Tax professionals the key to a successful small business

Having a professional adviser is the “single best predictor of success” for a small business, says ATO second commissioner Andrew Mills.

In a recent interview with the ATO’s Second Commissioner, Mr Mills said the Tax Office regularly sees three key attributes in successful small businesses, with tax professionals the standout factor.

“While the ATO (Australian Tax Office) does a lot of work to mitigate the complexity of small business tax, we tend to find the single best predictor of success for a small business is whether or not they have a professional adviser,” Mr Mills said.

“We see tax professionals as being vital to the health of the system and the small business market.”

Businesses that managed to get a good grip over their cash flow management, as well as be digitally ready, were more likely to be successful than those that weren’t, added Mr Mills.

A better Tax Office experience

Mr Mills also used his speech to reiterate Commissioner Chris Jordan’s pledge to create a better interaction experience for small business clients and their advisers with the ATO.

He noted concerns with the small business dispute resolution process, agreeing that there was more that could be done to support businesses who feel like they haven’t been heard.

“As the second commissioner responsible for review and dispute resolution, this is an issue that is a particular focus for me,” Mr Mills said.

“We think we do a pretty good job for the most part, but we also realise that it’s not good enough for any business to have a bad experience.”

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