Consulting Zen – the top consulting firms resource
Today, rapidly changing technological trends, new social media, changing customer needs and preferences, and new regulations challenge leaders across industries, including those in publicly traded and private companies, nonprofit organizations, and public organizations.
Enter consulting firms. Management consulting was established a century ago by Arthur D. Little, and it has since grown to a multibillion-dollar industry that employs the best and brightest and serves leading organizations worldwide.
Consulting firms help directors and managers solve various problems using the consultants’ knowledge and expertise. As the consulting world grows, it becomes more complex and interesting from the client’s point of view as well as from its partners’ and employees’ standpoint. New types of consultancies focus on specific niches, in which they develop unique and profound expertise; at the same time, consultancies that used to specialize in particular topics (e.g. strategy consulting firms or IT consulting firms) have moved up or down the value chain in order to offer their clients more holistic solutions.
Broadly speaking, there are several types of consulting firms, and many fall under the definition of ‘management consulting firms’.
Management consulting firms
Management consulting is the business of helping managements of corporations and organizations solve immediate and long-term problems. These problems may be related to revenue generation, efficiency, innovation, and organizational structure, and many others.
Strategy consulting firms
Arguably the most prestigious and well-known management consultancies are those that advise boards and top-level executives regarding strategic directions. Strategy consultancies have been known for years for recruiting top undergrad students from elite universities and graduates from prestigious MBA programs. In the last few years, the business of strategy consulting, inculding its top consulting firms, has faced significant changes.
These management consulting firms specialize in improving operational aspects of businesses (e.g. work process improvement, supply chain optimization, cost reductions for manufacturing lines or service activities). These types of projects may greatly impact the bottom line of the organization.
IT consulting firms
Technology consulting or IT consulting (i.e. information technology consulting) is often more about doing work for the client than providing advice. IT consultancies provide services related to integration of heavy-duty software (e.g. ERP systems like SAP) or other applications. IT consulting may involve hardware and software and is tightly linked to operations of organizations.
HR consulting firms (Human Resources consulting firms)
HR consultancies solve problems related to human capital. They may improve employment aspects (such as recruiting, talent development and management), compensation and rewards, performance measurement, internal communications and service, etc. While there are specific companies that focus on this type of consulting, some “regular” management consultancies also offer human capital consulting services.