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You’ve probably noticed the commotion caused by the directory enquiries charging controversy but before the dust settles it’s a good idea to look at this from the viewpoint of managing small business costs. It’s probably fair to say that most business owners don’t figure in the cost of ringing directory enquiries as it’s a cost assumed, incorrectly, to be within reasonable limits. A recent survey published by the Consumers Association of Ireland shows how exorbitant the charges can be.

There is no doubt that many business owners will question this cost but what’s more important is how they react and put in place procedures with employees as to the permitted usage of directory enquiry services.

There are many businesses that simply block outbound calls to directory enquiry numbers so the issue of excessive charges never arises.

For those businesses that don’t have call blocking in place, it’s surely time to get it in place and also have a business-wide policy on the use of directory enquiry services.

I’ve not used a direct enquiry service for many years since I discovered that you can quite easily, in most instances, get the required number by searching on the internet.

Check out the report here

Related:Manage your costs with our business reporting guide

Marc O'Dwyer

After completing a Graduate program in Marketing, Marc’s impressive sales career began at Allied Irish Banks, Pitney Bowes and Panasonic where he received numerous Irish and European sales performance awards and consistently exceeded targets and expectations. In 1992, Marc’s entrepreneurial spirit led him to set up his own business, Irish International Sales (IIS). Initially, this company was a reseller for Take 5 Accounts and Payroll software. Within four years, IIS became the largest reseller of Take 5 in Ireland, acquiring four other Take 5 resellers. He also found time to set up two mobile phone shops under the Cellular World brand and a web design company offering website design services for small businesses. In 2001, he bought the majority share in a small Irish software business, Big Red Book. At that time, the company was losing money. The company became profitable within two months, and Marc then acquired a payroll company to compliment Big Red Books Accounting products. In 2003, IIS were appointed as Channel Partners with SAP for their new SME product, SAP Business One. Marc sold his Take 5 business and concentrated on developing this new market for SAP As a result, by 2007, IIS was recognised as the largest Channel Partner for SAP in EMEA (Europe Middle East and Africa). In 2008, the IIS Sales Manager bought the Company from Marc in an MBO. He launched Big red cloud in June 2012, the online version of big red book, to date the company successfully converts 59% of trials into sales and the number of customers is growing rapidly. Marc continues to run both Big Red Book and Big Red Cloud which now support 75,000 businesses. He is a very keen sportsman, having played rugby for 20 years, represented Leinster at under 16 and under 20 levels, and league squash with Fitzwilliam Lawn Tennis Club for 10 years. Marc has competed in 11 Marathons, including the London and Boston Marathons, and has completed several Triathlons and Half Ironman races. He has also completed six Ironman Races in Austria(x2), Frankfurt (Germany), Nice (France) , Mallorca (Spain) and Copenhagen (Denmark)

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