Yesterday’s update on Ireland’s ranking in world competiveness placed Ireland 7th out of 61 countries surveyed, an increase from 15th place in the previous survey.
This is good news for the country and could give the impression that most Irish businesses might have a relatively easy job selling their products/services on home and international markets.
After all, if we as a country are in the top 7 of most competitive countries then it would be expected that most well-run Irish businesses would be right up there with the best internationally.
Unfortunately, it’s not quite as simple as that.
This survey ranks countries on a wide range of macro factors such as GDP Growth, Flexibility and adaptability of people, Investment Incentives, National Culture and Finance Skills. All very important things in their own right but not meaningful enough for individual businesses or typical SMEs.
No doubt our politicians will make great play of this improved ranking.
But Irish businesses are facing increasingly significant challenges including increased costs in insurance, bank finance, payroll, local authority rates etc. These are in addition to previous cost increases levied by governments in the form of withdrawal of redundancy rebates, increased PRSI costs and a failure by energy companies to pass on oil price reductions. Add to these the likelihood of further payroll costs increases coming from rising house prices and rent increases and the outlook is challenging to say the least.
But for businesses with the right approach and strategy these are challenges to be overcome. For business two of the key measures of success are profitability and cash flow.
If you would like a free guide on practical measures you can implement for increasing your profitability and cash flow in your business just request my report from the home page.
With the right approach many businesses can make very significant improvements and can make Irish businesses as competitive as possible.