In this Issue

February 2011 Newsletter

From the desk of our CEO, Andrew Blunden

As if we needed any reminders of the power of mother nature, the first two months of 2011 have certainly demonstrated it again. Having flown out of Brisbane only 2 days before the floods hit in January, seeing the build-up and impact of Cyclone Yasi in far north Queensland, and now witnessing the distressing events in Christchurch, it really strikes home how suddenly the certainties of life can turn.

We offer our heartfelt sympathy to all those affected by these distressing events.

At the same time we are continually impressed by the ability of people to rise above the trauma and demonstrate acts of heroism, willpower and tenacity.

Along a similar theme, in January Part Time Professionals was proud to be involved in the establishment of a new not-for-profit organisation, Business Life Australia. This organisation aims to assist businesses, business owners and their families survive traumas of another sort - those brought about by business stress and business failure. Applying a holistic approach to the issue, its tagline "Because Your Business IS Personal", seeks to help business owners, their staff and their dependants steer through challenging economic times by providing a combination of financial, legal and counselling support. As most family breakups are the result of financial stress, the organisation hopes to improve these statistics.

Pilot studies are planned to be run in both Sydney and Brisbane later in the year.

Finally, February heralded the introduction of the Chinese Year of the Rabbit. For the uninitiated, Rabbits (people born this year) are private individuals, who would rather work behind-the-scenes instead of being the centre of attention.  Like their animal counterparts, Rabbits are calm people who approach problems calmly and considerately, hardly ever raising their voice or becoming visibly annoyed. The Rabbit is quite keen and pays close attention to the situations developing around him. They are also intelligent and quick.

Sounds like the perfect accountant, eh!

If you would like to be introduced to a perfect accountant for your business - in a part time or project role - why don't you give Part Time Professionals a phone call today. Our friendly team are always happy to assist on phone 1300 79 1946.

The new labour market

"The job market that emerged from the ashes of the global financial crisis has changed forever". Although possibly a brave statement by Fiona Smith (AFR, 22 February) it does have a ring of truth to it.

Indeed changes to the labour market were already in evidence before the GFC. Mainly as a result of the internet, social media and improved technology, the GFC simply accelerated the impact as companies were forced to save money and do more with less.

Some examples of these changes are:

1. Portable resumes - a new iPhone app called IPQ Career Planner is a 140-question personality test which is designed to help people find the right career. This sort of profile can then be appended to people's resumes. People can also take online tests to certify they have certain skills, such as IT.

2. Screening - while some vacancies are almost impossible to fill, many attract so many applicants that employers are swamped. In Australia is is not unusual for up to 8,000 graduates to apply to an organisation offering only 300 entry level positions. Pre-employment screening (often online) is becoming more common. The British Intelligence agency, MI6, for example has a test on its website that assesses the ability of potential spies to hold cover stories!

3. Disintermediation - another word for 'do it yourself' hiring. Of course, as many companies take on their own hiring without the use of intermediaries, the costs of a poor hiring decision are increasing as labour costs grow and laws become tighter. The need for real expertise in this area will never diminish.

4. Job Portability - the terminations and salary reductions experienced during the GFC weakened the bonds between many people and their employers - and demonstrated that employees must take responsibility for their own careers. With the growing shortage of talent, which never went away in some sectors, a worker with prized skills will always be in the driver's seat. The days of the 'job for life' are over.

Of course, Part Time Professionals can assist your business steer its way through the new labour market. With no upfront recruitment fees, and a database of over 300 qualified and experienced accountants and executives who are keen to work flexibly to meet YOUR business demands, just give us a call on 1300 79 1946. Fast, cost-effective and flexible - that's our commitment.

Businesses to 'churn and burn' in 2011

Two reports were published in February that demonstrate that it will be a turbulent year for business in 2011.

The Dun & Bradstreet report showed that more than 160,000 businesses started up in 2010 - a 13% increase over 2009. But the rate of business failures last year also increased - by 23%. More than 10,000 businesses ceased trading last year compared to only 8,000 in 2009.

Christine Christian, CEO of Dun & Bradstreet, says she expects a similar rate of failures this year. "There were a lot of redundancies in 2009 and people have used that to start up businesses or acquire franchises. The next couple of years will be shaky. Unless banks become more responsive to small businesses by loosening credit terms we see similar rates of delinquency and decline this year".

Unfortunately, the banks don't seem to be listening. The head of NAB's business banking unit, Joseph Healy, told an ASIC summer school last Wednesday that "the banking system as a whole has not served the best interest of SMEs and is not ready to equip those businesses for growth". He confirmed that "it's more profitable for a bank to lend for a household mortgage than a business". His solution, however, was that any improvement needed to start with the regulatory system. So, dear reader, we may be waiting a long, long time...

Reaffirming the state of the business economy, the Sensis Business Index found that 12% of business owners are considering closing or selling their businesses this year. To put this figure in context, the report's author, Christine Sing, said that this compared with long-term averages of 7.5%.

The higher figure suggests that more business owners are concerned that they cannot generate sufficient returns in the current environment. This is mainly evident in the hospitality and retail sectors.

So 2011 looks to be a year of significant change for many businesses - without even considering the impact of the recent weather events and floods.

If you are looking to improve your business profitability and cashflow; are thinking of selling your business; or are looking at acquiring another business this year - and could really benefit from having a qualified and experienced accountant or CFO on your team - give Part Time Professionals a call on 1300 79 1946. We can introduce you to one of our 300 CFO Network members within 48 hours! What are you waiting for?

The Bottom Line

Improved cashflow is desired by most businesses. InAustralia it takes an average 52.4 days to get paid, according to Dunn & Bradstreet's December 2010 Trade Payment Analysis.

But there is now a solution! A Belgian outsourcing company has invented The Crying Invoice - an invoice with a voice-chip that begins to make weeping noises 20 seconds after the envelope is opened.

Its a great idea. Just take a look by clicking here.

About Part Time Professionals

Part Time Professionals™ is wholly owned and operated in Australia. Our principals together have over 40 years experience in public accounting and as CFO's and Directors in multiple companies - both listed and unlisted. They are members of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia, CPA Australia, the National Tax Agents Association, the Australian Institute of Company Directors, the Financial Executives Institute and the National Institute of Accountants.

Our aim is to help companies source the most experienced CFO, executive and corporate accounting talent, in the most cost-effective way!

We are constantly updating our website, so take a look at for more information or call us on 1300 79 1946 to discuss your needs.


Phone 1300 79 1946 | +61 2 9973 3179 |

• Sydney • Melbourne • Brisbane • Adelaide • Canberra • Perth • Hobart • San Francisco •

© 2011 Part Time Professionals Pty Ltd | ABN 64 118 518 880 | Privacy Policy