professional office supplies

An interview with product suppliers and solutions


This Article first appeared in the Winter 2021/22 edition of The Law.

The Law winter edition

Andy Poole interviews Des McKeown and Adrian McKenna of POS Group – product suppliers and solutions providers to the legal sector.

Covid-19 has changed the way that law firms operate, which impacts on processes and the use of products.  Andy Poole interviews Des McKeown and Adrian McKenna to explore their thoughts.

1. What types of law firms do you work with, and how do you help them?

  • We work with law firms of all sizes across the UK and help them reduce cost within their business across the various verticals we operate within; Office Supplies, Print & Design, Hygiene & PPE, Workwear, Interiors & Design, Business Gifts, Utilities, Managed Print Services and Confidential Waste Management.
  • We help the clients save money by promoting cost control. We do this primarily by offering them the opportunity to achieve rationalisation of their supply chain, consolidation of their processes and practices and standardisation of their products and service levels across all of their sites/users.

2. What has your experience been of the impacts of the pandemic on law firms from a change of process and use of product perspective?

  • Law firms have had to adapt to working without staff in their offices and that has provided numerous challenges AND opportunities to both the firms and their suppliers.
  • Some of our clients immediately contacted us about providing home working kits (various essential stationery products to allow the staff to function), and also ‘working from home’ furniture - ensuring that the products complied with all fire and safety regulations.
  • Clearly the biggest change was the amount of clients who were forced to work remotely and they switched to providing more documentation digitally - dramatically reducing the usage of traditional products like paper/envelopes/files etc
  • Other firms investigated and exercised the use of a ‘hybrid mail’ solution - exporting all mail to a third party mailing house to print, pack and post all client correspondence.
  • The return to the office has offered the chance for law firms to change their ‘space’, with more and more clients opting to reconfigure their offices with more breakout areas incorporating soft seating, acoustic booths and cellular pods. Many clients envisage more collaboration areas rather than banks of workstations. Some have even used the time to reduce the amount of meeting rooms within their office and created a business lounge - offering a more relaxed and open air space for discussions/meetings.

3. What do you think this means for the future of law firms

  • Many firms will continue with the processes they used during the pandemic but there is no doubt that there are already plenty of examples where the firms that have returned to their offices are returning to the ways of pre-covid.
  • That said, others have streamlined their products and processes and have embraced the change to achieve savings moving forward.
  • There is no doubt that the pandemic accelerated the reduction of certain products within our marketplace and that will result in a long term loss of revenue to us on paper products and associated items.
  • For law firms there are numerous opportunities to reduce costs by using space more efficiently and effectively.

4. Are there any innovative solutions that you have seen law firms apply?

  • The Hybrid Mail solution has been one that has triumphed throughout the pandemic and will continue to go from strength to strength. Clients are now questioning why they have multiple mail rooms across their estate when they can actually outsource all of their requirements at a fraction of the overall cost.
  • Firms have also been innovative with the use of their space - creating collaborative areas and ‘touch’ zones where staff and clients can meet to share information and ideas.

    For support and advice regarding cost management or business strategy for your law firm, please get in touch with Andy Poole

    Contact Andy Poole

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