ATO Small Business Newsroom
The Australian Taxation Office (ATO) has sought to simplify information available to small businesses, developing an online “newsroom” to inform business owners about their tax and super obligations.
Known as the “small business newsroom”, the platform gives business owners the option of signing up to receive information, articles and tax updates as well as important “due dates” that business owners can add to their calendars.
As part of the service, small business owners can choose to stop receive ATO letters in the mail.
“We know small businesses spend all of their time and effort running their businesses. They don’t want to spend time wading through complicated tax information. So we’ve worked with them to create a one-stop newsroom where they could quickly and easily find out about the latest tax and super news,” Steve Vesperman ATO Deputy Commissioner said.
“Now we’d like small businesses to check out and subscribe to the newsroom as well as tell us what they think, so we can keep improving the news service.”
Referring to research showing that tax compliance was costing small to medium sized businesses up to $18.4 million per year, Mr Jordan said it was essential the ATO cut call-waiting times and provide consistent advice to business owners. He also stressed the need to make it easier to find information on the ATO website and reduce the agency’s reliance on technical jargon.
“If we’re going to go digital, we need to get it right,” he said. “ATO systems should fit with natural systems used by businesses and guarantee security and privacy. No-one wants to wait 28 days for a written response.”
Mr Jordan also referred to a number of other ATO initiatives co-designed with small business to make life easier, including the ATO’s after hours call back service, a new “app” providing information for businesses on super and tax and an online business viability assessment tool to help manage cash flow and debt.