About Industrial Relations Advisory Solutions

Current Owner and Principal Advisor

Luke McCarthy

Industrial Relations and Human Resource Adviser

My story of running and owning IRAS starts from 1990. After having already worked at my fathers’ industrial relations business, McCarthy Associates Pty Ltd, for 10 years where I was trained to become an Industrial Advocate and Adviser to employers. During my training I undertook and completed night time studies at Sydney University earning a Degree in Labor Relations in Law and Industrial Relations.

In my time with McCarthy Associates I appeared before both Federal and State Industrial Tribunals and Conciliation Committees, hearings, award negotiations with peak employer bodies as a representative on Industry Training Group Committees, and giving award interpretation and advice by telephone or face-to-face with the Industries we represented. These industries are mentioned in Herb McCarthy’s section following mine.

In 1990, when I took on the reins of IRAS Pty Ltd, I introduced a telephone advisory service to complement the popular loose leaf publication targeting a number of different industries including: Health Professionals, Legal Firms, Accounting Services, General Retail and Commercial Travellers.

Over the years and with the interest of other businesses covered by other awards, our telephone advice is unrestricted and open to all industries and awards. Human Resources has always been part of our solutions in problem solving and has remained so to this day.

The loose-leaf publication still exists today and has had three new beginnings covering 18 areas of employment legislation, human resource and general information for employers in the day-to-day running of their business.

The IRAS service is about to transition again in 2020. Breathing new life in to its services and offerings to meet the needs of employers nationally through this website to access greater usability in content and clarification.

Under new direction beginning in 1990, no employer that has taken the advice of our Industrial Relations and Human Resource specialists have been prosecuted or litigated against.

The Founder

Herbert McCarthy

My father, Herb McCarthy, was the founder of McCarthy Associates Pty Ltd. in 1953. McCarthy Associated Pty Ltd was soon involved in numerous facets of Australian Industrial Relations including: Industrial Interests as an Industrial Advocate and Adviser at the National Level for the Timber Trade Industrial Association, The Flour Mill Owners Industrial Committee and the Stockfeed Manufacturers Association of Australia, the Hairdressing Industry and the NSW Furniture Guild. McCarthy Associated Pty Ltd. also created its popular loose leaf service which was supplied to Registered Clubs throughout NSW. This loose leaf service still exists as part of our service even today.

IRAS Pty Ltd. was established in 1976 to fulfil a need he saw a need for employers in small to large business and industries to be made aware of their award obligation and conditions in regards to rates of pay, leave, and tax tables that were difficult to understand and not easily accessible like they are today. So was born the loose leaf publications service called the Industrial Relations Advisory Service (IRAS), forwarded in a binder that could be updated as changes occurred.

Herb’s genius idea of providing such information in the IRAS format was not his first foray into providing information to the masses. As a Clerk with the Department of Labour and Industry, Herb put out the first wages bulletin in Australia, became a Clerk of the Court in the Industrial Relations Commission, and then went on to work with an employer association before branching out on his own.

The above industries he represented and the subsequent individual subscribers became reliant on this service that was printed and distributed from his office in the Sydney CBD. This service, the first of its kind in Australia with it’s punctuality, clarification, loose leaf format and postal updating of Industrial Courts decisions.

All the information and interpretation came from an experienced and respected advocate in Industrial Relations, who had his training at the forefront of Australia’s changing and often volatile Industrial arenas.

Herb McCarthy argued and parried with the best and brightest of the time who gave no quarter and he expected no less in return. He trained four of his sons through McCarthy Associates as Industrial Advocates and Advisers, with two, that includes myself, who are still in the business.

Partner with an Expert in Workplace Employment Relations