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Scaling operations delivers growth objectives - £4m over two years

Sectors: Conveyancing    Industry: Legal

Quick facts

  • Improvement playbook delivers 3-year Business plan

  • Partner resistance to change overcome

  • Improved customer service, compliance, staff utilisation and morale

  • Client onboarding time reduced from days to minutes

Managing Director

“Time Consulting Group has helped us to discover and implement significant efficiency improvements across our organisation. They have helped us develop an improvement roadmap for the organisation and have been instrumental in leading our culture change. The team alone could not have reached the depth of detail Time Consulting Group has achieved.”​

About our client

Our client is a legal firm specialising in high volume Conveyancing case management for house sale and purchase transactions. With offices in London and across the Southeast, it has been operating for over 25 years and steadily grown organically and through numerous mergers, incorporating several established practices into the portfolio.

The challenge

Following the takeover by Private Equity in 2019, the firm set out a plan to grow at scale over the next three years. However, as demand increased, it was identified that scaling operations, through recruiting more staff and implementing a new case management system, would not deliver the growth objectives the partners and investors were looking for.

The project scope included all functions and processes across all offices. The objective was to use our diagnostic service across people, processes and technology, to identify and recommend solutions to overcome constraints to growth.


The results


Client onboarding time reduced from days to minutes​

thumbs up

Improved customer service, compliance, staff utilisation and morale​


Significant efficiency improvements and introduction of online systems​


Allowing solicitors to focus on business development and fee earning legal advice​

Our approach

Discovery and diagnostic

Our first step was to run an eight-week diagnostic to uncover the full detail of what was happening within the business and evidence the opportunity to create profitable change.

This included a series of interviews with stakeholders and subject matter experts, Lean process analysis, observing tasks being performed, assessing existing technology, and considering how new technologies could add value.   

Key findings:
  • Customer onboarding questionnaires were complex and a mix of paper and PDF

  • 5% right-first-time questionnaire completion lead to downstream rework

  • 90% non value adding tasks identified, 40% related to email communication

  • 80% of case manager tasks could be automated or processed by admin staff

  • Efficiency saving case management system functionality was unused

  • Capacity, output, quality and work allocation was controlled by case managers

  • Organisation ‘one size fits all’ design fuelled low productivity

  • Ineffective case manager training for new hires

  • High staff attrition driven by a lack of development and commission-only rewards

  • Missed opportunities to adopt Agile software development approach

  • No evidence of operational management best practice for people based teams

Design, implementation and transformation

For each key finding, we led a number of Kaizen events to identify potential solutions. A series of pilot events were conducted to establish the feasibility of proposed changes and build momentum for new ways of working. Staff feedback created engagement, discussion and open dialogue, which meant reduced resistance to change, allowing further improvement to be made and larger-scale roll-out to be accepted.


With our support, the senior leaders used the learnings and outcomes of pilot studies to design the next generation Target Operating Model (TOM).  Cross-functional workshops enabled the creation of a Transformation Plan that laid out the pathway of improvement projects and workstreams that were sequenced to deliver quick and sustainable results.

Transformation highlights

  • Onboarding questionnaires were simplified and digitised using app technology to reduce complexity and confusion for customers and significantly lower the volume of downstream rework.

  • Analysis of email content using machine learning and statistical methods allowed non-value-adding time spent on email communications to be reduced by 25%.

  • New procedures and systems for capacity management, work allocation and sequencing were introduced, leading to increased output and quality.

  • 39% of case manager tasks were automated or processed by admin staff.

  • Handoffs and multiple checks were reduced by introducing error-proofing and workflow and using existing system functionality with robotics and automation.

  • The complexity of case manager tasks was reduced by analysing demand, segmenting work and aligning skills to work types.    

  • Staff recruitment and training procedures were revamped to ensure high-quality, capable case managers on appointment.

  • Staff attrition was reduced through 1:1 coaching, work type to skills alignment and increased training.

  • Technology team output and increased trust across the business were underpinned through training and coaching in Agile software development techniques.

  • Operational management best practice – such as daily performance meetings, KPI dashboards, process confirmation runs to standards, staff coaching, performance management, and problem-solving – served to establish continuous improvement routines for sustained gains.


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