The JobKeeper stimulus program just announced by the Australian government will help small businesses retain staff amid the COVID-19 slowdown. Read on to find out whether your business qualifies, what steps to take, and when you’ll see payment. 

Note that the details and specifics of JobKeeper will become clearer over the next few days. We’ll update you as we learn more.

Where do I start?

The first step is to register your interest at the ATO’s JobKeeper website. At this point, the ATO is only asking for your contact info and ABN. They’ll update you on what comes next.

If you’re an eligible employer, the ATO is promising to pay you $1,500 a fortnight for every worker who has been on the books since 1 March. You must then pass this amount directly to the employee.

If your worker normally receives less than $1,500 a fortnight in wages, they effectively

In these times of uncertainty, we’re adapting to ever-changing situations, and we’re truly grateful to have great teams collaborating to support you and your clients.

As always, we’re committed to providing tools and resources that can make things easier for you – and that’s why we’re pleased to announce the launch of Xero Tax to all accountants and bookkeepers on the Xero partner programme – at no extra cost.

Corporation Tax and Accounts Production for micro entities and for small companies (abridged) is now available. Read on to discover key features and how your practice can get started today.

Key features and benefits

What makes Xero Tax so special is its deep end-to-end integration with the core Xero product and its focus on time-saving workflows. Above all, Xero Tax is 100% in the cloud and beautiful to use.  

Check out some of the features:

  • Single sign-on: Sign into Xero Tax

We recognise that completing year-end will be more challenging this year as businesses are managing the impacts of COVID-19. We’ve built a guide for completing your year-end in Xero, but also wanted to make it easier for you, by highlighting the up and coming changes all in one place.

Managing COVID-19 Statutory Sick Pay

We understand that managing Statutory Sick Pay (SSP) for employees that are self-isolating because of COVID-19 adds a further burden at a time when reconciling is key. Xero has updated the SSP modal to support you through these changes. As our first step we’ve added a checkbox to the SSP modal that will allow you to indicate if time off has been taken due to self-isolation. Xero will then waiver the 3 waiting days for you and automatically calculate the SSP from day 1.

2020/21 Tax Year – Xero will take care of the following:


It’s no surprise that consumers often feel a more personal connection to small businesses. There’s something about doing business with an independent CPA or indie cafe owner than with a big tax accounting firm or national coffee chain.

But those personal connections have to be earned over time. With each interaction, one customer at a time, small businesses must prove themselves trustworthy. That trust forms the foundation for customer loyalty.

In October 2019, we surveyed consumers to find out what they look for in the small businesses they support, as well as what business owners can do to earn their trust. Here’s what we learned about how small businesses earn customer loyalty.

Understand your customers so you can exceed their expectations

How can small businesses get their customers to love them? Here are some great insights from our research:

  • Know where your customers prefer to interact: While small businesses

Meeting payroll amid COVID-19 will undoubtedly be difficult for many Australian small businesses. So it’s reassuring to know that you may be eligible for a government cash-flow boost of up to $100,000. But you could miss out if you neglect a key bit of housekeeping: lodging your activity statement.

That’s because your activity statement (or BAS) is where you report PAYG withholding, and this is what the government will use to determine if you are eligible for a credit – and how much. The federal government is urging small and medium-sized employers to lodge their BAS by mid April to speed the delivery of aid. You don’t necessarily have to pay your tax bill on that date; payment may be deferred. 

How do I get relief and when?

You don’t need to apply for the relief. If you’re eligible, it will be automatically delivered as credits in the ATO’s activity

Many small businesses are struggling as a result of closures and social distancing practices put in place because of the coronavirus pandemic. Here are 25 ways you can help small businesses right now.

How to Help Small Businesses

If you want to help local small businesses by supporting your favorite local shops, restaurants, and others stay afloat during this time, here are some ways you can do so.

Purchase Gift Certificates

If you can afford it, purchase gift cards from your favorite local businesses during this time. You’ll be supporting their operations when they need it most, and when businesses reopen, you’ll be able to enjoy your favorite goods and services that you’ve already paid for.

Order Takeout or Delivery

Restaurants in many states and cities are not open for dining in. However, you may still be able to get your favorite dishes delivered to your door.