Among those who have their own business, there’s little doubt that payroll and bookkeeping can present challenges to businesses of all sizes. Handling time and attendance, payroll taxes and workers’ compensation can be difficult for even the most experienced business owners. That’s where payroll services and bookkeeping companies come in. These companies take the stress out of payroll and its related processes by providing intuitive services to companies of all sizes and industries.

It is the responsibility of a bookkeeper to provide accurate, up-to-date financial data so that your accountant can prepare annual financial reports as well as tax returns for your business. These accounting reports can also be used by you as a business owner to help make important decisions for your business.

At The Hrkac Group, we partner with SIBS Bookkeeping Geelong to provide our clients with bookkeeping services. They specialise in payroll services in Geelong and work with you to ensure that your employees are paid on time and that all of your legal obligations as an employer are met, taking the worry out of your payroll processes. This allows you as a business leader to focus on important enterprise tasks instead of worrying about how and when individual employees will be paid. Here’s a breakdown of just a few of the services that a professional Bookkeeper can assist you with.


1. Payroll STP (Single Touch Payroll) Finalisation Process

Single touch payroll is a recent regulation that changed when and how small businesses report payroll activity to the Australian Tax Office (ATO). Businesses used to be required to report this information to the ATO once a year. Now, you must send a report after each payday. And those reports must be submitted digitally, in a specific format. As an employer, You need to make sure you can submit compliant reports every payday.

You also need to make a finalisation declaration by the 14th of July each year. If you do not finalise by this date, you should do so as soon as possible to ensure your employees can access their information to complete their income tax returns. If you can’t make a finalisation declaration by the due date, you will need to apply for a deferral.

If you don’t already use an accountant or bookkeeper, this could be a good time to start. They can take care of your STP requirements throughout the year and also the finalisation process.


2. WorkCover Annual Declarations

You must have a valid Victorian WorkCover Policy if your total remuneration to employees and rateable Subcontractors is $7,500 per annum or more. If you are registered for Victorian WorkCover, you must submit an Annual Declaration to WorkSafe VIC stating the cost of remuneration paid to your workers (including rateable Subcontractors)  over the year and an estimate of their remuneration for the following year.

You would usually log in to WorkSafe’s Online Employer Services (OES) to complete the declaration; another set of logins to remember, more data you need to find and keep handy to be compliant. Or, you can have a professional Bookkeeping/payroll service take care of this for you.

(*Please note other Australian States and Territories may have different requirements).


3. Payroll Tax Annual Declarations

The payroll tax applies if you pay wages (including rateable Subcontractors) in Victoria and your Australian remuneration exceeds this year’s monthly threshold of $58,333 (year ended 30th June 2022). There is also the mental health and wellbeing surcharge, which commenced on 1 January 2022. You must pay this surcharge if you pay Victorian taxable wages and your Australian wages exceed the first annual threshold of $10 million, with a first monthly threshold of $833,333. (*Please note other Australian States and Territories may have different requirements).

You must register with the State Revenue Office (SRO) to pay payroll tax where you exceed the relevant monthly threshold regardless of your annual remuneration paid. You will need your payroll records handy to help you. Penalties and interest may apply if you do not register.

Once registered, you can use the SRO’s secure online system Payroll Tax Express (PTX Express) to lodge monthly returns, pay your tax, complete your annual reconciliation, apply for a refund and update your records. If you are registered to lodge and pay monthly, you must submit your wage details every, even if you do not have a payroll tax liability. Employers self-assess their liability on a monthly basis and pay by the seventh day of the following month or the next business day (many businesses are eligible to report and pay on an annual basis depending on their total remuneration paid).

If this all sounds like too much work, payroll tax declarations are a specialty service of Bookkeepers. They can take your Payroll Tax Annual Declaration off your plate so you can get back to running your business.


4. CoINVEST Quarterly lodgements

CoINVEST is the construction industry long-service leave fund in Victoria, governed by the Construction Industry Long Service Leave Act 1997. The scheme was established in 1976 to ensure workers in the construction industry would have access to long-service leave, even if they didn’t remain with a single employer for the required seven years. CoINVEST operates as a fund into which you as a construction industry employer must pay a quarterly contribution fee proportionate to the size of your workforce’s total wages.  After seven years of working in the construction industry, workers can claim their long-service leave from CoINVEST.

Every three months, you must complete a ‘Workers’ Days and Wages’ form. You record how many days your employees worked in the quarter and also how much the employee was paid over the same period. CoINVEST will then issue an invoice to be paid, currently based on 2.7 percent of total gross wages reported on the form.

This is something else a qualified bookkeeper can take care of for you; the SIBS Bookkeeping Geelong team is experienced in processing these types of quarterly payments.


5. Portable Long Service Leave Authority (PLSA)

Did you know that the Victorian Government has made permanent Long Service Leave Benefits Portability Regulations that came into effect on 1st October 2020?

Much like Co-Invest works for the relevant trades and construction industries – The PLSA allows workers in community services, contract cleaning, and security to take their long service entitlement with them if they change jobs but stay in the industry. There is a quarterly lodgement and payment required.


6. Incolink Monthly lodgements

Incolink provides a safety net for workers in the commercial building and construction industry where permanency and continuity of employment are significant issues. For you as an employer, Incolink takes care of your redundancy compliance obligations, avoiding any large payouts at the end of projects.

If you have a membership with Incolink, you need to make monthly contributions. This is another specialty service that SIBS Bookkeeping Geelong can assist you with.


7. Paying Superannuation on time

As an employer, you must pay super contributions for your eligible employees to avoid the Super Guarantee charge.

You must pay your employee Super Guarantee contributions electronically to either a complying super fund that meets specific requirements and obligations under super law, or a retirement savings account (RSA) which provides a low-cost and low-risk savings strategy for retirement. Each of your employees may have a different fund which will need to be set up when they join your payroll.

You must pay Super Guarantee contributions by quarterly due dates – 28 days after the end of each quarter to avoid the Super Guarantee Charge Liability *. Some super funds require employers to contribute monthly. By registering with these funds, you agree to make monthly contributions to that fund. You can also arrange to make post-tax super payments on behalf of your employees if they request this.

If this all sounds like a lot of hassle on your behalf, engage the services of a professional bookkeeper. They’ll take this payroll pain off your shoulders to give you back the time you need to run your business.

(*Please note that this is when the Employers or relevant Labour Hire Subcontractors Superannuation Fund must receive the quarterly contribution by – for many clearing houses – you must lodge the Superannuation payment request by around the 14th/15th days after the end of the quarter to avoid the Superannuation Guarantee Charge Liability)


In conclusion

One size does not fit all when it comes to bookkeeping and payroll services. Each individual business and industry comes with its own unique circumstances and requirements. That’s why The Hrkac Group partners with SIBS bookkeeping Geelong. They work with you to simplify your business’s internal processes when it comes to keeping the books up to date through innovative ideas and technology. They work offsite and online, allowing them to complete monthly bookkeeping in record time; ensuring the best results for your business.

Most importantly they give you more time to focus on what’s important to you; running your business. If you’re looking for Payroll Services Geelong, look no further. To learn more about what services SIBS Bookkeeping Geelong can offer you, contact us via email or phone 0488 614 668.

The information provided in this blog is of a general nature only and is not intended as either advice or recommendations and is not tailored to your specific circumstances. Please also note that this does include any information on any Payroll requirements imposed by any State or Territory Governments outside of the State of Victoria. Please contact our partner – SIBS Bookkeeping team or us – the Hrkac Group Accountants team – if you would like assistance as to how, or if, any of the abovementioned would apply to you.

Liability limited by a scheme approved under Professional Standards Legislation.