New farm financial skills for new year at free workshops


A new year brings new opportunity, and producers across the region now have the chance to expand their knowledge, with an upcoming workshop specifically designed to provide farmers with the financial skills essential to managing an agricultural operation.

The practical Financial Skills Workshop, previously delivered face-to-face, will now be held virtually, ensuring producers still have an opportunity to upskill and network, despite COVID-19 restrictions.

The initiative has been spearheaded by food and agribusiness banking specialist Rabobank’s RaboClientCouncil – a group of the bank’s farming clients who volunteer their time implementing programs that contribute to the sustainability of rural communities.

Offered free of charge to participants, the introductory, interactive virtual workshop provides practical, hands-on advice 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’s financial profile.

Rabobank southern Victorian and Tasmania regional RaboClientCouncil chair Scott Colvin said while it was unfortunate COVID restrictions had limited the opportunity for face-to-face workshops, the new virtual course would give participants a comprehensive overview of how to run the farm from a business point-of-view.

“This virtual format has been rolled out in a number of other regions and has received really positive feedback, proving extremely effective and engaging,” Mr Colvin said.

“The information provided through this workshop is real and valuable – meaningful knowledge you can walk away with and use in the business.”

“And having a greater understanding of your business when approaching your financier really helps when applying for any additional finance requirements or to fund a new venture.

Rabobank regional manager Deborah Maskell-Davies said the workshop content had been tailored to farming businesses in the region through realistic case studies.

“Through these case studies, the sessions will look at what makes up a balance sheet, profit and loss statement and cash flow,” Ms Maskell-Davies said, “and interpreting the financial ratios to make calculated business decisions.”

“This then feeds into sessions on how banks assess a loan application and the importance of developing a business plan, as well as managing the business through adversity and positioning the business when the season improves.”

Director of Hudson Facilitation, Tony Hudson will present the workshop, which runs over two consecutive mornings.

Funded by RaboClientCouncils, the workshop is not restricted to the bank’s clients and there is no cost for farmers to attend.

/Public Release.