Opened in 2005 and situated just minutes from the heart of Leicester city centre, the Peepul Centre is a unique and inspirational social enterprise. It offers a multi-purpose venue for the local community. Facilities and services provided at and by the Centre range from civil weddings, conferences, exhibitions and events to an Ofsted-inspected nursery, a gym, theatre, restaurant and bar.
Auditel has been at the forefront of cost and purchase management for over seventeen years. In that time, they have built a dedicated 200-strong network of professional consultants who manage the full range of business expenditures for thousands of clients across the UK.
The Peepul Centre has benefited from Auditel’s professionalism and increased the value of their organisation. Debra Avery, Operations Manager of the Peepul Centre explained: “Auditel’s service is much broader and more holistic and it goes far beyond simple cost-cutting. Their recommendations take into consideration everybody concerned with and affected by our Centre to ensure we get the best option, not just the cheapest. They go the extra mile for us.”
The Peepul Centre takes a pragmatic approach to its business model so that it may continue to evolve and provide services that meet the needs of people in the local community. Like many organisations which receive funding through local and central government schemes, the Centre faces challenges ahead. Debra is determined to ensure that they meet these head on. “The Peepul Centre has registered charity status but we still have to make enough money to survive as a viable business. In the twelve months I’ve been in post, we’ve had deep cuts in our direct public funding. The trickle-down effect of these cuts on major users of our venue hire services, such as the NHS and local government, means our income has been affected on that side of the business. As a result we’ve had to develop a much more strategic 3-5 year business plan aimed at securing our long-term financial sustainability.”
Debra was keen to include a thorough review of the Centre’s overheads and service contracts in her strategic plan. At one of the networking events hosted by the Centre in mid-2010, Centre Manager Bharat Patel met Auditel consultants, Peter Harrison and Mike Ramsden. This was very timely.
Debra recalls: “I’d already done some research and knew it would be possible to secure better prices for many of our overheads and infrastructures. I’d had a look at some of the testimonials on Auditel’s website, so there seemed to be a good match between my objectives and their expertise. My first impression of Mike and Peter was how professional they were and this hasn’t changed. I’m always incredibly impressed by the information and recommendations they come up with.
“Within a relatively short period of time they have really come to understand our organisation and the issues that affect us specifically. Because I’m so time-poor, their input has been invaluable. Not only do they come back with a tremendous amount of information, but they present it clearly and make it simple for decisions to be made. This has saved me a huge job that would have kept me away from other areas of the core business.
“As you can imagine with a centre our size, we have numerous service contracts many of which duplicate costs incurred elsewhere. This is something I have been keen to address. What Auditel have done very successfully is to get us out of some contracts which would have needed me and an expensive legal team to negotiate. They did it so professionally and I was incredibly impressed.”
So far, Peter and Mike have identified and implemented savings of over £77,477 across the Centre’s gas, electricity, contract cleaning, washroom services and fire and security systems costs. Other projects now underway include a review of catering and stationery costs.
Debra confirmed:” Peter and Mike did a fabulous job on their initial projects and saved us a lot of money. Now they will be looking at anything that has an overhead attached to it. Over the next couple of years our income and expenditure will change dramatically so any savings Auditel make will directly and significantly affect our bottom line.”