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THE COST OF UNPAID OVERTIME? HAYS looks at the impact on employees

ASPEN WINS 3RD EXPORT AWARD 4 page Chief Minister's Export Awards feature

IS YOUR SMSF COMPLIANT? DDCS explain why this is essential OCTOBER 2013


How will the NDIS impact your organisation? RSM Bird Cameron explains LARGEST NETWORKING SECTION



8 pages of business networking photos

B2B wishes you a happy 21st birthday

Peter Spooner, LoanMarket, shares his experience

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Get behind the B2B Ocsober team Robbie Manzano from Healthy Identity and I are teaming up to by TIM participating in Ocsober this year. BENSON So please get behind us and donate Editor $10 or more. Go to au and click on 'sponsor a friend' and type in 'B2B' and sponsor either Robbie or myself. Ocsober challenges Australians to lose the booze for one month - during October - to help educate children about the effects of drugs and alcohol. All money raised goes to Life Education Australia, the organisation behind the iconic educational mascot, Healthy Harold who reach over 600,000 Aussie kids with their vital health and drug programs every year. This year Ocsober aims to raise $1,000,000 to help Life Education and Healthy Harold reach even more Aussie Kids. Life Education Australia is a charity providing positive, preventative drug and health education programs which motivate, encourage and empower young people to make smart life choices for a healthy future, free from the harms associated with drug misuse. Through Mobile Learning Centre. Life Education Australia's programs reach over 600,000 Australian primary and high school students each year.

New B2B website Please have a look at The new website is a terrific resource for people interested in business. Not only can you see the latest articles featured in B2B magazine, but you can also search through the content of the last 86 issues stretching back to 2006. Here you will find profiles of business people, feature articles on businesses, advice columns covering everything from accounting to websites and much much, much more. This is only the beginning: stay tuned for more developments. Send all comments to

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28 HEALTH Weight loss for life By Healthy Identity

06 Unpaid overtime: what’s the real cost?? Hays explains

08 Meetings, mung beans and the mountain pose.


Incorporating health & well-being into the workplace 10 It’s a hat trick for Aspen Medical: The winners of the ACT Chief Minister's Export Awards 14 Making sure your SMSF remains compliant With DDCS 16 The marketing power of a website: Canberra Web explains 18 Hays explains the evolution of digital marketing

COVER STORY 20 How will the NDIS impact your organisation? RSM Bird Cameron explains


24 ADVICE FROM THE EXPERTS 25 ACCOUNTING All SMSF members should hold individual enduring power of attorney By RSM Bird Cameron BUSINESS LAW Is a franchise for me? By Elringtons Lawyers 26 CORPORATE GOVERNANCE Directors in the spotlight By Australian Institute of Company Directors


INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY Intellectual property law 101 By Arete Group 27 ESTATE PLANNING The appointment of a testamentary guardian and family law By Certus Law


FAMILY LAW Luck and lottery – a fable for separating couples By DDCS


Tim Benson 0402 900 402 02 6161 2751

PROPERTY FINANCING Professional finance and mortgage broking services By Loan Market Home Finance Brokers 30 RECRUITMENT Private versus public sector recruitment By PCA People 31 SERVICED OFFICES Entrepreneurs’ business success secrets By Synergy Business Centres WEBSITES 7 steps to SEO By Synapse Worldwide A2B: ASSOCIATIONS TO BUSINESS 32 MINISTERS MESSAGE: Digital Canberra 34 CANBEERA BUSINESS COUNCIL: The Right Building in the Right Place 35 ACT EXPORTERS: ACT Exporter’s wish list 36 ACT & REGION CHAMBER OF COMMERCE & INDUSTRY: The kids are alright? BUSINESS NETWORKING 38 B2B @ ACT Chief Minister’s Export Awards 39 B2B @ ACT Bartercard Networking Event 40 B2B @ ACT Red Cross Ball 42 B2B @ Launch Of Canberra Theatre Collected Works 2014 45 B2B @ Canberra Business Council and Digital Enterprise Program’s networking event 46 B2B @ Business Point Pink Frosting B2B @ BNI Networking event



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Unpaid overtime what’s the real cost?

By Jim Roy, Business Director of Hays in Canberra


ore than a quarter of employers report that their people are clocking up increasing amounts of overtime and over 60 per cent say that those extra hours are unpaid. Pressure on organisations to increase productivity means that existing teams are being asked to do more work with the same number of heads. If not managed carefully, this has the potential to cause workplace stress and employee burnout, therefore costing a lot more in the long run. There could be a very good business case for adding permanent headcount or using a temporary staffing solution instead and there are some fantastic candidates available right now. Employers need to keep monitoring not just overtime but absenteeism and attrition rates so they know what all that overtime is really costing. In a survey conducted for the annual Hays Salary Guide, 1,600 employers were asked about the amount of overtime or extra hours being performed by their employees over the past year. Only 11 per cent had managed to reduce overtime with 63 per cent saying that the level of overtime or extra hours being performed inside their organisations had continued but had not increased. Of particular interest was the 26 per cent


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of employers who told us that the amount of overtime being performed by their employees had increased in the past year. Of those, 37 per cent said the amount of overtime had increased by up to five hours a week and 35 per cent by five to 10 hours a week. A further 10 per cent reported that the level of extra work had increased by more than 10 hours a week.

But it is clear that Australian workplaces have not yet found a balance that helps employees combine their work responsibilities with the other responsibilities in their lives The Hays Salary Guide also revealed that 62 per cent of the overtime or extra hours was unpaid. Employers are looking for maximum productivity from their existing workforce. The fact that so much of the overtime is unpaid creates the potential for issues around employee engagement and even rising absenteeism due to illness or stress. At Hays we recommend that employers take a number of steps to help manage employee engagement during sustained periods of increased overtime. These include:


• Actively monitoring the amount of overtime being performed and by which team members as well as absenteeism and general employee wellbeing; • Remaining open to adding permanent headcount as a way of increasing productivity and reducing the risk of existing employees leaving; • Using temporary staff to relieve pressure on overtime hot spots; • Actively encouraging managers to use regular feedback, paid rewards and unpaid rewards to recognise those employees putting in the extra time; • Monitoring business activity so staff can be given time off in lieu where possible. Based on feedback from our candidates, improvement to their work-life balance would make them professionally and personally happier. But it is clear that Australian workplaces have not yet found a balance that helps employees combine their work responsibilities with the other responsibilities in their lives. How can your workplace manage overtime more effectively? For your copy of the 2013 Hays Salary Guide, please contact Hays in Canberra on 02 6257 6344.


From let to right: Amy Bascomb, Iris Elgueta, Carol Benda, Marilyn Wright, Alison Scott, Allison Munro and Traci Harris

Meetings, mung beans and the mountain pose. How one business incorporates health and wellbeing into their workplace


arol Benda, Coordinator at Women’s Legal Centre, gazes out of the boardroom window and notices how the clouds are forming long streaks in the sky. Ordinarily she would bring her mind back to the staff meeting, but in this case, she and all eight staff members are lying prostrate on the floor as part of their combined staff meeting/yoga class. So if gazing out of the window helps Carol relax, all the better. The yoga class is one of the many initiatives that Women’s Legal Centre is putting in place as part of the Healthier Work program, a free ACT Government service aimed at encouraging staff to make healthier choices throughout their working day. As a busy organisation, where staff often work long hours and through their lunch breaks, the program has been a welcome addition. “We worked closely with our Healthier Work consultant to come up with ideas that would be easy to implement and cater to everybody’s fitness levels,” says Carol, who first heard about the program on the radio. “We also ensured that our activities could be incorporated as much as possible into our work schedule, so that people would feel like they still had time to get their work done.”


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Other initiatives have included a monthly lunch where the team walk to nearby restaurants and cafes, instead of driving, and outdoor activities such as lawn bowling, bike riding and even paddle boating. “Healthier Work also spoke to us about other things we could do with a healthy focus, so each week we organise a bowl of fruit and vegetables for staff to snack on,” she adds. “People have said they don’t think about needing their afternoon chocolate fix as a result.” Aside from the obvious health benefits, Carol has noticed a definite lift in spirits. “We’re a close working team anyway,” she says. “But having a formal structure in place that encourages all staff to participate in activities together has really boosted morale and brought us closer together – it’s been so worthwhile.” Healthier Work is a free ACT Government service established to support employers to develop health and wellbeing initiatives within their workplace. Visit for more details. Healthier Work is part of a joint Australian, State and Territory Government initiative under the National Partnership Agreement on Preventive Health

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Y O U .

You only live once. B U T









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6212 7600 Kendall Lane, NewActon

F E AT U R E Katy Gallagher, ACT Chief Minister, Bruce Armstrong, Chief of Staff, Aspen Medical


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rotecting troops on the frontline in Afghanistan is just one project led by the 2013 ACT Exporter of the Year, Aspen Medical – whose exports rocketed to $44million in 2012-2013. The Canberra-based healthcare provider was crowned Exporter of the Year for the third consecutive year during the ACT Chief Minister’s Export Awards Luncheon at the Hyatt Hotel on September 26 – a rare achievement recognising the company’s outstanding achievements. In 2012-2013, Aspen’s exports jumped 16% from the previous year, representing almost 20% of the company’s total turnover. During this time, its worldwide revenue more than doubled and its team doubled in size. The company also won the Health and Biotechnology Export Award. Aspen’s incredible growth reflects the strength of Canberra’s exporting industry, which is increasing by more than 9% a year – the highest rate of growth in the nation. “Aspen is a key player within the Territory’s vibrant exporting community; for the company to win ACT Exporter of the Year three times in a row is an extraordinary accomplishment,” said Chris Faulks CEO of the Canberra Business Council. “The prestigious Awards recognise the vital services ACT companies provide to clients throughout the world using our country’s capital as a base. “Congratulations to all our winners – the variety of the services they provide demonstrates the diversity and vibrancy of the export industry here in the ACT.” Aspen’s recent projects including providing medical equipment to countries in the Middle East which enables army medical battalions to deploy health care facilities in remote locations in less than 20 minutes. Glenn Keys, Aspen’s Managing Director, said: “The entire team at Aspen are delighted to have been awarded the Exporter of the Year in 2013, especially considering it was our third year in a row. “The competition in the ACT has always been strong and this year was even more competitive than ever with some great new innovations and emerging companies.” The Export Awards are just one way of recognising the ACT’s export success and the contribution local exporters make to Canberra’s and Australia’s economy and international reputation.

This year’s Awards were under the theme ‘100 years, 100 countries, 100 exporters’ and rewarded ACT exporters that are going from strength to strength during Canberra’s Centenary year. The growth of the Territory’s export industry is reflected by the addition of three ACT-only award categories this year – the ACT Exporting Government Solutions Award, the Exporting to Asia Award and the Emerging Exporter Award. The winners of this year’s ACT Chief Minister’s Export Awards are: • ACT Exporter of the Year – Aspen Medical • Agribusiness – Inland Trading Co. (Aust) Pty Ltd • Business Services – Northrop Consulting Engineers • Creative Industries – Bearcage Pty Ltd • Education and Training – University of Canberra • Environmental Solutions – XP Solutions • Health and Biotechnology – Aspen Medical • Information and Communication Technology – Seeing Machines • Infrastructure and Construction – Windlab • Small Business – eVALUA Pty Ltd • Emerging - QuintessenceLabs (ACT only) • ACT Exporting Government Solutions – Royal Australian Mint (ACT only) • Exporting To Asia – IE Asia Pacific (ACT only) Aspen will join Australia-wide category winners as a finalist in the Australian Export Awards, which will be announced in Melbourne in November. The ACT Chief Minister’s Export Awards are an initiative of the ACT Government delivered by Canberra Business Council.

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CONGRATULATIONS TO THE 2013 ACT CHIEF MINISTER’S EXPORT AWARDS WINNERS INLAND TRADING CO specialises in exporting premium quality wine from Australia, New Zealand and South Africa to the world. Inland exported more than 360,000 cases of wine to more than 40 countries in 2012-2013 alone – and grew a staggering 33%. NORTHROP CONSULTING ENGINEERS provides consulting engineering services across the built environment. The company started in Canberra 37 years ago and has grown to provide services across Australia and export to South East Asia and New Zealand. BEARCAGE PTY LTD has increasingly moved into the broadcast and transmedia market diversifying the fee-for-service business. In the past three years, it has focused on international television markets, particularly emerging markets. 12

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THE UNIVERSITY OF CANBERRA has a strong commitment to international education. Its Strategic Plan 2013-2017, Breakthrough, gives significant weight to internationalisation. Objectives include building a truly international university that can thrive in the new era of globalised higher education and research. XP SOLUTIONS is a world-leading provider of software solutions aimed at improving the physical and social environment. The company launched xpdrainage in 2013; an application for sustainable, low impact stormwater design. This product is poised to capture an emerging market.





ASPEN MEDICAL delivers world-class healthcare in remote, challenging and under-resourced environments. Growth is expected to continue as Aspen Medical leverages relationships with Government departments, the resources sector, Indigenous partners and humanitarian organisations in the US, UK and UAE. SEEING MACHINES was founded in 1997 within the Australian National University when a professor and three students developed a computer algorithm that, through an attached camera, allowed computers to determine a user’s eye gaze direction. The company now exports products to 10 countries including Brazil, the Netherlands, and Indonesia.





WINDLAB is a global wind energy company founded in 2003 as a spin out from Australia’s scientific research institute, the CSIRO. Windlab sites now represent over 20% of the renewable energy capacity in South Africa. EVALUA PTY LTD provides online electronic tendering and evaluation software. The company recently signed a contract with the New Zealand Government for the Next Generation Government Electronic Tendering Service (NG GETS) for the next five to 10 years. QUINTESSENCELABS is a technology leader in quantum science and its application to cyber security. It recently partnered with a joint venture of CBA and CISCO called Agora - a cloud-based service delivery platform that will enable the company to deliver unique technology as a service to international markets. ROYAL AUSTRALIAN MINT has delivered many international circulating coin projects, culminating in the recent coinage reforms in Samoa (2011-12) and Solomon Islands (2012-13). In 2012-13, RAM achieved $12.9million in export revenue, compared to $14.9million in 2011-12 and $2.9million in 2010-11. IE ASIA PACIFIC provides niche products, services and solutions that improve the detection capability for military Air Defence Radars and increase safety of civil Air Traffic Control. The company exports products and services to Indonesia, Singapore and Malaysia, with plans to expand into India and Thailand.




Supporting Partners

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Brendan Cockerill, DDCS Lawyers


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elf managed superannuation funds (SMSFs) are the fastest growing sector of the superannuation industry. One often overlooked and misunderstood aspect of SMSFs is the requirement that the members must always, either directly or indirectly, have input into the management and control of their SMSF, in order to be eligible for the generous tax concessions available to superannuation funds. To ensure that this requirement is met, every member of a SMSF should have in place an Enduring Power of Attorney (EPOA). The issue is best illustrated by an example. Mac and Cindy are both members of the Horse Lovers Superannuation Fund. In order to comply with the requirements of the Superannuation Industry (Supervision) Act 1993 (SIS Act), Mac and Cindy must, subject to the exceptions I will refer to below, be either the personal trustees of the fund or the only directors of the company that is trustee of the fund. Mac and Cindy are the directors and shareholders of Horse Lovers Pty Ltd, which is the trustee of their fund. What happens if Cindy loses capacity? Assume that following a horse riding accident, Cindy suffers serious head injuries which result in her losing her legal capacity. As Cindy has lost legal capacity she is unable to fulfil her role as a director of

Horse Lovers Pty Ltd and participate in the management and control of the Horse Lovers Superannuation Fund.

One often overlooked and misunderstood aspect of SMSFs is the requirement that the members must always, either directly or indirectly, have input into the management and control of their SMSF, in order to be eligible for the generous tax concessions available to superannuation funds. The SIS Act provides that a SMSF will not be in breach of the rules and will remain compliant if Cindy’s legal personal representative takes over her role in the management of the SMSF on her behalf. In this context legal personal representative means the trustee of the estate of a member under a legal disability or a person who holds an EPOA granted by a member. If Cindy did not have an EPOA a legal personal representative would need to be appointed

by an organisation such as the ACT Civil and Administrative Tribunal or the Guardianship Tribunal of NSW. As Cindy has an EPOA, appointing Mac as her attorney, Mac is spared from having to apply. However Cindy having an EPOA, is not enough in itself to deal with the problem. It is only the first step. In order to participate in the administration of the SMSF on Cindy’s behalf, Mac must take the necessary steps, in accordance with the terms of the Deed governing the SMSF and the constitution of Horse Lovers Pty Ltd, to become a director of the trustee company on Cindy’s behalf before the administration of the fund can continue. Becoming the trustee of the SMSF is relatively straight forward in the case of SMSFs with personal trustees, however, care must be taken in relation to SMSFs with corporate trustees. The reason for this is that an EPOA is of no use if the shareholding and/ or constitution do not allow the attorneys to become directors without the consent of another party and that consent is withheld. Accordingly, we recommend that appropriate steps are taken to ensure that the constitution of the corporate trustee allows the attorney to step in as a director of the trustee company in place of the member without requiring any other party’s consent or approval.

18 Kendall Lane, New Acton Tel: (02) 6212 7600

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Call us on 02 6223 2222 or drop into our office at U5 47 Vicars St, Mitchell for a chat about how you can start your journey into online marketing.


At Canberra Web, we specialise in visually stunning, organically optimised websites that rank highly in search engines and convert visitors into clients. HOW DO PEOPLE FIND WHAT THEY NEED?



Successful business marketing requires an understanding of your target market - how do they find the products and services that they need? There are many avenues a business can pursue to increase the exposure of their brand; print, television and radio advertisements are all well established marketing tools. In recent years, these stalwarts have been joined by a new stable mate: the Internet. The majority of people are now using Internet search engines to find what they need, and businesses need to shift their marketing focus to tap into the terrific potential of the Internet. A well designed and built website is the primary online identity for most businesses. Incorporating the keywords that potential customers use to search for the things you sell will drive traffic to your site to make that all-important first contact. This process, known as ‘organic search engine optimization’ is at the core of using a website as a marketing tool.

Why should a business put time and effort into organic search engine optimisation when they can pay to have a link to their website appear on the first page of search results? There are many reasons to pursue organic SEO. Paid search engine links only show for as long as they are being paid for, then they disappear as if they never existed, leaving no lasting improvement in the ranking of your website. Advertising through paid links can end up being very expensive. Some highly sought after keywords can cost the advertiser well over $20 for every person that clicks on the paid link, and you are still left with the job of converting that visitor into a sale. An investment in organic search engine optimization will help your website generate more leads over time as the site gains page ranking. Carefully built, optimised websites tend to climb the search engine rankings steadily and hold their place without high ongoing costs. Ranking highly in organic search results is a more reliable marketing strategy. Many users deliberately ignore sponsored links specifically because they have been paid for. Of course, no matter how you get the traffic, your website still needs to impress visitors so you can convert them into sales.

Effective online marketing is about more than just being found online. You need a stylish, modern website which makes it easy for visitors to find the information they want. If a website is well designed and built, it creates a user experience that stands out from the competition. This in turn raises the profile of your business in the online space. In this increasingly online world, investing in a website that appeals to its viewers, is easy to navigate on both desktop and mobile devices and can be found easily by search engines has become a necessity for every business.

START YOUR JOURNEY WITH CANBERRA WEB At Canberra Web, we specialise in visually stunning, organically optimised websites that rank highly in search engines and convert visitors into clients.

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arketing professionals in the fast moving consumer goods (FMCG) sector need to upgrade their skills to stay competitive in the jobs market, says recruiting experts Hays Sales & Marketing. According to the recruiter, digital marketing is changing the marketing mix and the way marketers communicate with their target markets. As a result, marketing professionals need to upgrade their skills since successful marketing strategies demand the right consumer insights and channel selection. “As digital is the fastest-growing revenue stream in the retail and leisure industries, the 4Ps of price, place, product and promotion need to be put in the digital marketing context,” says Peter Noblet, Senior Regional Director of Hays Sales & Marketing. “The challenge facing FMCG marketers is how to balance traditional and new media to achieve the best results. The power of personal media technology can be used to increase sales, enhance brand identity, improve consumer experiences, deliver location and contextually relevant information, deepen engagement, improve productivity and reduce costs for both consumer and employee audiences. “Furthermore, as the sophistication of mobile devices improves, there is an opportunity for marketers to deliver compelling brand messaging where consumers are making their purchase decisions.” Wal-Mart, for example, has an app that senses when customers enter a store and suggests switching their phone to "store mode." In this mode, shoppers can interact with special QR digital signage located throughout stores to access useful product information. WalMart, in turn, is able to track their in-store behaviour. If sales of a certain item are not performing, tracking can show whether customers are skipping the aisle entirely or looking at the product without buying it. This information enables store owners to make product placement or other adjustments. Impressively, customers who use the Wal-Mart app make two additional visits to the store each month and spend 40% more than those without apps.

Lack of digital proficiency Unsurprisingly, this kind of rapid change in the industry is causing some anxiety among marketers as a recent survey commissioned by Adobe revealed a lack of confidence in digital ability. Results showed that less than half of professionals who consider themselves primarily digital marketers feel highly proficient in digital marketing. A majority of digital marketers haven’t received any formal training in digital marketing, with 82% instead learning on the job. In addition, only 40% think their company’s marketing is effective. When it comes to measuring the effectiveness of digital campaigns specifically, only 9% strongly agreed with the statement that they ‘know their digital marketing is working’. Yet, 68% of respondents feel more pressured to show return on investment on their marketing spend. These findings underline the need for organisations to invest in training and resources that will enable marketers to extract actionable insights from data. The multi-channel approach “Consumers are using their personal media devices in parallel to other interactions with brands. They’re simultaneously browsing the web on their tablet, watching an ad on TV and sharing their experience on social networks via their mobile device,” says Peter. “Striking the balance between digital and traditional marketing can be a tough challenge but no marketing plan should be based around one tactic. Having combined marketing strategies will keep a company’s messages in front of its customers in many different environments,” says Peter. “By integrating old and new methods marketers are better equipped to increase product awareness and impact their organisations’ bottom line. “If a company integrates personal media into its overall FMCG marketing mix, its message will not only reach a much wider audience, but it can help reinforce its message and open up a means for immediate action and two way communication with customers.” Hays, the world’s leading recruiting experts in qualified, professional and skilled people.

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Photos by Andrew Sikorski


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NDIS brings radical changes for disability service providers Implementation of the new National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) will bring welcome changes to services for the 140,000 or so people with a disability, and those who support them. It will also have a major impact on organisations operating in the disability and community services sector.


f you operate in this sector, the organisation landscape is about to radically change. Will your organisation survive these changes? The introduction of person-centred disability support and individual funding arrangements will require many if not all service providers to alter or adapt their organisation and operating models, and to make pricing decisions in a new choice driven landscape. There are also changes to the governance and reporting requirements. For many organisations, the procedures, processes and pricing will need to be reviewed. There are four key areas where the impact on your organisation could be significant.



Block funding arrangements will be phased out. In its place are individual funding arrangements and person-centred support. Each ‘client’ will be supported through the development of an individualised plan. This will allow the type, level and frequency of support to be tailored to the needs of individuals. Clients are likely to be offered a choice of providers – so organisations operating in the sector are facing a new, more competitive landscape. The quality of customer service and the efficiency of the organisation processes will now have a much greater impact on organisation survival.

The new choice driven landscape will also make it vital for organisations to make pricing decisions that are competitive and financially feasible for the organisation. This will be a particular challenge for many providers in a sector that has not traditionally needed a strong focus on determining and reviewing pricing models in a competitive marketplace. Under-pricing or over-pricing can result in organisation failure, so well-considered pricing decisions are vital.

The NDIS has created a new competitive landscape for disability and community service organisations.

WORKFORCE PLANNING Workforce planning and development has always been a challenge for the sector however, a renewed strategic focus at a local level will now be needed to attract and retain a skilled team.

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You may need to drastically alter your business model to survive the new NDIS environment. Andrew Sykes

Now is the time to review your pricing, processes and procedures and plan ahead for sustainability in the sector.

While the sector may be familiar with reporting requirements, many of these requirements will change or become more complex. To be eligible to provide services under the individualised plans, all providers must apply and register through a new National Disability Insurance Agency (NDIA) provider portal. The origin of clients and funding will vary – so too will the reporting requirements. If you operate a organisation in the disability and community sector, don’t underestimate the impact that these changes will bring. Ensure that your business model and pricing structure can sustain your organisation in the new client-centred and competitive environment. RSM BIRD CAMERON

Tony Grieves

RSM Bird Cameron can assist in establishing and implementing sound business plans and strategies, and in evaluating and redesigning business processes to facilitate transition to the new NDIS environment. If you would like further information regarding anything discussed in this article please fill free to contact Tony Grieves, Senior Manager at RSM Bird Cameron on 02 6217 0395 or

Many disability and community service organisations will need to review pricing structures and alter their business models to survive in the new landscape created by the NDIS. Lauren Heys

Billy Kang

Under-pricing in this new environment could result in business failure. Young Han

With block funding being phased out and a new competitive environment replacing it, if you operate in this sector you may need to: • Revise business processes & procedures • Become more efficient to retain profit • Review and amend your pricing model • Become more marketing savvy • Do more to attract and retain employees • Create new processes for reporting The changes are quite significant and the time to begin planning is now. RSM Bird Cameron has significant expertise in assisting organisations in this sector to plan for profit.


Frustrated by lack of flexibility – Charlie’s story Charlie Whitehead was born with severe laryngeal tracheal and bronchial malaciaa - a rare condition that affects his airways - and was later diagnosed with severe combined immunodeficiency and Kanner’s autism. Up until recently, Charlie has needed a constant supply of oxygen and to be fed from a tube. His condition has left him with no immune system and a need for plasma therapy every four weeks. Ms Whitehead says because of Charlie’s many different conditions, he does not fall neatly into a box for disability care under the current system. “He’s got so many medical issues. He’s also hypoglycaemic, which means he has to stay on his feed 20 hours out of 24, so he’s got a bag attached to him with a lead,” Ms Whitehead said. FUNDING SYSTEM “We were receiving respite care for Charlie, but that stopped when he was diagnosed with autism because we were

told he was physically too able for their services”. A national approach to disability care would improve the quality of care for Charlie and alleviate the need to constantly be asking, ‘are we funded for that?’ Ms Whitehead said. There are many groups that provide disability services but they are sometimes hard to find, a NDIS would centralise Charlie’s care by making a tailored plan for his disabilities and provide alternatives when needed. FUTURE CARE Charlie’s autism means he needs to stay with the same therapist or carer to be able to develop a relationship with them rather than be moved around to different groups. Funding from an NDIS would allow Charlie’s family to pay the disability group directly for the service of choice rather than the current model of disability groups relying on specific government funds and cutting

out patients when they do not fit the group’s funding box. Under the NDIS people with disability will have more control and flexibility over how their funding is spent and will know how much financial support will be provided not only now but into the future. Charlie’s family have recently dug into their superannuation savings to fund a hydrotherapy pool for him in the hope that the regular therapy and exercise will strengthen him for future treatments down the road. The NDIS moves Charlie from a block funding model to a self-directed model, which would mean they could dedicate funding towards the pool which will help Charlie and into the future, when he’s 20 or 50 years old.

With RSM Bird Cameron you really are… Connected for Success. (02) 6217 0300 | B 2 B M A G A Z I N E   O C T O B E R 2 0 13


ADVICE 25 25 26 26 27 27 28 28 30 31 31

ACCOUNTING All SMSF members should hold individual enduring power of attorney by Michael O’Hehir, RSM Bird Cameron

BUSINESS LAW Is a franchise for me? by Kerin Cotchett, Elringtons Lawyers

CORPORATE GOVERNANCE Directors in the spotlight By Phil Butler, Australian Institute of Company Directors

INTELLECTUAL PROPERTY Intellectual property law 101 By Shaun Creighton, Arete Group

ESTATE PLANNING The appointment of a testamentary guardian and family law By Stephen Bourke, Certus Law

FAMILY LAW Luck and lottery – a fable for separating couples By Jacquelyn Curtis, Dobinson Davey Clifford Simpson

HEALTH Weight loss for life By Robbie Manzano, Healthy Identity

PROPERTY FINANCING Professional finance and mortgage broking services By Peter Spooner, Loan Market Home Finance Brokers

RECRUITMENT Private versus public sector recruitment By Allison Guy-Ritchie, PCA People

SERVICED OFFICES Entrepreneurs’ business success secrets By Robert Okulus, Synergy Business Centres

WEBSITES 7 steps to SEO By Sam Gupta, Synapse Worldwide


By Michael O’Hehir

All SMSF members should hold individual enduring power of attorney

At the moment the number of self-managed superannuation funds is increasing by 3,500 a month. Of this 70% of funds have individual trustees. A lot of trustees are unaware that if a trustee becomes incapacitated, then they can no longer act as trustee for their SMSF. The same goes with being a Director of a corporate trustee. In this case where a trustee becomes incapacitated, they must take their benefit as a lump sum payment and exit the fund in order for the fund to remain complying. This can be very difficult if say the funds’ holds non-liquid assets such as property or units in unlisted unit trusts. If the fund has borrowed money to purchase a related party asset such as a commercial property this can also cause significant problems for the trustees and the family businesses. To avoid this type of problem, we recommend all trustees have enduring power of attorneys. It should be noted that multiple members of a fund can execute an enduring power of attorney in respect of the same individual representative. This is particularly good if members of an SMSF are going to be nonresident for a period of time, they can appoint a person to act on their behalf and the fund still complies with the member residency test. If you are in your 30s and think that you do not need this, consider the following example. James 38 and Jenny 36 are trustees of their personal SMSF the J & J Superannuation Fund. They are keen property investors having two negatively geared properties in their own names and one in their SMSF. This property represents 80% of the funds’ assets. James and Jenny are very active people and enter cycling competitions regularly. Recently James entered a competition but unfortunately was hit by a vehicle and has been in a coma for a month. His prospects for full recovery are poor. Both members do not have enduring power of attorney. Under the SIS legislation both trustees are required to make decisions on behalf of the fund. As one member is now unable to do so, that member must be removed from the fund to avoid non-compliance. The fund does not hold enough cash to pay a lump sum for James so the property will now need to be sold in order to pay him out. If the market is bad, the fund could have significant losses. Jenny has then 6 months to appoint a new trustee to replace James, appoint a corporate trustee or wind up the fund. If James and Jenny had an enduring power of attorney, they could keep the fund and James could remain a member.


By Kerin Cotchett

Is a franchise for me?

There are plenty of opportunities to start a franchise venture in Canberra, however, before forging ahead and buying into a franchise you must do your research: investigate potential and future profit forecasts, carry out marketing studies, read the documentation, and find out as much about the franchise as possible. Certainly, you must step with caution. The franchise agreement that you will be required to sign will be lengthy and complicated. You should read it carefully and seek advice before signing. This agreement will: • grant you (the franchisee) the right to utilise, sell and/or distribute goods or services under an established brand name belonging to the franchisor; and • require you to pay the franchisor for the privilege. The financial cost usually entails a hefty percentage of turnover to be paid to the franchisor, together with added costs of advertising and marketing, training, and products, to name a few things. The Franchisor will also want to do their due diligence on you, for example: Your business experience – have you operated a business before? Your succession plan – what if an unexpected event occurs? Can the business continue to function, will the brand and customer database be protected? Your facilities - is your proposed premises secure and presentable? Is it accessible to consumers ie parking? Is your lease secure and long enough, and does the lease permit the franchise to operate? Will the brand have adequate visibility from that premises? What is your plan of attack for advertising – are their restrictions on advertising in the location, what is the competition? Who are your proposed employees - are they capable, presentable and adequately trained? How will the quality control be maintained? How often will they be trained in order to continue operation of the franchise? Will they wear uniforms that promote the product? Financial and accounting advice should always be sought before entering into a franchise agreement to ensure that you have the money and that the business is viable. Franchises are heavily regulated by the Franchising Code of Conduct – you need to ensure that the franchisor has complied with the Code in supplying you with all necessary disclosure prior to the signing of the agreement. And you should look into any government licensing that you will need, and investigate other related franchises in your area. If you are a prospective franchisee or franchisor, before you enter into any agreement contact the business services team at elringtons to fully understand your duties, obligations and compliance requirements of operating a franchise.

Bird Cameron

Chartered Accountants

Please contact Michael O’Hehir, Principal at RSM Bird Cameron, if you have any questions on or 02 6217 0318.

Contact Elringtons T: (02) 6206 1300, Level 7, 221 London Circuit, Canberra City visit:

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by Phil Butler

Directors in the spotlight

While many people will automatically think of directors being from the big end of town, recent figures from the Australian Securities and Investment Commission ( ASIC) put the spotlight on the reality of organisations and directors.

The role of a director can be a challenging and potentially difficult one. However, approached with the right knowledge and commitment, directors are able to guide their organisations to achieve great outcomes for our society. Many would be surprised to know that there are over 2.2million directors in Australia! Of even more surprise is the fact that there almost 50,000 directors domiciled in the ACT. In terms of organisations, there are over 30,000 Proprietary Companies in Canberra and close to 800 Public Companies ( while this figure is slightly inflated because of NotFor-Profit and Public Sector bodies). Reviewing these statistics recently acted as a timely reminder for directors of these organisations to fully understand not just their duties and responsibilities under law, but also the key role they play in governing the destinies of these organisations. The duties of acting in good faith in the best interest of the organisation; and acting with due care and diligence are of paramount importance. As are the myriad of other legislation which a directors needs to be ware of and comply with. The need for compliance is obvious, however it is the directors’ role in achieving the outcomes of the organisation that is of the utmost importance. Regardless of whether it is a private, public or NFP organisation, the board has the key role of harnessing the available resources to achieve the desired outcomes and maximising the impact of these resources. While this “stewardship” is of importance for all organisations, it can be argued that it is of even more importance when directors are in control of “other people’s money”. Hence it may be easier for a sole director to view their stewardship role with less importance, but for directors of public companies, or private companies with more than one shareholder they must be aware of this responsibility. The role of a director can be a challenging and potentially difficult one. However, approached with the right knowledge and commitment, directors are able to guide their organisations to achieve great outcomes for our society.

Phil Butler is Manager - NFP, Public Sector & ACT at the Australian Institute of Company Directors. Level 3 54 Marcus Clarke Street Canberra T: 02 6132 3200 |


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By Shaun Creighton

Intellectual property law 101

Intellectual Property (IP) – A Risky Generalisation? “I’ve got IP”, “They’ve taken my IP” and similar phrases are often heard today; however, their users are not always aware that IP is just a label of convenience, one that covers a grab bag of different subject matter and rights. So, we always need to be clear about what falls into which category and some of the basic differences, including whether there is any kind of application process to get the intellectual property right(s) (IPR(s)) in question and how long they might last (their term). The significance of difference So, patents, PBRs, registered designs and registered trade marks all have an application process. An application for any of these will involve submission of the relevant forms, payment of official fees, a formalities check, substantive examination (against the requirements of the relevant Act) and some form of final grant/registration. However, those application processes vary between the different types of IP. Just because some IPRs involve no formal application does not mean that you get them ‘automatically’. Copyright, CLRs, trade secrets and confidential information all have threshold requirements that have to be reached before subject matter protection arises. Further, all have detailed, complex rules allocating first ownership (or, in the case of trade secrets and confidential information, controllership). This is very important in the context of enforcing rights, as clearly it is not possible to enforce rights that you do not have. Further, copyright, trade mark and patent laws provide prohibitions against the making of groundless threats of initiating infringement proceedings, so it is always important to be clear in relation to relevant rights prior to asserting these rights. Exploiting and commercialising your IP Once an individual or entity owns IP, there are a number of options open. The most obvious is to use the IP directly according to type, for example, applying the mark in relation to goods/services, producing things embodying the invention, etc. However, self-use of IP is not always a practical option and that is where other ways of exploiting IPRs arise. Licensing means that an owner retains IP ownership but permits others to use or otherwise exploit it. In essence, this provides an opportunity to created leverage over use of the IP. Licensing arrangements come in many different shapes and sizes (eg exclusive v non-exclusive, royalty free v royalty payment, worldwide v territory limited, perpetual v time limited, freestanding v embedded). It is important to fully understand the differences between different types of licensing arrangements when drafting commercial licences such as franchise agreements, distribution agreements, sponsorship agreements, software licences, IT development (including software, websites etc) and any other arrangement where one party is granting the other a right to use their IPRs. Other ways of exploiting IP include assignment (ie transfer of ownership) and securing charges for loan or other purposes. Assignment has fewer options that licensing but can still involve partial or return-trip (reversionary) assignment. In any event, licensing, assignment and charging are all complex topics and, if in doubt, you should always consult a specialist IP lawyer. P: GPO Box 579, Canberra ACT 2601 E: T: 02 6162 1639 | M: 0430 22 78 62 W: or


by Stephen Bourke

The appointment of a testamentary guardian and family law

A testamentary guardian is a person appointed under your will to be the guardian of your minor children in the event of your death. We often see clients after they have separated from the other parent of their children. Because you may hold the other parent in a less than favourable light, the question often arises – who will look after my kids if I am dead? You can appoint a Testamentary Guardian but what happens if the other parent is still alive? Does it make a difference if there are Family Court Orders in place? The starting point under the Family Law Act 1975 is that each parent has parental responsibility for their child. That responsibility is ongoing. However, it may be altered by a court order. Thus when parents separate and orders are made in relation to the ongoing parental responsibility, one parent may be responsible for providing day to day care and the child may live with them while both parents may share the long term parental responsibility. What happens when the parent responsible for where the child lives dies? If the court orders do not make provision for living arrangements of children following the death of the parent with whom the children live, the surviving parent does not automatically assume responsibility to provide residence. It may require further orders and it may give rise to contest between the surviving parent and other family members or interested parties such as step-parents. What if the deceased parent had made their new spouse (a step-parent) or some other person a testamentary guardian? The testamentary guardian is responsible for the long term responsibility but not the daily care responsibility of the children. What does this mean in practice? It means that the testamentary guardian is responsible for financial matters and other decisions that affect the long term care and welfare of the child. This includes the right to start court action about where the child might live. Summary After a couple separate: • If there is no Court Order – both parents share equal parental responsibility. If one parent appoints another person as a Testamentary Guardian, that Guardian will share equal parental responsibility for long term care but does not have daily care and control over the child with the surviving parent. The surviving parent will have sole parental responsibility over daily care and control of the child which includes where the child will live. • If there is a Court Order (and the order does not make provision for the death of a parent) – the deceased parent (with whom the child was living) can appoint a Testamentary Guardian who assumes the parental responsibility for the long term care of the child but does not have daily care and control over the child. The surviving parent, Testamentary Guardian or other interested third parties may need to seek an order from the Family or Federal Circuit Courts to determine where the child will live.

Certus Law specialises in superannuation, trusts and estate planning. Visit Certus Law at Level 5, 28 University Avenue, T: 6268 9090,


By Jacquelyn Curtis

Luck and lottery – a fable for separating couples

A recent case decided by the Family Court in Sydney is a timely reminder for separating couples to legally formalise their financial and property matters after separating. In the case, the wife had a $6 million win six months after separating from her husband. The parties had been married for 20 years and had not legally formalised a property settlement at the time of the win. The husband brought a Court application, seeking half of the lotto win. He argued that the wife had purchased the $59.45 winning ticket from “joint funds” and that throughout the marriage, the wife bought weekly lotto tickets from joint funds which increased her chances of winning the major prize. The Court rejected the husband’s argument, finding that the husband had made no contribution to either the funds used to buy the ticket or the lotto win. However, the Judge made orders giving the husband an additional $500,000 from the parties’ property settlement to take into account the disparity between the husband and wife’s individual financial circumstances and the husband’s limited future working capacity. When making orders for property distribution at the end of a relationship, the Court considers the asset pool, the contributions by each party to that asset pool (both financial and non-financial) and the future needs of each person. The Court must make orders that are just and equitable in all of the circumstances. In this case, the husband received an additional payment to take into consideration his future needs relative to the needs of the wife. Some might think that the wife was not hardly done by in forfeiting $500,000 from $6 million. However, had the parties legally formalised a property settlement before the lottery win, the Wife’s lottery win would have been safe from the husband’s claim and the winnings would have remained entirely hers – instead making it a case of bad luck for him. Once a property settlement has been formalised by way of Court Orders or a Binding Financial Agreement, it is final. The orders or agreement can only be set aside in limited circumstances, dramatically reducing the risk of a former spouse being able to make a claim against newly acquired assets or windfalls. Similarly, for those operating a business or thinking of starting up a business after the end of a relationship, formalising a property settlement with a former spouse is an important risk management consideration. The “take-home message” for separated couples is to get your financial and property affairs in order in a timely fashion and to legally formalise any agreement you may reach with your former spouse. You never know what tomorrow may bring.

18 Kendall Lane, New Acton Canberra City ACT 2601 T: (02) 6212 7600 E:

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By Robbie Manzano


Weight loss for life

McDonaldization is a term used to describe a society with a fast food culture. Although the number of fast food restaurants in Australia don't compare to the high number of restaurants in America, health statistics indicate obesity is becoming more prevalent as Australia becomes more industrialized. According to the Australia Bureau of Statistics (ABS) in 1995, 57% of adults were considered overweight or obese. In 2008, adults that were considered overweight or obese increased to 61%. Of greater concern, it seems that our population is gaining weight faster, with the obese category increasing from 19% to 24% from 1995 to 2008. These alarming statistics has seen our society intervene in a variety of ways; some interventions being beneficial and some causing more harm than good in a societal contexts. Currently, our vision to regain control of our weight as a society has seen "weight loss" as a profitable market. Consequently, the push to create the quickest weight loss strategy has caused confusion in our society. Understanding what to do or what to consume, has seen those wanting to lose weight fall short or their desired identity. Weight loss is simple. However, there is one ingredient these fast weight loss strategies left out. This single ingredient can cause us to lose weight and maintain a healthy weight for life. I'm referring to "time". I see too many people look for a quick fix and weight loss either turns into weight gain or the yo-yo phenomenon were weight is gone then back again before you know it. There are two rules when it comes to sustainable weight loss. 1) Seek a health professional that has completed a university health degree. Advice from someone who has completed a 10-week short course in fitness may not have the knowledge to lead you in the right direction. A university graduate with a health degree has over 3 years worth of knowledge in a variety of health disciplines. For this reason they are able to adapt a weight-loss strategy based on scientific evidence to suit you. 2) Take the advice health professionals offer and put it into practice. This is where fast weight-loss programs go wrong. We forget health management is a skill. Practicing a healthy lifestyle in a dynamic society may seem difficult at the initial stages of your health kick. However, with continuous practice you'll soon be able to manage healthy practices and manage your weight for life. To encourage your health kick this October and November, Healthy Identity is offering the community group workouts and healthy weight loss, nutrition and lifestyle consultations. If you or your workforce is contemplating on being healthy this spring, please get in touch as we would love to help. For more information on any of our health programs send a email to, call me on 0423 366 014 or visit Robbie Manzano is founder and managing director of Healthy Identity. Robbie has degrees in Human Nutrition and Coaching Science from the University of Canberra and has completed a Graduate Certificate Public Health from Curtin University. 0423 366 014


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By Peter Spooner

Reasons to use finance & mortgage broking services

Australian residential property buyers are increasingly turning to finance / mortgage broking service providers for assistance. The primary reasons for this are simple: • a residential property finance broker is an expert who specialises in defining what type of financing option will work best for a client • they do the leg work wading through the large range of loan offerings in the market place to identify those that best match the client’s circumstances and objectives • they summarise and review the options with the client • they are unbiased in recommending a Lender/Product solution • they manage the loan application process. In other words, a residential property financing specialist focuses on matching Lender and Product offerings to the client’s circumstances and objectives - not the other way around, as is the case when finance institutions are directly approached.This situation is equally true, if not more so, when refinancing options need to be assessed. All too often at this point in time ‘customers’ come to realise that their current Lender doesn’t value their history and can only offer their own product range with their associated constraints.The services offered by a residential property financing broker, as compared to dealing direct with a lending institution, differ substantially in the level of choice and service offered by the broker in • meeting at a time that suits clients to fully discuss their circumstances, finance needs and objectives in order to formulate a personalised purchase/refinance financing plan • only progressing at a pace that is comfortable for the client • providing unbiased Lender/Product comparisons and Product summaries matched to the financing plan • providing a thorough explanation of all the features, fees and charges associated with the selected loan option • providing pre-purchase indicative borrowing capacity and, if appropriate, loan pre-approval • liaising with the clients solicitor, real estate agent and, as appropriate, accountant and financial planner to ensure that the borrowing aligns with broader strategies and loan progresses from application to settlement smoothly • being contactable after-hours, on weekends during and post completion. Recommended professional residential property financing brokers • will be fully independent of any Lender • will hold at least an ASIC CRN and NCCP compliant • will not charge a fee for service. A commission being paid by ultimate Lender. Full disclosure and comparative Lender commission data provided to the client • will hold industry recognised qualifications of no less than a Dip. FS (Finance / Mortgage Broking) and membership of an industry body such as the MFA.

Australian Credit Licence 390222

Peter Spooner is a qualified and experienced finance / mortgage brokering specialist. He has access to over 800 loan products from a panel of 30 lenders plus reach-back to over 500 Loan Market associates when formulating financing solutions for clients. To gain further information into the Loan Market go to www.loanmarket or to book an appointment please call Peter on 0400 281 398 or email him at

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Private versus public sector recruitment

By Allison Guy-Ritchie

The private sector recruitment process is very different to that of the public sector. Key differences are that the cycle is shorter in the private sector and often only takes days to complete as compared with months in the public sector. Some private sector recruitment processes are also less formal. Private sector hiring managers frequently look for candidates with commercial acumen, those willing and able to work with flexibility, and those with the ability to assess and understand the wider market in which a business entity operates. Candidates need to be able to explain and demonstrate through specific interview responses that they possess the competencies of efficiency, savings in time and/or money, opportunity identification and exploitation, and continual service improvement. Transferrable skills common to, and between, both sectors include organisation, communication, management, training, attention to detail, influencing skills, customer service, negotiation and others. Candidates need to be able to confidently demonstrate to a hiring manager actual and potential contributions. Culturally, the public sector is sometimes described by clients and candidates alike as highly structured and with rewards and payscales based on rank and tenure. The private sector is sometimes described as more dynamic and with rewards based on initiative and outcomes. These can be generalisations and there are exceptions within both sectors. Those who acknowledge these generalisations are better placed to understand the perceived and/or actual differences between sectors. Payscale comparisons between the sectors are interesting. For entry level roles the public sector base pay and other benefits are often higher than private sector employers who sometimes reference award conditions. As candidates progress, and with technical skills attained, the mid-level role payscales can be more comparable. Once candidates reach executive appointments there are fewer private sector opportunities and in the public sector there are often bottlenecks as a number of candidates seek to move into executive bands. At this level payscales start to differ again. Within the private sector executive remuneration packages become highly negotiable. Couple these considerations with the observation that there are significant variations amongst increments within public sector agencies and it is impossible to make the universal statement that one sector is paid higher than then other. PCA People provide specialist recruitment services across private, public and not-for-profit sectors and also for industry bodies and associations. For more information contact PCA People on 02 6257 1010 or email


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By Robert Okulus

Entrepreneurs’ business success secrets

With the election of the Abbot Coalition Government business confidence has increased. But what can you do to increase your chances of business success? As any thriving entrepreneur will tell you, there is no single, foolproof formula to ensuring business success. But speak to enough entrepreneurs and common patterns emerge. In Growth in a Difficult Decade, a book commissioned by Synergy, more than 60 entrepreneurs share their advice on how to achieve growth in the economic downturn. Here are the findings: 1. Perseverance, positivism and people In the face of adversity – plough on, stay upbeat and be decisive. “People who love what they’re doing don’t give up. It’s never even a consideration. It’s a pretty simple formula,” said Donald Trump, head of the Trump Organization. Others highlight the importance of hiring people who are better at something than you are. Coffee shop-chain Starbucks’ chairman and CEO, Howard Schultz, said, “There is no more precious commodity than the relationship of trust and confidence a company has with its employees.” 2. Harness the power of marketing Today’s multi-channel world offers vast opportunities. Make the most out of them. Dame Mary Perkins, co-founder of opticians chain Specsavers, said, “Customers are more demanding and more knowledgeable using the internet to find out things for themselves, and they want better service. So they need to be told why they should spend money with you.” 3. Learn from your mentors Take learnings from people whose opinion you trust. “I’ve found that some of my best mentors will paint a picture for me, but they won’t suggest any sort of direction. They’ll say: ‘Here are the five things that you can do, here are similar experiences that I’ve had,'” said Jason Ross of menswear retailer JackThreads. 4. Think globally and go for growth Having a global vision is vital in a world where thanks to technology there are no longer any geographical barriers. Marc Benioff, founder, chairman and CEO of , said, “The biggest lesson that I draw from the past decade is the importance of innovating on every level.” And with innovation comes the potential for growth. Footwear giant Geox’s founder Mario Moretti Polegato hit it on the head when he said, “It’s not true that everything has already been invented: there is plenty of scope out there for great innovation.” So, do you feel as upbeat about the future? What’s the growth outlook for your company?

Robert Okulus, Area Director | T 1300 476 946 Level 6, 39 London Circuit, Canberra Units 1 to 4, 8 Jardine Street Kingston ACT 2604


by Sam Gupta

7 Steps to SEO

The process of tweaking a website to help it attain better organic ranking on the search engines is known as ‘Search Engine Optimisation’ and is commonly referred to as ‘SEO’. Here is a quick 7 point checklist to help you with basic SEO:

Getting traffic is one thing, but converting a visitor into customer should be the focus of your SEO strategy. Copy of your page plays an important role in this. Use appropriate call to action buttons to convert that visitor into a lead. 1. Formulate a digital strategy for your business. Analyse and choose your keywords accordingly. Be careful, what you think people are searching for and what people are actually searching for could be two different things. 2. Don’t stuff your webpage with keywords. Do not try to target too many keywords for a page. Start with 1 to 3 keywords per page. 3. If possible, dedicate a page to each keyword you want to optimise. Link those keywords to their dedicated pages throughout the website. Use search engine friendly URLs. 4. Make sure your business is listed on Google Places (Google Map). Submit your website on other local directories. Most of them are free. Ask your suppliers and partners to put a link to your website on their website. 5. Add links to your website from social media tools such as Blogs, Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter and Pinterest. Make sure they are public posts so that search engines can see them. Remember, quality is preferred over quantity. 6. Try to add something new to the website at least once a month if not more frequently. It could be as simple as a new item or a blog post. 7. Getting traffic is one thing, but converting a visitor into customer should be the focus of your SEO strategy. Copy of your page plays an important role in this. Use appropriate call to action buttons to convert that visitor into a lead. Call Sam Gupta on 1300785230 for a FREE Website Analysis and 1 hour consultation to discuss your website in detail or visit

Sam Gupta is the managing director of Synapse Worldwide. Sam would love to hear your thoughts on this advice column. Please contact him on 1300 785 230 or

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Digital Canberra ANDREW BARR



t’s no secret that much contemporary business innovation is technology-reliant, particularly in a city such as Canberra – dominated as we are by the services sector. This innovation isn’t confined to the private sector. The expectations that Canberrans have for public service provision are also being influenced by new digital technologies and digital platforms, and by changing private sector service delivery standard and strategies.

And it is a great example of how the Government is helping to broaden the contribution of the private sector to the ACT economy by putting knowledge, innovation and creativity at the top of the ACT’s economic agenda. So if there’s anything about government service delivery you think can be improved by the better use of technology, please spread the word. The ACT Government acknowledges the need to embrace technology in our systems and business processes in order to meet the increasingly demanding requirements of citizens and provide services more efficiently. That’s why the Government has launched the Digital Canberra Challenge. The Challenge aims to stimulate innovation in electronic and mobile technologies, and in turn help to improve community access to government and public sector services. The Challenge will help to promote a more effective and efficient government, and will feature two competitions a year over the next three years. Each competition will run for six months and will engage local innovators and small- and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) in the development of new or enhanced digital government services. In the lead up to each round of the competition, ACT public servants and members of the public will have the opportunity to put forward unresolved


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business ‘challenges’ about the delivery of government services, with local innovators and SMEs then invited to submit conceptual solutions. Coaching, mentoring and research assistance will be offered to contestants, to help them develop their responses to proven feasibility stage, and then to be published as case studies. The top two contestants in each round will receive $12,500 and $7,500 respectively as prize money. The objective and approach of the Digital Canberra Challenge align closely with the ACT Government’s broader Digital Canberra Agenda, and also respond to rising community expectations of accountability and socially inclusive governance. The ACT Government is committed to its collaboration with the local business and ICT community in the development of the digital economy and the promotion of effective government. The composition of the Digital Canberra Challenge Program Board is a good example of collaboration between the government and the business and ICT community – consisting of representatives from the ACT Government, NICTA, CollabIT, and the Canberra Business Council. We will continue to work with our partners to deliver relevant and innovative outcomes, and to embed thinking creatively and proactively about the opportunities of the digital age into our operations. Canberra is an ideal place for the close private and public sector collaboration that the Digital Challenge involves. And it is a great example of how the Government is helping to broaden the contribution of the private sector to the ACT economy by putting knowledge, innovation and creativity at the top of the ACT’s economic agenda. So if there’s anything about government service delivery you think can be improved by the better use of technology, please spread the word. I look forward to locals rising to the Digital Canberra Challenge, and to the private and public sectors working together to develop new solutions for government services in the Territory. For information visit www.

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The right building in the right place CHRIS FA U L K S



UPCOMING EVENTS Thursday, 31 October 2013 2013 CBC Annual Gala Dinner Celebrating 100 Years of Business TIME: 7.00pm VENUE: Hotel Realm DRESS: Lounge Suit To book go to

Principal Members ACTEW Water, BluePackets Brookfield Johnson Controls, Canberra International Airport, CanPrint Communications Pty Limited, Cantlie, Cre8ive, Custom Security Services, Elite Sound & Lighting, Ernst & Young, eWAY, Hindmarsh, ISIS, KPMG, Master Builders Association (ACT), National Australia Bank Limited, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Staging Connections (ACT), The Village Building Co, Toshiba (Australia) Pty Limited, TransACT Communications, Westpac Banking Corporation 34

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ecently Canberra was privileged to have Larry Oltmann visit for a two-day workshop on the proposed Australia Forum convention centre. The Australia Forum workshop in light of the Australia Forum Scoping Study (2010) and the City to the Lake Project objectives, within the context of the City Plan. It was exciting to participate in the workshop, which considered potential sites for the new convention centre and concluded that the City Hill site (bounded by Constitution Avenue, London Circuit, Commonwealth Avenue and Vernon Circle) would not only accommodate the Australia Forum functional brief, it also had the potential to achieve an iconic outcome for the city. The design concept for the new convention centre, developed during the workshop, reinforced the need for flexibility and the ability to accommodate a significant expansion in the Canberra convention market over the next decade, as well as catering for ceremonial events appropriate for the national capital. While he was in Canberra Larry Oltmann also gave a lecture at the War Memorial. Titled The Right Building in the Right Place, he outlined the history of the design and location of convention centres around the world – from the 1960s when convention centres were built in city centres but the architecture tended to be that of a “box with a dock”, through to the 1980s and 90s when better designs were located inappropriately in industrial wastelands. More recently the trend has been to move convention centres back into the city centre, to make them a focal point of the city and to design them as iconic meeting places that reconnect people with their city and reflect the unique character of the city – the Right Building in the Right Place. Perhaps the most inspiring takeout from Larry’s presentation was that Canberra has an opportunity to design a new convention centre that is iconic in design and positions the city both nationally and internationally - as a smart city and knowledge economy; a place where BIG conversations take place; a place where world-leading scientists and researchers discover new solutions in our worldclass universities and research institutions; a place that is home to our national cultural institutions and collections and our National Parliament; a place B2B M AGA ZIN E

with an exceptional lifestyle; a place of brilliant possibilities. Larry stressed that all buildings need to be thought of as meeting places and convention centres, in particular, can act as a catalyst for cities to change, to become better places to live. Designed and located optimally, a new convention centre in Canberra will also add significantly to the economy. Larry quoted the fact that for every one dollar spent by a convention delegate, only ten cents goes to the convention facility itself. The other ninety cents flows into the economy more generally via spending on accommodation, restaurants and retail purchases. As an example of the economic impact of the business meeting industry, the latest $100m expansion of the Adelaide convention centre was repaid within five years from specific revenue that flowed into the economy from conferences. Larry Oltmann’s contribution vindicated the overwhelming industry support that the Australia Forum convention centre has attracted. In August 2013 over 50 peak industry bodies, National Institutions, research and learning institutions and other key organisations signed a Statement of Support unanimously identifying the Australia Forum convention centre project as the top priority for the ACT. Together these organisations represent all of the key industries and over half of the private sector employment base in the ACT and region. All have agreed that investment in a new state-of-theart meeting facility is an urgent priority for Canberra. Canberra Business Council and the Canberra Convention Bureau will continue to advocate at both the Federal and ACT Government levels and with the private sector for a commitment to progress the new convention centre project as a priority.



ACT Exporter’s wish list


he Federal Election is over and the new Minister for Trade and Investment is the Hon Andrew Robb AO, MP. Canberra Business Council and the ACT Exporters’ Network look forward to a long and productive relationship with the Minister in developing export trade by businesses based in the National Capital. There are a number of issues which the Exporters’ Network and the Council will be bringing to the attention of the Minister. TradeStart support for Canberra-based businesses Canberra’s business sector, though small compared to the major metropolitan centres, includes some of Australia’s most innovative businesses. Companies such as Aspen Medical, Seeing Machines, Inteledox, Funnelback, Windlab, Sentinel and many others are at the forefront of innovation in their respective fields. However, in global terms, they are almost all SMEs, which means that they have limited capacity to develop and expand their export trade activities. TradeStart support provides a vitally important resource to assist SMEs into export. We are glad to note the Coalition’s intention to boost the competitiveness of Australia’s SME sector generally. However, at the present time, Canberra-based SMEs do not have direct access to TradeStart support. The ACT-based TradeStart adviser position was abolished several years ago and the nearest adviser is based in Wagga Wagga and has a food and agri-business focus. It is vital to the continued growth of Canberra’s high-technology SME export sector for a TradeStart representative to be based in Canberra, so that he or she can provide higher levels of service and a greater awareness of the specific issues of Canberra-based SMEs. Austrade’s reduced support for exporters targeting the developed markets – the USA, Canada and the European Union. While it is encouraging that the Coalition supports assistance for Australian exporters to benefit from the continued strong economic growth of the Asian region particularly as the economic benefits of our increased engagement with Asia over the past few decades have been truly

remarkable. However, the previous government, in implementing its approach, had directed Austrade to cease providing tailored in-country services, such as potential customer and partner identification, introductions, appointments and business matching services to exporters targeting the USA, Canada and the European Union, and instead, focusing these tailored services solely on emerging markets in the Asian region. While there is no doubt the overall business environment is more complex in most of Asia than it is in the US or Western Europe, the fact is that much of our trade with Asia is carried out in areas such as minerals, energy, agriculture, tourism and education, by well-established, larger exporters who already have substantial knowledge of their target customers. Meantime, many of our hightechnology SME exporters (and this is especially true of Canberra-based exporters) are targeting markets in the USA, Canada and the European Union, where the competition is the most intense of any in the world. We believe it is vitally important to Australia’s high-technology exporting SMEs for Austrade to restore the provision of tailored partner identification and business matching services in the USA, Canada and the European Union if they are to continue growing and helping to diversify Australia’s export base. Proposed changes to the Export Market Development Grant (EMDG) scheme The Exporters’ Network is glad to note the Coalition’s policy of an additional $50 million in funding for the EMDG scheme and recommends that the changes proposed by the previous government in its Export Development Grands Amendment Bill 2013 be scrapped. We are particularly concerned that the proposed changes would exclude expenses relating to sales promotion in the USA, Canada and the European Union in applications made in the sixth, seventh and eighth year of applications. As noted above, Australian companies exporting to those countries require the same levels of support in getting themselves established in those fiercely competitive environments as do exporters targeting other regions.



The ACT Exporters’ Network works with exporters from the Canberra region, to build opportunities in overseas markets. If you require assistance, would like to be involved in our events, or find out more about the Network, please visit our website ( or (02) 6247 4199

B 2 B M A G A Z I N E   O C T O B E R 2 0 13




The kids are alright? T R E VA R CHILVER


Corporate Sponsors ActewAGL TransACT The Canberra Times The Good Guys Tuggeranong Synapse Chamber Networks Women in Business Young Business Network Business after Business Foundation Member Australian Chamber of Commerce & Industry


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partnership between the National Australia Bank, the Foundation for Young Australians and The Smith Family is making it easier for businesses to engage the next generation of young people by inspiring them to pursue careers that are rewarding and offer long term sustainability. Work Inspiration is a model for reinvigorating work experience that puts control into the hands of employers. Since the program was introduced to Australia in 2011, employers across the country have used it to create experiences of the world of work that engage and inspire the next generation. It is an example of businesses taking their future into their own hands rather than leaving it in the hands of governments to take care of it for them. The participation of young people in education, training or employment, however, is something that governments usually monitor closely. Work Inspiration grew out of awareness in the UK of the number of young people not in education, employment or training (NEET), and though it was of concern to the British government following the London riots in 2011, Work Inspiration was a business-led response to a business need with social implications. Australia’s youth participation rate, which measures the number of young people between the ages of 12 to 24 engaged in education, training or employment, has hovered around 71-72% since the mid 1980s, apart from a short dip to 67% in 1993. From a high of 73% in 2009, there has been a sharp decline in youth participation that this year sunk to 66%. Apprenticeship commencements are likewise concerning. In the wake of incentive cuts that leave businesses to fend for themselves in engaging young people in education, employment and training trade commencements have fallen 12% in the twelve months to June, and non-trade commencements fell from 70,000 to 36,000 from March 2012 to June 2013. Though this should raise the eyebrows of any economic conservative, the incoming ‘conservative’ government has made no commitment to address the declining youth participation rate. The Coalition’s plans are superficial and lacking a unified vision.


Skilled workers in all industries work hard to prepare the next generation for their industry, and until recently, government incentives have made a big difference to their capacity to make the commitment to preparing new recruits. Governments now seem to be turning their backs on those members of the business community who actively support young people to engage in education, training and career pathways. The future of the private sector in the ACT is dependent on developing the employability of the next generation. There is a need for targeted action to ensure young people are not lost from education, training or employment, and to stem the tide of young people disengaging from education and training. In the absence of coordinated strategy from government, business leaders are being left to fend for themselves to develop the skills of young people and to engage them in the future of Australian industry. Programs like Work Inspiration demonstrate how powerful employer-led initiatives are. After only a year in Australia, the campaign is gaining momentum from businesses that have taken it upon themselves to improve the way they prepare the next generation to participate in their workforce. While the figures for youth participation are concerning, as long as businesses take a pro-active approach to engaging young people, there is every reason to be optimistic about the future.

SAVE THE DATE Chamber Golf Day DATE Thursday 17 October TIME 11.30am Registration VENUE Federal Gold Club, Red Hill

Melbourne Cup Ladies Day DATE Tuesday 5 November TIME 11.00am to 4.00pm VENUE The Deck at Regatta Point



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B2B magazine October 2013 issue 87  

B2B magazine is the premier business magazine in the Canberra region and is delivered, each month, through Australia Post to all businesses...

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