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Consulting Best Practices

Hiring business consultants can mean the difference between success and failure for your company. We'll go through the good, better, and best practices for working with your consultants.

Ensuring a good Return On Investment on Consultants

Consulting Best Practices Articles

Consulting services have one thing in common – they are a considerable investment for a business. Whether it is a marketing, strategy, operations, or risk management consultant, the consulting firm needs to prove its worth. However, proving a return on investment is difficult. Most companies find it hard to measure the ROI of a consultant.

Five Ways to Get Good ROI on Consultants

Hiring a consultant for your company could be the key to expanding your company and earning higher profits. However, there is a risk. Will you receive the return on investment in terms of time and money from hiring a consultant? Below are five ways that you can improve your ROI for consultants.

1.  Choose the Best Structure for the Consulting Fee

Different consultants have different structures for their consulting fees. About a quarter of consultants charge hourly fees for their services. Almost one-half of consultants base their fees by the project. A small percentage of consultants charge daily rates for their services.

Most clients prefer paying a consultant by the project because they are focused on a clear ROI for consulting services. However, before you agree to a fee based on the project, make sure that the project's parameters are clearly defined and your expectations for results.

2.  Be Prepared to Share Information

Consultants must have information about your company to perform their services. Open communication between you and the consultant can increase the ROI of hiring a consultant.

Use detailed and specific confidentiality agreements to ensure that the consultant cannot use any information you disclose or is gathered during their work.

3.  Hire the Right Consultant for the Job

Knowing what type of consultant you need to accomplish your goals can be confusing.

For example, if you want to work on a strategic plan for your company, do you need a risk consultant in addition to a strategic planning consultant? Does a strategic planning consultant also cover strategic risk planning? You hire the right consultant for the job by asking lots of questions before hiring the consultant.

In addition to asking questions about the services the consultant provides, you should also ask questions about:

  • Experience

  • Communication style

  • Collaboration techniques

  • How they get buy-in?

  • Whom they've worked with in the past?

  • Testimonials and references


By asking questions, you can find the right consultant for you and increase your return on investment for consultant services.

4.  Be Clear About What You Want to Accomplish

A consultant may assist you in identifying and defining your goals or objectives. However, you need to have an idea of what you want to accomplish if you expect a high ROI from hiring a consultant.

Additionally, ask the consultant how they measure ROI for a job. Discussing benchmarks and ROI can help you define what you expect to accomplish by hiring the consultant.

In addition to tangible achievements, it also helps to understand the intangible value of working with a consultant. Intangible value can include reducing stress levels and breaking through roadblocks, or overcoming hurdles that you may not have known existed.

5.  Trust Your Consultant

This step could be the most challenging step in the process. Once you hire a consultant, you need to trust the consultant has the experience and knowledge necessary to perform the job. Unless the consultant goes far off in another direction, all the process to play through until the end.

Hiring a consultant for your company can be a risky prospect. However, if you take the time to choose the best consultant for the job and set detailed parameters and clearly defined goals, you can reduce the risk and improve ROI for consultants.

Experience the BFS Difference!

We think you'll find us much different than other consultants you’ve worked with. We combine our facilitation skills with a deep understanding of strategy design and risk identification, enabling us to see trends and drivers within your organization's designs and executes strategy; our unique perspective helps to identify blind spots that are slowing you down.

Using our Essential Strategy approach, we simplify the planning process, quieting the noise to help you create greater alignment up, down, and across the organization – we know it works because our clients tell us so!

Are you interested in breaking up the status quo – taking your organization to the next level?


Contact Erin to see if you might be a good match for your next planning event.

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NAICS: 541611, 541618  |  EIN: 47-4865088  |  DUNS: 080287863  |  Cage Code: 7N2T5


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