Accounting for Spain Brothers’ profitability: Expense Reduction Analysts deliver savings and service enhancement
Spain Brothers & Co. is an established firm of Chartered Accountants with offices in Canterbury, Dover and Folkestone, with over 100 years’ experience of working with businesses and individuals in South East England, with clients ranging from individuals and sole traders through to international groups of companies.
“We undertook a wide range of projects for Spain Brothers,” says Robert Stearn of Expense Reduction Analysts. “Some were relatively straightforward; others less so. I was fortunate to be able to call upon the expertise of my colleagues Pete Bramhall for Waste, Nigel Richards for Office Supplies, Gwyn Williams for Electricity and Gas, and Gareth Everson for IT Support and Maintenance.
“In addition, I asked one of Expense Reduction Analysts’ leading Client Relationship Managers, David Keating, to co-ordinate the programme of work.”
“Mine was one of the more straightforward projects,” comments Pete Bramhall. “Nevertheless, not many businesses of the size of Spain Brothers would have the experience internally to deliver the savings that we found. Their spend on Waste was relatively modest but one look at their copy invoices told me that they were paying too much, and I was able to secure them a 62% reduction.”
“Spain Brothers were less than satisfied with their IT Support and Maintenance provider,” says Gareth Everson. “Although the relationship had been in place for a number of years, the supplier’s response was patchy: at one point, they took a week to address an issue that had halted all normal business critical communications. Spain Brothers felt that there was inconsistency in the standard of support they were receiving from different technicians. They weren’t really looking to save money – merely to secure stable and consistent communications and quality of support.
IT Support: saving Spain Brothers’ fee earners time and stress “After comprehensive analysis and market research, we recommended that they move to a national supplier, who could point to an outstanding track record of performance and who offered greatly enhanced responsiveness, structure and processes. One example of this is that, where previously every support issue had to go through a single manager, now every member of staff had the ability to direct dial into the support operation – an enhancement that saved the company’s fee earners considerable time and stress.”
Gwyn Williams undertook the forensic analysis so essential to most Utilities projects. He comments: “As a result of this line-by-line scrutiny, we were able to give the prospective providers very detailed invitations to tender, so that they could work out the keenest possible prices for us. This resulted in significant savings. The devil, as so often, was in the detail.”
Robert Stearn summarises the team’s achievements: “Our work with Spain Brothers illustrates the breadth of what Expense Reduction Analysts can do: Electricity and Gas was all about savings, and knowing how to extract the keenest prices; Waste was down to the sheer experience of the specialist involved; and IT Support and Maintenance was much more about getting the service level right for the client, with savings being, to a large extent, incidental.”
Peter Cheney sums up the benefits of his company’s partnership with Expense Reduction Analysts: “The work that Robert and David and their team have done has been of great benefit – and it’s not all about savings. In IT Support, for example, we recognise that we do not have the necessary expertise in-house, so having Expense Reduction Analysts look at that vital area for us, with their knowledge of the marketplace and ability to ‘speak the language’, has meant that we are now receiving the service that our business needs to keep it communicating and running smoothly.”
SUMMARY OF SAVINGS
- Waste: 62%
- Electricity – Folkestone: 51%
- Electricity – Canterbury: 43%
- Electricity – Dover: 14%
- Gas – Folkestone: 27%
- Gas – Canterbury: 31%
- IT Support & Maintenance: 22%
- Office Supplies: 29%
“Expense Reduction Analysts have done a great job for us. There may be an impression that this service is only for larger organisations, but we have certainly benefited enormously. SMEs sometimes lack the time and tenacity to do what Expense Reduction Analysts do, and Utilities, in particular, can be a minefield for the uninitiated.”