What do big consultancy companies actually do?


Part of me would love to work for one given the high salaries, but what do they *actually do*? Why do they get so much money? And do you need to be an accountant to work for one?

In: 1

my dad is a medical software consultant and has been for the past 25 years. basically he goes into hospitals and pitches his company’s processors and software, then hopes that the hospitals think that they can’t live another day without it and he sells it to them.

he doesn’t work on the sales end, he works on the formulation and “pitch” end. ex. he worked with epic to design a hipaa-compliant cloud network, then sold the concept vs. the actual product.

it’s very “six sigma,” if you are familiar.

he is a fucking powerpoint black belt master.

A consultant does whatever the customer wants them to do. The cost of a consultant does not quite match the salary of the same consultant though. All the burden of taxes, paid vacation, health care, pensions, personal equipment, training, certifications, periods without contracts, etc. is all on the consultant company. So the difference between hiring a consultant and hiring a salaried person is not that great. What you pay extra goes to the sales team and the shareholders of the consultant company, not so much to the salary of the consultant.

You have consultants in almost any trade. However it is more common in areas where you work in shorter duration projects or where the work does not take full time. It is generally more efficient to have an expert move between companies applying their expertise at all of them rather then staying at one company where their expertise only applies to a small part of their work and the other work require less skills.

As you mention accounting is one of these areas. A company typically does accounting at the end of the month and then a big project once a year. And accountants are highly skilled people with lots of training and certifications and require constant upkeep with new tax rules and regulations. So a single consulting accountant might help out ten businesses all at once. But you also have business consultants who help improve the efficiency of the company when needed, again a highly skilled job which does not take up much time at each company. There are also lots of engineering consultants who work on development projects for various companies, both civil engineers, mechanical engineers and computer engineers. If you can think of a job there are consultants specialising in that job. There are vague lines between consultant companies and temp agencies.

At the places i have worked, consultants are usaly brought in by middle management when things are going down the toilet, he is officaly there to help and come up with new ideas (or do the bosses jobs) in realety they are the scapegoats so that when finaly (and inadvitably due to previous incompetence) things goes tits up the middle management can say IT WAS HIM, HE RUINED EVERYTHING.

They might also be uses for other things… I guess.

Depends on the company. Think of a consultant as a highly skilled temp worker in various fields. They get paid a lot because they aren’t generally getting benefits, so the hourly rate is normally higher than if you were a full-time employee.

A company will have a project that will take 6 months, but after that, they won’t have need for the extra employees, so rather than spending the time vetting, and interviewing, doing all the benefits stuff, they call a consulting company, say I need 2 people that have ‘X’ skills, for 6 months. The consulting company will offer the contract to some of their people, and that is that. The company pays the consulting agency, and they pay the consultants.

So the consulting company itself is kind of like a full-time time HR and management company.

Consultants buy a few six packs of beer and sit out on the back loading dock of the firm. They strike up a conversation with the guys on the dock and ask, “If you were in charge of this company, what would you change?” They then take good notes, go back to their office and write up a 100 page report outlining what they learned from the guys on the dock, and charge $25,000 for it.