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Management Consulting

Management consultants are up-to-date on the latest business practices.

A management consultant assesses the business. [©Jupiter Images, 2010]
©Jupiter Images, 2010
A management consultant assesses the business.

Management Consulting

As businesses grow, they turn to management consulting firms to help them remain competitive in their respective markets. Management consultants analyze businesses and propose new ways to improve a company's structure, improve efficiency and increase profits.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, a management consultant helps a business define and achieve its goals. Independent professionals who are hired for a fee, management consultants analyze the business, identify problem areas within and suggest possible solutions. They often help the company implement these new changes.

When considering management consulting, businesses may choose from either a sole proprietor or a consulting firm. Although they can choose generalists, specialists are available in a variety of areas:

  • Research and development
  • Financial planning and control
  • Human resources management
  • Labor relations
  • Manufacturing
  • Wage and salary administration
  • Organizational planning and development
  • Physical distribution
  • Sales and marketing
  • Administration
  • Information technology
  • Incentive compensation
  • Strategic and business planning

Management consultants investigate problems by analyzing data such as annual reviews, number of employees or company expenses. They may also interview management and other employees while observing their daily routines.

After compiling relevant data, management consultants develop solutions to the problems and make recommendations to the company. After the company receives the recommendations, it decides whether to follow them.

Types of Services Provided by Management Consulting

Some management consulting firms offer training courses and seminars on increasing workplace efficiency, explains Management Consulting Services (MCS). Management consulting firms that specialize in information technology may help companies move their internal data to a new infrastructure. Large corporations that have acquired new departments may require management consultants to help streamline operations and identify duplicate or unnecessary jobs. A small company that experiences rapid growth may wish to hire a management consulting firm that specializes in inventory management.

Increasing profits and improving efficiency remain at the top of the list of services provided by management consulting firms. Services that help businesses achieve these goals include:

  • Reviewing or developing the annual budget
  • Reviewing the format of financial statements
  • Reviewing cash flow management reports
  • Changing current performance evaluations
  • Reviewing or developing an annual profit plan
  • Defining an annual revenue potential and target
  • Preparing a cost analysis
  • Establishing a competitive billing rate structure
  • Evaluating a company's organizational structure
  • Analyzing internal operations
  • Reviewing goals and objectives
  • Assessing a company's strengths and weaknesses
  • Building interpersonal relationships and improving teamwork
  • Budgeting project fees
  • Cost accounting on projects
  • Drafting or reviewing policy and procedure manuals
  • Reviewing benefits and employee perks programs
  • Offering career development programs
  • Reviewing salaries and incentive compensation


Benefits of Management Consulting

In times of economic crisis, it's incredibly important for companies to streamline operations while maximizing profit. Even in the best of economic times, the business world is very competitive and many companies aren't as skilled at managing their operations as they would like to be. Even top-rated companies could benefit from an objective analysis and recommendation.

The Institute of Management Consultants recommends hiring a Certified Management Consultant (CMC) who can come to your company and present a workshop or seminar that will suit the company's specific needs. The Association of Management Consulting Firms has a large number of qualified members to choose from.

In many established corporations, managers and executives are unfamiliar with contemporary management techniques. Because of this, they limit themselves in an attempt to meet their goals in an ever-changing business culture. Management consultants have a wealth of experience, knowledge and business acumen and are aware of evolving customer interests. Their review of a company, combined with their savvy knowledge, can help the company create a sharper image in its overall message and goals.

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