10 Questions with Marion Mackie, Credit Manager at Whyte & Mackay

For the latest instalment of our ’10 Questions with…’ interview series, Rutherford Cross’ Eilidh Graham caught up with Marion Mackie from Whyte & Mackay.  Marion shared  insights from the transactional finance market and her role at one of Scotland’s most iconic drinks brands.


1. Can you please describe your current role?

“I work as Credit Manager for Whyte and Mackay, which involves reviewing the financial risk for the business with regards to onboarding new customers as well as monitoring existing customers’ credit limits and payment patterns to ensure funds are received on time.

I’m always looking to streamline processes and see if there are better or more automated ways of working. I report regularly to the Head of Financial Control and our Executive Team. My overall aim is to maximise our income whilst minimising risk.”


2. What does a typical day look like for you?

“A typical day or week would see me reviewing our cash position and any overdue debts with the credit control team, assisting with any potential barriers in the collections process and ensuring orders are released on time.

Continuous Professional Development is very important to me, so I make time to review my own and my team’s training so we are building on our strengths and developing ourselves.”


3. What do you think are the key challenges for Transactional Finance Managers and do you think the role has evolved over the last few years?

“For me one of the challenges is that we have frequent changes to legislation which means that we might need to undertake additional training or change the way we work.

I think teams working across all aspects of Finance had to change their ways of working when Covid-19 struck, using technology to keep us connected. At Whyte and Mackay, we are continuing to embrace the tech solutions, with a new AR automation system currently being implemented.”


4. What has your career progression looked like to date?

“I had no idea what I wanted to do when I left school, so I started off as an office junior, which gave me an understanding of the responsibilities of each function within an office. My next role was a promotion into Purchase Ledger which was great experience. I wanted to see the “other side”, so following that, I moved straight into a Credit Control role. I loved it, so from then onwards that was me!

I worked in a few different industries, gaining experience and understanding of Credit Control,  and completing my CICM qualification. I then joined Whyte & Mackay into a brilliant team and a really exciting industry.”


5. What has been your biggest challenge in your career?

“The global Covid pandemic was a difficult time for many people, both personally and professionally. From a Credit Control perspective, many banks closed for business, making cash collection seem impossible at times. Businesses still needed their cash flow to survive, so a lot of hours were spent trying to protect Whyte & Mackay’s assets, managing and mitigating risks during this challenging time.”


6. What is your career highlight so far?

“I took on the challenge of studying to become CICM qualified whilst working full time, which meant that I had to plan my time meticulously to meet both my work and study deadlines. On top of that I was also a new mum at the time! I look back and wonder how I did it, but I am really glad I went for it and extremely proud of achieving my qualification.”


7. If you weren’t in finance and you could be doing any job in the world, what would you be doing?

“My second favourite thing to do after Credit Management is event planning, so I could see myself doing that in some capacity. I love seeing people enjoy themselves and the end result of all the planning coming together!

I also love dogs, so it could definitely be something dog oriented! I’d love to run my own kennels or be a dog walker: being paid to spend my day with pups sounds wonderful!”


8. Whyte & Mackay is a brand rooted in history – how does it feel to be working for such an iconic Scottish brand?

“We have been going since 1844, so there is a lot of heritage there! Right now is such an exciting time to be working for the business and everyone is so passionate about our multi-award-winning Single Malt Whiskies (The Dalmore, Jura, Fettercairn and Tamnavulin), and our innovative modern spirits (The Woodsman and Shackleton Whisky).

I get to work with colleagues across the business which I really enjoy – everyone is so committed to Whyte and Mackay becoming a driving force in whisky.”


9. Do you have a mentor? What would you say is the importance of having a mentor?

“I don’t have a mentor, but I have a very good network of peers as well as a supportive employer who are always available to provide a sense check, advice and guidance when I need them.”


10. What advice would you give to someone considering a career in transactional finance?

“Go for it, why not? There are so many aspects to transactional finance, so understanding how these all link together is advantageous. If you find a supportive employer, you could potentially work in different departments to gain well-rounded knowledge and decide which part of the industry suits you best.”



If you are thinking about taking your next step in your transactional finance career or wish to discuss this article in more detail, please get in touch with Eilidh via the methods below. Similarly, if you are looking to hire transactional finance staff or you are looking for insights into the market / salary benchmarking, please reach out.

E: [email protected]

T: 07501 745 668