During a consultation, the client is supported by a consultant who creates ideas for further development of the company. In consulting, the consultant gives clear recommendations for taking action. This recommendation is part of the consulting process in the company, which consists of an analysis and planning, including implementation and control. Consulting companies in Michigan are conscious about three aspects; creation of ideas, action/implementation, and results. But what exactly is consulting?

What is consulting?

The definition of consulting is that consulting is a service that is provided to the client by specialized consultants or consulting firms. Another name for it is management consulting. It means that the area of ​​responsibility is pretty broad and diversified, consultant can give advice on:

  • Marketing
  • Staff
  • Logistics
  • Production
  • IT

The term consulting usually refers to an external consulting company that advises and supports either on a project basis or on a permanent basis. Since this is an external consultant, the advice is given objectively, as the consultant has no personal interest in the company. Alternatively, there is also internal consulting, in which an employee takes on the advisory role.

What tasks does consulting have?

A consultant finds solutions to specific problems in a company. The main task is therefore to strategically realign a company. The tasks of a consulting can be, for example:

  1. Acquire new markets
  2. Saving of costs
  3. Realignment of a company

To do this, the consulting company will first carry out an analysis of the current situation and examine the weak points. The typical tasks therefore also include collecting data and analyzing the processes accordingly.

Subsequently, strategies and measures are developed so that the company’s problems can be solved. As early as the planning phase, errors in important projects can be avoided and possible risks identified.

In the last step, the solution approaches are then presented to those responsible in the company. Often there is also support during the implementation of the measures and a subsequent follow-up check.

What types of consulting for companies are there?

Consulting in a company is diverse and subject to constant change. The classics of consulting for companies include:

  • Organizational consulting: development of the organization, restructuring of the company and turnaround (reversal for the positive)
  • Strategy consulting: development of corporate, market, competition and growth strategies as well as the development of business models
  • Process consulting: Optimizing processes, managing processes and increasing efficiency
  • Management consulting: management of the company, organization of management and development of management models

Consulting can affect all areas of the value chain, such as production, marketing and sales, purchasing, finance and logistics.

What is a Human Resources Consultant?

A Human Resources (HR) Consultant is a consultant who focuses on the personnel area and therefore has a specific area of ​​expertise. The day-to-day work of an HR consultant is determined by individual projects, which are usually shorter and in which several projects are often carried out at the same time.

An HR consultant is very often confronted with particularly critical issues, such as restructuring. He offers special consulting services in the field of personnel support.

What distinguishes a consulting concept?

Every problem solution is based on a consulting concept. This is a comprehensive draft that includes the range of services, the philosophy and the advisory strategy of Consulting. This is adapted to the client’s task and expectations.

The consulting concept consists of:

Consulting philosophyThe behavior patterns, values ​​and goals of the client’s consulting philosophy.
Consulting serviceThe range of services, which is also defined by the size of the customer, the industry, the consulting focus, and the degree of specialization.
Advisory strategyThe strategy of counseling, which is composed of the counseling style and the counseling method. That means the used instruments or the applied method for the consulting service as well as the communication and dealing with the customer.
Advisor’s Decision-making PowersThe decision-making powers granted to the consulting company.

How does the advisory process work?

Every company is different and therefore there are no standard concepts that work. For this reason, project ideas and consulting focuses are based on the real company and not on ideal ideas. The priorities of the company are very important in a management consultancy; therefore, it is necessary that the consultant discusses the respective goals including the financial resources as well as the costs of the project.

Advice is divided into various processes, depending on the customer group and the respective industry, advice is usually given according to the following pattern, depending on the specific problems:

  • Creation of an analysis of the current situation and definition of the existing problems
  • Execution of the consulting service, including the conception, the implementation and the control of the implementation
  • Communication of facts to the customer with proposed solutions and explanation of procedures

How is the advisory organization organized?

Depending on the company to be advised, the respective focus, scope and type of advice, the consulting company gets a comprehensive picture of the company to be advised before starting work.

How is a consulting project organized?

First of all, the planned measures are explained to the customer. In this way, uncertainties and ambiguities can be cleared out of the way at an early stage. At the same time, the client receives a concrete idea of ​​what to expect in the near future. The content and timing will also be discussed.

Then the consultant determines who the project manager is and which stakeholders are affected. A solution concept is developed on the basis of the offer and the documentation provided by the customer. The goals are defined in the recording of the current situation.

What are the costs for consulting?

The fees for consulting companies are very different and there is a wide range. For example, a project manager costs between $ 1150 and $ 2275 per day. For IT consulting, the daily rates are between $ 950 and $ 1800. If strategy consulting is required, the use of a management consultant costs between $ 850 and $ 1975. Depending on the project, the costs can also be higher. These rates were determined by the Federal Association of Management Consultants in a survey of 203 consultants.

Is consulting worthwhile for my company?

Sometimes a company has opportunities and capacities that it cannot recognize itself without the help of a consulting company. But it can also be the case that suggestions from the company do not meet with approval from subordinates. A professional consultant sharpens the view for the essentials and can perhaps better explain the meaning of new processes to the employees.

In a consulting company with industry knowledge, recognition of employees is often easier. Sustainability has to be developed and does not come about by itself. This also means that a company constantly adapts to the market and reinvents itself. It depends on the power of persuasion and the quality of advice whether investments or possible process optimization remain just a thought model or are actually implemented promptly.

What are the advantages of external advice?

The advantages of professional consulting are obvious:

  1. Management consultants are real professionals who know the pitfalls very well and are specialists in their field
  2. An external consulting company sees the company and the project neutrally from the outside
  3. The company can focus on its actual corporate goal and does not need its own resources to solve a problem
  4. The problem is usually solved faster with a consulting company

What are the disadvantages?

Of course there are also some critical voices. The disadvantages include:

  1. Using a consulting company is expensive
  2. The external consultant has no in-house knowledge of the work processes and must first be trained
  3. The advisor is not always on site and can therefore sometimes not be contacted immediately
  4. Employees often have less trust in external companies

What alternatives to consulting are there?

A disadvantage is that an external consultant is usually involved in consulting. Many companies do not want this and consultancy does not offer an alternative either, as it is mostly about individual changes to the processes. An alternative to consulting are group processes that are carried out with the company’s own project teams.

Conclusion: Consulting offers many advantages, but also has some disadvantages

Consulting is a great solution if you like to rely on an external team of consultants, for example because you don’t have your own resources. However, a certain amount of preparatory work is required for the employment of a management consultant, as the consultant is not yet familiar with the company and its work processes.