W.O.McGrory & Company, based in Drogheda, is over 3 decades in existence and as you can imagine, they have built up an extensive range of skills and experience over that period of time. They’ve been involved in helping businesses survive and prosper through recessions and through boom-times, through rapid expansions and through periods where tight financial control was critical for survival.

However, with many businesses now looking to manage their way through the current economic nervousness it is reassuring to know that, in many cases, simple common sense steps are all that is necessary to not only maintain a business’s stability, but also to be able to take advantage of whatever growth possibilities arise.

According to Paul Farrell, a partner in the firm, the most common causes of businesses falling into difficulties are; cash flow problems, which are made worse at times like this by not keeping records up to date and by not chasing debtors efficiently, also, allowing taxation liabilities to build up, relying on a small number of customers, or worse, one big customer.

Tony Mallon, a senior manager within the firm, says, “Like the Ten Commandments in the Bible which were summed up in two, the ten commandments of successful businesses can be summed up in two; efficient management of cash flow within the business, and having access to up-to-date accurate financial information on a regular basis.

Bernadette McGrory Farrell, another partner, has been heavily involved at national and international levels within the profession, which saw her become the first female president of the Institute of Certified Public Accountants in Ireland from 2000 to 2002.

Bernadette continues to play an important role in shaping the accountancy profession in Ireland, and now sits on the board of the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), the global organisation for the accountancy profession.

With a diverse range of interests being represented at the global level, Bernadette brings her own focus to the table at IFAC with the interests of small businesses being a huge concern of hers.

“We’re a country of small business people, and my position on the IFAC board provides a great opportunity to bring the small practitioner and small business focus into the spotlight. The specific issues facing small businesses often get lost in the bigger picture and increasingly complex and onerous legislation places a heavy burden on small business owners.”

While bringing the concerns of small business to the global table, Bernadette has gained invaluable experience in successful business management, which she brings back into the practice in working with a wide range of clients.

“In the Practice we work with start-up businesses right the way through to second-generation family firms. A high percentage of our work these days is carried out at the client’s premises. Our experience shows that new and existing clients get better value for money when their accountant actually calls to their own business premises. The advantages include:

  • Better value for money
  • Better and more focused quality of service
  • Improvement in client’s knowledge of business performance as there is more client involvement
  • No more time-consuming trips to Accountants office

It’s possible therefore to have a qualified Accountant visit for 1 day a month which gives the client all the expertise they need without any onerous employer costs or commitments.”