The Office
St Mary's Crescent
ST14 7BH

Tel: 01889 564739
Fax: 01889 568972


We provide consultancy support, sometimes for ongoing issues arising out of research projects and sometimes for stand-alone projects: see our Recent Projects page for more details of consultancy projects we have undertaken. Clients include:

  • Home-Start UK
  • Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council
  • Staffordshire Early Years Unit
  • Sure Start Unit (the Government's programme for pre-school children)
  • Connexions (the Government's programme for teenage children)
  • Regional Action West Midlands
  • Government Office South-East
  • National Association of Volunteer Bureaux
  • Staffordshire Drug Action Team
  • Staffordshire Probation Service
  • Wolverhampton Quality Protects Partnership
  • Government Office West Midlands
  • British Humanist Association

We have a number of skills to offer:

  • co-ordinating people to achieve objectives in a single or multi-agency environment
  • project management
  • writing reports, promotional material, newsletters etc
  • training - especially managing diversity, personal empowerment
  • training needs analysis - from small single groups to large multi-agency subject areas
  • organisation - particularly conferences and training courses
  • social research
  • facilitating events such as awaydays

How To Make Best Use Of Consultants

External consultants can be most helpful to your organisation by taking on pieces of work which are clearly bounded, important, time-consuming and need doing within a certain period of time. However, initiating and managing this process may not be straightforward. If you would like to read some tips and guidance on the effective use of external consultants, please see Helen Kara's article in the 26th July 2001 issue of Community Care.

Helen has also co-written a book, "Commissioning Consultancy", giving guidance to those commissioning work from external consultants. The book was published in 2003 by Russell House Publishing Ltd. Click here to see a review of Commissioning Consultancy by Tim Burke, consultant editor of "Young People Now".

Commissioning Consultancy - Training Course

Are you involved in commissioning consultancy, research, training or project management? Are you sure you employ best practice in commissioning these skills? If your answers are yes to the first and no to the second, then this one-day course is for you.

By the end of the course, you will understand

  • The difference between ‘pure’ consultancy and research, training and project management
  • How to write a successful brief
  • Your responsibilities as a commissioner
  • How to find and recruit a suitable consultant or consultancy firm
  • Which interpersonal skills you need to use with consultants
  • What you can expect from a consultant
  • How to manage the consultancy process
  • What to do when things go wrong

...and you'll receive a free copy of the book!

The course is run by a consultant with experience of commissioning: Helen Kara, co-author of Commissioning Consultancy (2003 - Russell House Publishing). She has encountered many of the pitfalls from both sides. In this course, she shares the benefit of her hindsight so that it can become your foresight

To see an analysis of the evaluation forms from a recent course, please click here.

If you would like to register an interest in attending this course, please email with your contact details. You will then be put on a waiting list and informed as soon as a course is arranged in your area.