Holy Family Catholic MAT
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Holy Family Catholic MAT
"The Judicium unlimited approach means that we can predict precisely the cost of those advisory services. It takes away a major risk associated with the Pay As You Go approach because we don’t need to worry about additional fees that could crop up at any time."
Holy Family Catholic MAT (HFCMAT) was established in 2012 with the aim of raising standards and achievement for all of its 3,600 students.
The Trust, based predominantly in the Wirral, now consists of two High schools and three primary schools. Three of the schools are also Teaching schools and two are rated Outstanding. A year ago, the Trust began to look at restructuring. This process involved moving certain back-office services to a central hub that would serve each school.
“One advantage of a MAT is having central services to meet the needs of all the MAT’s schools,” says Ian Potts, Chief Financial Officer for the Trust. “If you have five schools each with a finance person processing invoices for the same supplier that is really inefficient.”
The process was complex and couldn’t be done without expert advice, but the risk was that such advice would prove costly if it was used on a ‘Pay As You Go’ basis, Ian says.
The solution was to use Judicium’s unlimited employment law and HR services. “The Trust’s two High schools had used Judicium’s services for some time, but our primaries had always used the local authority,” Ian explained.
The first HFCMAT primary began using Judicium’s unlimited services in September, with the other primaries starting in Spring 2021.
Judicium’s advice proved invaluable. “Any process of centralisation creates potential HR and legal issues,” says Ian.
“We need to ensure that any process is transparent, fair and equitable. Judicium’s team were involved in weekly calls with our executive team, drafting a business rationale for the process and ensuring that what we were doing was fully compliant.”
The unlimited service model offers distinct advantages over the Pay As You Go model found in other providers, says Ian Potts.
“In a previous role as Finance Director for a college we used different solicitors for our different requirements, but the approach had its disadvantages. Because it was on a ‘Pay As You Go’ basis the costs got in the way of us developing a true partnership.”
“With the unlimited approach that we have with Judicium there are none of those constraints. For example, if I have a query on an HR matter I will have a call with Judicium to get an early steer and I will consult closely with them along the way.
If it was another model I don’t think that this would happen. I also think we get a far higher quality of advice.”
Ian says that the fixed-price nature of the unlimited advice package means that costs can be kept properly in check. “We always have to be mindful that we have to achieve value for money because we are using public money,” he says.
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