Blogs

How to spot a customer or supplier in trouble

If a customer or supplier is in trouble, the earlier you spot the signs, the sooner you can take action to protect your business, says Feargal McCormack.   When a key customer or supplier is in difficulty, this can have serious consequences for your business. One way to protect yourself is to learn to recognise signs of trouble. Typically, these include:   ◆ Customers or suppliers who avoid communication ◆ ...

Are mobile devices putting your business at risk?

Feargal McCormack, Managing Partner,

Business owners need to do more to protect mobile devices, says Feargal McCormack.   Research carried out last year found that people now spend more time on mobile devices than on desktop or laptop computers. Most of us today use smartphones to access email and various apps and services containing work related contacts and data. The benefits are obvious: these devices give us convenient 24/7 access to ...

Understanding Business Continuity Planning

Feargal McCormack, Managing Partner,

In these times of increased risk, business continuity planning has never been more important writes Feargal McCormack. These days it’s not uncommon for high profile events like the recent ransomware attacks to generate debate about the need for businesses to improve their security. But it’s not just cybercrime or technology failings that disrupt business operations. Every day, fires, floods, accidents, theft, malicious destruction, illness, loss of ...

Beware Bogus Calls And Emails

Feargal McCormack, Managing Partner,

Businesses can be an attractive target for fraudsters so it is important to implement processes to protect against bogus calls and email, warns Feargal McCormack. Almost every day we read reports in the news of individuals who have fallen victim to bogus calls and emails. Recently, fraudsters purporting to be from the tax authorities contacted individuals demanding immediate payment of a tax bills over the phone. ...

Brexit Negotiations

Notwithstanding Northern Ireland’s potential influence on the UK’s Brexit negotiation priorities as a result of the recent general election, PKF-FPM continues to advise businesses to plan for the worst case scenario, says Feargal McCormack.   Perhaps the most significant thing we’ve learned about Brexit so far is that the island of Ireland will be a priority in the forthcoming negotiations. On 22 May 2017 the EU Council ...

Getting to grips with business fraud

Feargal McCormack, Managing Partner,

  The best way to prevent business fraud is to implement strong internal controls, writes Feargal McCormack.   All businesses are vulnerable to fraud. While online and email-enabled frauds are the ones we hear most about these days, internal fraud is arguably a more serious business issue because it affects every business at some stage.   Losses from the misappropriation of company assets, theft of company data, payroll and procurement ...

Managing Working Capital

Feargal McCormack, Managing Partner,

  Improving the way you manage your working capital will make your business more resilient to economic uncertainty, says Feargal McCormack.   Careful management of working capital will be critical as business prepare for Brexit. Improving working capital builds resilience and is a practical and cost-effective way to protect your company’s profitability and fund growth. Practical strategies to improve working capital include:   ◆ Managing customers: Prompt invoicing and effective control ...

Are you ready for the GDPR?

Feargal McCormack, Managing Partner,

Now that we’re in May, your business has just a year left to prepare for the General Data Protection Regulations, explains Feargal McCormack.   The GDPR rules, which come into effect on 25 May 2018, will strengthen data protection for EU citizens. They apply to any organisation that offers goods or services to EU residents or handles information about individuals based in the EU on behalf of ...

Charity Sector Governance and Risk Management

Recent leadership failures show that the quality of charity sector governance is never more important than when things go wrong writes Feargal McCormack.   The charities sector is not immune to governance failures. Over the last few years we’ve seen several high profile scandals that resulted in significant reputational damage with knock-on consequences for fundraising and service provision.   In many instances, these situations could have been avoided through ...

Passing on the family business

Feargal McCormack, Managing Partner,

A good succession plan helps family business owners maximise future benefits, writes Feargal McCormack.   Last week, at an event organised in association with Dundalk Chamber of Commerce, PKF-FPM outlined the steps family-owned entities need to take to secure the long term future of their businesses.   Three quarters of all businesses in the UK and Ireland are family-owned yet fewer than 30 percent survive beyond the second generation. ...