Last week we talked about how consulting firms today should be “going digital” and what that sort of transformation would entail. This week we’d like to offer a digital diagnostic case study from one of our top-tier consulting clients.
- Lost proposals due to long discovery time
- Clients expected immediate ROI
- IP trapped in excel documents
- Established the firm as an innovative differentiator
- Brought value to the client from day one
- Able to share and improve on IP all in one platform
A top-tier consulting firm was losing proposals due to long discovery time
The senior manager of HCM strategy at a top-tier consulting firm noticed that the organization was losing business because clients were reluctant to pay the firm to spend 6-8 weeks with 3-4 consultants gathering data just to get to know the client before offering initial high-level solutions. Instead, clients wanted the consultants to come in and start providing value and solutions from day one.
Additionally, the firm lacked an easy means of conducting repeatable business. Their diagnostics were trapped in excel documents scattered throughout the organization, and they were embarrassed to use their manual methods while advising clients to go digital.
The firm needed digital transformation in order to differentiate
In order to differentiate from competition and attract new business, the firm needed a way to accelerate the client discovery process, reduce the time to value for the client, and adopt a digital approach to creating and using content.
“[9Lenses] was a clear differentiator in helping us win our work.”
~ Senior Manager of HR Strategy
The firm turned to the 9Lenses digital consulting platform as a solution because it allowed them to use a differentiated, digital approach to creating, deploying, reusing, and improving on their IP, increasing efficiency and reducing the time needed for discovery. Client stakeholders were interviewed digitally on their own time, and IP was stored on a digital platform. The firm built a proposal around the 9Lenses solution while bidding at a net new client.
9Lenses was the key differentiator in winning a competitive bid with a new client
The client embraced the idea of digital engagement through 9Lenses, and the firm won the bid. The firm then built their diagnostic on the 9Lenses platform and ran it on the client, targeting 140 people across the globe in order to gain a thorough understanding of the client before the kick-off. In two weeks, they received a 76% response rate and collected detailed quantitative and qualitative data that identified pain points and immediate focus areas for the client. Using 9Lenses, the firm was able to deliver value to the client from the first day.
Additionally, the firm was positioned to continue business with the client. When the client saw the results, they wanted to run the interview on an additional population of 400 stakeholders, and the firm was able to do so immediately with no additional effort. Because their IP was housed in the platform, the firm was set to run the same engagement over again in order to capture additional insight or benchmark progress for the client. As a result of the value the firm brought to the client, the initial win turned into a $3M follow-on engagement.
With 9Lenses, the firm improved margins by accomplishing more work in less time
Because the 9Lenses platform enabled the firm to accelerate client discovery, the time needed to learn the client’s business was reduced from eight to three weeks, and fewer analysts were required. As a result, the firm was able to be more profitable, doing more work with fewer resources and raising its margins by 10%.
The firm used 9Lenses digital diagnostic platform to create a reusable asset to reinforce their brand
Given the client’s reaction and the differentiation that the 9Lenses platform provided, the firm decided to invest further. They set up a Center of Excellence to begin housing all IP on the 9Lenses platform instead of in individual spreadsheets and hard drives, rendering it secure and easily available to anyone in the firm so that IP was never duplicated or lost. Moreover, the firm gained the ability to improve on their IP over time, identifying the best questions and diagnostics to address client problems.
“Let’s expand that digital boundary so that we start doing our work in a digital way, just like we’re telling our clients to do work in a digital way. We need to practice what we consult.”
~ Senior Manager of HR Strategy
With 9Lenses, the firm made their IP a reusable asset that reinforced the brand. After the first engagement, they ran the same diagnostic on two other clients and began expanding into other practices. The 9Lenses platform allowed them to have a whole new conversation with clients, introducing a subscription model that allowed the firm to return to the client to measure progress and create recurring revenue streams.
With 9Lenses, the firm was able to achieve a new business model based around digital functionality that created a distinct point of differentiation, grew margins, brought huge value to the client, and promoted efficiency and security of data management throughout the firm.