We’re little over a month away from the launch of Single Touch Payroll (STP), arguably the most significant compliance event since the introduction of GST.
From 1 July this year, small businesses will be expected to send their tax and super information from their payroll or accounting software to the ATO at the time of each pay run. For many small businesses, this means transitioning their books to a digital payroll solution for the first time. In fact, only 44% of small businesses are currently using payroll software, according to recent research1 conducted by Intuit.
If you’re yet to make the digital transition, you’ll be buoyed by what early adopters of STP have told us.
The early bird gets the worm
Feedback from small businesses already using STP is overwhelmingly positive. Our research discovered that 69 per cent said that STP is beneficial to their business, with 62 per cent telling us that STP is proving to be a time saver. A third of these businesses said it’s given them back more than two hours per week.
This should be a huge reassurance for small business owners who are still to become STP compliant, almost half of whom pointed to concerns about cost (47 per cent) and unnecessary complexity (46 per cent) as the reasons why they are concerned or anxious about STP.
Focus on long-term benefit
Ensuring your business is STP-compliant is a good reason to digitise your business, but it’s certainly not the only one. Using a solution that combines STP-compliant payroll with dynamic accounting software can literally transform your business life.
For example, QuickBooks plus payroll combines dynamic cloud accounting with STP-compliant payroll, meaning business owners can increase their efficiencies across a range of business tasks, including managing cash-flow, getting paid, reconciling their bank and credit accounts and filing GST and BAS. There are also gains to be made by having access to your real-time business data to plan ahead and the ability to get work done on-the-go.
STP is the prompt and an opportunity for businesses that have not yet gone digital to explore and ultimately experience the full suite of benefits cloud accounting software can provide, over and above compliance.
Take that first step
Given half (5 per cent) of small businesses who participated in our research said they have little knowledge about the next steps required to comply with STP, you might be wondering what you actually need to do to meet the Australian Tax Office’s (ATO) 1 July deadline.
There are plenty of useful resources on the ATO website that will help you get up to speed. Another important port of call is to speak to your trusted financial adviser for more information and guidance on what is required to get STP-ready.
There is still plenty of time to get your business digital-ready for STP. We encourage you to make it a priority and we are here to help you make the transition. Take the bull by the horns and embrace the change.
John Dunkerley, Country Manager, Intuit Australia