The Fortune 500 and Fortune 1000 have long benefited from big consulting and outsourcing firms. At Valenta our mission is to provide the same types of services to mid-sized and small business. We aim to do this so that SMB companies can compete globally and are not left behind as our world and today’s business are fully transformed and become part of a new Information Age and Information Economy.
There are many benefits of consulting, and many benefits of staff augmentation. SMBs deserve to leverage these business tools just as much as large Fortune 1000 companies. In this article we will describe the different types of consulting and outsourcing firms, we will describe the services they provide, and we will also discuss the Valenta approach to consulting and staff augmentation.
Types of Consulting and Outsourcing Firms
The big time consulting and outsourcing firms primarily serve the Fortune 1000. These firms are admirable companies and have driven innovation and efficiency gains wherever they go. They are role models for all companies in the space. Tier-1 companies include the likes of McKinsey, Boston Consulting, Bain, Accenture, Deloitte, EY, and KPMG. The services of these firms also typically come with a hefty price tag and that is why they have been exclusively available to the Fortune 1000. In addition to giant public companies, large private equity entities have also used the big consulting firms.
The huge consulting and outsourcing companies mentioned above plus the other large firms that support the Fortune 1000 and large private equity typically fall into four categories. Those four include Strategy Consulting, Implementation Consulting, Functional Specialists, and Industry Specialists. McKinsey, Boston Consulting, and Bain are examples of companies that started as and are still primarily strategy consultants.
They provide the answer to a problem or develop a strategy but typically do not implement a recommended solution. Although increasingly McKinsey, Boston Consulting, and Bain are starting to move downstream and offer implementation. There are now relatively few strategy only firms. Accenture and Deloitte are excellent examples of classical implementation firms. These two companies along with their accounting centric cousins EY and KPMG were the first to offer outsourcing and offshoring in a big way. Deloitte, Accenture, EY, and KPMG are increasingly moving upstream and offering strategy consulting as well.
Functional Specialists and Industry Specialists is an area that is much more fragmented. There is a large number of companies in this area that only focus on large enterprises and the Fortune 1000. When it comes to SMBs there are many small companies that only focus on one type of solution, or only implementing technology from one large vendor (like Salesforce for example). New technology areas also lead to new firms offering services.
This is particularly true when it comes to digital transformation and AI. However, when it comes to all types of consulting and outsourcing companies whether they are strategy consultants, implementation firms, functional specialists, or industry specialists, SMBs have been left out. Boutique private equity firms have been left out as well. At Valenta our goal is to change that … but more on that later. There are tons of gains and efficiencies to be had and many benefits of consulting and benefits of digital transformation that can transform today’s SMBs.
What Does a Consulting & Outsourcing Firm Do?
The answer to the question of what a consulting and outsourcing firm does is very straightforward. They help solve problems. Sometimes those problems are known, and a company will come in to map out and implement a strategy to address them. Many times, they are unknown, and a company will come in and study different aspects a of a business, offer advice, and then potentially provide implementation.
Business optimization first and foremost is what is being offered with consulting and is the primary benefit of consulting firms. Digital transformation is increasingly something that consulting firms offer. Digitally automating workflows in client back offices can lead to dramatic cost savings and efficiencies. Leveraging the benefits of digital transformation is one more reason that consulting firms are engaged and a service they provide to their clients. Implementation firms will deliver on all kinds of technology implementation. In addition to digital transformation technology like RPA, IPA, and Conversational AI they also work on large ERP implementations and other projects.
Outsourcing and offshoring are other services that companies offer. When a company is looking for business optimization solutions it often makes sense to use staff augmentation for non-core back office tasks so that onshore staff can focus on the core business. Putting the people who are closest to the customers and closest to where strategy needs to be developed fully focused on those roles is perhaps the biggest benefit of staff augmentation. Cost savings can indeed be dramatic but the ability to have the right people in the right roles is usually the biggest reason to leverage staff augmentation.
One final service consulting firms typically provide is training. This training can be about business productivity tools, business process methodology like Six Sigma, or any number of things. Based on all this it is no surprise that the main service offerings of Valenta is business optimization consulting, digital transformation, staff augmentation and training.
Why Engage with a Consulting & Outsourcing Firm & What does it Look Like?
The Fortune 1000 and big private equity entities engage with large consulting and outsourcing firms for a variety of reasons. Probably the biggest reason they contract with these firms is to obtain specific expertise that does not exist in house. Another reason they seek them out is to provide objective analysis and outside unbiased fresh perspective. More simply stated, consulting and outsourcing firms provide on-demand brain power.
When it comes to large firms typically the Fortune 1000 engages in multi quarter and typically annual expensive engagements to study and provide reports on a particular problem or issue. Most engagements for the big firms are at least one million dollars. This price tag is needed to support the army of staff that is put on projects. This price tag is also the reason these services have been out of reach for SMB clients.
Staff Augmentation with a big consulting firm is not like hiring someone from Upwork or Fiverr. While going to Upwork for a small job or gig might be an OK strategy it is not good for the long haul and is not scalable at all. When outsourcing with the big consulting and outsourcing firms large teams of well trained and educated personnel are provided in well-equipped service centers.
Management layers for staff and the redundancy of roles etc. is also provided. Outsourcing with the large firms is no small matter and it is done well. Offshore staff when provided by large consulting firms is less expensive than hiring workers on shore by the Fortune 1000, but still out of the reach of mid-sized companies and small businesses. Clearly there are many benefits of staff augmentation just like there are numerous benefits of digital transformation. Making these services affordable is our goal here at Valenta, and that leads us to our next topic …
The Valenta Approach to Consulting and Staff Augmentation
At Valenta, our service offering looks most like those of Accenture and Deloitte, but on a smaller and more affordable scale, and with a focus on SMB clients. As mentioned above, the main service offerings of Valenta are business optimization consulting, digital transformation, staff augmentation and training. Unlike McKinsey, Boston Consulting, Bain, Accenture, Deloitte, EY, and KPMG we focus on SMB and boutique private equity only. Unlike McKinsey, Boston Consulting, and Bain we do strategy plus implementation. Also, instead of long term retainers supporting a small army of staff, our engagements are project driven and have specific goals.
Our managing partners all have different domain and industry expertise, and we bring in the right partners to serve our clients. Our clients do not get an army of staff to address their engagements, instead they get a special forces team. Our engagement teams consist of local Managing Partners and Managing Directors who are partners in our business. They also include local consultants who are often also Managing Partners plus offshore consultants and technical experts we have hired directly from large firms like Accenture, Deloitte, EY, and KPMG. Our approach is to offer senior and invested partners who are in the same cities as our clients and the same offshore support you would find with a large company.
We offer the same type of staff in service centers with management layers and redundancy that is common in large outsourcers. Instead of outsourcing entire large departments we can outsource a single person, a couple, a few, or several. We can also provide entire departments as needed. We provide nearly every role that may be needed by SMB clients. We have a multitude of back office roles available for contract to support, Accounting, Finance, Billing, HR, Sales, Marketing, IT, and Operations.
Finally, when it comes to technology, we implement the same types of digital transformation projects as the Tier 1 firms. We have deployed numerous RPA, IPA and Conversational AI projects and we work with all the leading vendors in these areas. We also provide ERP implementations and do many CRM roll outs for our clients. Our engagements are in shorter duration than the large consulting firms and we are project driven. In the areas of digital transformation and Conversational AI we conduct feasibility and ROI evaluations up front to ensure that every project pays for itself. In summary, we deliver the benefits of consulting, staff augmentation and digital transformation cost effectively and efficiently.
Want to Learn More?
Our process consulting and digital transformation services are designed to enhance your business efficiencies and provide a competitive advantage. Everything we do at Valenta is about helping companies focus on and have time for what they do best and their core mission. Valenta is a consulting business at its core. Our consulting conversations lead to discussions where we can provide 1) staff augmentation, 2) software integration, 3) digital automation and transformation and finally 4) learning and training programs.
Many of the consulting engagements we work on include business process and policy development, risk control and management, organizational structure planning, business continuity, MIS/IT/software communication-design and integration, training and development programs, program and project management, content creation, web development, digital transformation, and more. Some of the outsourcing jobs we fill include bookkeeping, accountants, billing & back office admins, virtual assistants, paralegals, paraplanners, medical and dental RCM assistants, financial crime personnel, project managers, IT staff, managed IT, software developers, software administrators, business development, digital marketing, AI and machine learning specialists, data analysts and scientists, IT security analysts, and much more …
Please contact us for a Free Consultation at any time.