Where has the time gone?
If you are anything like me you’ll be thinking where has the time gone? Only two months left of 2018, eight Tuesdays to Christmas, even less paydays and only two and a half GST periods until the end of the financial year! And this is supposed to be an October newsletter – I might just squeeze that in.
Like most workers accountants have to work to a schedule and have KPI’s such as meeting tax return filing targets with Inland Revenue (100% by 31stMarch), making sure we meet our clients timeframes for information and filing GST or PAYE on time for those clients that request that service from us, although thankfully we aren’t responsible for paying these returns on time!
I remember the first time I logged into the new GST platform and saw a message saying I had $XX thousand’s to pay in GST and freaking out until I realised it was a new ‘feature’ that summed up all my clients GST obligations at that moment. Not sure it’s such a handy feature!
We have to be ready for impromptu jobs that come in such as unfiled returns from previous years, sometimes lots of years, business cessations or start ups, meetings to discuss asset purchases or disposals and a host of other necessary business issues.
Other areas we need to keep up with include such things as:
Law changes – such as the new anti-money laundering and countering terrorist financing act (AML/CFT), which kicked in on the 1stOctober for accountants, that has kept me busy doing my company and client risk assessments, company policies and procedures, training both to learn myself then passing that on to peers in the industry;
Inland Revenue’s transformation changes – payday reporting; moving over to new platform for services (MyIR); AIM, a pay as you earn method for provisional tax and other changes - all designed to “making it simpler and faster for New Zealanders to pay and receive their taxes and entitlements”. Check out the IRD website for details.
On going Professional development is also an importance, IRD seminars, Xero workshops, tax agent and bookkeepers conferences and meetings and other industry specific courses.
I’ve also taken on some additional PD training by joining ACAMS (Association of Certified Anti Money laundering Specialists), completing the certificate in Risk Assessments and starting their full certification course – exam 1stFeb! I’ll just fit that in somehow.
Next year I aim for the ACAMS audit certification, which will allow me to be an “appropriately qualified” auditor for AML/CFT purposes. The legislation requires anyone who is captured by the act, such as lawyers (July 18), accountants and bookkeepers (October 18), real estate agents (next year) and high value dealers (next year) to be audited every two years. Financial institutions e.g banks have been covered by the act for some time already.
In addition, I’ve moved my office back home which allows me to be more flexible with my time, given some of the course content is delivered via live webinars from Florida (very early mornings) and gives the dogs company (they’re happy and permanent attached at the legs). Overall it gives a better work/life balance, which is super important in today’s busy world.
So like most prioritising, working to a schedule and generally keeping head down gets it done. Having lovely clients helps too J