Sheffield based Wake Smith Solicitors has retained the coveted Lexcel accreditation for the fourth year running based on excellence in legal practice management and client care.
Lexcel is the Law Society’s legal practice quality mark and sets the required standard in seven different areas: structure and strategy, financial management, information management, people management, risk management, client care and file and case management.
Wake Smith impressed the Lexcel Assessor with their detailed strategic review due to be rolled out from June 2017 which proactively addresses the firm’s longer-term direction and succession-planning and includes the firm’s refreshed values project, and practical steps around IT.
The Lexcel Assessor’s report observed that: “In several areas, particularly risk management and strategic planning, the firm is now using the requirements of the Lexcel Standard as a platform upon which to build and to develop their policies and procedures beyond simple compliance with the Lexcel Standard, to further benefit and protect the firm and its clients.
The report added: “This is a highly commendable approach and illustrates that the firm has a mature understanding of how the Lexcel framework can be developed and enhanced in a bespoke manner, to suit the individual needs of the firm.”
Wake Smith was first awarded Lexcel in 2013 and remains committed to maintaining high levels of compliance in line with the Lexcel quality standard.
Highlights identified during the assessment included Wake Smith’s Conveyancing Quality Scheme accreditation, file management and supervision procedures, effective file review systems and strong financial management and credit control procedures.
The assessor also reported: “Morale is good at the firm, the staff interviewed were engaged and knowledgeable about the firm’s risk management procedures and the general atmosphere at the firm is positive and welcoming whilst being highly professional. Overall, the firm’s commitment to high standards was evident across all areas.”
Nick Lambert, chairman at Wake Smith, said: “We are delighted that our Lexcel Standard has been renewed once more and this is testament to the hard work from all of our divisions.
“It is vital that we manage the quality of our legal services effectively. It demonstrates our commitment and ability to consistently deliver services that meet client expectations, improve overall satisfaction and assist regulatory compliance.
“It is also excellent to see that our new strategic plan and values project were both highlighted as areas of the firm excelling good practice. These projects have involved a significant time commitment by the senior management of the firm and reflects the responsible attitude taken to ensuring the firm’s continued success.”
The firm, which moved staff from its two original offices into one state-of-the-art city-centre building last year, employs 100 people and provides legal services for businesses and individuals. Wake Smith also recently renewed its internationally recognised Investors in People accreditation which sets the standard for people management.