It’s a wrap

With Christmas 2019 but a weekend away and 2020 just around the corner, it’s a perfect time to stop and reflect on the ‘year that was’ at Harris Black before we close for Christmas Break…

Work as Usual… Helping Our Clients Achieve!

2019 was another busy year and the entire Harris Black team should be commended for their commitment and dedication, always working hard to ensure our clients receive the highest level of service possible. To reward their efforts Directors recently introduced a Harris Black “Help.Achieve Award” which goes to a nominated staff member monthly awarding them not only the trophy for a month but an evening out at a restaurant of their choice also! Well done team!

Additionally, this year Directors, Brendan, Paul, Renee and Nathan introduced several great strategies and diagnostic tools to help clients identify areas of their business where improvement might be warranted. As a result, we’ve had some cracker conversations and impressive advisory outcomes with many of our valued clients, assisting them to develop exciting new business strategies and ultimately helping them to achieve their long-term goals.

Qualifications Attained and Ongoing…

The strength in our value to clients is determined by our collective knowledge. As such, commitment to continuing education is important and ongoing in our chosen field. Study is often commenced and completed by those in the HB team whilst working full-time which can be pretty stressful at times!

Hats off to the following staff for their achievements and ongoing dedication to study in 2019:

• Matthew Mok – Graduated University with a Bachelor of Commerce in June and immediately commenced studies for his CA qualification.
• Daniel Wattimena – also studying for his CA qualification.
• Jacinta Murray – Just finished her last module for CA qualification (Results aren’t in but we’re pretty sure it’s a done deal!)
• Grace Wong and Lucy Moore – currently studying to become Chartered Tax Advisors with the Tax Institute of Australia.
• Bjorn Kirberg – currently completing his Masters of Tax.
• HB Directors – who all attended ongoing Mindshop training with Paul Whimp attaining the level of Accredited Mindshop Facilitator (AMSF) status!


2019 has been a big year for milestones and causes for celebration!

Harris Black celebrated our 25th anniversary since commencement in 1994 in July, hosting a gala event attended by all staff, family and friends of Directors and a few of our long-standing clients at the beautifully developed Howard Smith Wharves. At the same event we celebrated, Director Brendan Power clocking up 20 years with the firm. A great night was had by all!
Congratulations this year to Nikki White who became a Principal of the firm in September and also to Grace Wong, Lucy Moore, Natalie Macinic and recently Keziah Sedgwick for their promotions in 2019 also.

Personal celebrations within the HB family haven’t been in short supply over 2019 either…

• Practice Manager, Kim Schluter married partner James Ward in June and are now expecting their first child early in the New Year!
• Baby Kei Kawamoto was born to Manager Tomoka Kawamoto and her husband Anthony in November; and
• Melbourne Cup day saw two more exciting announcements… Bjorn Kirberg and wife Michelle are expecting their second child in May 2020 whilst PA Alana Reckin and her partner Shanan Wood are now engaged to be married!

Out and About…

March saw a small contingency of HB staff members manning a booth in support of the Institute of Chartered Accountants (CAANZ) Employment Evening in Brisbane. A busy event with hundreds of university students attending which we recognise as a great opportunity to connect with some very impressive upcoming graduates.

May and November saw Directors and Managers alike attending Brentnalls conferences in Melbourne and Sydney respectively. The conferences are a valuable opportunity to share information and ideas with our affiliate firms. The core focus of the affiliation being how best to improve our services and ultimately provide exceptional outcomes for our clients. Proudly Brentnalls ranked 28th in the Australian Financial Review’s Top 100 Accounting Firms in 2019.

Giving Back…

As we do each year, 2019 saw the HB team holding numerous fundraising events both internally and externally in aid of charities supporting Motor Neurone Disease and Guide Dogs Queensland. A swimming carnival, dog walking challenge and a Christmas Pod Decoration competition were just a few of the events that helped us raise close to $3,000 for these deserving charities.

Staff Events…

In true Harris Black style, 2019 has seen us share some very special and fun firm events. Our annual HB Staff Day (as always promoting our culture, team environment and our constant focus on improvement), the ever exceptional EOFY dinner and our Melbourne Cup Day event (this year celebrated at the Regatta Hotel) were all memorable and team building get-togethers. HB Directors put an enormous amount of effort into the organisation of these events for which the entire team are exceedingly grateful!

Finally, as we head out the door for a Christmas celebration including barefoot bowling at Merthyr Bowls Club, (sunscreen slapped on and team attire sparkling), we look back proudly on the year that was… but we look forward also to further great achievements, more reasons for celebration and the continued provision of great service to you, our valued clients in 2020.

Christmas wishes to all!
Stay safe and enjoy your time with family and friends!

Important Tax Dates

15 January 2020

• Lodge tax return for taxable large/medium entities as per the latest year lodged (all entities other than individuals), unless required earlier.
• Lodge tax return for the taxable head company of a consolidated group (including a new registrant) that has a member who has been deemed a large/medium entity in the latest year lodged, unless the return was required earlier. Payment was due 1 December 2019.

21 January 2020

• Lodge and pay quarter 2, 2019–20 PAYG instalment activity statement for head companies of consolidated groups.
• Lodge and pay December 2019 monthly business activity statement except for business clients with up to $10 million turnover who report GST monthly and lodge electronically.

28 January 2020

• Make quarter 2, 2019–20 super guarantee contributions to funds by this date.

Meet Gerald Simeon

Gerald joined the Harris Black team in 2012 as an Administration Assistant. Gerald went to university in the Philippines and completed his MBA at CQUniversity in December 2009.

Some interesting facts about Gerald – born in Mandaluyong, Philippines, Gerald speaks fluent Filipino and Tagalog. One of Gerald’s hobbies is photography and a skill he would like to master is drawing. If Gerald could live anywhere, he would live in Seoul, Korea because of the friendly people and great food, but the most relaxing place he’s visited is Boracay in the Philippines. If he could eat any food for the rest of his life, it would be Korean BBQ, but for breakfast Gerald enjoys peanut butter toast – with sugar!

An excerpt of the interview with Gerald is below.

To view the full interview, please click here.

Brentnalls Affiliation Conference

On Wednesday 23 October 2019, Harris Black’s Directors, Practice Manager (Kimberley Schluter) and Workflow Manager (Kath Healy) headed to the Sofitel Hotel in Darling Harbour, Sydney for another of the firm’s bi-annual Brentnalls Conferences.

As many of you will already know, the Brentnalls affiliation is a network of like-minded, independent Chartered Accounting firms across Australia with members in Brisbane, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide, Hamilton VIC, Perth and Auckland NZ. Harris Black has been part of this dynamic group of professionals for over 20 years. Each of our firms have a similar passion for improving client service and striving for best practice in all areas of business. In particular we are all very focused on helping our clients achieve their goals, develop their businesses and ultimately grow their wealth.

Our Brentnalls Conferences are generally held in October and April/May of each year and run across 2-3 days. They provide us with the valuable opportunity to share our ideas, further develop our capabilities through collaboration with our colleagues from other firms and ultimately improve our ability to better support and provide exceptional service to our own clients.
The focus topics for this conference were well received and considered by all. They included the following:

• Compliance issues associated with the use of Electronic Signatures – guest speaker, solicitor David Reid;
• Audit protection insurance and the increasing number of ATO Audits conducted by governing bodies – guest speaker, Michael Sexton from “Accountancy Insurance”
• Innovation – what stifles innovation in the workplace and ways to create an innovative culture within your firm – guest speaker James O’Loghlin

Additionally, as is the norm for our October conferences, each firm provided an update on their internal practices which in turn generates further collaboration within the group to identify and implement best practices.

The Brentnalls group enjoys a great camaraderie given many of the participating professionals have known each other for a significant period of time. Whilst the days are hectic and packed with information and discussion, we do tend to enjoy our evenings with a few relaxing drinks, great dinners and plenty of laughter.

How can we help you?

Today’s financial environment demands a regular review of strategy and a focus on execution.