Farmers in South East invited to fine-tune their financial management skills at free workshops

Rabobank

After a 15-month hiatus due to COVID, South Australian primary producers will again be able to come together to learn financial skills essential to manage a farming operation.

Marking the first face-to-face Financial Skills Workshop since the beginning of the pandemic, with workshops run virtually during COVID, it will be held in Coonawarra on Tuesday July 13 before being rolled out in Horsham and Mildura later that week.

Spearheaded by food and agribusiness banking specialist Rabobank’s RaboClientCouncil – a group of the bank’s farming clients who implement programs that contribute to the sustainability of rural communities – the initiative is being offered free of charge to farmers in the South East region.

The interactive workshop – run over one day – provides practical skills for understanding financial statements and banking requirements, and explores topics such as taxation versus management accounting, essential business management ratios and understanding key components of a business’ financial profile.

Rabobank South Australia and North West Victoria regional RaboClientCouncil chair Claire Catford of “Middle Range”, Balaklava said it was exciting to be able to launch the face-to-face workshops again, with the “round table discussion format” allowing farmers to learn from each other.

“We often learn a lot from people in similar situations and the workshop is designed so participants can learn from each other as well as ask questions of the facilitator and banking staff on the ground,” she said.

Mrs Catford, who participated in the virtual Financial Skills Workshop last year, encouraged others to register and attend the workshop regardless of their level of financial literacy.

“In our workshop we had participants from all backgrounds and even those highly experienced in the financial side of their business got a lot out of it,” she said.

“For me, it was a good opportunity to further expand my financial literacy in terms of business performance, the key components of accounting and calculating diagnostic ratios. It proved to be a catalyst to review our business by running through the ratios and ensure we are thinking strategically about our business.”

Rabobank head of relationship management for South Australia and North West Victoria Adam Moss said the program helped put farmers in the driver’s seat of their business.

“Using realistic case studies as the basis for understanding what makes up a balance sheet, profit and loss statement and cash flow, the workshop also delves into how to calculate financial ratios and how to use them to make informed business decisions,” he said.

“Participants will also walk away with a better understanding of what banks look for when assessing a loan and the financial profile of a business.”

Director of Hudson Facilitation Tony Hudson will present the workshop, along with a number of agribusiness banking professionals.

Funded by RaboClientCouncils, the workshops are open to clients and non-clients of Rabobank and there is no cost for farmers to attend.

/Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length.