“For sophisticated users of consulting services, we deliver McKinsey, Bain and BCG-quality at one-third the price”
Corporate groups and private equity firms have been traditional buyers of McKinsey, Bain, and The Boston Consulting Group (BCG) who provide valuable insights and support. However, many clients are facing increasing demands while their budgets are frozen or being cut. There are many projects that are six to eight weeks in duration and only require small case teams of two to four people. While clients appreciate the quality of output by these strategy firms, few of them have budgets that can sustain paying on a continuous basis the premium rates charged by these firms. This is where the right consulting partner can fill the gap and add significant value.
The Traditional Service Delivery Model
The traditional consulting model works very well on large-scale projects. On these type of projects, the traditional value proposition has been the following:
- A client retains an industry partner who has 20 to 25 years experience in an industry who, besides sharing insights from working on past projects with competitors, provides access to his or her industry network
- The firm will say that it will will bring unique, intellectual assets to the engagement
- There is a credentialization or halo effect by having the logo of one of these firms on a deliverable that is being presented to a Board of Directors, Management Board, or Loan Syndicate
Unfortunately, these benefits are expensive and are not adjusted for the size of a project. Most of the heavy-lifting for the projects is done by smart people who are a few years out of a top MBA program or a highly-ranked undergrad program. The industry partner adds insights near the end of the project. The result is that clients will typically pay a mid-five figure amount each week for a case team of three people from these strategy firms.
Our Service Delivery Model
We have refined a unique service delivery model, called McBain-lite, for clients that delivers intellectual leverage for projects that are on the revenue-side of the income statement or have data as the primary ingredient. When clients are evaluating the right consulting partner for projects that are six to eight weeks in duration and require small case teams of two to four people, they should ask themselves three questions:
- How often will they see the industry partner with 20+ years experience during the project?
- What are the intellectual assets that the firm will be bringing to the project or will it be essentially the work product of the case team?
- How important is it to have a McKinsey or BCG logo on the final deliverable?
If the answers to the above questions are “maybe once or twice”, “none really” and “not important” respectively, then we may be the right delivery partner for you especially if there is no need to have a case team onsite for the entire duration of the project.
Our service delivery model pulls down on a couple of cost levers to deliver strategy consulting resources at budget-friendly rates without sacrificing project quality. First, we pass back the savings of not paying the large firm overheads nor paying the carrying costs of the rarely seen industry partner. Second, the client saves on project fees by having the case team working virtually for most of the project. By pulling down on these two cost levers, sophisticated users of consulting services get case teams that have similar experiences and skillsets as the ones provided by the brand-name firms but at one third the price.