How Consulting Engineers Can Take A Long-Term Approach To Growth
Finding solutions to big problems is all part of being an engineer.
But as 2016 unfolds, you'll no doubt also have your own idiosyncratic business challenges to overcome.
Demand for your services will be on the increase. But is the reality of this as good as it sounds?
Being able to pick and choose who you work with may sound like the stuff dreams are made of. Yet, in reality, crafting a portfolio of profitable business that will sustain growth into the long-term requires a bullet-proof plan.
Recognising good opportunity
For any busy firm, an enterprise resource planning system (ERP) is a fundamental asset when it comes to "sorting the wheat from the chaff".
Using it to identify the projects that have performed well for your firm in the past means you can go after the same type of business again in the future.
Furthermore, such a system will play a central role in helping you grow your business organically. By tapping into your firm's financial data, it will reveal the clients that pay on time and turn the most profit. Which in turn will help with prioritising projects and clients.
Attracting the best talent
Yet, getting choosy over clients is not the only challenge engineering firms will face if they are looking for sustainable growth this year.
Finding the people you need to take your firm into the future is unlikely to be easy. It will continue to be a employee's market in engineering in 2016 and you're likely to have to compete rigorously with your competitors to get the right talent on board to take your firm in the direction you want it to go.
So how can technology help your firm hire and retain the people and resources you need?
Margins for investment
A sound technological platform is essential for keeping a tight control on costs, monitoring existing staff progress and productivity, keeping projects on track and maximising profit margins wherever possible.
Increasing revenue in this way will bolster the financial health of your firm and help raise the capital you need to invest in your people. This will be imperative for setting attractive yet sustainable salaries, funding training and even hiring in outside help for when things really get exciting.
Time to review
With increasing business activity on the cards for 2016, now could be a great time for reviewing your firm's technological capabilities.
The right system will play a central role in winning the best business and rallying the experts you need for a long-term and sustainable future, well beyond 2016.
Find out more about the trends and challenges in the Consulting Engineering industry and how to make 2016 your firm's year for growth in our Consulting Engineering Industry Snapshot 2016.