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Meet the delegate: Caroline Pillay from Airey Miller

Mon 15th January 2018, 2:30 pm

The Sitematch team caught up with Caroline Pillay, senior partner from Airey Miller, to discuss her plans for the upcoming Sitematch event on 8 February 2018.

Can you say something about your role and responsibilities at Airey Miller?

I am one of four senior partners of Airey Miller Partnership. I lead a team of 10 professionally diverse individuals responsible for delivering client-side professional services to primarily local authority partners, more specifically local authorities who have set up commercial development delivery vehicles.

We provide the technical expertise to support the development of robust designs and inform the development of financially viable and technically deliverable schemes which both align with agreed corporate standards and specifications while responding to stakeholder expectations.

With a focus on building up the capacity of our client’s in-house development teams beyond standard consultancy, we create a learning and professional development environment conducive to organisational success and individual achievement.  Our remit is to deploy additional resourcing to strengthen in-house capacity and capabilities to support the organic development of skilled and competent council or special purpose vehicle [SPV] development management professionals.

My team is currently supporting Homes for Lambeth, the new Lambeth Council housing development company as strategic, commercial and technical advisers to the council and the SPV in the delivery of the council’s ambitions to develop  around 10,000 homes over the next seven to 10 years.  As the council’s in-house, outsourced resource, we provide a comprehensive client side support service.

Airey Miller has attended previous Sitematch events. Could you provide an example of a particularly useful meeting? What were the outcomes of that meeting?

The previous events have been useful to us as a platform for meeting potential partners of likemind, and sharing detail of our organisation's services. We have been able to follow up on some of the brief meetings we had at the event with more detailed conversations and relationships, all of which we continue to nurture with a view of finding common ground from where working relationships can begin.

What qualities do you look for in public sector partners?

Primarily what we look for in working with public sector clients is trust: trusting the advisor or consultant to provide the advice they are being paid to provide. We seek a 'work with' rather than a 'work for' culture. Where this collaboration exists, the work is more satisfying, the quality and productivity increases and this will hopefully provide more and better opportunities to work together.

Honest feedback about how you are doing so you can make the 'next' experience even better. Continuous improvement is what we seek to achieve.

What can Airey Miller offer local authorities that others can't?

Airey Miller provides a professional management and client-side service which at present is unlike no other consultancy. We have teams of professionals dedicated to meeting the needs of each of our clients on a project-by-project basis.

We act as our client's in-house outsourced resource, applying the full breadth and depth of our experience and expertise to supporting client teams. Our approach can also direct support to inexperienced client project teams allowing them to retain total control of projects with the significant back-up of the Airey Miller professional team and services.

Our teams are able to guide in-house teams through the project development process and stages, providing step-by-step guidance and advice as they negotiate each stage of work. This enables them to learn on the job and acquiring a more entrepreneurial and commercial way of thinking.

What are your objectives for attending the next event in February?

We are keen to further relations with those councils we met at the last event as an opportunity to understand their progress over the last year and discuss where and how we might be able to offer support to move projects forward.

We also look forward to meeting and speaking to new councils in the process of setting up or who have already set up new housing delivery companies to discuss how Airey Miller might be able to offer services in a range of different areas. We are also looking forward to starting new conversations and furthering existing connections.

If you would like to attend the next Sitematch London event on 8 February 2018, contact Josie Brewer on 020 7978 6840 for more information.

 

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