This newsletter is an opportunity for us to fill you in on what is happening at Navwealth: an update on our people, our culture, and our business.
Who would have thought twelve months ago we would be dealing with a pandemic called COVID-19. I am not aware of any business in Australia that cited a pandemic as a potential threat in their business plan twelve months ago.
In the 29 years we have been in business I must say I am most proud of what the Navwealth team has achieved for our clients during this extraordinary time. The number of special projects and initiatives we achieved is unprecedented.
See below some examples of how we adapted.
BUSINESS CONTINUITY PLAN THROUGH THE PANDEMIC
INCREASED CLIENT TIME
Our time spent with clients since February doubled either over the phone or on Zoom. This was so we could ensure that all clients were supported through this challenging time.
The manner in which our clients have managed to cope with the volatility of their portfolios in this one-in-one-hundred-year event is beyond anything I have seen. We were so surprised every week at the acceptance from clients at coping with what is a stressful event, especially for our retired clients.
We established a rotation of our work force with 50% of our team in the office and 50% of our team working from home. This allowed us to practise safe distancing and ensure everyone was safe and healthy.
Like many businesses we were not set up for this, so a huge investment had to be made in systems and technology in a very short time frame to minimise disruption to our services.
We have found this has worked really well, and I have no doubt working from home will be the new norm after COVID-19 for many people.
Again, in the interests of saving time and keeping everyone safe, we embedded new technologies, DocuSign and Please Sign. This enables documents to be signed online versus sending documents in the post or having clients print, sign and scan documents requiring signatures.
We have received wonderful feedback on how much easier this process is for everyone.
In February, we launched Navwealth Bookkeeping headed up by Hayley Kalms.
As part of our integrated approach to our clients’ needs, we identified that our business clients needed a quality bookkeeping solution. We also realised the huge advantages of having bookkeeping and accounting functions working closely together.
Later in this newsletter we have included a piece from a client benefiting from the services Hayley and her team provide.
BOOKKEEPING AND WEBINARS
The Navwealth Accounting & Bookkeeping team launched a weekly Friday webinar for our business clients to help them navigate the challenges of the COVID-19 government incentive programmes.
Given the government incentive programmes were released in such a short period of time, we had to assist just about every business client we look after to ensure their eligibility and application for various packages.
The workload for the first three months of COVID-19 for our Accounting team could only be compared to when the GST was introduced! I am extremely proud of the webinar program allowing us to communicate vital information quickly and safely.
We are very pleased to have a new member of the Navwealth family. Jesse Canon joined us back in March as our new Lending Specialist. With significant experience in lending, Jesse is able to offer great opportunities to save money, and find lending products most suitable to your needs. We see this a really great service not only for our existing clients but also for their adult children embarking on property purchases. See Jesse’s bio included later in the newsletter.
We are working on a new solution for those clients with a family trust or company holding investment assets. For many years we have been using CLASS software to run our clients’ Self-Managed Superannuation Funds, as it allows us to keep SMSF records up to date by providing monthly online reporting. Information such as member balances, rate of return, pension payments etc are all available at the touch of a button. This new service will be able to provide the same service for trusts and companies. This will enable clients to experience up to date and important data on investments, allowing them to make more timely investment decisions. We will keep you updated on the progress of this exciting new initiative.
We really missed seeing you in person at our annual economic update, but enjoyed seeing so many of you join our online event instead. Let’s hope in 2021 after a vaccine becomes available, we can get you all back to our yearly event that we all love so much.
Finally, as I write this I am pleased to confirm that we have not heard of any clients or their family members contracting COVID-19. This is wonderful news and we hope that it continues. Whilst we do many more meetings on Zoom, we do offer client meetings face-to-face in the office, if preferred. For the safety of all, it is very important that we adhere to COVID-safe practices. Therefore, if you wish to attend the office, you will be asked prior to attending if you have any flu-like symptoms and we will also take your temperature on arrival. Safety of our team and clients is our greatest priority.
We hope that you enjoy this newsletter, and on behalf of Simon, Andrew, Dawn, Hayley and all the Navwealth team we wish you and your family all the very best in these challenging times. Rest assured Navwealth is here to support you in whatever way we can, so don’t hesitate to contact us.