For as long as anyone can remember the business model for professional services has remained the same. You start with professionals, people with specialist knowledge, training and skills. These people apply their knowledge and skills to solve problems, on projects, cases and consultations. Finally, you charge for these experts on a per hour basis, after all it’s their expertise that is solving the client’s problem.
The trouble is that technology is rapidly shaking up all industries. Professional services have been slow to take the hint and start to incorporate new technologies to augment their practice. Combine this with changing client expectations of perceived value and the old ways are starting to look shaky. Firms are increasingly spending more time justifying their hours than addressing the client’s core problems.
We think it’s time professional services let go of the past and embrace a new model.
Don’t get me wrong here, we’re not suggesting replacing lawyers with AI or engineers with drafting algorithms, the skills of expert practitioners are the very cornerstone of the model. We just want to unlock those skills for better business returns and happier clients.
There are three key planks in the new model:
Be customer value focused
Provide integrated client support
Seek remuneration based on the value you provide to the client not the number of hours spent doing the job
The chart below shows how businesses can transition from the current model as expert practitioners into the integrated collaborators your clients need you to be by realising the three key planks.
We know this works because it’s what we’ve done building Expede. We started as a boutique consultancy in the oil and gas industry but as our software developed, we’ve been able to realise our goal of being a trusted partner to our clients, regardless of their industry. Our software helps us realise our own and our customers business goals now and into the future.
We welcome enquiries from professional services businesses ready to make the transition and bring greater success to their own - and their clients' - businesses.