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The Wonders of Microsoft Excel’s 3D Formulas

Excel’s 3D Formulas Work Across Worksheets

Excel formulas online training courseWe’ve recently updated our Microsoft Excel Training Course content, because it remains one of the most indispensable tools for small businesses — and we’ve included a new exercise workbook which takes you through all the steps involved in developing a financial forecast for an investment.

We used a granny flat project as the case study in our financial forecasting workbook, but the beauty of Excel is that, once you get the formulas right, they can be replicated for any kind of investment, not just one for building a granny flat.

The wonderful 3D formula

3D formulas are one of the other many wonders of Excel. A 3D formula is basically a reference to the same cell or a range of cells within multiple Excel sheets. They’re a convenient way to reference several worksheets that follow the same pattern, with cells that contain the same type of data.

All functions work with 3D formulas

3D formulas can be used with all Excel functions — SUM, AVERAGE, PRODUCT, etc — which means that, using a 3D formula, you can easily create a financial forecasting sheet for any stage of an investment, and easily reference that data in another financial forecasting sheet. This is invaluable because there are very few projects or investments that can be contained in just one Excel worksheet.

A project like the granny flat case study in our online Excel Training Course, contains many moving parts — there’s the initial construction, then there’s the ongoing maintenance, and the rental income to manage. It would be impractical to keep all of this information contained within the one Excel worksheet.

3D formulas can be modified with time

The best part about using 3D formulas is that you only need to specify the start and end sheets (which for ease-of-use, you could just label ‘start’ and ‘end’) and the formula will reference all the worksheets between the start and end sheets, including those two sheets.

This means that, as your investment or project grows, once you’ve got the 3D formulas set up correctly, you can just add and subtract worksheets as necessary, and the calculations will update automatically.

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Once you understand how to create and work with 3D formulas, you can use them for any project or investment that you create a financial forecast for — be it for a granny flat project, business investment or anything else that requires you to make a financial decision.

Visit our website for more information on our Microsoft Excel Training Course, which covers 3D formulas.

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online bookkeeping courses to earn cpd points

EzyLearn Excel, MYOB and Xero online training courses count towards Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for bookkeepers and accountants. We’ve been an accredited training provider of the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers ever since the organisation started in Australia. Find out how CPD points can be of benefit to you.

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Depreciation and Tax Deductions Associated with Granny Flats

Working Out Your Depreciations with Excel

excel online training course financial forecasting
Ok, so you may or may not have the room for a granny flat, but either way, Excel is the foremost tool for forecasting financial investments.

If you have the room, building a granny flat on your property can prove to be very lucrative. EzyLearn has recently created a new Microsoft Excel exercise, using the construction of a granny flat as a case study, which forms part of our online Excel Training Course.

It was created to help students understand how to use Excel for financial forecasting, but it’s also useful to those interested in constructing a granny flat on their property.

Costs that will be depreciated

In a recent post, we mentioned claiming depreciation on the property’s existing dwelling. If the existing dwelling on your property is rather old, it may not be able to be depreciated. Depreciation rates are determined by the ATO, while an quantity surveyor will be able to determine the value of your dwelling. The cost of the new granny flat will be depreciated over time. Keep in mind that individual elements of the granny flat, such as the floorings, can also be depreciated in addition to the capital structure.

Most expenses can be deducted

The ATO has a long list of expenses relating to rental properties that can be deducted. If you visit their website, you’ll find that most expenses relating to a rental property can be claimed as a tax deduction, depending on the type of rental property. If your granny flat is intended as a long term rental, as the granny flat in our case study is, then nearly all expenses, including the demolition of the old garage and other capital works can be deducted right away.

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How you treat these expenses and depreciable assets is covered in the granny flats case study of our Microsoft Excel Training Course. Visit our website for more information on our full suite of training courses.

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EzyLearn online training courses count towards CPD points

EzyLearn Excel, MYOB and Xero online training courses count towards Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for bookkeepers and accountants. We’ve been an accredited training provider of the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers ever since the organisation started in Australia. Find out how CPD points can be of benefit to you.

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Use Excel to Manage ALL Your Investments

Once You Master Excel You Can Do Anything!

using excel for financial forecast granny flat2
Excel is one powerful tool. Its formulas can be extrapolated to most any accounting software program.

In our Excel training Course there’s an exercise workbook on granny flat investments, which takes you through all the steps involved in developing a financial forecast for a granny flat. It can also be used to determine the financial forecast of any investment, not just granny flats.

Even though lots of cloud-based software applications have come along in recent years — Xero and MYOB and CRMs like Zoho — which have made it possible for lots of business owners to keep track of their financials and customer sales history without ever needing to open an Excel spreadsheet, Microsoft Excel is still the software used by accountants and analysts in nearly every profession.

Excel is flexible

Microsoft Excel may be difficult to master — indeed, it’s probably one of the most difficult in the entire suite of Microsoft programs — but it’s also the most flexible. The formulas sitting behind nearly every cloud-based accounting software can all be replicated and modified in Excel, where in MYOB or Xero, they can’t.

You can’t enter the details of your granny flat project or other investment into Xero and MYOB and create a financial forecast, even though near similar formulas are being used each time you run a profit and loss statement.

Cloud software is Excel plus PLUS

Before computers and Microsoft Excel came along, accountants used a pen and paper to keep track of their clients’ business financials. And before that, before the numeral system was invented, the abacus was the main accounting tool used by merchants and traders to keep track of their finances.

You probably have no use for an abacus anymore — although in some parts of Eastern Europe and Southeast Asia people still do — because, as an accounting tool, it’s too basic. But the same cannot be said about Excel, which is capable of handling complex formulas and rendering an answer.

Export accounting data into Excel

Because cloud-accounting software is essentially a very user friendly version of an elaborate, however inflexible, spreadsheet, it means you’re able to export your accounting data into Excel. Financial analysts and accountants do this when they need to carry out further analysis on a client’s financial data, and you can too.

Once you know how to use Excel for financial forecasting, you can use the same formulas and modelling for any financial forecast — be it for a granny flat project, business investment, anything that requires you to make a financial decision.

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Visit our website for more information on our Microsoft Excel Training Course, with its new intermediate-level ‘Granny Flat Case Study’.

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online bookkeeping courses to earn cpd pointsEzyLearn Excel, MYOB and Xero online training courses count towards Continuing Professional Development (CPD) for bookkeepers and accountants. We’ve been an accredited training provider of the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers ever since the organisation started in Australia. Find out how CPD points can be of benefit to you.

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When Building a Granny Flat, Here’s What You Need to Consider

Excel Can Help You with Financial Forecasting

using excel for financial forecast granny flat
Excel is a great tool if planning a big ticket project like developing a granny flat on a property.

If you have the room, building a granny flat on your property can prove to be very lucrative. EzyLearn has recently created a new Microsoft Excel exercise, using the construction of a granny flat as a case study, as part of our Excel Training Course. It was created to help students understand how to use Excel for financial forecasting, but it’s also useful to those interested in constructing a granny flat on their property.

The first thing to consider is whether it’s viable to borrow money to fund your entire granny flat project. Most people add a granny flat to their property to earn an additional income by renting it out. If this is your intention, then you need to determine whether the granny flat will become a positive cash flow investment or a negative one.

The existing property

To begin, you must determine the value of the dwelling or existing property on the land you own. Is it brand new, relatively new, older style, or very old? You should have a quantity surveyor determine the value of the existing dwelling, to determine how much of the entire property’s value — that is, the house and land — is based on land value. In most cases, land value will far exceed the value of the dwelling, however many people are surprised to learn by how much, especially if the dwelling isn’t very old. Once you know the value of the dwelling, you may be able to claim depreciation as a tax deduction.

Development costs

You should now start to factor in the development costs associated with the project. This includes the cost of demolishing any existing structures — a garage or shed, for example — and remediation of the site in the event asbestos is present. You should also have a fairly good idea of what it will cost to construct the granny flat up to the stage where you can move in. Not all granny flat construction companies take you up to this stage, often exiting at lock-up stage instead. Don’t forget to include any council fees or levies associated with constructing your granny flat.

Expected income

In the Microsoft Excel case study, both the existing dwelling and the new granny flat will be rented out as investment properties. However, you may not do the same. You need to determine how much rental income you can reasonably expect to earn from your granny flat. You should also determine whether you’re located in a region with low rental vacancy rates and high demand for long term rentals. This will determine not just the net weekly income you can expect to receive, but also the frequency at which it will be occupied, which will also factor into your bottom line.

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Considering each of these areas is just the first step in developing a comprehensive financial forecast of your granny flat project. Our Microsoft Excel Training Course, with its new granny flats case study, goes into much greater detail. Bookkeepers can also keep up their certification and earn CPD points with our Excel, MYOB and Xero courses. Visit our website for more information on our full suite of training courses. 

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Video: Receive an Automatically Discounted Price for Online Course Enrolments!

Specials and Summer Training

2016-12-20 How to use the EzyLearn website to get discounts and special pricingIt’s Christmas time and we’ll be open every day (except the public holidays) which means you can make contact with questions or support during your course.

But best of all, we’re offering a fabulous special offer with a saving of over $300. Check out the quick video below which shows you how to get $663 dollars worth of training for just $296a saving of $337!

All you have to do is choose your courses at our Online Course Enrolment page and the discounts will be applied automatically.

Get New Skills for A New Year!

discounted Myob QuickBooks online courseWith the New Year coming fast we find most of our students are looking to change careers and/or up-skill so as to feel confident with their computer skills in job interviews and the like, so our current special offers will train you up to be your best, cheaply. Here’s all you need to do:

  1. Choose Microsoft Excel course (12 month’s access, all 9 courses and Certificate).
  2. Scroll down to the discounted courses section to see the Xero Training Course available for $30 less.
  3. Scroll down further to see the Microsoft Word Course (12 month’s access, all 9 courses and Certificate), which is normally $267 is now FREE
  4. Tick the box next to “Yes, I have a discount voucher code” and enter 8881818 to receive a further $70 discount off the Microsoft Excel course!

If you don’t have the time right now, don’t worry, you’ve got 12 months to complete all these courses at your own pace — so just enrol now to get the current special offers.

Watch this video to see how to get the discounts

New Online Courses for the New Year

It’s been a very busy year for new course creation and we’ve just launched two new courses that are all based on new online cloud-based services in bookkeeping and marketing/advertising. Read about them here:

QuickBooks Online

Provide quotes on your tablet computer, convert them to invoices when you get the order and take photographs of your receipts for expenses — works on your smartphone too. These are the features of America’s most popular accounting software program that is now aggressively promoting itself to Australian small businesses.

And what do we think? We believe QuickBooks is good software — find out more about our Intuit QuickBooks Daily Transactions Course.

Our New Digital & Social Media Marketing Course

Facebook and social media online training course
Tired of struggling to post consistently on Facebook and other social media sites? We’ve had a WordPress course for several years to teach you how to create your own website and blog, edit images, and optimise it for search engines (like Google). But if you’ve ever struggled with fleshing out a Facebook Page, or want to start promoting yourself or your business in social media, try our Digital Business and Social Media Marketing Courses.

We show you what you should include on a modern day website as well as including Facebook Page, Content Marketing and Facebook Advertising training (which we used to help Derek Farmer show up on Page 1 in Google for the competitive Cammeray Real Estate Agent search query).

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Most of all, from all of us here at EzyLearn, HAVE a FANTASTIC and SAFE Christmas — doing things you love!

Online computer training Christmas specials_comp

 

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You Need To Be a Job Hopper To Do Well In Your Career

When it Comes to Your Career, Hopping Around is OK

job-hopping-to-success
Those who hop may be the most successful, career speaking.

For many years, young people, particularly Generation Y, were cautioned about changing their jobs too often — or being a “job hopper”. It would give the impression they were flaky or disloyal or unable to commit, they were told. You want to find a job where you can stay there for at least 10 years, where you can grow and progress through the company. That was the advice handed out just a decade ago, perhaps even more recently than that.

But the tide is now rolling the other way. People of all generations and work experience are now being advised to change their jobs, not just every decade, but every 3 years, or 5 at a minimum. Do that and, rather than being seen as a liability, you’ll be seen as an asset. 

What Job Hopping Gives You

All those different jobs, at different companies and in different industries, cultivates skills and attitude that’s highly sought after by a range of employers. Changing jobs shows you’re willing to adapt, able to move with the times, and that you possess many different skills that you wouldn’t had you been left to inevitably go stale in the same old job for a decade or more.

However, besides acquiring a new skill, there are other benefits to changing jobs regularly. People who change jobs will typically earn up to 50 percent more than if they stayed in one job. That’s because the economy isn’t what it used to be, and the days of being rewarded with a fat pay rise each year are pretty well over. And even if your company still regularly gives their staff a pay rise, it’s unusually anything more than between 3 and 5 percent — but 50 percent? Keep dreaming.

Job Hopper or Continuing Professional Development?

If you’re a person who can change jobs frequently, it indicates that you’re probably a quick learner. You’re the kind of person who can pick up on new systems, processes, procedures, and even workplace cultures, and that makes you incredibly valuable for prospective employers. In many ways, this job hopping could be considered a new skill itself, an informal type of continuing professional development. Sound like you or someone you know?

Continuing professional development has become exceedingly important to many employers in the last decade because of how quickly new technologies have been introduced into the workplace, as well as the changes to many industries themselves. In the bookkeeping profession, for example, there have been numerous software changes, as well as changes to  industry regulations that now require all tax agents to register with the Tax Practitioners Board (TCB) and hold a minimum Certificate IV in Bookkeeping from TAFE to provide tax-related services; bookkeepers are also required to engage in continuing professional education in order to renew their registration with the TPB.

Just as it’s important for employees to show they’ve got the latest training in software that’s been introduced into their industry, it’s equally important to show that you possess other skills that usually aren’t taught in a classroom (or on an online content management system!) — such as, being receptive to change, quick thinking, personable, and being engaged by your work. That last one, the one about engagement, is super important, because it’s now believed that the learning curve tends to flatten after 3 years.

Flattening Out in Your Job

job-hopping-changing-jobs-regularly-a-good-thingIn other words, after you’ve worked somewhere for 3 or more years, you stop learning things, stop picking up new skills, and, usually, stop being engaged at work. You’re now just going through the motions because your job has become second nature to you. These are not sought after qualities in an employee; worse still, after 3 years, the skills you learned early on in the piece are probably close to being outdated, if they aren’t already, anyway.

Plan for the Next Three Years of Your Career

Think about where you’d like to be three new iPhones from now (one that’s waterproof, hopefully), and plan your career accordingly. Think about whether you’ll need to update your education in the future, too. Don’t forget that, with new technologies and new processes for using that technology in the workplace, you’ll need the skills to match if you’re going to be able to compete in the job market.

‘Think about where you’d like to be three new iPhones from now… and plan your career accordingly.’

In fact, the majority of students who take our online MYOB and Xero training courses, do so because they’d like to improve their skill sets to help them get work, or so that they can begin working for themselves as independent contractors, and they’d like to be able to offer bookkeeping services to businesses, regardless of the accounting software they use.

If you’re looking to improve you current skill set or you’d simply like to learn a new one, visit our website for a full list of our training courses and details on how to enrol. If you enrol in any of our MYOB, Excel, Word or WordPress training courses, you’ll receive Lifetime Membership to our course materials. This means you can stay up-to-date with each new version of software that’s released for no additional cost!

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Xero now looks like Quickbooks Online and MYOB needs an upgrade

Xero, Quickbooks and the plus button

xero-dashboard-is-starting-to-look-like-the-quickbooks-online-dashboard-xero
The Plus button in Xero

We’re currently completing new, updated content for our Xero courses and one thing stood out more than anything else – the PLUS button in the top right hand corner! If you are familiar with Intuit Quickbooks you’d immediately recognise that their PLUS in the top centre of the screen is how you access most of the software’s features and I’ve always liked how easy it makes navigating the software. If you compare the two of them you may think that the Xero software still has some way to come.

The other thought I had about this change is “how much will Xero change its user interface”? People get used to how to navigate around a software program (User Experience) and don’t want things to change too much and that has been a great feature about MYOB – their navigation has remained fairly consistent for two decades.

Will cloud services be upgraded like their computer software peers of the naughties?

Microsoft might be the inspiration for change for Xero because although most of the formulas and functions in Microsoft Excel remain the same, the way you navigate around the software changes every 3-6 years. This is a boon for the larger software training companies that charge extra for courses in the different versions (we include all versions for the one price of course 😉 but it can be frustrating for staff who have to re-learn how to navigate the software and their spreadsheets when the office software is updated.

xero-dashboard-is-starting-to-look-like-the-quickbooks-online-dashboard-quickbooks
The PLUS menu in Quickbooks has more features

While we are on the topic of upgrades and how annoying they are I received an email from my accountant to upgrade the MYOB version that we share so that she can access the files to work on them! I can say for sure that I once again felt that MYOB are behind the timeline as they fight to stay in control when looking at how they develop their software compared to the other accounting programs like Xero and Quickbooks where the software is updated and live.

Testimonials for Xero, MYOB and Microsoft Excel courses

On a different note, I asked our web guy to get some information about where our students are located around Australia and at the same time get some of their testimonials quotes onto our website. He’s not finished yet, but when I see the different suburbs from all over Australia I reflect on the same picture over 10 years ago when we were operating physical training centres in Sydney’s North Shore, Northern Beaches and Parramatta and our students were located within 20kms of each centre.

It’s a wonderful feeling to see students doing our courses from all over Australia but it’s even better when we see enrolments from UK, Canada, US and Hong Kong because it shows the true power of cloud based services.

When you want to become a Registered BAS Agent

Start a bookkeeping business not a franchiseLast week I wrote about starting a bookkeeping business while you are working your day job and I just want to add a note that may be very useful for those who want to become a registered BAS agent. National Bookkeeping offer a BAS lodgement service through our licensees and it is a great way for qualified bookkeepers (who have their Cert IV in Bookkeeping or Accounting) to work with an organisation and build up the hours they need to register as a BAS agent via the Tax Practitioners Board.

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To Job Seekers MYOB is Still Number 1

Most existing business use MYOB

Job Seeker Super Special Discount Offer for MYOB Course, Excel Course and Word Course with certificate 1I love the power of being able to login to our accounting software to resend invoices or create them when I have some idle time and I’ve discovered that lots of trades people and independent contractors love it too, but most enquiries we have from prospective students is about MYOB accounting software because that’s what most small businesses need help with.

That is also why we’ve bundled the most popular software requirements for those who are applying for office admin or accounting jobs – MYOB, Microsoft Excel and Microsoft Word – AND created a special bundled price for the lot!

Superannuation companies need Excel

I was speaking with the risk model manager for a very large superannuation fund earlier this week and we were discussing the course outline of our Microsoft Excel courses and how that fits into the needs of their own workforce (he was exploring a corporate training arrangement) and I mentioned something that resonated with him.

If you are learning a program like Excel or Word from scratch the training materials can be quite generic and cover almost any topics, but as soon as you head into the Advanced Excel Course topics you may also be looking at customising that course using tools, formulas, functions and macros that are specific to your own business – particularly as a large company.

Cafes and Restaurants use Word and Excel

New Morisset Cafe owners at Cafe Limejay use Microsoft Excel to create their new menu-smallI was speaking to a local business owner of a cafe in Morisset, close to my home (yes, I’ve escaped the Sydney property prices, lack of space and high traffic!) about their new menu when they confessed that they used Microsoft Excel to create the menu after struggling with Word to do it. They are a mother and daughter team and worked together to get the new menu ready for their customers.

What stood out in the conversation is just how complicated Microsoft Word is once you start exploring the more intermediate and advanced capabilities. We use these advanced tools when we create our Training Workbooks and it’s worth using the skills because you can save a lot of time for repetitive tasks or when you make changes, but for smaller or more creative tasks like forms and tables Excel is often a simpler program to use.

Save $397 and do the lot

Online Training Course special offers for MYOB, Xero, Excel, Word and moreWe’ve bundled the MYOB, Excel and Word courses, with assessment and certificate options and all you need to do is select these courses at our enrolment page to receive the automatic discount. This offer is called the Job Seeker Offer and is available for a limited time so enrol now and take the saving. Then feel free to share the results of your work if you want to.

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Microsoft Excel 2016 & Gantt Charts for Your New Website/Business/Project

Project plans and gantt chart templates in Microsoft Excel 2016 training courses online

 

GANTT CHARTS ARE just one of the many wonderful features  Microsoft Excel and help enormously in the workplace. 

Many project managers oversee the project management and implementation of, say, a staff induction system, a new computer system or procedural changes.

Our Online Excel Training Course includes training on how to create your own project plan using Gantt charts. Continue reading Microsoft Excel 2016 & Gantt Charts for Your New Website/Business/Project

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Start Now and you’ll have until 2017 for MYOB, Xero, Excel, Word and WordPress

Corporate Training for Microsoft Excel, Microsoft Word, Accounting and WordPress Courses

Online Training Course special offers for MYOB, Xero, Excel, Word and moreWith these software programs you can run most aspects of a business and we’re including them all in our new Corporate Training Business Software Training Licences for businesses with a team of people who all want to improve their software skills.

Our Business Software Training Licence enables up to 5 staff members have unlimited access to all training resources for all of our software training courses for 12 months for a low fixed cost. We also have discount prices for larger numbers of staff.

If you look at the total retail price for all of this it is well over $6,000 of value in online corporate training courses and at the current price you’ll only pay less than 25% of the price. That is a saving of over 75%!

Software corporate training course licences for discounted online coursesIn 2015 we experienced a significant increase in the number of corporate enrolments for our Microsoft Office courses and have created this package to make life easier for corporate who want to enrol their staff easier, while also taking advantage of the discounted prices.

Bookkeeping Course Combos and Enrolment Vouchers are also available

If you are looking to up-skill in a number of accounting software or office application programs you’ll also discover some discounted course combination offers for popular courses.

[button link=”http://ezylearnonline.com.au/how-it-works/special-offers/” newwindow=”yes”] See our Special Offers[/button]

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What Type of Education Does The TPB Accept For Its New CPE Requirement

Type of Education for CPE Requirements of the TPB

What Type of Education Does The TPB Accept For Its New CPE Requirement

Earlier this year, the TPB changed the requirements of the tax and BAS agent registration renewal process, now making it essential for all BAS and tax agents to participate in some form of education under its new continuing professional education (CPE) requirement.

According to the TPB, tax agents must participate in a minimum of 90 hours of CPE over the standard three year registration period, while BAS agents must participate in a minimum of 45 hours over the standard three year registration period. The Institute of Certified Bookkeepers have enabled completion of our Microsoft Excel Training Courses be accepted for CPD points.

Types of study approved by the TPB

As you’ve probably guessed, for your study to be recognised by the TPB and go towards your CPE registration requirement, the study has to relate to your area of work as a BAS or tax agent. While a short course on DIY home maintenance wouldn’t be covered, a seminar conducted by a qualified accountant who specialises in the building industry would be recognised by the TPB, even if it’s being led by a colleague at the firm where the BAS agent works.

The TPB has specified a number of activities that they consider relevant to tax advice, BAS and tax agent service you may provide:

  • Seminars, workshops, webinars, courses and lectures
  • structured conferences and discussion groups (including by phone or video conference)
  • tertiary courses provided by universities, registered training organisations (RTOs), other registered higher education institutions or other approved course providers
  • other education activities, provided by an appropriate organisation
  • research, writing and presentation by a registered tax (financial) adviser, tax or BAS agent of technical publications or structured training
  • peer review of research and writing submitted for publication or presentation in structured training
  • computer/internet-assisted courses, audiotape or videotape packages
  • attendance at structured in-house training on tax related subjects by persons or organisations with suitable qualifications and/or practical experience in the subject area covered
  • attendance at appropriate Australian Taxation Office (ATO) seminars and presentations
  • relevant CPE activities provided to members and non-members by a recognised professional association
  • a unit of study or other CPE activity on the Tax Agent Services Act 2009 (TASA) including the Code of Professional Conduct (Code).

If you’re a member of a recognised professional association

The second-to-last activity included in that list, you may have noticed, accepts any relevant activity provided by a recognised professional organisation. There are quite a few professional organisations recognised by the TPB, as you can see on their website, but the one probably most relevant to bookkeepers is the Institute of Certified Bookkeepers (ICB), with which EzyLearn is also a training partner.

The ICB is an association established to support bookkeepers and BAS agents by regularly holding seminars and training workshops, giving members access to marketing materials – such as customisable e-newsletter templates and unique email addresses – listings on the ICB directory and IT support, among many other things. Because they’re also accredited with the TPB and recognised by the ATO, they also possess a fair bit of influence with both organisations, making the lives of its members much easier.

In this case, being a member of the ICB, gives you access to a number of TPB-certified continuing professional education courses, seminars, lectures and workshops that can be counted as part of your CPE quota; members can also access a CPE register within the ICB dashboard to record their CPE activities.

Courses you can study as an ICB member

As a member of the ICB, you’re able to take any of the courses that they consider relevant to your profession as a bookkeeper and BAS agent, and which they consider to be continuing your professional education. This would include any of our MYOB or Xero training courses, but would also include our Excel and Word training courses as they’re both used to assist you in doing your job as a bookkeeper and BAS agent.

If you’re a BAS agent and your registration with the TPB will come due on or after July 1, 2016, you will be required to have participated in CPE to be eligible for renewal. Joining the ICB and taking advantage of the many free and discounted seminars, workshops and courses, like one of our online training courses in MYOB, Xero, MS Excel or Word, is a good way to ensure you remain compliant with the TPB’s tax and BAS agent registration terms.

To find out more about joining the ICB, visit their website. Alternatively, if you’d like to learn more about starting your own bookkeeping business or working as a home-based bookkeeper, subscribe to our blog for all the latest news and updates delivered straight to your inbox.

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How does $20,000 mortgage repayments equate to $47,598.02?

Microsoft Excel Course now includes a mortgage spreadsheet

Microsoft Excel Training Course can help you halve your mortgageA mortgage for your home is a huge debt, particularly for those living in the swelling capital cities with soaring house prices. The pro and cons of buying your own house and living in it are:

  • You don’t pay capital gains tax on a property you live in, but
  • You can’t claim the interest component of your loan

The big problem with this is the interest charge – you can’t claim the cost of it yet it’s a massive component of each and every payment you make on your mortgage. You’d need your house price to go up at least at the interest rate you are paying to make it a good investment – and right now you’d be doing fine (perhaps except in Perth now).

Bigger payments reduce the interest paid

Our Microsoft Excel Training Course now includes an Excel spreadsheet file that will help you see just how much money you’d save if you paid even a small amount off extra each month!

You can use the mortgage comparison file to compare two mortgages, make extra payments or even shorten the term of the loan to see how much you’d need to pay each month if you want to pay your mortgage off quicker.

If you are an existing Excel Course student you’ll find the new file at the end of our Microsoft Excel Advanced Course 309.

Take 10 years off your mortgage while its easy to

I don’t want to turn this into a financial education blog, but there are several reasons to open this spreadsheet and start seeing the resulting figures to workout the best way to allocate the money you earn. Interest rates are at record lows, house prices ‘may’ be peaking, some people say that Australian banks are so highly leveraged to the residential property market that they’ll need to hold more capital reserves.

Either way you look at it, why not use your Microsoft Excel skills and play with some calculations to see how much better off you could be if you are financially prudent now. You can also use this Microsoft Excel file to do a stress test and see how much your mortgage would be if interest rates do go up as many people expect they will.

free online training course in Xero or Microsoft Word with MYOB or Microsoft Excel CourseFree Microsoft Word Course (or Xero Accounting) when you enrol in Excel Certificate Course

Note that if you enrol into Microsoft Excel Courses and choose the certificate option you’ll receive a BONUS course in either Microsoft Word (to create a professional resume) or Xero Accounting! Read our BONUS course offer announcement.

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Free Xero Course with Excel and MYOB Courses

It’s a Good Year for Xero Cloud Accounting

Many accountants and businesses are now using Xero instead of MYOB so it's important for bookkeepers to be trained in this.
Many accountants and businesses are now using Xero instead of MYOB so it’s important for bookkeepers to be trained in this.

It’s been a surprising year this year for our Xero Training Courses. Xero must be doing something right with their marketing and strategy because we’ve seen a significant increase in the number of students enrolling for this course.

I was just speaking with one of our students only recently and she mentioned that of all the software programs she uses (and she uses them all) that Xero makes bookkeeping so easy that some of her clients who’ve gone onto it have reduced the number of hours that they employ her!

[quote]It’s a scary thought if you are an independent contractor who doesn’t have a professional services agreement in place for regular work with their clients, but it’s also a sign of the times for bookkeepers in the cloud (online) software era.[/quote]

The biggest reason for the ease of use? Bank Feeds. See below for our free Xero course offer..

Do Bookkeepers Need to Change What They Do?

Blog about Content Marketing and inbound marketingI recently wrote about content marketing and whether a bookkeeper is someone who can discuss or even recommend this service to the people they work for. The best way to think about this is how the bookkeeper role works in many companies, for example, do small businesses look for a bookkeeper who can provide a wider range of services than just bookkeeping? It’s common for a bookkeeper to work in the administration areas of a small business because finance and administration go hand in hand and it’s common for contractors who understand cloud based services to delve into and explore other cloud based services.

I was speaking to another bookkeeper who is a Registered BAS Agent about her website and online marketing and she was telling me about all these fantastic things she was doing to promote her own business.

[quote]After talking to her for an hour I started thinking that she is a good person to talk to about Internet marketing – and that perhaps she starts offering these services to her clients too![/quote]

In the end it often depends on the size of a bookkeepers clients and the type of work they want to do. When you develop your bookkeeping and accounting skills you become more valuable as an accounts contact, particularly as a Registered BAS Agent, however you can become more of a small business administrator if you are aware of how to manage many different parts of the business.

It’s a Great Time for Free Xero Courses with MYOB Course enrolment

Sorry, I digress.

[box type=”tick” size=”large” style=”rounded” border=”full”]What I really wanted to announce was our new fantastic special offer of a free Xero course or Microsoft Word course when you enrol into a Microsoft Excel or MYOB Training Course with EzyLearn.[/box]

Xero is great to know if you want to delve deeper into the various software programs available to do bookkeeping (and a great tool to offer if you want to operate a bookkeeping business from home). Microsoft Word is a great program to master if you want to create documents for yourself or the business you work for and the tool of choice for creating a great resume so you can get that next job you’re going for.

 

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Microsoft Excel Online Training Course Includes Beginners to Advanced with LIFETIME Access

9 Microsoft Excel Training Courses from Beginners to Advanced for One Price

Microsoft Excel Training Course on graphs and chartsMost students know about us because of our online MYOB Training Courses (5 courses for the price of 1) but we have a fantastic offer for Microsoft Excel Training Courses where we include every course from Excel Beginners, Excel Intermediate and Excel Advanced for one low price.

We create our own courses so we have the perfect combination of:

  1. Training Videos (where we use the exercise included with the course to demonstrate how to use all the features of Microsoft Excel),
  2. Training Workbooks (where we lay out the exercises in a step-by-step approach so you can practise every new skill at your own pace and in your own time – even without internet access),
  3. Microsoft Excel Exercise files so you can open them and see exactly how each of the Excel features work in a real life scenario
  4. Knowledge Review Tests to make sure you remember the most important aspects of each training course and can receive a certificate of completion (if you enrol for that option)
  5. Microsoft Excel Training Course Certificate to demonstrate the completion of your course

Worksheets, Charts and Databases

Microsoft Excel 2007 Beginners training courses and certificateOur Microsoft Excel Training Courses will teach you about ALL of these uses for Microsoft Excel and provide you with dozens of files to learn, practise and even use in your own home or business.

[quote]Charts or Graphs are visual tools that can make mundane data interesting and useful to demonstrate patterns.[/quote]

Excel charts are based on data that is entered into a worksheet but can also be produced from more advanced tools like Pivot tables.

Charts are introduced in our Microsoft Excel Beginners Courses, along with worksheets and databases and it is covered in more detail in the Intermediate Microsoft Excel Training Courses AND in the Advanced Microsoft Excel Training Courses that include pivot tables.

[box type=”tick” size=”large” style=”rounded” border=”full”]We even include the example of how we used enrolment data from 2003-2004 to find out the best time of the day and day of the week to offer our class-based Microsoft Excel Training Courses when we had our Sydney Training Centre in Dee Why.[/box]

12 Months or Lifetime Course Access

One of the fantastic things about operating an online training business is we can give students as much access as they need even LIFETIME course access. We can do this because we use a LMS (Learning Management System) called Moodle that is used by well regarded universities around the world (as well as many more humble training organisations like ours.

When we operated a class-based training centre we offered students free repeats so they could refresh their Microsoft Excel skills if they didn’t use the software for a while after their course – now we can offer unlimited access to all courses for 12 months or LIFETIME access.

No Need to Choose Between Beginners Intermediate or Advanced Excel Courses – you get them all

A skills assessment is the normal procedure a HR manager puts their employees through to understand how much their staff know and where they need to improve. It’s also the assessment that students used to go through with us over the phone when they had to decide between the different skill levels of courses (Beginners, Intermediate or Advanced), but because we include EVERYTHING in our online course there is no need to perform a skills assessment.

You can bone up on any Excel basics, reinforce your existing skills and hone some new skills because all courses are included when you enrol into Microsoft Excel with EzyLearn!

Learn more about what is included in our Microsoft Excel Course Outline and see our Enrolment page for detailed pricing and course options.

[button link=”http://ezylearnonline.com.au/courses/microsoft-excel/”]Microsoft Excel Training Courses[/button] [button link=”http://ezylearnonline.com.au/enrol/” bg_color=”#038a20″]Enrolment Prices and Options[/button]

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Content Marketing Gives You Organic Success on Google

content-marketing-by-blog-postsWhen I started my blog more than 5 years ago, I felt a bit like a computer nerd. I mean, who wanted to read about how to do bookkeeping and accounting using MYOB?

Then cloud accounting became a thing and software once more became exciting.

MYOB vs Quickbooks vs Xero Training Courses
Share price information for MYOB via Comsec

Incidently, the big fight to become the most successful Cloud Accounting Software is now well underway with MYOB having just been relisted on the ASX and its share pricing diving very quickly.

They’re competing with Xero and we wrote about the fierce competition looming against MYOB in 2010 when Craig Winkler (the man who build MYOB into the success it become now being a significant shareholder in Xero).

What made bookkeeping exciting to so many more people?

Bookkeeping became exciting, in large part, because of the flexibility it offered busy people wanting more control over their working lives, and busy parents trying to juggle priorities.

We could create a content marketing strategy about how cloud accounting makes bookkeeping faster and easier for small business, while also making it possible for parents to work closer to home (or at the family home), performing bookkeeping tasks and avoiding traffic, congestion and time you never get back commuting.

I should also confess that, at the time, I didn’t realise how important AND time consuming content marketing would be. Every blog post takes at least an hour!

You may ask how what appears to be a relatively simple blog post can take that long? In reality, a well researched blog post, including topic research, finding images, finding the right page(s) to link to can take several hours and that’s what we’re going to share in our soon-to-be-launched Content Marketing Course & Services.

Why does it take so long to write a blog post?

content marketing training courses and services
Content Marketing is worth the effort and now is the time.

If it were the case of just writing some sentences, it wouldn’t take that long at all. But what’s the point of that?

I’m not going to insult people, particularly people who have proven that they take the time to read my blogs on a regular basis, with poor quality, rushed content.

Furthermore, everything I write relates to something else we do and it involves:

  • Carrying out research to back up what I write about (like the above information about MYOB shares and a previous blog about both MYOB and Xero getting smashed by a huge US based competitor)
  • Referencing our own landing pages for the services we provide, and
  • Linking to relevant blogs that I’ve written.

Getting found: Optimising your blog posts for Google

I haven’t even mentioned the time and effort in optimising each and EVERY blog post for the keywords that are important to us. That involves:

  • Tags
  • Keyword density
  • Relevant landing pages
  • Keywords in headings
  • Images

Outsourcing blog writing to the Philippines, India or the Ukraine?

Tempting isn’t it? The thought that you can get someone to write a great blog post for your business for $2-3 per hour!

I mean in one day you could get all your writing done and then just schedule the blog posts to be published in something like your WordPress Blog over the next month or two. But it’s not that easy it is?

We are in an age where just stringing some words and sentences together isn’t going to get any one to pay much attention, particularly if there is a hint of broken English or disconnect with the topic. And anyway, if you’re going to write content you need to be an expert don’t you? Who wants to read some words that have just been sprayed onto a page because they have relevant keywords?

Content Marketing Strategy — who is the reader?

Like many tasks involved in small business, the most important part of the work is creating the Content Marketing Strategy; the plan for:

  1. Topics that will interest your readers and potential customers
  2. The keywords to be used in those articles (blogs)
  3. The landing pages that will convert potential customers into customers

Some of these components have nothing to do with the intended reader, but if your content marketing is going to be effective you’ll have to have a clear description of your reader in your head — I like to give them a name, imagine how many children they have, where they live, why they’re using my products/services, who their friends are, how they are going to talk about our company etc.

A wise old business owner I use to speak with regularly kept asking me the question, “Who is your customer, Steve?” This relates to everything. It relates to content marketing, but it also relates to when our courses are available, how we combine several features into one offer, how we try to do more for that market, like find other ways for them to benefit by using our service, hence National Bookkeeping!

What are you doing for your reader?

Start a bookkeeping business not a franchiseMost of our online training students use our services for MYOB Training Courses, Excel Training Courses, Xero Courses and Small Business Management Training.

For most people it’s because they’re looking for bookkeeping work or want to start a bookkeeping business. Finding out as much as possible about why our students do our courses enables us to develop products (and write content about) what they need.

Join our Bookkeeping Directory TODAY

We partner with a bookkeeping directory which is aimed at helping people (our students primarily) find bookkeeping work or start a bookkeeping business. It’s also a great way for small businesses to find bookkeepers who are close to them. 


Find out how you can promote your bookkeeping services to a much wider circle of people by engaging in content marketing.

List yourself on National Bookkeeping

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Beginners to Advanced Microsoft Excel Course for $197 inc Exercise Files

$197 Beginners to Advanced Microsoft Excel Course includes Exercise Files

Microsoft Excel Training Course exercise files

One of the best ways of learning how to use a program is to use that program during your training. Some people can sit with programs like Microsoft Excel and learn by trying something out and making mistakes and then trying again.

[box type=”tick”]We’ve discovered that Microsoft Excel course students want to work with real world files in a logical step-by-step method that uses the exercise files for the basic skills and then keep using that file for the more advanced skills.[/box]

By the end you’ll have a powerful Microsoft Excel spreadsheet using advanced skills and because you learnt in a logical and methodical way, using gradually more complicated tools, you’ll have learnt most of the Microsoft Excel skills you’ve wanted and won’t even notice the time go by.

Real World Use of Microsoft Excel Spreadsheets

Excel training course exercise filesThe main uses for Microsoft Excel are as a:

  • Worksheet that enables you to lay out information in a logical fashion and then perform calculations with that data
  • Database that lists all of the information in a tabular format that can then be filtered and manipulated into a format that can be used in mail merges etc, and
  • Charts and graphs that visually present the information in a worksheet or table so that we humans can make sense of the information

Here are some of the ways that we use Microsoft Excel for our training business.

Present information for use in newspaper ads

In Microsoft Excel Course 303 we look at formulas and formatting and one exercise file we share with students and an example of what’s possible using Excel is the artwork we created for the newspaper ads for our courses at our training centres in Sydney. The table structure of Excel enables us to lay the information out precisely and if we need to change the dates

What costs us the most money

Yes, you can see the costs of running a business in a simple table, but when you put it in a chart you can visually see the differences in costs and in our 305 course on charting we’ll show you how to create the various different types of pie, line and bar charts as well as many other types. You’ll learn how to format the charts to make certain areas stand out and you’ll learn how to demonstrate trends.

Budgets and forecasting

It’s great when you have historical information to work with because you can spend a lot of time working out percentages, margins, budgets etc to try to figure out how you will go in the future. We include many exercise files in Microsoft Excel Course 306, including files to help you:

  • Maintain a household (or business budget)
  • Calculate sales margins and commissions for sales people (we have several different versions of this file to demonstrate how the file should look at the various stages of creating it).
  • Create a price list (including all wholesale product costings – that will be hidden from view)

 Making the right decisions

When we operated our training centres in Sydney we spent a lot of our time scheduling courses. We had to allocate training rooms, roster on our great trainers, print training materials and we needed to know when people where coming to courses. We discovered that most people who wanted to learn Microsoft Excel did a night class. We had these variables to work with:

  • The courses
  • What days people had come to these courses in the past
  • The time of the day that students had enrolled into these courses: morning, midday, evening or weekend.
  • Different training methods (class-based and Flexible Learning)

By discovering the best days and times that students had enrolled into courses from the past we were able to better schedule our courses to get the most students. It means we didn’t need to cancel courses.

See the contents of Microsoft Excel Course 308 for more information.

Figure out how to make more profit

In a business you can build a bigger business and make more profit by

  • increasing sales,
  • cutting costs,
  • focussing on your most profitable customers,
  • focussing on your most profitable products,
  • decreasing the time it takes to get your money (cash sale or terms).

Using Goal Seek in Microsoft Excel we discovered something that’ll help all independent contractors run a better more profitable business.