Countrywide signs BPO deal

Residential conveyancing firm Countrywide Property Lawyers has extended its relationship with IT services firm Logica in a...

Residential conveyancing firm Countrywide Property Lawyers has extended its relationship with IT services firm Logica in a five-year, £16m business process outsourcing deal which it anticipates will pay for itself in two-and-a-half years.

Logica will operate a new document-handling centre for Countrywide. The centre, which should be operational by February 2003, is expected to manage and provide electronic access to more than 10 million documents a year by 2008.

Ian Goddard, Country-wide's programme manager, said the centre's imaging and workflow system would double the efficiency of key legal staff, dramatically improve customer service and support its aim of increasing its market share from 1% to 10% over five years.

Business process outsourcing (BPO) is expected to become increasingly common as the trend for IT outsourcing accelerates its growth. Supporters of BPO deals believe it can tie outsourcing to business - rather than technical - goals.

In August Countrywide signed a £10m, five-year IT outsourcing deal with Logica for a customer-focused conveyancing system to be rolled out across five regional centres in Cardiff, Brentwood, Manchester, Northampton and Woking, encompassing customer relationship management and workflow elements. Eight of the firm's staff transferred to Logica in the deal.

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