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JobKeeper: a lifeline for Australian businesses

JobKeeper: a lifeline for Australian businesses The coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic has caused unprecedented confusion and severely disrupted whole industries. Businesses around the world are trying to adapt to ever increasing restrictions and governments are trying bold measures to help business support their employees.

To that end, the JobKeeper initiative launched by the Australian Federal Government yesterday will seek to provide businesses who have suffered significant loss in recent weeks with a financial subsidy to assist their employees.

No doubt, with information coming thick and fast from all avenues, business owners and employees alike will be struggling to make sense of it all. Especially at a time when lost revenue has forced many business owners to make the difficult choice to stand down their workforce.

However, the JobKeeper initiative could be the most important lifeline for many employees and employers during this crisis, so it is important that you be aware of your eligibility and be ready to take action. Sybiz will be conducting a free webinar to explain how your business can register for JobKeeper and how Sybiz solutions can help you manage this critical process. See the bottom of this page for more details.

Understanding JobKeeper

If you missed the Federal Government’s announcement yesterday, here are the key details of the JobKeeper initiative.

What is JobKeeper?
JobKeeper will allow businesses who meet certain qualifications to pay employees $1,500 per fortnight through a federal government subsidy for a maximum of 6 months.

This is aimed at keeping employees and employers connected and re-connecting in the case of employees who have been stood down. The intention is that by retaining the employer/ employee relationship that business will be in a better position once restrictions have been lifted.

Who can apply?
There are two different eligibility thresholds for businesses based on their turnover and lost revenue.

Smaller businesses:
Turnover of less than $1bn
Has lost 30% or more of revenue compared to the same period (at least one month) in the previous year

Larger businesses:
Turnover of more than $1bn
Has lost 50% or more of revenue compared to the same period (at least one month) in the previous year.

Businesses who meet these criteria will be eligible to register for JobKeeper by making an application to the ATO and providing supporting information demonstrating loss of revenue.

Who will receive JobKeeper payments?
Payments will be made to employers who then pass it on to their eligible employees.
Employers are free to pay additional wages on top of JobKeeper.
Employees are only eligible for JobKeeper payments from a single employer.

When do payments start?
Employers are instructed to start providing payments to employees as soon as possible with a start date of 30 March 2020. Reimbursement is to be provided by the Australian Taxation Office as monthly arrears from the first week of May.

Join our free information webinar

There is still much that business owners and employees need to know about the JobKeeper initiative before they can start making payments.

To help you understand more about the impact of JobKeeper and how it can be managed with our leading payroll and HR solution, we will be holding a free information webinar session on Thursday 2 April at 10:30am ACDT.

We recommend you attend this webinar even if you are not sure you are eligible for the JobKeeper initiative, as it will likely impact many areas of the market in the coming months.

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