In this Issue

October 2009 Newsletter

From the desk of our CEO, Andrew Blunden

Its almost Melbourne Cup Day again and as we were finalising this newsletter (and looking for another reason to "break out the bubbly") we received a very positive report on Australian employment intentions. According to the latest Hudson Employment Expectations Survey 18% of employers are now planning to increase their permanent staff. This is the sharpest rise in the 10 year history of the survey.

The most dramatic increase in hiring confidence was in the financial services sector, which was hardest hit by the global financial and economic downturn.

This should provide a most encouraging boost for local employee confidence. On the other hand, as companies begin rehiring, both the skills shortage and employee turnover will increase. It is therefore important that companies have plans in place to address these issues as they arise during the recovery.

PricewaterhouseCoopers Private Business Barometer (October 2009) reported that only one in five businesses are preparing for the recovery. This suggests that eighty percent of businesses may be left behind - or may be unable to move as quickly as their competitors when the "green shoots of recovery" start bearing fruit. Just as businesses need to plan for difficult economic times, they also need to prepare for the recovery. Having direct experience with a BRW Top 100 fast grower, I know how challenging rapid growth can be - and having the right people and financing in place is the key to success.

Part Time Professionals are delighted to now represent over 270 contract accountants, CFO's and executives throughout Australia in our CFO Network and look forward to assisting many Australian companies as they gear up towards recovery. Remember that "failing to plan" can mean "planning to fail". We represent many experienced experts who can really help your business to ride the recovery!

Part Time CFOs in the Wall Street Journal

The Rent-a-CFO solution has hit the headlines again in the US with a timely article in the Wall Street Journal singing the praisies of the part time or contract CFO.

"Small-business owners in need of accounting help to balance their books and guide them out of a financial black hole are renting CFOs rather than hiring them. The strategy comes at a time when the deep recession has forced small companies to look for money-saving alternatives that can yield good returns yet avoid substantial overhead costs", the article says.

The article quoted lawyers, entrepreneurs, technology businesses and other business owners from across the USA with comments such as:

  • the CFO is more objective and "someone who can prevent us from making any bad decisions...It has really given us a level of confidence that we did not have in decision making" .
  • for the CFO's strategic advice, bookkeeping services and accounting expertise, "It's a tremendous cost-saving".
  • "This is something I should have done a long time ago".
  • If we hadn't had this service, "we would still be struggling".

Fortunately Australian business owners don't have to go to the USA to source this service.

With over 270 members in its CFO Network throughout Australia readily available to help your business source a contract or part time CFO, Part Time Professionals has the  Rent-a-CFO solution right at your doorstep. Just give us a call on 1300 79 1946 and we can arrange an interview with your part-time CFO today.

Coping with Recovery. A Member's Story.

So you’re surviving the global financial crisis? Good. Like most of us we had no idea how bad it would get or who to believe. One thing for sure though, we didn’t come across too many GFC skeptics! Opinions ranged from Armageddon to maybe within a year we’ll be fine.

Probably you took the conservative view and prepared for hard times (and few are willing to say the worst is over yet or that the “green shoots" appearing are strong enough to bloom).  So you battened down the hatches, saved money wherever you could, deferred a few investment decisions and otherwise conserved capital. In other words – took it on the chin and soldiered on. Now perhaps you’re feeling that at last you can put your head above the trenches.

At least that’s the observation made by Harold a well respected Sydney based management consultant, former partner with Ernst & Young and immediate past Chairman of an international consulting firm with its finger on the pulse of a broad array of significant business operations.

He’s seeing some positives arising from these tough times. Such as companies forcing themselves to rely more on their existing people, rather than looking for external solutions – finding ways to stretch their skill base, and accelerate their people’s ability to take on greater responsibility. In this way they are building their own future stars instead of importing them. Everybody wins.

Harold has been helping senior executives prepare for the next step up and is mentoring them in their new or expanded role. In one case a technical manager in the telecoms industry needs to accelerate his commercial and management skills to take on a Divisional General Manager role. In another, a proprietor/manager wants to live overseas and still retain some technical functions that could be managed from a remote location. This raised issues of succession, clarity of roles and responsibility as well as governance and risk. It also raised matters of strategy – where should the business be heading strategically?

If you are interested in learning more, or would like to chat to Harold about some of your own issues, please contact us at Part Time Professionals on phone 1300 79 1946.

The Bottom Line

For the business executive who has everything, a Japanese menswear company has now begun selling an "anti-swine flu" business suit that it says can reduce the risk of catching the virus.

The wool suit is coated with titanium dioxide, which breaks down the virus molecules on contact under ultraviolet light.

The material, which can also reduce odours such as cigarette smoke, will keep its anti-virus properties even after being dry cleaned more than 20 times, said a spokesman from Haruyama Trading Co. It has a price tag of 52,290 yen ($650) and comes in four colours.

The company initially aimed to develop a dirt- and odour-resistant suit, "but laboratory experiments proved that molecules of viruses were actually dissolved three hours after they adhered to the fabric," he said.

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.


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