By Julian Bryan, Managing Director of Legal Futures’ Associate Quill 
At Quill, we’re dedicated to getting the job of cashiering right. You see, we’ve been supplying outsourced cashiering services for 20 years, half of our company’s life, and we’ve earned ourselves an enviable reputation as a market leader in cashiering based on our 100% accuracy rates. Demand for our services has grown year on year. That’s why we’re now the UK’s largest employer of outsourced cashiers.
Saying we’re committed to impeccable legal accounting isn’t just empty words. Our claim is demonstrated in our unique-in-the-industry trainee scheme. Our training programme has been operational since the very beginning, some 20 years ago, and we welcomed our new intake of trainees this September.
We invest considerable resources – both money and time – into breeding the next generation of cashiers for our Pinpoint bureau and the legal industry at large, the latter having endured a dire shortage of trained cashiers in recent years.
As part of our training academy, our trainees combine on-the-job experience, peer support and classroom learning at Quill in conjunction with the Institute of Legal Finance & Management – or ILFM for short – and gain a recognised legal accounts diploma-level qualification upon course completion.
They also attain a well-paid position at Quill, become part of a caring and fun company, cultivate a whole new set of skills and acquire the opportunity of a lifetime career in a specialised field where they’ll never be wanting for work.
We pay for our trainees’ external course fees and fund their ongoing annual subscriptions to the ILFM or other professional body. This amounts to a substantial sum of money over the duration of the scheme and thereafter as fully qualified members of their chosen membership organisation.
We also devote something even more valuable than money – time and attention. We recruit stringently by closely screening applicants and taking up references pre-start date, employ a permanent trainer as a constant source of support, assign cashiers to supervisors in teams of six for careful mentoring, and provide convenient access to existing cashiering bureau members who can share their extensive knowledge and assist when a helping hand’s needed.
Once our trainees are on board, we have best practice processes in place to ensure their work meets the highest standards that we, and our clients, expect from them and continually harness their skills.
For the former – quality standards – we insist upon commonality by shared use of our Interactive legal accounts system, supplied alongside the Pinpoint service, and consistent ways of performing each cashiering task. These are defined by Interactive, which all of our cashiers use, from trainees upwards. For the latter – continued professional development – we follow a tried-and-tested performance appraisal procedure to monitor progress and identify additional development needs which we address with formal training or one-to-one coaching.
For added kudos, our training academy is endorsed by the ILFM, specialist providers of services – such as training – for legal cashiers. Our affiliation with the ILFM means our trainees undergo training at Quill, supplemented with training at the ILFM, so the qualification awarded upon successful completion comes with the widely-recognised ILFM stamp.
ILFM accreditation demonstrates sound, comprehensive and practical application of solicitors’ accounts rules and their compliance with regulatory guidelines. It’s a distinguished proficiency badge which is highly desirable to both clients and other employers alike, should end users of our services seek evidence of our cashiering mastery or our trainees later decide to secure employment elsewhere respectively.
In sum, our trainee scheme is beneficial for multiple stakeholders. For trainees, it’s the first step onto their career ladder. For clients, it’s a quality guarantee and future-proofing promise. For Quill, it’s developing the right skills in-house to thrive as an outsourced cashiering bureau and differentiate ourselves from other suppliers of outsourcing services who fall far short of the bar set by us. It’s also the feel-good factor of contributing in no small way to cultivating our country’s rising talent. For the legal sector as a whole, it’s confirmation of Quill’s standing as experts in all things cashiering.
We’ve got lots to say on the subject of outsourced cashiering. To read more, access our earlier articles published on the Internet Newsletter for Lawyers website titled ‘Outsourced cashiering and your bottom line’ , ’Ten reasons to outsource your cashiering’  and ‘How outsourced cashiering works’ .