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Is your business ready for Christmas holidays?

Nov / 17 / 2015

Summer is coming, the Jacaranda is in bloom and the beach beckons – but if you’re shutting up shop for the Christmas holidays, make sure your business is also ready to take a break.

This checklist is a good place to start. 

Office Premises

  • Check your insurance is up to date so it’s valid over the holidays.
  • Test smoke alarms and replace batteries if necessary.
  • Let your landlord or property manager know when you’ll be away.
  • Turn off heating, lighting, appliances and computer equipment.
  • Clean out perishable food from the fridge.
  • Give indoor plants an extra good watering (or take them home if you’ve got green thumbs).
  • Put the rubbish out.
  • Notify businesses that regularly deliver to you of your closedown dates, eg the water cooler company and the sanitation equipment company.
  • Put a hold on any newspaper deliveries.
  • Notify the office cleaner of closure dates, and consider organising a thorough clean while the premises are empty.
  • Order supplies needed in January in time, and ensure delivery isn’t during your closedown.

 Finances, leave and pay

  • Make sure you have enough funds in your business account to cover automatic payments for salaries and other regular bills.
  • Ensure all your tax requirements (GST, PAYG and other employer deductions) are in order if they have to be filed during your holiday.
  • Calculate holiday pay ahead of time.
  • Give employees 14 days’ notice if you have an annual closedown, eg the office or workshop closes over Christmas and no one is to work.
  • Clarify with staff what their leave breakdown is – what’s compulsory leave and when they’re due back at work.

 Clients and suppliers

  • Tell clients when you’ll be closing and reopening – post this on your website, in out-of-office replies, on your answerphone, and if appropriate on the front door of your business premises.
  • Pay your suppliers’ invoices.
  • Send out your own invoices.
  • Share emergency contact details with staff and clients who might need them

It might seem like a lot to do, so delegate as many of the tasks to other staff as early as possible. That way Christmas holidays will be enjoyable & you can return to work in the New Year without any work headaches.