The consulting industry is highly competitive and many question what exactly it is that the leading businesses in the industry do differently.
The fact is that those firms leading the industry have figured out how to best utilise technology and ERP solutions in particular, to be more than just a support function – their technology now operates as a revenue generator.
They have developed superior processes and systems to harvest knowledge, manage quality, schedule resources and manage changes.
They focus on developing repeatable processes which they can manage in real-time, so they are better at estimating and ensuring projects are delivered on time and on budget.
So how can other consulting firms also reap the rewards technology has to offer and increase profit margins in business?
The first step is to prepare for growth
If your firm is serious about winning new work, then you need to have the resources available to deliver.
This includes the capacity to take on new projects, a flexible framework to adjust workloads and assignments, and tools to manage multiple projects and resources simultaneously.
Without this framework, your firm will be unable to support the growth and increase of profit when it occurs.
You need to be able to define your success metrics
This is a critical part of understanding your business growth – you need to know what you want to achieve and when you want to achieve it by.
All aspects of the business should also be considered and measured out including revenue growth, project schedule variance backlog and customer lifetime value.
You need to choose the right technology
Generic ERP solutions can capture data, but they are unable to assist with accurate assignments of resources on a time and material basis, as well as managing retainers and fixed price projects.
Instead, you need an ERP solution that has been built to flex in line with your changing client demands.
This is where Deltek comes in.
Our project based ERP solutions have been developed for all members of the project industry in consultation with in-house experts. As a result, using our solutions provides a number of key benefits that directly impact the bottom line.
Stronger financial management: A Deltek solution allows you to perform revenue reconciliation on a per-project basis, manage finances on a multi-company, multi-currency basis, implement billing and invoicing according to project milestones and deliverables, capture time and expenses at point of entry and ensures you are compliant at all times.
Better collaboration: The robust, multi-dimensional finance model enables users to undertake tasks seamlessly in real-time, ensuring Finance have control and providing Management with the ability to have insight across the entire business and make decisions in real-time opposed to retrospectively.
Better resource utilisation: Deltek ERP allows you to effectively assess capacity against future bids, identify under and over-utilised resources for better management, and amend workflows and processes to create new efficiencies and cost savings.
More accurate proposals: Mistakes at the project bid phase have major repercussions once work begins. Any underestimation of time or resources will immediately eat into profit margins. A serious underestimation could mean your business ends up out of pocket. Deltek’s project-based ERP helps you access your metrics, historical analysis and delivers a complete company overview that allows you to formulate more accurate proposals.
Improved reporting: Deltek reporting delivers granular analysis of each project, making it easy to see where deliverables are slipping and allowing for redeployment of resources to regain control. Deltek provides reporting functionality for users and their specific areas of the system, allowing everyone to identify new efficiency savings that will boost profit margins further.
Access anytime, anywhere: It’s important to have strong workflows and approval hierarchies that are clearly outlined on a platform everyone can access. Ensuring the correct employees approve certain aspects such as POs or invoices is essential and being able to do this on the go the through the mobile app is particularly useful, especially as it’s often senior members of staff conducting these approvals and they may need to work remotely.
Used in the right way, technology can give a consulting firm its edge in a highly competitive industry and increase profit margins in the business.
Deltek’s project-based ERP has been developed for all members of the project industry in consultation with our in-house industry experts, making us the smart choice for consultancies who want to watch their profit levels rise.
Learn more about Deltek’s ERP solutions