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About Minerva

As procurement specialists in the schools sector Minerva offers a unique service to independent schools and academies.  We understand that schools have their own distinctive characteristics and challenges and use our knowledge to meet your specific needs.

Our audit process combines information on cost reduction opportunities together with advice on improving your school's purchasing practices.

With a ‘no savings, no fee’ guarantee Minerva can give you peace of mind that engaging us is financially risk free.

At Minerva we stand for the traditional values of openness, honesty and integrity.  Our aim is to provide you with a commercial solution whilst maintaining a personal relationship enhanced with a large dose of enthusiasm for what we do!

We really are passionate about helping you to save money and develop robust purchasing strategies for your school.

Contact us today to see how we can help you.

Our Main Contacts

Lorraine Ashover, Director

Lorraine Ashover is Managing Director of Minerva Procurement Consultancy Services Limited.  Fulfilling a long-standing ambition to be her own boss Lorraine set up Minerva in 2010 in direct response to feedback from the school bursar community and helps schools reduce cost, streamline procurement practices and save time. 

The company looks after many independent and academy schools and manages significant spend on behalf of clients.  Prior to setting up Minerva, Lorraine worked for Barclays Commercial for 20 years, the last seven of which were as an Industry Specialist in the education sector.  When not working Lorraine runs after her daughter Maisie, escapes into a good crime novel and bemoans the demise of her beloved Nottingham Forest!

Kerry Harkins, Tender and Compliance Manager

Kerry joined Minerva in March 2017. Kerry has had an extensive career within the procurement and purchasing industry, both in the UK and Australia. She has worked in the private, and public sectors, and has procured services on behalf of the UK Nuclear Waste Executive, UK electricity generating industry, and the Victorian Government in Australia.

Upon returning to the UK, Kerry has most recently been working in a local primary school, and has first-hand experience in relation to the challenges experienced within the UK education sector. She is committed to helping schools achieve greater value for money within their procurement spend, and passionate about easing pressure on budget constraints.

At weekends, Kerry is either getting up in the wee hours of the morning to watch her cherished Australian Rules Football team (St. Kilda), or out exploring the many wonderful cities in the UK and Europe. 

Plum Garland, Executive Assistant

Plum joined Minerva in May 2015. Previously Plum worked at a London University and, prior to that, at a Local Authority. From her previous roles, Plum brings experience of supporting busy people with busy calendars, whilst trying to keep the office running smoothly.

When not at work, Plum can usually be found watching rugby, covered in paint and glue making something crafty, or clutching her Kindle.

Maisie Simper, Work Experience Girl

Maisie joined Minerva in 2016. Maisie has lots of knowledge and can work under pressure. She is ready to help in all situations. Whether the work is hard or easy she pushes though to find a solution. Maisie is there to help the business. She is part time and when she is off she reads, does Sudoku and word searches and also does arts and crafts.

Work for us!

Interested in what we do and want to join in?  Find out more about working at Minerva.

Awards

Below are just some of the awards we have won. Click here to view more


Stevie Award Winner 2012    Best of Best 2014.jpg      Awards2016FINALIST-01.jpg   

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  • I engaged Minerva after working with them as part of collaborative procurement process for broadband as our school is doubling in size this year. One area that required attention was the cleaning provision. We had 2 cleaners through the Local Authority and I wanted to investigate the options of outsourcing the contract. Lucy and Lorraine met with me to discuss the plans and to understand our requirements. The tender documents were produced which included fine detail such as specifications, insurance levels and company resources. A site visit and presentation day was arranged which enabled us to meet the potential suppliers and to build the all-important relationships. Lucy kept me updated throughout the process which resulted in me being able to make the decision, before needing to give termination notice to end the current agreement.
    I’m very happy with the outcome of the tender. Minerva have guided us through the procurement to ensure we are compliant and that we obtained the relevant information from the suppliers.
    I would recommend Minerva without hesitation and I look forward to working with Lucy and Lorraine again in the near future.
    – Mary Shorland, School Business Manager, EP Collier Primary School and Nursery
    EP Collier Primary School
  • immediate savings, amounting to £000’s…..Minerva Procurement Consultancy were thorough, detailed and analytical in their approach whilst not being intrusive…..I would have no hesitation in using Minerva again, for any audit, small or large, and would recommend their service to anyone
    – Jonathan Frost, Bursar, Rookwood School Trust Limited
    Jonathan Frost, Bursar, Rookwood School Trust Limited
  • “Lorraine works in a very efficient and professional manner, and she has secured considerable cost savings for my school. We particularly like the ‘unpushy’ approach. Having known her for several years I have no hesitation in recommending Lorraine and her service to any other school.“
    – Alastair Graham, Headmaster, Hall Grove School
  • “I cannot speak highly enough of Minerva Procurement and of Lorraine Ashover and her colleagues. I have been most grateful for the advice and help given in renegotiating better deals on everything from utilities to stationery with copiers, printers and postage in between.
    Lorraine is a delight to do business with and her cheerful and professional manner are always reassuring us that we are in safe hands.
    You have nothing to lose and everything to gain; I can highly recommend Minerva Procurement to you.”
    – Tanya Hutt, Bursar, Lyndhurst School
  • I would like to express our gratitude for all the work that your colleague, Lucy Smith, has done on the grounds maintenance tender at Chipping Norton School. She advised and guided us throughout the tender process, updating us when required, and ensuring that all steps were taken in a timely and efficient manner. She worked closely with our Site Manager, Steve Edwards, to produce a detailed specification of the work to ensure the tender documents covered all our operational needs a well as regulatory requirements. Lucy also arranged and conducted a site visit for a number of suppliers. The tendering process was well documented and the detailed report produced by Minerva should satisfy external auditors during the annual review of accounts and has enabled us to make an informed decision of the best company to meet our grounds maintenance needs.

    The savings by re-tendering the contract will more than offset the procurement fee paid to Minerva resulting in an overall projected savings of more than £750 over the three year period of the contract.

    We are very pleased with the experience we have had with Minerva in facilitating this important procurement process and for all the work done by Lucy to produce a successful outcome. I would happily recommend Lucy for similar procurement projects and look forward to working with her and the rest of the Minerva team in the future.

    Thank you again for providing a high standard of service.
    – Gary Kelly, Business Manger, Chipping Norton School
  • We engaged Minerva to assist the four schools in our Trust with the procurement of cleaning and catering services across all four sites. Minerva have shown a high degree of professionalism and knowledge during the running of the OJEU tender for the Trust. The process has been handled smoothly from the beginning, keeping to the agreed schedule. Minerva visited each school to fully understand all our requirements.

    The contact and communication from Minerva has been clear and comprehensive making the process easy to understand and allowing each school to feel confident in the outcome of each stage. I am very happy with the work and support from Minerva and have no hesitation in recommending them.
    – Dr Sarah Scott, Director of Finance, Anglian Learning
  •  “Lorraine, thank you so much for the quick and efficient service you and Zenergi have provided to The Abbey School in regards to our gas and electricity contract renewals.  It has been a lot easier than it ever was with CMR.  In addition it’s very reassuring to know you will be monitoring our bills on an ongoing basis. We would be very happy to recommend your services to other schools.”
    – Tim Hartley, Finance Manager, The Abbey School
    Tim Hartley, Finance Manager, The Abbey School
  • Nathan was very responsive to our needs and kept us informed throughout the process. Communication was timely and professional, and Minerva obviously has an excellent knowledge of statutory tender requirements for public bodies. We were impressed with the service and the support provided.
    – Sally Hunston, Business Manager, The Iffley Academy
  • Southcote Primary School have used Minerva Procurement for several years now. They have procured cleaning services, HR, telephony systems and photocopiers.

    On all occasions they have dealt with matters efficiently and professionally arranging presentations from prospective suppliers through to signing off the contracts and checking through the “small print”.

    They have followed up issues with preferred suppliers following acceptance of contracts and continue to do so on our behalf.

    I cannot recommend them enough.
    – Lesley Rooney, Bursar, Southcote Primary School
  • I have worked with Minerva for a number of years because they provide procurement expertise and focus that enable our school to achieve higher quality results at a better price. The recent catering tender achieved an initial investment into the school of £50,000; a contract with Chartwell's that will achieve a profit share within one year; and a much better range and quality of food. Minerva manage the whole process to remove the pressure from the school; they ensure that the tender sticks to a tight timeline; and enable full compliance with procurement legislation. I would strongly recommend Minerva and we are already working together on our next tender.
    – Dave Cobb, Business & Development Manager, Saint Cecilia's Church of England School

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Not feeling chatty email us at - plum@minervapcs.com