A consultancy business is reliant on its people and this makes it challenging to scale: good people need to be found and there’s only so many billable hours a week that even the most overworked consultant can achieve. Becoming more profitable – achieving more with less – is a key performance indicator for any consultancy.
The goal to increasing profitability for a crisis consultancy is:
- Find opportunities to become more productive
- Reduce costs
- Sell something other than labour
Becoming more productive
Consultants can become more productive in several ways:
- Reduce the time it takes to accomplish a task
- “Deskill” or compartmentalize a task so that less experienced staff are able to conduct the task or parts of it.
Crisis training software like TeamXp helps in both these regards.
First, a computer-based crisis simulation can be re-run over and over without the printing and paper handling associated with powerpoint/excel-based so that’s time saved from re-use and from being more productive in the training execution.
Second, having the client sign-off on the scenario and then reporting back after the exercise can take time going back and forth and to assemble the report and finding the evidence (if there is any that’s not purely observational). TeamXp simplifies this by being able to export its scenario to an auto-generated Word document that can be easily tweaked and enhanced. Quantitative and qualitative data is also exported to the report allowing consultants to focus on the insights and not the assembly.
Third, exercises can be designed so that the facilitator need have no or little familiarity with the running scenario meaning less experienced staff and fewer staff can run everything. This is achieved with (a) automation – allowing the scenario to run to a set schedule (although it can be paused and accelerated as necessary) and (b) prompting the facilitator what to do next and what’s happening in the scenario. This is incredibly helpful for large international consultancies because an exercise designed in London can be shared around the world for consultants to run locally.
Reduced costs can mean a lower bill for the client and can make the difference between a job going ahead or not.
Travel and accommodation costs can form as much as 80% the cost of a training exercise – and that’s all “waste” in the sense that it serves little positive contribution to the training outcomes. In the movie business the mantra is to “maximize the money on the screen” meaning spend the budget on things the audience will notice.
TeamXp makes it possible to run exercises where players are distributed around the world – removing the travel and accommodation expenses to allow more budget to go on the things that matter most to the client.
Selling something other than labour
Computer-based crisis simulations allow consultancies to leverage their intellectual property and build online exercises that clients pay to run by themselves. This could be a facilitated exercise run by the client with key members of their crisis team or could be completely automated as a solo-player exercise accessible by anyone in the company.
Even if the client runs the exercise itself, data from the exercise can be made available to the consultancy meaning that insights – potentially the most valuable part of the consultancy service – can be provided without devoting time and expense to the operational issues of running the exercise.
Recent studies have shown that few consultancies believe they’re keeping pace with client expectations with regards to the application of technology to their issues. This needn’t require huge investment of time or money to fix.
In fact, a rather modest investment in crisis simulation software, will allow you to offer immersive realistic exercises and make you more competitive with innovative crisis consultants like Deloitte and NYA Risk who are already transforming their service offering with Conducttr’s TeamXp.
featured image https://pixabay.com/en/horse-herd-dust-nature-wild-430441/
How to Run a Crisis Exercise When Your Team is Scattered Across the World
Large organizations have the need to train staff across the world but bringing them...