BUSINESSES in Donegal are putting themselves at risk and missing opportunities by failing to adopt a more strategic approach to finance and HR. That’s according to two experts in the field, Anthony Boyle, a Chartered Tax Adviser and co-owner of Tax Assist Accountants and Lynn McLaughlin, founder and managing partner of Fortius HR.
In partnership with Donegal’s Local Enterprise Office, Anthony and Lynn will deliver two courses which will address these issues head-on. Scheduled for the autumn, both courses are specifically designed to help SME’s in Donegal develop essential financial and HR skills to help sustain and grow their business.
The HR course runs for four days over four consecutive months, while Accelerate Finance runs for four half-days over two months; both courses also offer participants four hours of one-to-one mentoring whereby participants can have their individual challenges addressed.
Commencing on Wednesday, 31st August 2016, the Accelerate Finance management programme is open to all SME’s in Donegal. Anthony Boyle says the course will address common issues that businesses face on a daily basis: “We’re delivering this course in response to the key issues that businesses face, so we’ll cover practical tips on keeping proper books and records, good credit control, staying revenue compliant, how to pay as little tax as legally obliged and availing of the numerous valuable state sponsored incentives, of which businesses are often unaware. A guest speaker will also discuss the issue of raising finance, the options available and how best to approach and position applications with banks and other lenders.”
“In my experience, new and established business owners often fail to plan financial projections or create working budgets, which makes it difficult to stay on top of business finances and keep records right which results in unnecessary stress and poor use of their valuable time. To ensure participants get the most out of the course, I’ll be profiling each business in advance, so I can deliver content that’s in line with their individual needs and build on this during mentoring” he added.
Specifically aimed at SMEs, the Human Resources (HR) Management Development Programme will commence on Tuesday, 13th September and will familiarise participants with key areas of HR. Modules include an overview of Human Resources responsibilities for business owners, Recruitment and Retention, Talent Management, Health & Safety and Developing Human Resource Systems and Procedures. The HR Programme will be delivered by Lynn McLaughlin, who has over 15 years’ experience working in the profession.
Lynn believes that many businesses are not totally aware of their responsibilities when it comes to employing staff or how to ensure they have the knowledge and procedures in place to protect their business for every eventuality, including an inspection from NERA and Social Welfare: “We want to guide small businesses and give them the knowledge to effectively access HR documents such as contracts of employment, job descriptions, grievance procedures and much more. Participants will also develop a ‘HR Toolkit’ which contains documents specific to their business requirements”.
Lynn added: “In an SME your people are your business, so recruiting the right talent is imperative but with often limited material and financial resources and one in four businesses highlighting hiring skilled staff as a barrier to growth, it’s important to think creatively about how you do this and to manage your talent in an engaging and effective manner”.
Ursula Donnelly from Donegal’s Local Enterprise Office says the management development programmes are an ideal opportunity to meet other entrepreneurs, share knowledge and address similar challenges. “In addition to the relevant and important topics covered within these management development programmes, the added benefit is that entrepreneurs can review the status of their business and take action to help their business grow. It’s vitally important that business owners are able to determine the types of risks that are most likely to affect their business and the Accelerate Finance and HR Programme allow business owners to proactively create risk management strategies that will safeguard their business and allow it to thrive.”
Both management development courses will take place at the Local Enterprise Office, Enterprise Fund Business Centre, Ballyraine, Letterkenny and the cost of each course is €200, which can be paid in instalments. To book visit www.localenterprise.ie/Donegal or for more information on Accelerate Finance, contact Eve-Anne McCarron, Local Enterprise Office on firstname.lastname@example.org.
For more information on the HR Programme contact Gordon Burke, Local Enterprise Office on email@example.com. Local Enterprise Office Donegal is supported through co-funding from the Irish Government and the European Regional Development Fund 2014 – 2020.
SPONSORED CONTENT BY: LOCAL ENTERPRISE OFFICE DONEGAL