Rabobank supports farm financial skills workshops in northern Queensland


Northern Queensland producers have the chance to expand their knowledge, free of charge, at four Rabobank workshops designed to help provide the financial skills essential to managing agricultural enterprises.

The practical Financial Skills Workshops – providing producers with an opportunity to both upskill and network – will be held in Hughenden, Julia Creek, Charters Towers and Atherton in late November.

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

Offered at no cost to participants, the introductory, interactive workshops provide practical, hands-on advice for understanding financial statements and banking requirements, and explore topics such as taxation versus management accounting, essential business management ratios and understanding key components of a business’s financial profile.

Rabobank Northern Queensland/Northern Territory Rabo Client Council member Ardie Lord said financial skills “are critical for our producers and future producers”.

“These workshops provide knowledge and insight for running and managing the day-to-day aspects of agricultural businesses from a financial perspective. They also seek to attract and retain the next generation of individuals in the industry while supporting the knowledge of current producers,” Mr Lord said.

“Since commencing this series of workshops in late 2021, the Rabo Client Council has delivered a total of nine learning opportunities in the region for more than 160 producers.

“Attendees at the previous workshops have told us the information provided through the workshops is real and valuable – meaningful knowledge they can walk away with and use in the business.”

Mr Lord said, for agricultural producers, having a greater understanding of their business when approaching financiers can also help when applying for any additional finance requirements or to fund a new venture.

Rabobank regional manager Trent McIndoe said the workshop content had been tailored to farming businesses in northern Queensland 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,” he 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.”

Mr McIndoe said the new workshops in Julia Creek and Charters Towers follow on from workshops held there in late 2021 and early 2022, although participating in one of the previous sessions was not a pre-requisite to attend.

“In this second module, we will be exploring gross margin analysis – a critical step in farm planning and decision making,” he said. “In the new module, we will be taking an enterprise-focused approach, separately considering grains and livestock enterprises. The module will also focus on preparing annual cash flow budgets.

“If you’re interested in these workshops, keen to meet other progressive producers in the agri sector and increase your financial literacy and skills – confirm your place before the courses are fully allocated.”

The workshops – which will be limited to 30 participants each and are not restricted to the bank’s clients – will be presented by director of Hudson Facilitation, Tony Hudson.

Workshop dates and locations are:

  • Monday, 21 November 2022 – 9:00am – 1:00pm – Julia Creek
  • Tuesday, 22 November 2022 – 9:00am – 3:30pm – Hughenden
  • Wednesday, 23 November 2022 – 9:00am – 1:00pm – Charters Towers
  • Friday, 25 November 2022 – 9.00am – 3.30pm – Atherton

To register to participate in the Hughenden and Atherton workshops, please click here.

To register to participate in the Julia Creek and Charters Towers workshops, please click here.

/Public Release.