“The support of our mentors and the Auditel network has been superb”
Laurence Fitch and Ruth Dawe have run their cost, purchase and supplier management practice in St Albans since September 2008. Ruth recalls: “I knew that we wanted to run our own business. We felt that franchising offered us the ideal balance of having our own enterprise with the support of an established organisation. Laurence came across Auditel at The British & International Franchise Exhibition at Olympia, London, in April 2008. I was immediately impressed with their business format and how well it suited the current economic climate. The concept of franchising gave us the opportunity to look at different well-established models to decide which suited us best and we chose Auditel.”
Ruth confirms: “The training we received was outstanding. It allowed us to develop our skills so that we could push our new business forward as specialist consultants in cost, purchase and supplier management. The support of our mentors and the Auditel network of over two hundred consultants has been superb. Even our most obscure questions have been answered. Now we have an excellent and varied client base and are ahead of where we had hoped to be at this stage. Satisfied clients are offering referrals to their contacts.”
One such satisfied client is the Mildmay Mission Hospital. Although founded back in 1866 to fight the cholera epidemic in London, Mildmay is better known today for its work in caring for people with HIV in the UK and abroad. It was the place where Princess Diana famously shook hands with a patient suffering from AIDS, at the height of the media frenzy about the disease. At present, the department has 16 beds with plans to move to a new larger development in the next 18 months.
Laurence and Ruth approached the Mildmay Hospital in March 2010. Since then, they have impressed an initially sceptical director of finance, Joe Thomas, with their professionalism, knowledge and willingness. “It has been fantastic dealing with them both,” Joe reports, “they just get on with it, make no extra work for us and really know their stuff!”
Auditel have investigated several areas of Mildmay’s spend including electricity, gas, fixed line telecommunications, stationery and janitorial supplies. In addition to savings of £37,000, other reductions were: 17% on line rental, 40% on call traffic, 65% on telephone system maintenance; 33% call savings for the first year and 16% on janitorial supplies.
Laurence and Ruth are planning further initiatives including printed matter, photocopying, print and copy where substantial savings are also expected, with a potential annual reduction of 54.5% on stationery. Mildmay also benefitted from their implementation of a structured core list, thus ensuring that they are buying services more effectively and at a better price.
Joe Thomas enthused: “Laurence and Ruth have been very effective in finding us cost savings. They have made everything very easy and been an absolute pleasure to work with. In these tough economic times, Auditel have created a bit more financial space for us to work in.”
Clearly, their successful involvement has been very timely!