Kennedy Cater is a legal broker and cost consultant. We will help your organisation find, brief, negotiate and manage the right legal providers to deliver the best possible solution for the best possible cost. We will always reduce your spend and improve your quality of advice. Call us now to discuss your needs on 0207 113 4020 or visit www.kennedycater.com Services Our Public Sector Team provides services to a range of clients including central and local government, housing associations and NHS Trusts. We have been instrumental in:
- Assisting our clients to drive down the cost of their external legal provision; and
- Creating internal efficiencies aimed at enabling legal teams to do more with less.
Our experienced team of legal and procurement professionals have the depth of knowledge and expertise to work closely with Public Sector clients delivering value through our broad range of products and services.
Legal Services Framework Agreements
Framework Agreements offer clients in all sectors an opportunity to secure best value legal solutions – not only by way of competitive fee arrangements but also through the delivery of valuable additional benefits such as free of charge bespoke training, precedents, etc. We specialise in setting up robust frameworks of solicitors and barristers for our clients (in both the public and private sectors). Often our consultants will work with clients to forge alliances of organisations that can approach the market with a higher volume of work than such bodies are able to present on their own. We understand the need for clients in the public sector to comply with the EU procurement regime and work closely with them and their procurement teams to ensure a fair, transparent and objective process. Framework agreements we have set up in the Public Sector include those for the London Boroughs Legal Alliance (a collaboration of 11 London authorities) and the Housing Associations Legal Alliance. The arrangements in place for both of these groups are innovative, exciting and are leading to substantial savings for those members involved.
Setting up a framework agreement is only the first step in the process for securing best value external legal support. Without proactive panel management the promised benefits are often not delivered, nor the opportunity maximised. We offer bespoke panel management services including:
- Ensuring the rates charged by suppliers conform to those agreed at the outset
- Reviewing invoices for accuracy and reasonableness
- Ensuring delivery of promised value added benefits
- Assisting with mini-tenders
- Managing the delivery of bespoke CPD-accredited training by lawyers to clients
- Conducting annual 360 degree reviews with panel suppliers
One of the great opportunities for public sector bodies is the ability to collaborate with others in order to achieve the most competitive rates possible from suppliers – not only from law firms and barristers’ chambers but also for ancillary services such as knowledge management systems, case management systems and digital dictation systems. We ensure clients are given access to the best solutions, trials and then negotiate the most competitive pricing available for the group.
Legal Contract Management
We recognise that in-house lawyers and their colleagues in business departments often engage lawyers to assist on large projects and then struggle to find the time to manage the delivery of the service properly. We work with clients to ensure a roadmap of steps is clearly set out in advance of the work being awarded. We then work alongside the lawyers to ensure that the service is delivered on time and to budget.
Lawyers are often engaged on projects on the basis of an estimated fee which then spirals out of control. With our legal experience, we are able to analyse bills with a view to assisting clients in negotiating them down or helping the client to understand why estimates have been exceeded with a view to ensuring this ceases to happen. Instructing us on this basis, clients have saved hundreds of thousands of pounds without endangering their relationships with key advisers. Involving us at the start of the project would be even better!
In the current economic environment, it is important for all public sector bodies to ensure that their existing legal solution represents best value. With our keen insight into rates (both hourly and fixed for commoditisable work) we are uniquely positioned to assess whether such organisations might achieve better value by switching provider. This could involve outsourcing work from an in-house team to an external provider or simply switching from one external provider to another. Either way, we will work with you to analyse existing fees paid then approach quality solutions in the wider market on a no names basis to determine if longer term better value solutions might exist elsewhere.
Shared Services Consultancy
Given the current additional pressures on local authorities to make savings, we have been engaged by a number of local authority clients in relation to shared services. Authorities that are keen to engage in shared services have instructed us to prepare outline business cases for them. These include an assessment of the various options from loose collaboration to a fully merged and co-located service, analysis of the cost base of the authorities’ current service, both the “cashable” and qualitative benefits that might arise from a shared service, the potential risks and a range of other issues including those relating to structure and governance.
For those clients with ad hoc legal requirements, we make our own panel of leading solicitors and barristers available on a case by case basis. Our team of case workers work with legal teams or senior managers to obtain quotes from a number of best placed legal solutions. Through the legal panels we have established and the rates we see on a daily basis, we have access to the most competitive rates from leading public sector specialist firms and barristers’ chambers.