Quartet of experienced case assessors joins the BBRS

The BBRS has strengthened its case assessment, policy and operations teams with eight new hires

The Business Banking Resolution Service (BBRS) has announced a boost to its case assessment, policy and operations teams, with a total of eight new hires as it transitions to go live as a service.

Included in the appointments are four Lead Case Assessors, three Policy Advisors, and a new Head of Technical Operations. Each new hire brings with them valuable expertise in their respective fields ahead of the service’s launch, bringing together experience from institutions including the Financial Ombudsman Service, the civil service and Parliament.

The BBRS is a non-profit organisation set up to resolve disputes between larger eligible SMEs and participating banks. The creation of this new, free, service has been a collaborative effort between seven major banks and SME stakeholders.

Joe Cruden, Ashley More, Greg Barham and Ray Neighbour have been appointed as Lead Case Assessors. Joe joins the BBRS from the Competition and Markets Authority, while Ashley, Greg and Ray join from the Financial Ombudsman Service. Between them, they bring over 50 years of experience in alternative dispute resolution. They will be working with the BBRS’ case management partners at the Centre for Effective Dispute Resolution (CEDR), to ensure each case is assessed in line with the BBRS’ fair and reasonable approach.

Greg Barham has a long history in financial services and was previously a Senior Ombudsman at the Financial Ombudsman Service. Similarly, Ray Neighbour also has extensive experience in dispute resolution, having worked at the Financial Ombudsman Service for 23 years in a variety of roles including as an adjudicator, as the Head of Service Review and as an Ombudsman.

Joe Cruden began his career in dispute resolution in New Zealand at Utilities Disputes, and with the Advertising Standards Authority, and has since worked at the Competition and Markets Authority. Ashley More began her career as a private practice litigator, before becoming inhouse legal counsel at the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS) and then the Financial Ombudsman Service for 8 years. The combined experience of the BBRS new Lead Case Assessors will be crucial to the continued evolution of the service.

Strengthening the operations team, the BBRS have also appointed Mike Robinson as Head of Technical Operations. Mike was previously Head of Casework Teams and Chair of the Employee Council at the Financial Ombudsman Service.

Additionally, the BBRS has announced the appointment of three new Policy Advisors, Clemency Huggins, Laurenz Gerger and Johanna Liddle, who previously held roles in Parliament, the Association of British Insurance and the civil service respectively. Part of the policy team’s role will be to observe the economic and political environment to ensure the organisation supports SMEs and banks in all possible ways, and make sure its policies allows it to deliver our public interest mission. The team will also be instrumental in the setting up of the BBRS’ full service.

Lyndy Geddes, Director, Technical Operations, commented:

“As we transition towards the go live of the full service, we are continuing to implement the learnings from our Live Pilot. The process enabled us to develop an improved operating model, featuring strong core expertise in case assessment, dispute resolution and policy within the BBRS.

“All of our new hires form an essential part of this core expertise, and I am delighted to be welcoming them to the BBRS team during this critical period for the service. Their combined knowledge and skills will be a huge asset to our organisation and I very much look forward to working with them all.”

Peter Taylor, Director of Legal and Policy, said:

“The BBRS’ new policy team are already hard at work, helping to shape the organisation’s policies and rules as we transition towards go live. It’s fantastic to have such talented individuals joining us from broad backgrounds, bringing with them invaluable expertise.”