Business bulletin: 22 July 2021

NT Training Awards gala dinner, 18 September 2021, book your ticket

Construction of a road

Territory companies can now take advantage of a clearer and more streamlined tender assessment process, which will boost opportunities for Territory businesses to bid for government contracts.

The new Value for Territory Assessment Framework will deliver greater consistency in assessment and ensure tender assessment questions are relevant to the scope of goods and services being sought.

The new framework will also help strengthen the Buy Local Plan and provide more consistent delivery of Value for Territory outcomes.

Industry can expect to see the first tenders which include these changes in the coming weeks. By October 2021 all quotes and tenders will incorporate the new Value for Territory Assessment requirements.

The framework includes a number of changes to the way tender assessments are planned and responses are assessed. These include:

  • disclosure of a more detailed breakdown of local content sub-weightings
  • information relating to the importance of each assessment criteria, so tenderers can understand what is important to focus on in their response
  • a common set of easy to understand questions with clear response requirements
  • increased objectivity in tender assessments.

The Value for Territory Assessment Framework has been developed through extensive consultation with industry and the Buy Local Industry Advocate.

A guide for industry has been developed to explain how the Northern Territory Government defines and assesses Value for Territory in tenders and is available on the Northern Territory Government — Tendering with government website.

Water running over a hand

There is still time for Territorians to have their say and provide input into the future of Darwin region’s water supply.

To increase water security for all Territorians, and as part of the development of a Strategic Water Plan, the Territory Government is considering infrastructure solutions for the Darwin region.

The Northern Territory Government, in collaboration with the Australian Government and Power and Water Corporation, is developing a detailed business case to assess 2 short-listed infrastructure options to meet the Darwin region’s future water supply needs.

The Preliminary Assessment, released in February this year, highlights that the current water supply system in Darwin will need to be increased in the future to meet forecasted social and economic growth.

This means that over the longer term, investment in new water supply infrastructure is crucial.

The same report also looked at potential solutions and identified 2 short-listed options for further consideration:

  • Option 1: Adelaide River Off-stream Water Storage (AROWS) and Manton Dam Return to Service (RTS) which can provide water for a range of use over the next 50+ years; and
  • Option 2: Desalination and recycled water which can enable industry development in the short term (up to 10 years) at the proposed Middle Arm Sustainable Development Precinct.

No decisions on a preferred option have been made. Community input is essential to inform future decisions made by government.

To have your say visit the Have your say website.

The survey closes at 8am on Monday 26 July 2021.

For more information on the Darwin region’s future water supply, please visit the Water Security website.

Man reviewing paperwork

Territory businesses can now access new and tailored support under the refreshed Business Growth Program.

The impact of COVID-19 required Territory businesses to adapt and develop new ways to do business. In response, the Northern Territory Government has updated Business Growth to better reflect current economic conditions.

Under the program businesses can access professional advice to grow their business or assistance to overcome a challenge.

There are 6 areas of support under Business Growth, they include:

Strategy: set clear outcomes and goals to achieve long-term business success through business planning.

Marketing: better promote and position your products and services.

Operations: improve your systems and processes to achieve operational efficiency and effectiveness.

Financial: build a better understanding of the financial position of your business and develop strategies to improve cash flow and grow profit.

People and Culture: develop workforce structure, policies and procedures that align with the vision, purpose and goals of the business.

Mentoring and coaching: available to businesses on a case by case basis once they have completed one of the other Business Growth programs.

Service Providers that would like to offer services under the Business Growth Program can now register their interest at the GrantsNT website.

For more information about the Business Growth Program visit Business Growth Program.

Unlock your company's growth potential

The Business Acceleration Program (BAP) is back bigger and better with an expanded program and additional placements for Territory businesses.

BAP is an initiative of the Northern Territory Government and is delivered in collaboration with the Australian Centre for Business Growth, Darwin Innovation Hub, and a new program partner, the Chamber of Commerce NT.

The innovative program provides business owners, chief executive officers and managing directors with the knowledge and skills they need to develop as leaders, accelerate company growth and compete in a global marketplace.

The high value, world-class program enables participants to identify opportunities, overcome business challenges and drive competitive advantage.

Territory graduates of BAP have reported strong growth despite the economic impacts of COVID-19, this includes: 60% reported an increase in revenue, 35% reported an increase in profit and 65% recorded an increase in jobs.

The program consists of 3 parts:

  • Assessment Clinics: a full day workshop designed for business owners, CEOs and Managing Directors who are ready to grow their businesses, become better leaders, and expand their markets.
  • Growth Ramps: a targeted 6-month program designed for business owners, CEOs and managing directors who are looking to move to the next level, hire more people and grow their organisations.
  • Growth Modules: the 9-month program provides an opportunity for you and your executive team to build the skills your company needs to achieve sustainable and continuous growth.

BAP graduate and Director of Tangibilis Physiotherapy, Marcus Mance said “For our physiotherapy business the UniSA BAP program revolutionised our thinking and most importantly our plan for future growth.

“The immediate short-term results have been nothing short of remarkable. We feel far better prepared for creating opportunities and facing challenges with the knowledge and experience we have drawn from Jana and her team.

“This program is a must-do for any small business looking to improve themselves and their services.”

Assessment Clinics are now open with placements available until November 2021.

To find out more about the Business Acceleration Program or apply visit the Australin Centre for Business Growth website.

Chefs working in a kitchen

Recent changes to the NT Designated Area Migration Agreement (NTDAMA) by the Australian Government will provide greater flexibility for Territory businesses to attract and retain their skilled workforce.

The NT DAMA is a key regional migration program that enables NT employers to sponsor overseas workers to fill skill shortages.

Under the policy, introduced at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, businesses with a workforce comprising of 30% or more temporary visa holders were unable to access the program.

This policy particularly affected industries such as tourism and hospitality that traditionally rely on overseas workers to meet their workforce needs.

Last month the Australian Government overturned the 70/30 policy in the Northern Territory, with changes implemented effective immediately.

To date, there are around 230 Territory businesses which have utilised NT DAMA with many more expected to benefit from this change.

To find out more about NT DAMA visit the Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade website.

There have also been recent changes to the Working Holiday Maker (WHM) Visa. WHM Visa holders working in the tourism and hospitality sector can now work for the same employer for 12 months without requesting for permission.

In addition, work undertaken in the tourism and hospitality sectors in the Northern Territory can be counted as specified work towards eligibility for a second or third WHM visa.

For further information about Working Holiday Maker visa program go to the Australian Government Department of Home Affairs — Immigration and citizenship website.

Mechanic fixing an army truck

Defence businesses and related supply chain operators, are encouraged to stay up to date with defence industry news from the Northern Territory Government’s Department of Industry, Tourism and Trade.

The department plays a key role, helping to grow and promote the Northern Territory’s defence industry and the dedicated DefenceNT team is available to assist companies looking to increase their defence business maturity.

The team is also available to facilitate access to opportunities through engagement with the Department of Defence, Australian Defence Force and prime contractors.

Subscribe now with the Defence industry newsletter subscription form.

Last updated: 22 July 2021

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