one can:

    - Increase engagement

    - Presents new opportunities

    - Gives agreement on goals

    - Builds culture

    - Strengthens the business through good management and governance.

    Strategy takes time and effort. It requires a comprehensive assessment of both positive and negative internal and external conditions, accompanied with best ways to leverage the positives and minimise the negatives with clear goals, tasks and methodology.

    Implementation of a plan requires buy-in from all the management team and strategy days are a good way to achieve this. A strategy day has agenda items with a focus area around building achievable goals.

    The balanced Scorecard

    A balanced scorecard is a tool, used to assess and measure the progress of a business and its path toward the business overall strategy.

    It helps an organisation translate their vision, communicate, plan, learn and enables feedback so they can continue to grow.

    Balanced scorecards allow owners/executives to understand how each department is functioning through a variety of perspectives. From our experience, manufacturers face either one of two key issues; not knowing what KPI’s to track to allow for improvement, or being unable to gather enough data to accurately assess the measures you want to.

    There are four drivers known as KPI's in a balanced scorecard.

    These KPI's help managers develop their resource needs by focusing on the areas of finance, customer satisfaction, internal business functions and innovation, to ensure growth. These areas are evaluated by looking at whether current objective, targets and initiatives are being met and measures are efficient.

    For example, it may find areas of skill gaps, which is a major issue in manufacturing, which could mean devising a plan to collaborate more with external bodies.

    Costs of strategy

    While developing, strategy sounds good in theory, often business owners say that they are too busy, or the costs are too high. Yet, successful business outcomes have been proven to be from having a strategy in place. One thing we’ve noticed is that the most effective strategies don’t require a huge investment, but do need vision and dedication. You need to plan for growth, you can’t wait for it to happen organically.

    As part of your plan, it’s important to see if there are programmes or grants for your business, which give you extra money in your budget and can aid in cashflow. Furthermore, it is common now for manufacturers to collaborate with industry networks, research bodies and even competitors to gain competitive advantage. Creating these knowledge networks will assist in your business management.

    With SME’s making up 97 per cent of the Australian economy, incentives to boost SME’s – particularly in high growth areas such as manufacturing are available.

    The Australian Government has developed an entrepreneur programme, specifically for SME’s, which enables them to be more innovative, productive and competitive. More than 10,000 businesses have accessed the programme and it’s grants and 98 percent of these participants have said it has contributed to their future success and improvement.

    The programme gives tailored advice and assistance to businesses operating in growth sectors such as advanced manufacturing, to improve their business management through the engagement of independent, skilled and experienced business advisors with private sector experience.

    In particular, the Entrepreneurial Growth Grant, is available to SMEs. There are a number of projects that the funding can be used for, including strategic planning, where the entrepreneurial growth grant will match dollar for dollar of expenditure for the use of a professional services firm. The program has helped businesses increase turnover, and improve or develop new products and services.

    There are eligibility requirements, including having an eligibility turnover between $1.5m and $100m, a 3-year trading history, have an A.C.N, being financially solvent, not be a tax exempt organisation and be participating in one of the growth sectors.

    To prosper, the manufacturing sector must improve access to global supply chains and international markets; engage with numerous networks, improve management and workforce skills, develop leadership capabilities and improve internal capabilities within the business. To achieve this requires careful business management, beginning with strategic management, so visions can be realised.

    Australia’s manufacturing industry is volatile and unpredictable for any business. Understanding and analysing the experiences of business owners and managers helps us to identify the important issues and priorities impacting the industry. If you’d like to take part in the MWSG Survey click here

    Reference: Aus Industry Group.

  • 20-Aug-2018 18:33 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Authors: Jim Koutsokostos and Anthony Bradica of Hall & Wilcox

    Do you operate or manage a medical or healthcare clinic? Does the clinic engage medical practitioners and professionals (such as GPs, dentists)?

    If so, the payroll tax authorities around Australia will be looking at you (if not already).

    What do you need to do?

    Consider both your legal agreement with the medical professionals and what happens on a day-to-day basis with the clinic’s patients; how cash is collected and how it is applied to pay the clinic’s costs and the medical professional.

    Consult a legal adviser to confirm your payroll tax obligations (if any) on the payments you make to the medical professional.

    The detail

    The State Revenue Offices around Australia currently have medical and healthcare providers in the spotlight regarding their payroll tax obligations.

    The revenue authorities are currently focusing on medical, dental, and optometry clinics, and the manner in which the clinics have structured their arrangements regarding medical professionals at that clinic. In many cases, medical practitioners are engaged by a service entity (or medical centre operator) as contractors to work in these clinics. The Revenue Offices have sought to apply payroll tax to the payments made by the centre or clinic to the medical practitioners.

    The recent VCAT decision in The Optical Superstore Pty Ltd & Ors v Commissioner of State [2018] VCAT 169 (Optical Superstore) is an example of that payroll tax focus.

    In Optical Superstore, the Applicant was the owner and operator of an optical clinic. The Victorian State Revenue Office (SRO) raised amended assessments for payroll tax in respect of payments made by the Applicant to optometrists who provided services to the general public at the Applicant’s facilities.

    The features of the arrangements in the Optical Superstore case will be familiar to medical and healthcare providers, in that the Applicant:

    • owned and managed an optical store
    • collected income from optical sales and the provision of eye tests to customers and
    • paid a portion of the income from its customers to the optometrists.

    The SRO contended that the payments to the optometrists constituted payment for work performed by the optometrists under the ‘contractor provisions’ of the payroll tax law, as the arrangements involved ‘relevant contracts’ in relation to the performance of work by the optometrists to the owner of the clinic. This meant that, in the SRO’s view, the payments to the optometrists were deemed to be wages and subject to payroll tax.

    The Tribunal found that the agreements between the optometrists and the Applicant were ‘relevant contracts’ for payroll tax purposes (meaning that payments under these agreements could attract payroll tax). However, in this particular case, the payments made by the Applicant to the optometrists were not wages because the store was simply returning the fees to the optometrists, who were rightfully entitled to that income under the trust arrangement that was in place between the store and the optometrists.

    The SRO has appealed this decision, which is scheduled to be heard in September 2018.

    Key risks and issues

    The SRO has been emboldened by the Optical Superstore case and is currently reviewing a number of arrangements involving medical and healthcare providers.

    A similar focus is also being applied by the Revenue Offices in New South Wales and Queensland.

    Unfortunately, there is no ‘safe harbour’ and each business needs to consider their own position.

    Ultimately, the outcome will depend on a weighing up of the following matters:

    • The wording of any service agreement between the medical centre or clinic and the medical professional. For example, is the arrangement a trust arrangement under which the owner of the clinic is merely collecting income on behalf of the medical professional or is the practitioner actually working for the clinic?
    • What happens on a day-to-day basis regarding the management of the practice. For example, in a typical case where the clinic is entitled to a ‘service fee’ of, say, 35% for operating and managing the practice, the Revenue Office may take issue with a medical centre recognising 100% of the consultation fees paid by patients as its own income in its financial records (with a separate expense item for the amounts returnable to the medical professional), even though the service agreement makes clear that the fees are to be held on trust for the medical professional.

    To the extent that the arrangements do constitute relevant contracts in relation to the provision of work, it is possible that an exemption may apply. However, these can be very fact specific and will often require further fact finding.

    It is not hard to imagine the Revenue Offices soon targeting other industries and professions where service entity arrangements, similar to the medical profession, are in place, e.g. barristers, accountants and engineering businesses. Ultimately, the strength of the case will depend on the written agreements in place and how the practice is managed on a day-to-day basis.

    If you have any queries in relation to the above or how it may impact you, please do not hesitate to contact Hall & Wilcox.

  • 17-Aug-2018 14:42 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Remember how much fun it was to register to protect your security interests on the Personal Property Securities register (PPSR) when it came into force in 2012?

    If you answered ‘yes’, then the fun will return this year as many of those registrations will come up for renewal in January 2019. This is because by far the most common duration of registration has been 7 years. So, hundreds of thousands of registrations will be subjected to expiration next year, unless they are renewed.

    Those with long memories might also recall the confusion that reigned over technical aspects of the registration process, which lead many businesses to register multiple interests, on the basis that “it’s better to be safe then sorry “.

    Now that the position is (somewhat) clearer, it is likely that many registrations going back to 2012 are no longer necessary and should not be renewed.

    All of this means is that prudent businesses will, over the next few months, be conducting a review of their PPSR registrations and working out which ones to renew and/or amend.

    Matthews Folbigg Lawyers have advised small and large business on PPS issues since before the inception of the PPSR. We can guide you through the registration process, advise on whether a registration is enforceable, and act for you in disputes over registration issues. Our aim is however to ensure wherever possible that these disputes do not arise.

    If you have any questions or concerns about the PPSR please call or email Jeff Brown of Matthews Folbigg Lawyers on 9806 7446 or

  • 16-Aug-2018 17:38 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    WSA Co has issued the Expression of Interest for the Bulk Earthworks Airside Civils (Bulk Earthworks Package A) for the Western Sydney Airport.

    Parties interested in this package, may register via WSA Co’s website: Registrations must be submitted by close of business 24 August 2018.

    Please forward any enquiries to

  • 16-Aug-2018 09:36 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    The Australian Turf Club have partnered with Sky to host the inaugural Big Sports Breakfast Grand Final and Racing Lunch on Wednesday 26 September.

    Don’t miss your chance to join the ‘whos who’ from the worlds of Racing, NRL and AFL whilst enjoying all the live racing at Rosehill Gardens!

    Book by the 31st August to purchase tickets at the special members rate of $165 per person –

  • 16-Aug-2018 08:56 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    The countdown for HSBC Sydney 7s 2019 is on! Sydney’s biggest rugby festival is back anready to take over Spotless Stadium in Sydney Olympic Park on 1-3 February.

    The Aussies took out the Men’s and Women’s titles in 2018 and will be back for more glory this time around, in what promises to be an epic weekend full of high-class entertainment on and off the field. There’s free train travel included in all tickets, and access to the stadium on Friday is free of charge for everyone!

    Using the password below, you can get access to discounted pre-sale tickets which are available now, for a limited time. Don't miss out, secure your tickets today before they're all gone!

    Buy now using the pre-sale password EARLYBIRD2019!

    Pre-sale opens 10am Monday 13 August and runs until 5pm Wednesday 22 August (AEST).

  • 15-Aug-2018 16:49 | Tracy Dawson (Administrator)

    Emotional Intelligence is the strongest predictor of performance, explaining a full 58% of success in all types of jobs.

    “EQ is your ability to recognise and understand emotions in yourself and others, and your ability to use this awareness to manage your behaviour and your relationships.” Drs. Travis Bradberry and Jean Greaves

    TalentSmart tested Emotional Intelligence alongside 33 other workplace skills, and found that 90% of top performers have high EQ. In fact, people with high EQ and average IQ outperformed those with the highest IQ 70% of the time.

    The impact on earnings for the individual was also shown to be significant.

    Those with a high degree of EQ earn on average US $29,000 more per year than those with low degree of EQ. The link between emotional intelligence and earnings was so direct, that each point increase in EQ was shown to add $1,300 to an annual salary.

    Why does having a high EQ matter so much?

    How we behave and perform in ‘ordinary’ situations is nowhere near as important as how we behave in difficult situations or how we respond to difficult people.

    If you have brilliant ideas and can solve complex problems but don’t listen to the ideas of others, your value to your team and the business diminishes significantly.

    Too often people are aware of their emotions and of other people’s emotions and ‘just say it anyway’. However, when we ‘vent’ we hardly ever get what we actually wanted. In addition, the person we ‘override’ thinks we don’t care about them, the relationship goes backwards and can even break down.

    Managing your emotions is a more certain way to get a good outcome.

    While it is a much more difficult option to choose, it is a skill that will pay massive dividends to your career and business.

    How high is your EQ?

    If you see that someone is resistant, do you tell them not to worry, it will all be okay, and then just ‘steam roll’ on (the lower EQ response)? Or do you notice that they are concerned and ask them about their concerns, so that you can address these and help them to move forward (the high EQ response)?

    When someone ‘vents’ or ‘loses it’, and excuse their own behaviour because ‘the other person was asking for it’, they are actually revealing their own lower EQ.

    High performers, on the other hand, are great under pressure.

    They manage their own emotions well and are very mindful of, and responsive to, the emotions of others. This enables them to achieve positive results even in difficult situations with difficult people.

    These people get noticed because their ability to behave appropriately and perform well under pressure is a key advantage for any business.

    Emotional Intelligence can be learned

    While some people naturally have a higher EQ, it is important to note that EQ can be learned.

    GREENLINE is a one-day program that uses neuroscience and practical tools to set you on the pathway to a higher EQ and higher performance.

    If you are interested in developing the mindset and skillset for a higher EQ, World Class Teams can help you to achieve that.

    Call World Class Teams on 1300 085 248 or check out their internationally successful GREENLINE program at

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