Hot off the presses for Charlesworth Group
Following a BPIF (British Printing Industries Federation) meeting, where Dennis Marshall (Joint MD at Storey Evans) gave a presentation on his experience with Expense Reduction Analysts, David Boothman felt the time may be right for Charlesworth Group to take a look at its strategic costs and release further profit from its business.
As a successful printing and publishing firm with bases in the UK, USA and China, Charlesworth Group had large costs that needed to be addressed. Therefore, he contacted Expense Reduction Analysts Consultant Adam Wheatley to request a meeting and discover how the profit improvement model operates. “I was particularly struck with Adam’s explanation that I retained control of the cost areas under review. This and Dennis Marshall’s recommendation were sufficient for a quick decision to be made to launch the first two projects”, said David.
Those first projects were Stationery and Transport. David comments, “Transport is a critical cost for us, with service to our clients being even more important than cost. It says something for the confidence I had that I felt able to include such an important cost at this early stage”. Adam introduced Diane Lane, Transport Specialist, to the Charlesworth purchasing function whose initial scepticism was overcome when they realised that she was as concerned about customer service as they were. Her industry knowledge enabled Diane to maintain service levels whilst achieving an immediate cost- saving of 29%. David adds, “The process was designed to ensure that our needs were fully understood and, more importantly, we were able to select those options that we believed best met our requirements.”
Finally, following this success David decided that the time was right to re-assess his paper and packaging costs which, for a printer, form one of the most crucial core costs. Expense Reduction Analysts’ Paper and Packaging Consultant, Richard Anson, worked closely with the Charlesworth team to find a procurement solution which maintained quality and delivered savings of £32k pa. This level of market expertise surpassed the expectations of Charlesworth Group but it was not until David asked Richard and Diane to return on a monthly consultancy basis that the benefits could truly be seen. “Moving away from a shared savings basis has allowed Expense Reduction Analysts to seek a more diverse set of savings opportunities, adding more value that we ever anticipated”, says David.
The new review of paper costs was particularly successful. By employing his vast knowledge and experience, Richard was able to recommend some significant changes to Charlesworth Group’s purchasing strategy which have resulted in considerable savings. In-fact, a further £84k pa reduction was obtained, bringing total paper savings to 21% and creating a final saving across the entire set of categories of £172k pa.
Adam Wheatley, Lead Consultant on the project has been extremely pleased with the entire project. “Charlesworth Group has embraced this entire process enthusiastically which has resulted in a smooth programme for me and my team but, more importantly, enabled us to work hand-in-hand to deliver
a range of cost-savings that would have otherwise proved impossible. The ongoing relationship is working just as well and I look forward to seeing the cost-savings continuing for a long time to come”.
It is often believed that cost-reduction programmes are not significantly effective when focussed upon strategic business activities. However, the level of knowledge within Expense Reduction Analysts is proven to not only achieve savings but can also bring additional benefits to a client. David concludes. “It is clear to me that Adam and his team have always done their very best for us and it is not often that you find an external partner that you believe makes a significant contribution to the success of your business.”
Charlesworth Group has now referred Expense Reduction Analysts to its sister company, Maney Publishing, which has already received an 11% cost saving.
SUMMARY OF SAVINGS
- Transport: 29%
- Stationery: 28%
- Paper: 21%
- Packaging: 15%
- Inks: 14%
- Postage: 14%