Posted on 2 Comments

Would You Employ A Cheater?

would you cheat in a small business courseWhen you choose to study an online MYOB training course with EzyLearn, you learn every aspect of the MYOB software and how it applies to real-life business and accounting situations. Then, at the end of each module, you complete a test to prove to yourself (and your future employer, even) your knowledge of each module of MYOB, such as payroll, for instance.

There are many people who will argue that tests aren’t necessary; that they’re just an exercise in testing how well you can store lots of information in your short-term memory, then forget it afterwards. They advocate, instead, that you’re marked on how well you performed on your overall coursework, and do away with exams altogether.

[quote]But the thing about an exam is that the better you know your coursework, the better you’ll perform.[/quote]

An exam is designed to taken be taken under pressure. They’re testing your knowledge of things that you are likely to encounter in your day-to-day, and may require you to act immediately. They’re not testing you on something that should be considered at length.

Even though EzyLearn offers lifetime access to our MYOB and Excel training courses, we still expect—in fact, we require it—that our students will pass each test at the end of each of the course modules.

There are a couple of reasons for this:

  1. The first, and this is probably the main reason, is that if you decide to, you can pay an additional fee to receive a certificate that shows you’ve completed and passed our online training courses. This can then be used to show potential employers that you actually know what you’re doing in MYOB—which for many accountants and bookkeepers is either a deal breaker or a deal maker.
  2. But an exam also forces you to study the coursework, whether it’s arbitrarily just to pass the test or thoroughly to make sure you understand and perform well in the test—and this largely depends on your own personal code of ethics. Even if you haven’t done a scrap of coursework before you go to complete a test, the mere fact that you have to complete and pass a test to progress through the course forces you to review the coursework.

It’s easy to cheat in any course by plagiarising someone else’s work. In the academic world, the ramifications involve being awarded an instant fail; in business, it usually involves legal action. But a person’s inclination to cheat and plagiarise someone else’s work raises other ethical questions that those respective punishments don’t address.

Cert IV in Small Business ManagementI recently attended a networking event and spoke with someone who had completed a Cert IV in Small Business Management at a local BEC (Business Enterprise Centre)- they had completed a Government funded course and used the excuse of having to do the course as quick as they could so they could start their own business. The problem was that this person “encouraged” many of the students to work together (which is a good thing), but they ended up handing in the same assignment and in some situations forgot to change the name on their assignment!

Working together in a group is a fantastic way to learn because everyone has their own strengths and the really smart students can often be good teachers for the slow learners, but to simply replicate another persons work and not even use your own writing style and interpretation is very sad. It’s particularly sad when the Small Business Management course is designed to help you create an individual business plan for your own specific business.

[quote]Our assessors mark every assignment and provide individual feedback to ensure you properly examine your new startup business.[/quote]

This brings us to whether or not you would feel comfortable employing someone who had willfully cheated in a training course. Personally, we wouldn’t. Aside from that person displaying very little work ethic (they couldn’t be bothered to do the work themselves, so cheated instead), it also makes us wonder whether they would behave unethically in other ways—would they take our client base and start-up a rival business?

This is why we test our students at the end of each module, and only those students who receive a passing grade do, in fact, pass the course. It’s not because we think our students will cheat; it’s because we want our students to really learn and understand the coursework, so they can excel and succeed in business.

Posted on

Internet Marketing Scholarships Available for Mums in Chatswood

Digital Business Course - Google marketingPerhaps you’re a mum who’s available during school hours and want to start your own business? We might have the opportunity for you. Due to the success of our MYOB training courses and with requests from our students we are developing the Digital Business Course in conjunction with the Australian Small Business Centre.

[quote]We’re looking for talented mumpreneurs who want to learn some new skills while working with a live online training business.[/quote]

With the Small Business Management Course on our Learning System we’re keen to help mums create a business plan for their own business from our office right here in Chatswood. If you’re a reader from another part of Australia (or the world for that matter) you can still learn about our developments at this blog and at the Small Business Centre blog.

Michelle provides support for MYOB course students
Michelle provides support for our MYOB training course students

Michelle recently started on our training support team and we are looking for mums to help us with the development of the Digital Business Course and we are looking for mums who have excellent skills or motivation in:

  • Graphic Design
  • Business and Blog Writing
  • Website Design using WordPress
  • Social media
  • Online and Telephone based support
  • Bookkeeping
  • Marketing and Advertising
  • Google Online Marketing

If you would like to join us on a journey of learning and growth please enter your details at this form: http://www.australiansmallbusiness.com.au/services/business-service-provider/ (make sure you mention the EzyLearn blog post and we’ll receive all your information).

You’ll be interested to know that our Digital Business Course is designed around helping a printing business in Artarmon get a professional website using WordPress, but more importantly students will learn about:

  • Integrating social media,
  • Creating and optimising a blog (just like this one!),
  • Using YouTube
  • Using Google Analytics to measure your results
  • Getting the most from Google Adwords
  • Learn about Google authorship
  • Google Local Marketing

Students will also learn about a host of other Google services available to help businesses become more visible to their potential customers and step into the new age of online marketing. Students will learn about how to make a business “relevant” in Google searches.

The other aspect of our Digital Business Course is we want to educate mums how to perform the tasks that many businesses need to become visible online. In the same way that learning MYOB enables mums to work flexible hours from their own home, the Digital Business Course will provide an excellent structure to enable mums to work flexible hours while helping businesses get into the digital age.

Enter your details at this website for an opportunity to win a scholarship:  http://www.australiansmallbusiness.com.au/services/business-service-provider/

 

Posted on 2 Comments

Admin Assistant position filled and new MYOB job at Chatswood

Michelle provides support for MYOB course students
Michelle provides support for our MYOB training course students

Did you remember receiving that blog post about us looking for a person to work with us doing office admin in Chatswood? Michelle, one of our MYOB course students, completed her Business Service Provider profile and fit the bill so we brought her in for interviewing.

You might recall that we wrote about an MYOB course student who also created a website for her fathers business? It was Michelle!

Michelle is a hard working mother of two teenage children and she has worked hard to learn new skills, while managing her fathers business, building it’s website and lots of other great things.

Michelle is now part of our team and she’s learning a lot of new things about how we operate our business, how we promote ourselves online and also how we use online marketing tools like Google. Most importantly I’m introducing her because she’s available to help current students get through their course as part of our Student Community and Tutor Support program to helps them in their journey to find MYOB jobs.

But more than MYOB, Michelle is currently completing her Cert IV in Small Business Management with the aim of being able to help people start their own business or manage their existing business better.

Welcome aboard Michelle 🙂

We’re revamping our Student Community and Tutor Support service to specifically focus on skills to help students find MYOB jobs and learn small business management skills and Michelle will be available to help students.

MYOB jobs in Chatswood and Gold Coast.

I was so impressed with the result of our search that I’m reaching out again. We are looking for another admin assistant at our Chatswood office and also in the Gold Coast area so if you live in these areas make sure you complete the Business Service Provider and tell us a bit about yourself. We prefer to work with students who have completed our course and understand how we operate our business so you get the first chance!

Posted on 1 Comment

Don’t Stress: Start a Home-Based Business

Are you happy in the workplace or would you be happier working for yourself?
Are you happy in the workplace or would you be happier working for yourself?

In a previous post we gave you five reasons to start a business and work from home. In fact, taking the plunge to embark on your own business is something we refer to a lot at EzyLearn, but for good reason — being happy.

Often we forget just how incredibly important this is, but if you’re not happy at work, it will impact your home life and your health.

Being happy at work is one of the reasons we’re so passionate about helping people start their own business through our online training courses. Continue reading Don’t Stress: Start a Home-Based Business

Posted on 5 Comments

Be Happy: Start a Business and Work From Home

You may find that one of the key benefits of starting your own business is that your work actually makes you much happier.
You may find that one of the key benefits of starting your own business is that your work actually makes you much happier.

Are you toying with the idea of starting a virtual or home-based business? Well EzyLearn is your one-stop training-shop for everything you need to start a business — all via our Small Business Management training course, MYOB training courses, WordPress training courses and MS Office training courses.

But what are the real benefits of working from home? Continue reading Be Happy: Start a Business and Work From Home

Posted on 1 Comment

The Virtual Business: Transitioning from the Real World to the Digital World

If you prepare and test first, then the transition from physical to virtual office should be smooth sailing.
If you prepare and test first, then the transition from physical to virtual office should be smooth sailing.

There are many benefits to be had by operating a virtual business — both to yourself as a business owner and to your clients — and in our last post about closing your bricks and mortar office doors to create a virtual one, we discussed the importance of getting the timing right.

But once you know the timing is right, how do you make the transition? Continue reading The Virtual Business: Transitioning from the Real World to the Digital World

Posted on 1 Comment

MYOB Student Creates a Website for Dad’s Business Using WordPress.

ASBC-Crest-smaller-Certified ContractorYou might recall the blog post that I put out earlier this week advertising for an Admin Assistant for our Chatswood office. We had some fantastic responses and it confirmed my thoughts about promoting work opportunities to our own network as opposed to complete strangers on a website like SEEK.

You might be interested to read about our bad SEEK experiences at the Australian Small Business Blog! There’s also some interesting information about competition and business valuation that you might find interesting if you are planning to start your own business and want to understand the concept of value.

One of the most interesting experiences in my team building exercise so far is discovering people’s attitude to work. The best example I can think of is the story about one lady who completed our MYOB course so that she could help run her father’s business. In the short time she had to get up to speed, she was able to use her skills to not only help manage the finances of the business but she was able to improvise and adapt to each new situation that arose, including building a professional website for that business using WordPress and perform many other tasks outside of her area of expertise.

[quote]This is one of the key skills you need to run your own startup business. Improvisation.[/quote]

We are working on a Certification Program for the Australian Small Business Centre to credential contractors who make themselves available to help businesses manage their business from Day-to-Day. This program is designed to build a team of competent professionals who understand the principles of providing a good and competent service for a reasonable return. We are looking for contractors who want to work with local businesses and offer a win-win service.

If you want to start your own business or want help getting your existing business off the ground make sure you complete the Business Service Provider form and begin your journey on becoming a Certified Contractor.

Posted on

The Start-Up Incubator: Pollenizer

ID-10024306

We’re often talking about start ups, starting a new business, what it takes to succeed, and we cover many of the practical aspects of owning and operating your own business in our Small Business Management course. We’ve also touched on prepaid legal services for bookkeepers who have completed our online MYOB training course and the latest provider to enter the prepaid legal fray: LawPath — which is also the latest venture of start-up incubator, Pollenizer.

Pollenizer: How it all Started-Up

Based in Sydney’s Surry Hills, Pollenizer, which was founded by Mick Liubinskas and Phil Morle — the former chief technology officer of infamous file sharing site, Kazaa — aims to co-found companies and grow them to a point where the founders can then exit for a profit.

Pollenizer’s most recent success story is that of group-buying site, Spreets, which was sold to Yahoo for $40 million dollars after only 12 months.

When Morle and Liubinskas spot a start-up they’re interested in, they invest up to $150,000 to help get what is often just an idea scribbled on a napkin off the ground.

Pollenizer’s Start-Up Science

How do ideas make it to some kind of fruition? This involves employing what Morle calls the Pollenizer “start-up science” where each start-up is dragged over Pollenizer’s so-called technical and marketing coals.

Discovery, Validation and Efficiency

Starting with discovery, the Pollenizer team looks into whether a particular start-up solves an existing problem and whether customers will pay for the solution. Next, is validation — testing whether real people will actually want to pay for the product. The last stage is efficiency: ensuring the business is capable of operating when more customers come on board.

But about half of the start-ups don’t make it past the second stage.

***

But one of the most interesting aspects to the way Pollenizer operates occurs before you’ve even opened your doors for business, so to speak: Pollenizer’s “start-up science”.

By methodically looking at your business idea and what your business aims to do, you’ll discover any pitfalls you may encounter, giving you the chance to modify and refine your business idea.

We all like to think we have a great business idea that could change the world. But as Pollenizer shows, for half of us it’s just an idea.

That doesn’t mean give up; it means research, reassess and retry.

Posted on

Will the Self-Education Cap Deter You from Further Study?

Online study is flexible and cost effective.
Online study is flexible and cost effective.

For a country that has long considered itself the “clever nation” — the land responsible for the cochlear implant, the hills hoist, and the black box flight recorder — the Federal Government’s proposed $2,000 cap on self-education expenses seems a little surprising.

The Government announced the self-education cap two weeks ago and since then, speculation has been rife that the cap will deter employees and businesses from undertaking further study.

Annette Tsouris, Director of Studies at Australian Workplace Training has been quoted in the website, Smart Company, as saying that though the $2,000 cap was reasonable, for people currently employed and looking to up-skill, “the average price of a course is around $3,000.” While the cost of post-graduate studies at university usually run into the tens-of-thousands.

Online Training — The Cost Effective Alternative

Of course, costly face-to-face study and post-graduate degrees aren’t the only learning methods available. Online training courses — in all kinds of areas for instance, MYOB, Excel and WordPress — have become popular, not just because of their flexible delivery method, but because online study companies don’t have the same overheads as face-to-face institutions and can offer courses at considerably lower prices — the average cost of an online training course at EzyLearn, for instance, is less than $270!

Although the cap on self-education expenses could do well to be a little higher — $5,000 per person, say — the cap itself won’t deter people from further study; from gaining the power of knowledge. It will only serve as an impetus for individuals and businesses to investigate other non-traditional learning options, such as online study and training methods.

Our Online Courses Below the Cap

For budding entrepreneurs or individuals seeking the skills to start their own business, or to manage a small business, our Small Business Management course is currently only $1,397 — well below the proposed cap.

We have reduced the price of our Small Business Management course, which is usually more expensive, for a limited time to allow you the opportunity to gain the necessary skills you need to start their own business or gain employment managing a small business without exceeding the self-education cap.

Take advantage of this great offer now and enrol in our Small Business Management course; discover the valuable skills you need to successfully manage a small business, including writing a business plan, conducting market research, legal and risk management, and much more!

Posted on 2 Comments

Starting A New Business? What Tools Do You Need to Succeed?

ID-10075456

It’s often said that the majority of new businesses fail in the first year. Some people even go as far as to say that 90 percent of new businesses fail within their first twelve months of operation, but is this statement really true?

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics it’s not. The number of new businesses that fail in the first twelve months is closer to 30 percent, or 3 out of every 10.

However, just because a business survives its first year or even the second or third, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a successful one.

If a business isn’t able to pay the owner a wage that equaled or exceeded what they could have earned elsewhere as an employee, it’s not successful.

Further, if that business hasn’t generated a profit or positive cash flow, it’s still not successful.

Nor is a business a successful one if it hasn’t had enough working capital to service their debt, pay taxes and suppliers, and so forth.

New businesses are incredibly risky; and even if you have a great idea for a start-up or years of experience in your particular field of expertise, that doesn’t guarantee success.

Ensuring a new business is fail-safe requires a solid business plan. A business plan is like a road map—it shows you exactly what route to take in order to arrive at your destination—and without one you’re literally driving blind.

If the idea of writing a business plan seems a little daunting, you’re not alone. It’s one of the key components to running a successful business, but it’s also the most often overlooked, which is why we are now offering a Small Business Management course.

Among the subjects included in the course such as, researching the market and creating a marketing action plan, you will also learn how to write your very own roadmap to success—a business plan.

So if your New Year’s Resolution was to start a new business in 2013, then join us online with the new Small Business Management Course, which was especially created by Maggie Richardson from the Australian Small Business Centre for Australian Small Businesses.

Posted on 1 Comment

ANNOUNCEMENT: Are you thinking about starting a business this year?

small business course and business plan

Starting a Business

The first step in the process of starting a business is making the decision, but what happens next? It’s the idea. The great thing about being human is that we are always full of ideas. It doesn’t matter what level of education or even your age we all have ideas and we all have desires so the first step of starting a business is pretty simple.

The most important step however is action, how you develop your idea into a product or service that others are interested in or need. We provide online training for Australia’s most popular accounting software, MYOB so it’s clear there is a demand for bookkeeping skills in small businesses. If you have accounting or bookkeeping skills and qualifications and are interested in starting a business you might want to explore a Small Business Course that has now been loaded on our Learning Management System (LMS).

The Small Business Management course covers all the aspects you need when starting a business and the first subject covers “Originate and Develop Concepts“. The rest of the course goes through all the skills you need to create a business plan for your new business so it is a great course to do if you are thinking about starting a business. It’s also a good course if you want to elevate your skills in your current work too.

Our small business course is designed by Maggie Richardson from the Australian Small Business Centre and the good news is that she’s helped over 1,000 people build business plans to turn their ideas into reality. You’ll also be happy to learn that businesses are more successful when they operate to a business plan. If this is your year to start a business come and join us online with the Small Business Management Course.

National Bookkeeping Business Plan Template
Get a bookkeeping business plan created by a registered BAS agent and get started fast

Start a Bookkeeping Business

If a bookkeeping business is something you’re interested in then you’ll be excited to learn that our Registered BAS Agent and Course Creator, Jacci has completed Maggie’s Small Business Management Course and created a business plan for a bookkeeping business that you can use as the basis for your own plan – most of the hard work has been done.

Just change the details for your own circumstances and you’ll have a plan that will help you get clients and stay on track to make a profit and enjoy the benefits of choosing your own hours and working close to home.

Posted on 1 Comment

Cloud Accounting Software and Automatic Bank Feeds (MYOB training video)

As part of our commitment to be the number one choice for online MYOB Bookkeeping training courses we are always keeping an eye and ear out for changes and improvements in the bookkeeping industry. If you do your own banking reconciliation, you might agree that sifting through printed statements and checking each entry off in your accounting software is maybe the most tedious part of bookkeeping.

But it need not be. With accounting bank feeds – a new feature in the world of cloud accounting – your bank transactions are automatically synched with your cloud accounting software.

This means that as long as you’ve entered your purchases into your accounting software, when your statement comes in from your bank, it will automatically marry up your purchases for you to approve with just the click of a button.

Automatic bank feeds removes the single most tedious step from the banking reconciliation process, which, depending on the size of your company, can take anywhere fifteen minutes to two hours (sometimes even more).

For a little more detail on how MYOB and bank feeds works, watch this video:

Or, for more information on how Xero and bank feeds work, watch this video:

But it’s important to know how your accounting software will access your sensitive banking information as currently there are two main methods for doing so.

First there is the method used by the likes of MYOB where your accounting software provider integrates a direct feed of your bank transactions from each of your banks into your software without needing your bank username and password.

The second method, called screen scraping, requires your accounting software to use a third party to access your bank transactions, thus necessitating your bank usernames and passwords, which can become a grey area with regards to protecting yourself from banking fraud.

While the companies that use the screen scraping method take security very seriously, should a breach occur, you could find yourself in violation of your bank’s terms and conditions because you gave out your usernames and passwords.

It’s up to you to choose what method you feel comfortable with but always check your bank’s terms and conditions before you give out your login in details.

Whatever option you choose, by eliminating the hours of data entry, your saving not only time, but also money.

And for the layperson doing their banking reconciliation themselves, services like Shoeboxed only eliminate the data entry even further.

PS: We’re also almost ready to announce our new Cert IV in Small Business Management with the Australian Small Business Centre so if you are looking to start a business or learn the skills to manage one stay tuned…

Posted on

Is TAFE the place to do a Cert IV Small Business Management

Cert IV in Small Business ManagementI was speaking with an entrepreneur who built a very successful plumbing business and he told me you don’t need to do a course to start a business, you need to have a passion for what you are doing and just get out there and do it. We realise however that some people are bolder than others and some people prefer to plan to reduce the risk of failure. At the “end of the day” it’s really just about getting started and turning ideas in reality and activity.

We spend a lot of time designing courses to help provide students with step-by-step instructions so we understand that many people want to learn how to start a business the right way.  There is also a lot to consider when starting a business including your pricing, competitors, legal business structure, marketing, daily operations, financials and reporting to contend with so it’s important to have a business plan in place to help you get a clear picture if what you’re doing. Starting a business is about knowing what you need to know and creating a plan for your future.

I’ve also come to understand that you go to a doctor for medical advice, a dentist for your teeth and an electrician for any electrical work so wouldn’t you rather learn how to start and build a business from a company that is living and breathing this stuff every day!?

For this reason, not only are we working with a very experienced training company that delivers the Cert IV Small Business Management but we will be working with a team of experienced business owners who will contribute their real world knowledge into the courses over the coming year via webinars and interviews so you get to see practical implications of the subjects in the course.

If you’re interested in starting a business in 2013 or working in small business management subscribe to this blog for our launch announcement and receive our fantastic launch pricing.

Posted on 2 Comments

Business plan for your startup bookkeeping business

Start a bookkeeping business plan

Free Business Plan Templates

I recently wrote about the importance of writing a business plan if you want to start a bookkeeping business. I included a great business plan template that is made available by the Australian Department of Innovation, Industry, Science and Research. You can find free Microsoft Word templates from within Microsoft Word or by doing a simple Google search. Today I’ve included a link to some free templates from Microsoft.

This website provides a template for a “business plan for a startup business” but you might notice there is also a business plan template for existing businesses.

Who Starts a Home Based Bookkeeping Business?

Many of our students are mums who are returning to work after many years of looking after young children. They may have had a professional careers, but their circumstances change and they now want to operate a business that allows them to drop children off and collect them from day care and school. If you are one of those people you’ll be thrilled to hear that there are several work-at-home-mums (or virtual assistants) as part of our EzyLearn Online Training Team 🙂

Small Business Management CourseYou may also be interested to know that our Small Business Management course includes training on topics that enable you to work from home via the Internet. Cloud based services like Google, WordPress, Dropbox and even the new MYOB software now make it possible and we show you how to do it.

Best of all, the Australian Government provide a website full of resources for those people who want to start a home-based business and a bookkeeping business is one of the best (according to us) because:

  1. It allows you to work your own hours
  2. If you are smart you can earn good money
  3. Every business needs to do bookkeeping
  4. Very few business owners WANT to do bookkeeping
When you enrol in an EzyLearn online MYOB Training Course you receive access to the courses for LIFE so they are always available to you as a resource, with case studies of various different business scenarios used in our training workbooks.

Bookkeeping Business Plan Built By a Registered BAS Agent

National Bookkeeping Business Plan TemplateDo you want to start a bookkeeping business? Want to work to a plan that was built by an experienced bookkeeper? Does it all seem a bit daunting?

[quote]Jacci, our Registered BAS Agent has worked through the Small Business Management Course to create a Bookkeeping Business Plan for those who want to start their own bookkeeping business.[/quote]

This course not only gives you a well rounded education of the requirements to start and build a small business, but you will receive a business plan that you can tweak to suit your own circumstances as part of the course! Read more..

NEW! Start a Bookkeeping Business Without Buying Into a Franchise

Added November 2014

Maggie Richardson’s Small Business Management Course is now online at EzyLearn BUT better than that we’ve combined it with a bookkeeping business plan (written by Jacci) as well as some legal templates, agreements and other training to help you get started with a bookkeeping business you can operate from your own home quickly.

When most people think of startups they think of technical wiz kids who create mobile phone apps, but our startup academy helps ordinary people start their own business as independent virtual assistants working from home in industries that are growing and with companies that can provide the support to help them get up to speed quickly and get great clients.

Want to learn more about starting a bookkeeping business?

Posted on

Does your business innovate or compete?

Red Ocean Blue Ocean from Dr Sarah Laytons Blog
Red Ocean Blue Ocean from Dr Sarah Laytons Blog

At a recent business owners breakfast I heard someone speak about blue ocean and red ocean strategies. I’m going to write some blog posts about how to build your business as part of our project to help our MYOB students start, maintain and build their own bookkeeping businesses and this article is a fitting way to start.

The Blue Ocean strategy involves finding new demand in an uncontested market which essentially means to innovate. This essentially means create something new, but I think for many small business it could means package your services so that you can demonstrate a difference between your bookkeeping business and others. The Red Ocean strategy is all about competing head to head with your competitors to try to get existing customers to move away from someone else to use your services. You can get a better idea of what Blue Ocean strategy is at their website.

We try to innovate in our services by offering lifetime access to all courses, provide all skill levels in one course (ie. beginners to advanced) so you don’t have to waste time trying to figure out which level you are at and provide different versions of training for Microsoft Word and Excel (ie. 2000, 2003, 2007 and 2010.

This table shows the key differences between the strategies. See which strategy you are pursuing.

Are you looking at starting or growing your business?

Cert IV small business management coming soonDo you want to start a business? Do you want to create a business plan? Does it all seem a bit daunting?

[quote]We are working with Maggie Richardson, author of “Starting a business in Australia” to get her Cert IV in Small Business Management online.[/quote]

This course not only gives you a well rounded education of the requirements to start and build a small business, but you will end up with one-to-one help in creating a business plan as part of the course! Read more..