For the study, Forbes Insights surveyed 169 senior executives based in the U.S. and U.K., with a combination of various C-suite and director positions, and conducted in-depth interviews with a handful of executives who successfully manage relationships with consultants. While at the surface, most consulting projects are considered successful, a deeper analysis reveals cracks in this pretty picture:
- Only half of respondents used the same consultancy again, despite the fact that 92% of executives say the consulting project was successful. This exposes a serious dichotomy between expressed satisfaction and willingness to rehire the same firm.
- Defining and managing the project and its scope was among the most significant challenges for executives. Although the outset of the project is critical to success, just over half (58%) of executives worked with consulting firms on the project's strategic direction before starting work.
- Change management capabilities are lacking, as many consulting firms deliver a PowerPoint presentation and leave the execution to the client. The survey revealed that communicating with internal teams and management is among the top five challenges for consulting firms.
- Companies don't know how to define success for strategic projects, as is revealed by their preferred method of payment. Most companies (59%) prefer to pay without taking results into consideration, whether based on a flat fee or hourly charges.
Download the full report to view the results of the study.