Julie Williams, Founder and Commercial Director of Convey-Assist, WIRP’s latest sponsor describes her journey from furlough to launching the UK’s first onshore provider of professional outsourcing services dedicated solely to Conveyancing firms and departments.

In March 2020 the world we know changed.  Prior to that I had worked in the conveyancing sector for over 30 years.  With roles ranging from case handling to Managing the Operations of large volume conveyancing businesses I thought I had experienced most things the sector could throw at me. That soon changed.

COVID 19 raised its head.  The pressure that lockdown, staff furlough and the SDLT holiday placed on conveyancers was immeasurable. I witnessed highly experienced conveyancers crumbling under the strain and walking away from the profession they had served for decades.

One warm and sunny day that summer I was on furlough and facing redundancy when I read a post on linked in that changed everything.  Written by a property lawyer from the sanctuary of a hospital bed where they had been sectioned by the police following a suicide attempt!!  the post detailed emotions and anxiety that no job should cause a person. 

Having suffered with my mental wellbeing after the birth of my second child I recognised some of the comments made and was horrified … How could things have gone so far?

This triggered something in me and together with an old work colleague, who is now my business partner, we looked at ways we could support both those lawyers who could no longer face the stress of client facing roles and those still working in practices managing large caseloads, doing extra hours and facing extraordinarily demanding clients.

This where we settled on providing flexible, outsourced, expert support to deal with title checks, raising enquiries and preparing client reports.  After long discussions and debate ConveyAssist was born and we are now 2 years old and growing.

We now provide conveyancing businesses with a flexible solution to resourcing issues and pipeline management.  Whether it’s a helping with a backlog of title checks being constantly chased or helping with those complex title checks that sit on the corner of a desk for days we work as an extension to our client’s business.  Giving them the capacity to deal with the call volumes and emails and ultimately manage clients’ expectations leading to improved communication and client satisfaction. 

Our clients can now demonstrate quicker transaction turnaround times, increased capacity, and improved customer satisfaction all of which lead to more completions and ultimately fees.  More importantly though our fantastic team members have found a role which allows them to work flexibly in the sector they once loved and have significant experience in without the added pressures and anxiety.

We are proud to be sponsors of the Women In Residential Property network and even more to able to support the industry that has given us both so much over the years and to enable firms to demonstrate their support for the health and wellbeing of their most precious asset – their staff, and we would love to tell you more, if you’re interested.

Julie Williams