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COVID-19 Business Continuity – 5th October

I’m here with the COVID-19 continuity update for Australian businesses on Monday 5th October. In today’s briefing:

1. Victoria: Update on all students going back to school
2. Federal Budget: Boosting Apprenticeships Commencement

 

1. Victoria: Update on all students going back to school

In today’s update from the Victorian government, dates were announced for when all Victorian students will return to classroom learning. All primary school students and Year 7 students will be back at school from Monday 12th October, with Years 8, 9 and 10 students to go back on 26th October.

For parents who have been juggling homeschool and working from home, this now provides surety to plan when their kids will be going to be back at school. For business owners, this will also be a positive step towards a closer version of normal.

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2. Federal Budget: Boosting Apprenticeships Commencement

The federal budget will be handed down tomorrow night, and all eyes will be on how the government plans to rebuild the economy. An early indicator of what we might expect came yesterday with Treasurer Josh Frydenberg’s announcement of the ‘Boosting Apprenticeship Commencements’ program, which will see an additional $1.2 billion spent on wage subsidies for 100,000 apprentices and trainees.

Under the new program, businesses that hire a new or recommencing apprentice or trainee will qualify for a 50% wage subsidy. The subsidy will be to the value of $7,000 a quarter, for the period today (5 October) until September 30, 2021.

The subsidies will be available to all businesses across all industries and locations, until the cap of 100,000 is reached.

A few points to note:
• The Boosting Apprenticeships Commencements (BAC) subsidy is only available for apprentices and trainees who are employed in your business from 5th October 2020.
• If you have an apprentice or trainee who was employed by your business as at 1st July, you may be eligible for the Supporting Apprentices and Trainees wage subsidy, which is also 50% of their wages up to $7,000 per quarter (see here: https://docs.employment.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/supporting_apprentices_and_trainees_fact_sheet.pdf)
• The BAC subsidies are available as “first come, first served” until the maximum of 100,000 apprentices/trainees have been employed.
• Like the first round of the apprentice wage support scheme, the subsidies are paid in arrears for the quarter.

For small businesses, this subsidy should be part of your considerations when you are reviewing your current resource model and the plans for your business. Businesses of all types can have trainees in various roles such as marketing, project administration, accounts and bookkeeping, in addition to the traditional apprenticeships we see in trades sectors. A Tenfold business mentor can help you develop a plan for the right resource model and organisation chart to achieve your business goals.

For more information on the BAC scheme: https://www.employment.gov.au/boosting-apprenticeship-commencements
And for FAQs: https://docs.employment.gov.au/system/files/doc/other/bac-questions-answers.pdf

While the budget may herald some good news for some sectors, let’s remember those businesses that are still being forced to keep their doors closed. As I’ve mentioned before, we have a few Tenfold clients that have not been able to operate at all since the initial restrictions came into force in March.

While some businesses are preparing to return to a new kind of normal, spare a thought for those that are still shut down. They are doing their best to adjust their businesses, to stay afloat, and I can say with great pride, they are maintaining their integrity. I won’t name businesses here but you know who you are. The Tenfold team has your back; we feel for you and we respect your commitment to keep looking ahead and trying to move forward.

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I’ll be watching the federal budget like a hawk tomorrow night and I’ll be back on Wednesday with a briefing on what it holds for Tenfold clients.

Ash

Ashley Thomson B.Eng(Hons), Grad. Dip. Mgmt, MEI
Managing Director
Tenfold Business Coaching

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