What is Asset Based Consulting?

Shannon M October 22, 2019
What is Assed Based Consulting?

What is Asset Based Consulting, this growing trend in consulting?

By posting an insolent growth rate of 12% last year, the council confirms its good health and sector leaders are enthusiastic about the future of their industry.

But consulting is constantly evolving and is not spared from the technological transformations which are profoundly changing society and the world of work. A recent trend is starting to gain ground in consulting: Asset Based Consulting.

What is Asset Based Consulting? Here is a summary of this new form of advice and the advantages it brings to clients.

1. Sell tailor-made

Wanting to sell a packaged product because it has already been successfully created and executed can work when the requests are always very similar: an SEO audit of a website or specific training for example. But that’s not always what’s right for a client. The simplest way to sell a consulting engagement is to offer the service that the client really, truly and completely needs.

Selling a project is not like selling a product that has non-modifiable functionalities; on the contrary, a consulting mission can be completely adapted to the client's needs. It is therefore necessary to listen at length and actively to the issues, discuss the project, and understand the client's objective in depth, before offering them the service they really want. In a word, tailor-made!

What is Asset Based Consulting?

Before going into detail about the concept of Asset Based Consulting, it must first be precisely defined. Asset Based Consulting is a category of consulting in which tools and products represent the main asset of the offer, in opposition to the human capital generally highlighted in traditional consulting offers.

The first to develop this new form of consulting were the firms McKinsey, KPMG and BCG. In Asset Based Consulting, it is the intellectual property contained in products and technologies that is sold. While traditionally it is the talents of consulting companies that are offered, here it is the solutions and tools that will be offered to respond to client problems.

The objective is to create products capable of doing what consultants may be required to do in traditional consulting missions and to allow the client to reuse this product. KPMG, for example, has implemented financial advisory tools which replace certain audit missions that they tended to carry out themselves until then. Thanks to artificial intelligence, their tools analyze clients' accounting data and provide them with analyzes and advice on this basis.

Customers have access to this tool whenever they want and can benefit from real-time analytics. This tool that KPMG sells by subscription is much less expensive for its clients while providing them value throughout the year.

Asset Based Consulting does not call into question traditional consulting, because many works cannot be carried out by technologies, even with the most powerful artificial intelligence, but it is an important trend in the consulting sector and this one which must be taken very seriously by the management teams of consulting firms. Many startups are starting to offer solutions capable of analyzing a large amount of data and providing information to their clients for much lower amounts than consulting missions.

It is important that consulting firms start to develop tools to automate certain repetitive tasks that their teams carry out, and reorient their value proposition towards the part of recommendations and actions that artificial intelligence cannot carry out. For example, PwC launched its Cloud Transformation development department a few years ago, which offers all kinds of automated solutions to its clients while retaining strategic plan execution missions where humans are very important.

The advantages of Asset Based Consulting

1. Mastering geographic challenges

While most consulting projects require traveling to the client to fully understand the client's issues and have a complete view of the situation, Asset Based Consulting makes it possible to sell a very “scalable” solution. : once developed, it generally requires only minimal adjustments to be deployed to the customer and provide value. Installation and management can be carried out remotely, as can training and support for the customer.

2. Responses to new customer issues

Companies have increasingly easy access to information on their competitors, their market and its developments thanks to the content offerings that have flourished in recent years (CB Insight, Forrester, etc.). The information, until now the preserve of the council, is therefore called into question. Customers have new expectations for which they hope to measure ROI. The solutions that come from Asset Based Consulting make it easier to calculate and monitor this ROI.

3. The response to a new form of request

Customers are increasingly expecting “self-service” offers. This need for independence strengthens as software solutions multiply and become more intelligent. Customers now want the right information, at the right time, at the right price. Companies have less patience for long transformation projects, deployments over several months, etc. As with our society in general, immediate and repeated consumption is preferred to waiting for a more exhaustive but long-term result.

Asset Based Consulting is not just a trend in consulting, it is profoundly changing the entire consulting industry because it meets strong demand from traditional consulting clients. Consulting firms that are quickly taking the lead in this transformation still have time to differentiate themselves and take advantage of it because the offering remains in its infancy.