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Results from Australia's National Survey.


To provide an objective view, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), which is an independent government broadcaster, conducted a national survey to 54,970 Australians to share their thoughts and opinions on being “Australian”. The purpose of the survey was to obtain data representing the communities across Australia in a number of areas, including sex, age, education, language, finance, lifestyle, religion and geography. According to the survey, the following proportion of Australians, indicated the following areas were affecting them personally (highest to lowest):

* Climate change – 72%

* Saving enough money for retirement – 62%

* Health or the health of the family – 56%

* Affording a home – 46%

* Australia must do more to address injustices against indigenous people – 41%

* Not having enough money to get by – 40%

* There is still a lot of racism in Australia these days – 40%

* Job security – 38%

* Crime – 36%

* Providing for family – 30%

In other sections of the survey, the respondents were required to provide a score from one to ten, on a range of questions about being an Australian. The results from the survey were very interesting - listed below from the highest to lowest.

  • Respecting Australia's institutions and laws

8.7

  • Appreciation of Australia's natural environment

8.3

  • Feeling Australian

7.5

  • Speaking English

7.1

  • Having Australian citizenship

7.1

  • Sharing the same values as most Australians

6.9

  • Being knowledgeable about Australian history

6.6

  • Living most of one's life in Australia

4.7

  • Being born in Australia

3.0

  • Being white

1.8

Whilst it would have been interesting to understand how many Aussies enjoyed Vegemite for breakfast, or which sporting team was the most popular in Australia, it was pleasing to see the key aspects with being an Australian, were focused on “respect” and “attitudes” towards the local laws and environment. On a personal level, it was also surprising to see that 80% of respondents agreed that immigrants to Australia, are able to retain their cultural values without being less Australian. 

My takeaway from the survey? Being an Australian is a subjective test with varying indicators, however it includes key notions of being part of a society that preserves individual cultures, backgrounds and at the same time instigates equality and respect amongst all.

If you are personally interested in comparing your own results, the article from ABC provides the link where you can complete the survey:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-22/annabel-crabb-national-identity-what-makes-an-australian/11623566

…………………………………..

Written by Robert Lu.

Robert is the Immigration Manager at Oz Migration Solutions. He has been working in the industry for the last 12 years, passionate about immigration and a believer in “Big Australia”.

MARN: 0848586



Contractor Or Employee? Differentiating the two in today's gig economy!


An employee works in your business and is a part of your business, whereas a contractor runs their own business.

The table below outlines six of the factors that, taken together, determines whether a worker is an employee or contractor for tax purposes.

Follow the links in the table for more information about each factor.

EMPLOYEE

CONTRACTOR

Ability to subcontract: An employee can’t assign or delegate the work, i.e. they can’t pay someone else to do the work.

Ability to subcontract: A contractor can assign or delegate the work, i.e. they can pay someone else to do the work.

Equipment, tools and other assets:

Your business provides all or most of the equipment, tools and other assets required to complete the work, or the business provides them with an allowance or reimburses them for the cost of the equipment, tools and other assets.

Equipment, tools and other assets:

The worker provides all or most of the equipment, tools and other assets required to complete the work.

The worker does not receive an allowance or reimbursement for the cost of this equipment, tools and other assets.

Commercial risks: An employee takes no commercial risks. Your business is legally responsible for the work done by the employee and liable for the cost of rectifying any defect in the work.

Commercial risks: A contractor takes commercial risks and is legally responsible for their work and liable for the cost of rectifying any defect in his work.

Control over the work:  Your business has the right to direct the way in which the employee does the work.

Control over the work: A contractor has freedom in the way the work is done, subject to the specific terms in any contract or agreement.

Independence: An employee is not operating independently for your business. They work within and are considered part of your business.

Independence: A contractor operates their own work independently for your business. They perform services as specified in their contract or agreement and is free to accept or refuse additional work.

Basis of payment: An employee is paid either hourly, weekly, fortnightly or monthly for the time worked, or for a price per item/activity or commission.

Basis of payment: A contractor is paid for the result achieved based on the quote they provided.

Similarly, a quote can be calculated using hourly rates or price per item to work out the total cost of work.

If you hire a worker you must check if they are an employee or contractor. It’s important because:

  • It affects your tax, super and other obligations.
  • Penalties and charges may apply if you get wrong.

Your Tax, Super and Other Obligations:

Your tax, super and other obligations will vary depending on whether your worker is an employee or contractor.

If your worker is an employee you will need to:

  • Withhold tax (PAYG withholding) from their wages and report and pay the withheld amounts to us.
  • Pay super, at least quarterly, for eligible employees.
  • Report and pay fringe benefits tax (FBT) if you provide your employee with fringe benefits.

If your worker is a contractor:

  • They will generally look after their own tax obligations, so you don’t have to withhold from payments to them unless they don’t quote their ABN to you, or you have a voluntary agreement with them to withhold tax from their payments.
  • You may still have to pay super for individual contractors if the contract is principally for their labour.
  • You don’t have FBT obligations.

Remember, it is against the law to wrongly treat an employee as a contractor. Businesses that do this are illegally lowering their labour costs by:

  • Not meeting their tax and super obligations.
  • Denying workers their employee entitlements.

So, you need to check that you have got it right. If you don’t get it right, penalties may apply.

Some workers are always employees…

Any of the following types of workers are always treated as employees:

  • apprentices
  • trainees
  • labourers
  • trades assistants

Apprentices and trainees do a combination of work and recognised training to get a qualification, certificate or diploma. They can be full-time, part-time or school-based and usually have a formal training agreement with the business they work for, which is registered through a state or territory training authority or completed under a relevant law.

In most cases they are paid under an award and receive specific pay and conditions. The work arrangement for apprentices and trainees is employment. You must meet the same tax and super obligations as you do for any other employees of your business.

Companies, trusts and partnerships are always contractors:

An employee must be a person. If you've hired a company, trust or partnership to do the work, then it is a contracting relationship for tax and super purposes. The people who actually do the work may be directors, partners or employees of the contractor but they're not your employees.

Labour hire or on-hire arrangements:

If you have obtained your worker through a labour hire (or on-hire) firm and pay that firm for the work undertaken in your business, then your business has a contract with the labour hire firm and they are responsible for the PAYG withholding, super and FBT obligations. Labour hire firms can be called different names including recruitment services and group training organisations (where your business is referred to as the 'host employer').

Hiring individuals?

If you've hired an individual, it is the details within the working agreement or contract that determines if they are a contractor or employee for tax and super purposes. The agreement or contract your business has with the worker can be written or verbal.

How can you work it out: Employee? Or Contractor?

To check if your worker is an employee or contractor, you would need to review the whole working arrangement. The easiest way is to use the Employee or Contractor decision tool.

You can use the Employee/Contractor decision tool to work out if your worker is an employee or contractor for tax and super purposes.

You have to simply answer the questions about the working arrangement and you will generate a report that you can keep for your records. If you answer each of the questions accurately and honestly, you can rely on the results.

If you are a worker and want to determine your employment status, you can use the Independent Contractors decision tool.

As mentioned above, if you outsource or run your contractors through an ‘on-hire company’ such as our sister company, Pendragon, this in most cases, will alleviate you of any employee obligations, responsibilities and compliance and in most cases, you will also not be deemed to be the direct employer.

If you are still confused or in doubt as to whether your contractors would be deemed/viewed as employees or not, we are more than happy to have a look at your company’s individual circumstances and advise accordingly. Don’t hesitate to contact our sister company, Pendragon on 02 9407 8700 or reach them at info@pendragon.net.au to discuss further.

Regional Permanent Residence - Is it an option for you?


The Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional Provisional Visa (Subclass 494) will replace the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (Subclass 187) on 16 November 2019. Once granted, the Subclass 494 Visa will have a pathway to permanent residency after the applicant has worked and resided in regional Australia for 3 years. In total, nine thousand spots will be allocated to the program every year.

What are the requirements from the sponsoring company?

  •  your employer must be located in a designated regional area of Australia (excludes employers in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne).
  •  your employer will need approval from the Regional Certifying Body which is the government authority designated for your location of proposed employment.
  •  your proposed position title will need to be on the relevant occupation list.
  •  the position on offer must be full-time, offering a salary at market rates and likely to be available for five years.

What are the requirements for the candidate?

  •  obtain a successful skills assessment for your proposed occupation
  •  have at least three years of full time and relevant skilled work experience
  •  be under 45 years of age
  •  demonstrate a competent level of English which is equivalent to at least 6 for each of the 4 test components for IELTS..

What are the requirements for pathway to Permanent Residency?

You can access permanent residence through the Subclass 191 visa when the following is met:

1. have worked in the designated regional area for at least three years, whilst holding a 494 visa.
2. show earnings of at least $53,900 annually for three years.

…………………………………..

Written by Robert Lu.

Robert is the Immigration Manager at Oz Migration Solutions. He has been working in the industry for the last 12 years, passionate about immigration and a believer in “Big Australia”.

MARN: 0848586



How do you attract top talent?


According to Herman Aguinis’ research paper titled ‘The best and the rest: revisiting the norm of normality in individual performance’, which involved more than six hundred thousand researches, entertainers, politicians and athletes, the results found that “high performers are approximately 400% more productive than average ones.

According to Herman’s findings, the answer is simple right? Your organisation needs to hire the top performers within their field of specialisation. The difficult question is, how do you locate, attract and more importantly afford the top talent?

In today’s employment market, companies need to differentiate themselves from competitors, as employees are now looking beyond the traditional opportunities on offer.

The modern workplace has increasingly been focusing on ‘flexibility’ and employers have been aiming to become ‘employers of choice’, which is all about creating a work culture that people want to be a part of, and a workplace where they enjoy coming into every day.

According to Robert Half’s 2019 market overview, their survey concluded that providing company perks for employees is also key. Their findings confirmed:

  •  80% of Australians would consider companies with flexible working arrangements and company perks, over a higher salary.
  •  84% with flexible working arrangements, allow their employees to work outside the standard 9-5pm hours, with the option to work from home.
  •  60% offer bonuses and well-being programs.
  •  58% provide paid parental leave / Long-service recognition / Increased holiday allowance.


With the new generation of employees being millennial aged workers, it is becoming the norm for employees to “job hop”, hence it might be good timing to start reviewing the internal policies to be aligned with your organisation’s values.

The late Steve Jobs of Apple probably summed up talent’s importance the best, with this advice:

Go after the cream of the cream. A small team of A+ players can run circles around a giant team of B & C players. The more companies that aren’t on their game will find their best people cherry-picked by companies that are”.

http://www.hermanaguinis.com/PPsych2012.pdf 

https://www.roberthalf.com.au/sites/roberthalf.com.au/files/documents_not_indexed/RH_0319_IAPDF_SG2019_AUS_ENG_SEC.pdf?utm_source=sfmctransactional&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=2019salaryguide-ongoing&i= 

…………………………………..

Written by Robert Lu.

Robert is the Immigration Manager at Oz Migration Solutions. He has been working in the industry for the last 12 years, passionate about immigration and a believer in “Big Australia”.

MARN: 0848586



1

Oz Migration Blogs

Results from Australia's National Survey.


To provide an objective view, the Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC), which is an independent government broadcaster, conducted a national survey to 54,970 Australians to share their thoughts and opinions on being “Australian”. The purpose of the survey was to obtain data representing the communities across Australia in a number of areas, including sex, age, education, language, finance, lifestyle, religion and geography. According to the survey, the following proportion of Australians, indicated the following areas were affecting them personally (highest to lowest):

* Climate change – 72%

* Saving enough money for retirement – 62%

* Health or the health of the family – 56%

* Affording a home – 46%

* Australia must do more to address injustices against indigenous people – 41%

* Not having enough money to get by – 40%

* There is still a lot of racism in Australia these days – 40%

* Job security – 38%

* Crime – 36%

* Providing for family – 30%

In other sections of the survey, the respondents were required to provide a score from one to ten, on a range of questions about being an Australian. The results from the survey were very interesting - listed below from the highest to lowest.

  • Respecting Australia's institutions and laws

8.7

  • Appreciation of Australia's natural environment

8.3

  • Feeling Australian

7.5

  • Speaking English

7.1

  • Having Australian citizenship

7.1

  • Sharing the same values as most Australians

6.9

  • Being knowledgeable about Australian history

6.6

  • Living most of one's life in Australia

4.7

  • Being born in Australia

3.0

  • Being white

1.8

Whilst it would have been interesting to understand how many Aussies enjoyed Vegemite for breakfast, or which sporting team was the most popular in Australia, it was pleasing to see the key aspects with being an Australian, were focused on “respect” and “attitudes” towards the local laws and environment. On a personal level, it was also surprising to see that 80% of respondents agreed that immigrants to Australia, are able to retain their cultural values without being less Australian. 

My takeaway from the survey? Being an Australian is a subjective test with varying indicators, however it includes key notions of being part of a society that preserves individual cultures, backgrounds and at the same time instigates equality and respect amongst all.

If you are personally interested in comparing your own results, the article from ABC provides the link where you can complete the survey:

https://www.abc.net.au/news/2019-10-22/annabel-crabb-national-identity-what-makes-an-australian/11623566

…………………………………..

Written by Robert Lu.

Robert is the Immigration Manager at Oz Migration Solutions. He has been working in the industry for the last 12 years, passionate about immigration and a believer in “Big Australia”.

MARN: 0848586



Contractor Or Employee? Differentiating the two in today's gig economy!


An employee works in your business and is a part of your business, whereas a contractor runs their own business.

The table below outlines six of the factors that, taken together, determines whether a worker is an employee or contractor for tax purposes.

Follow the links in the table for more information about each factor.

EMPLOYEE

CONTRACTOR

Ability to subcontract: An employee can’t assign or delegate the work, i.e. they can’t pay someone else to do the work.

Ability to subcontract: A contractor can assign or delegate the work, i.e. they can pay someone else to do the work.

Equipment, tools and other assets:

Your business provides all or most of the equipment, tools and other assets required to complete the work, or the business provides them with an allowance or reimburses them for the cost of the equipment, tools and other assets.

Equipment, tools and other assets:

The worker provides all or most of the equipment, tools and other assets required to complete the work.

The worker does not receive an allowance or reimbursement for the cost of this equipment, tools and other assets.

Commercial risks: An employee takes no commercial risks. Your business is legally responsible for the work done by the employee and liable for the cost of rectifying any defect in the work.

Commercial risks: A contractor takes commercial risks and is legally responsible for their work and liable for the cost of rectifying any defect in his work.

Control over the work:  Your business has the right to direct the way in which the employee does the work.

Control over the work: A contractor has freedom in the way the work is done, subject to the specific terms in any contract or agreement.

Independence: An employee is not operating independently for your business. They work within and are considered part of your business.

Independence: A contractor operates their own work independently for your business. They perform services as specified in their contract or agreement and is free to accept or refuse additional work.

Basis of payment: An employee is paid either hourly, weekly, fortnightly or monthly for the time worked, or for a price per item/activity or commission.

Basis of payment: A contractor is paid for the result achieved based on the quote they provided.

Similarly, a quote can be calculated using hourly rates or price per item to work out the total cost of work.

If you hire a worker you must check if they are an employee or contractor. It’s important because:

  • It affects your tax, super and other obligations.
  • Penalties and charges may apply if you get wrong.

Your Tax, Super and Other Obligations:

Your tax, super and other obligations will vary depending on whether your worker is an employee or contractor.

If your worker is an employee you will need to:

  • Withhold tax (PAYG withholding) from their wages and report and pay the withheld amounts to us.
  • Pay super, at least quarterly, for eligible employees.
  • Report and pay fringe benefits tax (FBT) if you provide your employee with fringe benefits.

If your worker is a contractor:

  • They will generally look after their own tax obligations, so you don’t have to withhold from payments to them unless they don’t quote their ABN to you, or you have a voluntary agreement with them to withhold tax from their payments.
  • You may still have to pay super for individual contractors if the contract is principally for their labour.
  • You don’t have FBT obligations.

Remember, it is against the law to wrongly treat an employee as a contractor. Businesses that do this are illegally lowering their labour costs by:

  • Not meeting their tax and super obligations.
  • Denying workers their employee entitlements.

So, you need to check that you have got it right. If you don’t get it right, penalties may apply.

Some workers are always employees…

Any of the following types of workers are always treated as employees:

  • apprentices
  • trainees
  • labourers
  • trades assistants

Apprentices and trainees do a combination of work and recognised training to get a qualification, certificate or diploma. They can be full-time, part-time or school-based and usually have a formal training agreement with the business they work for, which is registered through a state or territory training authority or completed under a relevant law.

In most cases they are paid under an award and receive specific pay and conditions. The work arrangement for apprentices and trainees is employment. You must meet the same tax and super obligations as you do for any other employees of your business.

Companies, trusts and partnerships are always contractors:

An employee must be a person. If you've hired a company, trust or partnership to do the work, then it is a contracting relationship for tax and super purposes. The people who actually do the work may be directors, partners or employees of the contractor but they're not your employees.

Labour hire or on-hire arrangements:

If you have obtained your worker through a labour hire (or on-hire) firm and pay that firm for the work undertaken in your business, then your business has a contract with the labour hire firm and they are responsible for the PAYG withholding, super and FBT obligations. Labour hire firms can be called different names including recruitment services and group training organisations (where your business is referred to as the 'host employer').

Hiring individuals?

If you've hired an individual, it is the details within the working agreement or contract that determines if they are a contractor or employee for tax and super purposes. The agreement or contract your business has with the worker can be written or verbal.

How can you work it out: Employee? Or Contractor?

To check if your worker is an employee or contractor, you would need to review the whole working arrangement. The easiest way is to use the Employee or Contractor decision tool.

You can use the Employee/Contractor decision tool to work out if your worker is an employee or contractor for tax and super purposes.

You have to simply answer the questions about the working arrangement and you will generate a report that you can keep for your records. If you answer each of the questions accurately and honestly, you can rely on the results.

If you are a worker and want to determine your employment status, you can use the Independent Contractors decision tool.

As mentioned above, if you outsource or run your contractors through an ‘on-hire company’ such as our sister company, Pendragon, this in most cases, will alleviate you of any employee obligations, responsibilities and compliance and in most cases, you will also not be deemed to be the direct employer.

If you are still confused or in doubt as to whether your contractors would be deemed/viewed as employees or not, we are more than happy to have a look at your company’s individual circumstances and advise accordingly. Don’t hesitate to contact our sister company, Pendragon on 02 9407 8700 or reach them at info@pendragon.net.au to discuss further.

Regional Permanent Residence - Is it an option for you?


The Skilled Employer Sponsored Regional Provisional Visa (Subclass 494) will replace the Regional Sponsored Migration Scheme (Subclass 187) on 16 November 2019. Once granted, the Subclass 494 Visa will have a pathway to permanent residency after the applicant has worked and resided in regional Australia for 3 years. In total, nine thousand spots will be allocated to the program every year.

What are the requirements from the sponsoring company?

  •  your employer must be located in a designated regional area of Australia (excludes employers in Sydney, Brisbane and Melbourne).
  •  your employer will need approval from the Regional Certifying Body which is the government authority designated for your location of proposed employment.
  •  your proposed position title will need to be on the relevant occupation list.
  •  the position on offer must be full-time, offering a salary at market rates and likely to be available for five years.

What are the requirements for the candidate?

  •  obtain a successful skills assessment for your proposed occupation
  •  have at least three years of full time and relevant skilled work experience
  •  be under 45 years of age
  •  demonstrate a competent level of English which is equivalent to at least 6 for each of the 4 test components for IELTS..

What are the requirements for pathway to Permanent Residency?

You can access permanent residence through the Subclass 191 visa when the following is met:

1. have worked in the designated regional area for at least three years, whilst holding a 494 visa.
2. show earnings of at least $53,900 annually for three years.

…………………………………..

Written by Robert Lu.

Robert is the Immigration Manager at Oz Migration Solutions. He has been working in the industry for the last 12 years, passionate about immigration and a believer in “Big Australia”.

MARN: 0848586



How do you attract top talent?


According to Herman Aguinis’ research paper titled ‘The best and the rest: revisiting the norm of normality in individual performance’, which involved more than six hundred thousand researches, entertainers, politicians and athletes, the results found that “high performers are approximately 400% more productive than average ones.

According to Herman’s findings, the answer is simple right? Your organisation needs to hire the top performers within their field of specialisation. The difficult question is, how do you locate, attract and more importantly afford the top talent?

In today’s employment market, companies need to differentiate themselves from competitors, as employees are now looking beyond the traditional opportunities on offer.

The modern workplace has increasingly been focusing on ‘flexibility’ and employers have been aiming to become ‘employers of choice’, which is all about creating a work culture that people want to be a part of, and a workplace where they enjoy coming into every day.

According to Robert Half’s 2019 market overview, their survey concluded that providing company perks for employees is also key. Their findings confirmed:

  •  80% of Australians would consider companies with flexible working arrangements and company perks, over a higher salary.
  •  84% with flexible working arrangements, allow their employees to work outside the standard 9-5pm hours, with the option to work from home.
  •  60% offer bonuses and well-being programs.
  •  58% provide paid parental leave / Long-service recognition / Increased holiday allowance.


With the new generation of employees being millennial aged workers, it is becoming the norm for employees to “job hop”, hence it might be good timing to start reviewing the internal policies to be aligned with your organisation’s values.

The late Steve Jobs of Apple probably summed up talent’s importance the best, with this advice:

Go after the cream of the cream. A small team of A+ players can run circles around a giant team of B & C players. The more companies that aren’t on their game will find their best people cherry-picked by companies that are”.

http://www.hermanaguinis.com/PPsych2012.pdf 

https://www.roberthalf.com.au/sites/roberthalf.com.au/files/documents_not_indexed/RH_0319_IAPDF_SG2019_AUS_ENG_SEC.pdf?utm_source=sfmctransactional&utm_medium=Email&utm_campaign=2019salaryguide-ongoing&i= 

…………………………………..

Written by Robert Lu.

Robert is the Immigration Manager at Oz Migration Solutions. He has been working in the industry for the last 12 years, passionate about immigration and a believer in “Big Australia”.

MARN: 0848586