Today, traditional work practices like hiring full time employees has become a huge challenge. For tons of reasons, companies have now felt the need to hire consultants rather than hiring full time additional staff members. In fact, management consulting is a field with an estimated $255 billion industry globally spreading in over 750,000 consulting firms
The term consultant is commonly used to define both employees and freelancers of consulting firms from different industries, such as Human Resources (HR), Information Technology (IT), operations, strategy, and finance. But, why do companies hire consulting firms? There are varied reasons why they tend to do so and some of these are the following:
They need an outside eye
Have you encountered a time when you are dealing with a specific issue in your life? And then you turn to your family and friends for suggestions and opinions? Most companies do this too especially when there’s a tough decision involved.
Companies usually possess different perspectives in solving the issues that they are facing. However, they want to make sure that each move they make is valid and correct. For this reason, they turn to consulting firms. Consultants come in to provide an opinion. But, it won’t just be your ordinary opinion. Consulting firms have worked with various companies and may have encountered these problems in the past.
They can produce a reliable perspective using their experiences as their basis. They tend to give innovative insights and ideas for possible changes that most companies won’t see on their own using their limited capabilities.
They need extra manpower
Companies need to solve even the most complicated problems and this is really vital for their survival. However, not all companies are able to provide the manpower needed to focus on their problems. These problems and issues are usually stacking up and may continue to accumulate if no action is done.
Companies need to maintain their focus on their day to day tasks while accommodating new projects. In the end, they came short and may only prioritize the core job responsibilities. The ability to fill in the gaps is very crucial for every company. Otherwise, companies might lose their financial stability.
For situations like this, consulting firms basically serve as the company’s temporary but highly skilled staff. Consultants don’t have to be full time employees in a certain company. So it is wiser and more practical to hire them than someone new. Consulting firms usually switch around among different companies which means they have fast learning adaptability. Onboarding is not even an issue for them too.
Companies won’t need to pull out their employees from their actual tasks when they hire staff from consulting firms.
They need expertise
One of the major reasons why companies hire consulting firms is because they need someone who possess expertise on a certain area. Regular employees might not be familiar with it. Consulting firms have varied skills perfect for accommodating one-off projects without the need to be hired full time.
Engaging with a consulting firm gives them access to professionals that possess the skills they needed for their company. Consulting firms serve as an on-the-go experts to help companies in their difficult situations involving HR issues, rolling out of a new product, crisis management, and others.
They want someone capable to teach
Consultants have various skill sets. Companies hire them to educate and teach their staff. Whether it is introducing a new approach on dealing with customers, updating the latest software, or implementing new policies of a certain department, a consultant might come in handy. They serve as coaches to train their existing and even the new staff members.
This will be an advantage for companies because it will save them from hiring another staff. Instead, they allow consulting firms to train their current employees in various areas. This will be an added value and competency to their existing employees as well.
They need to save money
Hiring full time staff and employees need a good amount of financial commitment. The company must be able to pay their salaries and related benefits. This won’t be the best option for many, especially for seasonal companies and businesses. Companies need to follow strict rules and regulations from the Department of Labor. They may be able to bring in full time employees but could end up having them laid off.
So, it will be less legally challenging yet cost efficient alternative to hire people from consulting firms. They can be hired and asked to work only for a certain time period. They can also work on an hourly basis. This way, companies can hire an expert without having to pay expensive compensation costs.
They need a safe zone
There are times when businesses are working out on a controversial project or a challenging task. It can become difficult for them to make wise decisions. They need to take necessary actions without being wrapped up in politics or economic struggles. So, they tend to hire consulting firms to provide an unbiased perspective and do the work for them.
In the movie, Up in the Air featuring George Clooney, there was an instance when he was hired by his clients to go all over the country to conduct employment terminations. Just like in that movie, companies and businesses might undergo major restructurings. So, they tend to hire external parties such as those from top consulting firms in DC to handle these types of tasks.
They need to play it safe so it won’t cause a backlash to the company. A consulting firm is indeed a safe zone for businesses when they are in this kind of situation.
Consulting firms truly provide support to companies in many ways. Listed above are just some of the biggest reasons why people in business must be hiring consultants. It is extremely vital to evaluate if your organization benefits from an on-the-go expert or if you really need to expand manpower. You might want to consider these reasons to make a wise judgment for the betterment of your company.