About the Australia Society

This page has been set up as the main platform for all members who are currently living in Australia or indeed simply considering a move down under. The main aim of the page is to provide up to date information and news on all social and networking events, whilst acting as the main social forum for all members living in Australia. The page also provides assistance with and information for those members who are considering migrating down under. An active jobs' board may also be integrated where members can post information on positions that are available in their respective cities.


Over 100 attendees representing Institute members and other stakeholders were in Chartered Accountants House last Monday (17 Sept 2018) to meet with representatives of the Financial Reporting Council (‘FRC’) and hear presentations on UK and Irish GAAP. The FRC sets accounting standards for Ireland.  Anthony Appleton, Director of Accounting and Reporting Policy at the FRC discussed the development of FRS 102 from when it was first issued in 2013 to the most recent amendments to the standard, the Triennial review 2017 amendments.  Jenny Carter, Director of UK Accounting Standards at the FRC presented on the Triennial review 2017 amendments, highlighting in particular the changes made regarding directors’ loans to small entities; intangible assets in a business combination; investment property rented to another group entity; classification of basic financial instruments; and the definition of a financial institution, and also looked at what’s next in terms of changes to the standards. The FRC presentation was accompanied by a presentation by Eimear McGrath from KPMG and Barbara McCormack from Chartered Accountants Ireland on the key financial reporting requirements of the small and micro companies regimes in the Republic of Ireland. The event was chaired by Terry O’Rourke, chair of the Institute’s Accounting Committee.

Sep 21, 2018

Employers must act now to prepare for PAYE Modernisation Tuesday, 18 September 2018 Chartered Accountants Ireland is calling on all employers to engage with Revenue in advance of the fast approaching 1 January 2019 implementation of a new PAYE system called PAYE Modernisation. So far it appears only some 11,000 employers have provided Revenue with the list of employees which is critical to the smooth commencement of the new system.   There are almost 200,000 employers in the country. According to Chartered Accountants Ireland Director of Public Policy and Taxation Brian Keegan, there is a real risk of some employees suffering harsh emergency tax in the January payroll - the first pay cheque after Christmas - unless these lists are right.   “PAYE Modernisation should ultimately have benefits for employers and employees alike, as employees who pay their tax through the PAYE system will be able to claim tax credits and reliefs with more ease under the new arrangements.  There is however a compliance cost to Irish business.  It’s essential that all employers get involved now with the switchover to manage this cost and help ensure their workers don’t lose out” said Dr Keegan. The Institute recommends that employers submit their employee lists to Revenue through Revenue’s Online Service (ROS).  Uploading this list will ensure that both Revenue and employer records are aligned and employers are receiving the most up to date employee information to calculate their deductions. The deadline for uploading this list is 31 October 2018, to allow sufficient time to complete the data alignment process and amend any differences before the go live date of 1 January for PAYE.  Failure to upload this list runs the risk of discrepancies between employer’s lists and Revenue’s lists not being remedied before 1 January, resulting in a high possibility of employees suffering harsh emergency tax in the January payroll. ENDS Reference: Brian Keegan, Chartered Accountants Ireland Director of Public Policy and Taxation – 01 637 7200 Note to editors:  Chartered Accountants Ireland is Ireland’s biggest and fastest growing professional accountancy body, with 26,500 members across the globe. It is the voice of the accountancy profession in Ireland.

Sep 18, 2018

By Dawn Leane In their book The Athena Doctrine: How Women (and the men who think like them) Will Rule the Future, John Gerzema and Michael D'Antonio found that, universally, people have grown frustrated by a world dominated by what they identify as traditional masculine thinking and behaviours: control, competition, aggression and black-and-white thinking. They believe these behaviours have contributed to many of the problems we face today.  There is also a business case for greater diversity. The EY Ireland 2018 Diversity & Inclusion Report, Time to change gear, suggests that 98% of respondents believe that an inclusive environment is vital for business performance. So why are businesses failing to make meaningful progress on gender diversity? The same survey identified that almost half the respondents favour regulation as a driver for creating more diverse and inclusive organisations while 79% say they favour regulation to address gender diversity on boards – perhaps suggesting that organisations are at a loss as to how to progress. While businesses struggle to make progress on gender diversity, are there lessons to be learned from how Rwanda reconstructed its society? The women of Rwanda In 1994, Rwanda suffered appalling genocide with over a million people killed, often by neighbours or other family members. In the wake this devastation, it was the women of Rwanda who rebuilt the country. They didn’t set out to create a movement; many had little or no formal education. Nevertheless, they organised and today Rwanda has the highest percentage of female representation in the world, with 61% of seats in the lower house and 39% of seats in the upper house, held by women. If, in the face of such adversity, these women could rebuild a country where every semblance of normality had disappeared, why are affluent, educated, first-world countries unable to engender change? Organisations approach diversity, and specifically gender diversity, intellectually. They try to solve the problem with rules, regulations and interventions designed to deliver quick results. The difficulty with this approach is that while it may change behaviours, it doesn’t change underlying attitudes. Rwandan women made progress in part due to the seismic cultural change they underwent in 1994. All the societal norms and behaviours vanished overnight. In such a landscape, all bets are off and a new culture must be defined. The women of Rwanda have solidified their position in the intervening years. If we consider gender equality as an issue of organisational culture and we accept that every organisation has its own unique culture, it follows that applying universal principles, like regulation, etc. simply won’t work and could even be counter-productive. Cultural change is notoriously difficult to effect. As the saying goes, ‘culture eats strategy for breakfast’. Cultural change takes years, not months. Meanwhile, over that time, more pressing business issues become a priority and, often in the face of slow or no progress, the initiative loses momentum, and staff lose trust and motivation. Adapting company culture My approach to diversity differs depending from one organisation to another. Change must take account of the company culture – not the culture the company espouses, but employees actual experience on the ground – if it is to have any chance of succeeding. Like Rwandan society, it must involve the very people who are impacted in both identifying the problem and developing the solution. In practical terms, that means doing things like asking the women who work in organisations about their experiences, as opposed to making broad assumptions and involving them in the solutions. I have worked with women employed in progressive organisations with very positive approaches to gender diversity, yet a particular line manager or other circumstances can negatively impact their experience. Successful cultural change requires a systematic approach and, in my experience, it is the sum of small sustainable changes that make the greatest impact on shifting the culture. To create a new paradigm, these changes must be consolidated and embedded in the organisation; it must become part of ‘how we do things around here’.   Dawn Leane is Principal Consultant at LeaneLeaders. 

Sep 14, 2018