DFK Gooding Partners

January 15, 2024

With consecutive 40degree days on the horizon, the Perth summer heatwave is officially here. And with it, the mark of a new year and a fresh start. For businesses, the new calendar year presents an ideal time to evaluate plans for the year ahead, review existing areas for improvement, and implement changes to drive growth and resilience across the next twelve months.

To help you get started for 2024, some of our advisory specialists have provided their new years tips for business owners, executives and managers looking to hit the ground running this year.

Jump down to:

Technology and IT tips
Tax compliance tips
Grants and incentives tips

Workplace culture: Tips for nurturing your greatest competitive advantage

Wendy Jeffery-Lonnie, GPHR Director

Clear your desk

Yes, it’s obvious and yes, it’s predictable. However the physical space of the workplace has a profound effect on how we we work, and studies and productivity experts support the benefits of having and maintaining a clean desk.

From a logistical perspective, you can lose precious work minutes every time you search for a misplaced paper. From a cognitive perspective, a clean desk creates a sense of order and control, reduces stress and anxiety, enhances focus, and improves overall work performance

Recognise and reiterate the successes of 2023

You celebrated the wins at the end of the year, however with a festive holiday in-between its a good idea to remind your team of these wins once the office is back to capacity. Re-acknowledging and highlighting the successes of the past year boosts morale but also reinforces a positive workplace culture. It fosters a sense of accomplishment and motivates employees, creating a foundation for continued success in the new year.

Take the time to identify any cracks in culture that may have surfaced towards the end of the year

Addressing any cultural issues promptly is crucial for a thriving workplace. Identifying cracks in culture at the beginning of the year allows time to get on the front foot and proactively mend any disconnections or conflicts, ensuring a healthier and more cohesive work environment throughout the upcoming year

Remind the team of your company values – refresh printouts / desktop charts

Revisiting and reinforcing company values helps align employees with the organization’s mission and vision. Refreshing physical assets such as posters, screensavers and desktop backgrounds, serves as visual reinforcement of these values throughout the workplace.

Practice giving and soliciting regular feedback

Encouraging a culture of open communication through regular feedback is essential for employee growth and satisfaction. For business owners, actively seeking and providing feedback establishes a feedback loop that enhances individual and team performance, contributing to a positive workplace culture built on transparency and continuous improvement. If regular feedback was missing in 2023, 2024 is a good point to bring it in.

Review your strategy for communication & recognition to find improvements

Effective communication and recognition are pillars of a healthy workplace culture. Reviewing and refining communication strategies ensures that information flows smoothly throughout the organisation. Additionally, enhancing recognition practices helps in acknowledging and appreciating employee contributions, strengthening the sense of belonging and motivation.

Check your team building activity plan

Team building activities play a vital role in fostering collaboration, trust, and camaraderie among employees. Regularly assessing and updating the team-building activity plan ensures that these activities remain relevant and engaging. Investing in well-planned team-building initiatives contributes to a positive workplace culture by promoting teamwork and reducing potential conflicts.

Wendy Jeffery-Lonnie


Embracing technology: Tips for staying ahead in a dynamic Landscape

Ryan Huts, DFK Gooding Partners IT Advisory

In today’s fast-paced business environment, leveraging technology is non-negotiable. Evaluate your current tech stack to ensure it aligns with your business needs. Utilising the latest tools and platforms can significantly boost efficiency and security. Whether it’s adopting new project management software or enhancing cybersecurity measures, staying technologically savvy is essential for continued success.

Upgrade software and systems

Ensure your software and IT systems are up-to-date so you are leveraging the latest features, improvements, and security patches. Regular updates ensure consistent system performance, reduce vulnerabilities, and contribute to a more efficient and secure IT infrastructure overall.

Annually review your cybersecurity measures

Did you know the average cost per cybercrime reported to the ACSC is around $39,000 for small businesses? Or that one in four SMBs that use a PC use an operating system version that is Windows 7 or older? it could be time to review and update your systems and cybersecurity measures.

Review your firewalls, check your antivirus software for the latest updates – has your system changed? Your antivirus may also need to change. If you don’t have in-house IT, cyber security audits can be delivered with a trusted IT advisor.

Is it time to adopt digital signatures?

Digitally signing documents with a secure platform is more efficient than printing, signing and scanning documents, and provide one-off encryption for the highest level of security. Check our Business Tips article for more information.

Optimise your cloud services

Evaluate and optimise the use of cloud services to enhance scalability, flexibility, and data accessibility. Migrating relevant operations to the cloud can improve collaboration, streamline processes, and provide a more cost-effective and efficient IT infrastructure.

Review your employee IT training and education

Prioritize ongoing training for employees to keep them updated on the latest technologies and best practices. Well-trained staff can make better use of IT systems, increasing productivity and reducing the risk of errors or security breaches.

In addition, regularly educating yourself and your team around the latest cyber security scams will increase your ability to spot one when it inevitably arrives in your inbox. The ATO scam alert service is a great website to bookmark – ATO Scam Alerts

Ryan Huts


Tax compliance: Tips for tidying up loose ends for full and half year reporting

Andrew Young, Tax Advisory

The new calendar year also means half yearly reporting for many businesses – an ideal opportunity to assess where you may be out of compliance and get on the front foot.

Company directors: check ASIC focus areas of reporting

For company directors, the ASIC focus areas of reporting is an important resource to ensure compliance in full and half year reporting. Assessing the impact of uncertain market and economic conditions is a big focus for full and half-years ending 31 December 2023. Read the latest ASIC focus areas.

Check your potential small business tax gaps

For small business owners, the ATO small business income tax gap estimates 28 – 33% of small business taxpayers made mistakes on their tax affairs. Not understanding tax obligations accounted for the bulk of these, so catching mistakes now can help avoid a costly tax return come June 30.

  • As a company owner are you using company assets for private purposes, or private assets for company purposes? The outcome of either can result in over-claimed or incorrectly claimed business expenses, undeclared profits and dividends, and misapplication of loan accounts.
  • Changing business structures – Sole traders moving to a company or trust structure, without understanding that business assets are now owned by a separate entity, and therefore personal use of these assets can result in a fringe benefits tax obligation.
  • Business owners incorrectly splitting income with other family members – this is referred to as the alienation of personal services income (PSI)
  • Company directors borrowing company or trust funds for personal reasons (for example large purchases or day-to-day expenses) without maintaining the appropriate loan documentation or records required. This has implications under Division 7A of the of the Income Tax Assessment Act 1936

Be aware of your 2024 deadlines

It may seem obvious, but being aware of all the reporting deadlines for your business while essential can also become overwhelming. Critical deadlines include:

  • Fringe Benefits Tax (FBT) return due by 25 June where lodging through an agent
  • Finalisation declarations for employee Single Touch Payroll (STP) information due by 16 July
  • Taxable payments annual report (if required) due by 28 August
  • Business Activity Statements (BAS) which are due either monthly, quarterly or annually depending on your business.
  • Financial reports (if required) due by 31 October for unlisted entities

We issue an updates and reminders newsletter once a month with all the important due dates and deadlines for small businesses. Every reminder can be easily added to your calendar – you can subscribe to our newsletter here.


Programs, grants and incentives: Tips to maximise your financial resources

Andrew Young, Tax Advisory

Are you launching new strategic initiatives or product innovations for 2024? Ensuring you’re aware of available programs and tax incentives will identify potential financial support opportunities.

You may be also eligible for a government grant in certain circumstances, such as research and development, capability building for specific events, innovation or exporting. Every grant or incentive will be based on a different eligibility criteria and require time to prepare, so engaging an experienced advisor to assist will minimise your time spent away from core business.

Industry Growth Program – Open for 2024

This program supports innovative small and medium businesses undertaking commercialisation and/or growth projects within the National Reconstruction Fund priority areas. It supports businesses through advisory services and opportunities for matched grant funding.

  • grants of $50,000 to $250,000 to support early-stage commercialisation projects
  • grants of $100,000 to $5 million for commercialisation and growth projects.

View Industry Growth Program

Research and Development Tax Incentive

Our advisory team regularly assists clients to get the most out of the Research and Development Tax Incentive (R&DTI). If you are researching or developing applicable new products or innovations for 2024, the the R&DTI helps companies innovate and grow by offsetting some of the costs of eligible research and development (R&D). If you need assistance navigating the R&DTI please contact us.

Business.gov.au grants and programs finder – Western Australia

There are currently 135 grants and programs either open or about to open for businesses in Western Australia. Are you across what may be applicable for your business?

View grants and programs finder

Grant Connect – Federal Grants

GrantConnect provides centralised publication of forecast and current Australian Government grant opportunities and grants awarded.

View Grant Connect

Andrew Young


Can we help you start 2024 with a bang?

info@dfkgpca.com.au / (08) 9327 1777

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