Thornton & Lowe about Exact for Professional Services

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Founded in 2009, Thornton & Lowe is a specialist bid management, procurement and training company. It is headquartered in Bolton, Greater Manchester and has offices in Scotland, London and Sunderland.

Prior to partnering with Exact, Thornton & Lowe was using a mix of electronic and hardcopy timesheets, manually analysing them in order to gain insight into project-specific risk, budget control, project progress and expenditure. It was a slow, costly, time-consuming administrative exercise that monopolised the valuable time of staff. For example, hard copies could not be updated in real-time, creating time consuming manual exercises prior to considering whether or not to take on new clients. Staff weren’t able to get instant visibility of capacity data, so the team found it harder to plan and be fully accountable for their time. As Thornton & Lowe increasingly began to win more and more new business, it became apparent that something needed to be done.

“As a rapidly growing business, we identified the importance of ensuring a seamless and real-time system and needed a platform that could manage future growth,” said David Thornton, founder and Director of Thornton & Lowe. “We knew we needed to find a solution that knitted all the different factions of information together and could facilitate the smooth, efficient operation of our team.”

Thornton & Lowe searched for some time before settling on a new solution. Being a well-established business, it had a significant number of existing systems that needed to be thoroughly assessed before looking to consolidate or transfer them to a new provider. Once the decision was made, Thornton & Lowe was designated a specific team by Exact for the implementation process.

“One thing that attracted us to Exact was the fact that their values match ours. We pride ourselves on providing continuity to our clients. You get instant access to the same people you spoke to yesterday, last week or a month ago,” said Adam Shafar, Senior Bid Writer at Thornton & Lowe. “Our dedicated Exact team was great. It was proactive and we felt incredibly well supported during the transition.”

As a result of using Exact, Thornton & Lowe now has an excellent level of transparency within the business. This provides the control and insight required to make quick but informed decisions. It also ensures that its senior management team can free up time, efficiently and effectively monitor project progress, and take action and report on performance levels. Exact allows the team to have immediate access to available capacity, sales pipeline information and project spend against budget – complete with an early warning system to avoid any surprises.

“Like so many things in life, no two businesses are ever the same. At Exact, we enjoy working with our customers to create the right solutions and seeing the tangible way we help with business improvement. Sometimes the journey can be complicated, but with a little determination, we’ve found the results have always been worth it. Thornton & Lowe is a testament of that,” said Christopher Sharp, Senior Partner Manager at Exact.

Now able to manage the large selection of variables and businesses in one place, Thornton & Lowe has the structure in place to support rapid but sustainable growth. As Exact packages are easily adaptable based on the size and needs of a business, Thornton & Lowe envisages that this partnership will continue into the foreseeable future.

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