Centre for Assessment helps Northern Ireland firm with offices in Belfast and Dublin achieve the Law Society Standard.
Lacey Solicitors is a law firm with offices in Dublin & Belfast that offers specialist legal services in the areas of insurance, commercial and property law across the entire island of Ireland.
Lacey Solicitors has a strong relationship with the insurance industry and they are acutely aware of the standards expected by insurance clients. Their experienced solicitors deal with cases at all levels in the courts, both in Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. Their innovative and meticulous approach allows them to explore all options.
They understand that allowing a dispute to reach the hearing stage isn’t always in the best interests of their clients. They endeavour where possible to secure the discontinuance or settlement of cases at the earliest practicable stage of litigation so as to avoid the risk and expense of a trial.
It is likely that Lacey solicitors were the 1st firm in the world to achieve the revised international Lexcel 5.1 standard.
What made you decide to choose the Lexcel accreditation?
Lacey Solicitors is committed to the highest standards of professionalism and client care. Consequently, we were keen to gain external recognition of our good practice.
Lacey Solicitors was referred to Centre for Assessment by Lexcel consultant and assessor Martin Rice. Martin explained that Centre for Assessment adopted a pragmatic and supportive approach whilst ensuring that the Law Society's standards are applied rigorously.
What support did Centre for Assessment give you during the process?
Very supportive in the assessments themselves – very understanding of the way that we work, they understand the market well enough and can slightly change their approach based on the client. We found this very helpful.
Lexcel was used flexibly which helped a lot. Felt like the assessor wanted them to get the accreditation – more supporting than a test. Martin comes in quarterly to audit some files and do mock visits to make sure there isn’t an issue.
Now Lacey Solicitors are Lexcel accredited, what has the impact been on the day-to-day running of your business?
The business is run better. Already were doing a lot of the stuff, but now it is demonstratable. Clients will want to hear that we have Lexcel and they are impressed and see it as a bonus. Has definitely helped bring on new clients.
All proper procedure is done “religiously”, and some inefficiencies have been removed.
Staff appraisals have helped the business and culture develop. Ideas and opinions are able to flow correctly and effectively. Bosses feel as though they are getting the best out of their staff and vice versa.
Internal promotion and hiring has become more frequent, staff feel more motivated.
What positive benefits have you seen in your business? What challenges have you overcome by implementing this change?
One of the key challenges was to ensure consistency of approach when adopting new processes and procedures. The firm has since embedded best practice across all areas and continues to use external support to ensure independent and objective guidance and advice in addition to the formal assessment process.
The main challenge was being able to come up with a lot of the procedures – business continuity etc.
It was good to have all of these put in place, Lexcel forced us to sit down and establish how the business will act in all situations. Office Manual is more robust and created to the right level, thanks to Lexcel.
Mitigated nearly all operational risk.
Interested in obtaining Lexcel? For more information, please contact us.