Kendall Kingscott | Expense Reduction Analysts

Kendall Kingscott

Multiple cost-centre savings build even stronger foundations

Thanks to expert management and strategic investment, construction consultancy Kendall Kingscott bucked the economic downward spiral of 2008. With continued growth and expansion, the firm decided to conduct a review of its own expenditure in order to maximise financial efficiency in a competitive market place.

Having been responsible for a strategic procurement review at a previous employer, Kendall Kingscott’s Financial Controller immediately understood the benefits that a third party procurement consultancy could bring. She was keen to utilise the independent market knowledge and expertise of the ERA team in order to review overhead costs, including some specialist cost-centres. In addition to direct cost savings, the projects resulted in some unexpected added value benefits.

Established in 1962, Kendall Kingscott are a multi-disciplinary construction consultancy working with clients across central and southern England.

Their teams plan, design and manage projects in a wide variety of sectors and ranging in value from small scale repair schemes to multi-million pound new developments.

Kendall Kingscott offer director level involvement from start to finish and draw on the talent and expertise from their 130-strong team of staff.

Despite the depressionary impact of the 2008 financial crisis, a focus on developing the practice had resulted in not only the growth of client numbers and revenues but workforce and offices too. ERA’s brief was to diligently review every overhead cost area with a view to answering the crucial questions; ‘Was Kendall Kingscott receiving best value?’ and ‘Could a different approach, or change in supplier deliver cost savings or improved value?’

After analysing requirements and selecting the best-fit team of experts, ERA is able to manage the procurement process on behalf of clients at every step, to ensure quality and service levels are maintained to the highest possible standards. And it’s this integrated, results-driven approach that resulted in a truly bespoke solution for Kendall Kingscott.

“As is often the case an initial review identified some areas of cost where goods and services were under contract, consequently we developed a 2 year programme of contract reviews at the dates appropriate to pre-empt renewal notices,” explains ERA Client Relationship Manager, Alastair Baker

Quick wins, strategic improvements and peace of mind

An immediate cost saving was identified when it became clear that Kendall Kingscott were still being charged for a Printer/Copier lease agreement which had in fact expired some years earlier. ERA Printer/Copier specialist, Andy Kinnear, secured a rebate of several thousand pounds and structured a favourable contract for a brand new machine. Over the following 12 months, Andy was able to negotiate the replacement of the entire Printer/Copier fleet (comprising over a dozen machines) delivering enhanced functionality benefits as well as ongoing annual savings of over 42%, on both lease and operating costs.

Whist very happy with the service of their current supplier of Office Consumables, Kendall Kingscott’s management were surprised to discover that ERAs initial benchmarking review indicated that significant cost savings could be available. Alastair introduced ERA Office Supplies specialist, Rob Riches. After conducting a thorough tender process, Rob presented a consumables supplier whose profile and geographical coverage closely matched Kendall’s own, with offices in the South and South West.

Kendall Kingscott’s key buyer of office supplies visited the alternate supplier’s depot and as a result agreed to move the supply contract, with potential savings of 53%. Rob also reviewed specialist papers for architectural drawings, confidential waste shredding and IT consumables and hardware. As a result ERA were able to offer the company’s management the reassurance that they were already receiving best value.

ERA Energy Specialist Richard Clayton was approached to review the firm’s energy costs. He identified and benchmarked the ‘hidden’ cost of service charges levied by Kendall’s energy broker, bringing transparency and reassurance of value to an existing relationship.

Protecting the firm’s most vital asset: its people

Kendall Kingscott’s Board passionately believes that their most important asset, and the key to their success, is the 130-strong workforce. It was therefore no surprise that they were keen for ERA to review Employee Benefits.

Alastair brought in The ERA Employee Benefits Team: specialist employee benefits advisers who are fully authorised and regulated to advise, arrange and manage all types of employee benefits schemes.

ERA specialist, Helen Pengelly reviewed the appropriateness and costs of; Group Life, Group Income Protection and Group Private Medical Insurance policies. The review of the medical policy required particular sensitivity owing to a number of ongoing claims. Savings of around £8,000 per annum were identified with some minor changes to benefits structures. Critically the level of cover offered to employees continues to be amongst the best ERA have seen in the Professional Services sector.

“Without our skilled and dedicated workforce, we simply wouldn’t be able to consistently deliver top-quality projects whilst continuing to push the boundaries and remain at the forefront of our industry. It was hugely important not just for the business, but for me personally, that the Employee Benefits scheme was thoroughly reviewed to ensure we were delivering best value and structure for our employees,” explains Kendall Kingscott’s MD.

“I was utterly confident that Helen and the ERA Employee Benefits Team could not only deliver savings in this area but ensure that the absolute best levels of cover and benefits were in place for Jon’s team. Their expertise in what is such a specialist cost-centre is widely praised and I’m delighted that we were able to secure a win-win solution for both employer and employee that helped further strengthen that relationship,” says ERA’s Client Manager.

Communication builds trust

Alastair’s Relationship Management skills ensured that Kendall Kingscott’s management team remained fully informed throughout each project. This level of transparency and dialogue has been the basis of what is now a solid and valued working relationship. The ERA team are currently engaged in a market appraisal and negotiation of new contracts for Kendall Kingscott’s telephony requirements.

“Working with ERA has been a great experience and one that has certainly proved valuable for the company. Whilst we are capable of conducting similar cost savings exercises ourselves in-house, the leverage, experience and access to specialists that ERA bring to the table is second to none. We are all very, very pleased with the results so far and we look forward to seeing what more can be achieved.”

SUMMARY OF SAVINGS
  • Office Supplies: 53.4%
  • Photocopiers & Printers
    – Phase 1: 61.0%
  • Photocopiers & Printers
    – Phase 2: 42.5%
  • Employee Benefits: 13.6%
  • Mobiles: 46.7%
added value
  • Historical rebates secured
  • Access to specialist cost centre experts
  • Increased productivity and efficiency
  • Identify potential future savings

“Working with ERA has been a great experience and one that has certainly proved valuable for the company. Whilst we are capable of conducting similar cost savings exercises ourselves in-house, the leverage, experience and access to specialists that ERA bring to the table is second to none. We are all very, very pleased with the results so far and we look forward to seeing what more can be achieved.”

Financial ControllerKendall Kingscott
Project Consultants