Logistics consultancies do not generally post a rate card for a very good reason. Every assignment is different, requires different expertise and experience, and often varying levels of seniority amongst the consultancy staff. In other words, there is no “one size fits all”. On the other hand, a client does need to know what the probable cost is going to be and is quite likely going to shop around for what seems to be the best deal.
The best deal is not always the lowest rate. There are other factors at play, which experienced businessmen and managers appreciate. One of those is reputational. The success or otherwise of a consultancy engagement will reflect on the manager who made the hiring decision.
Scoping Out The Requirement
The first thing any consultancy worth its salt will do is invite you for an initial professional consultation that is usually relatively informal and for which there is no charge. This is intended to enable the consultancy to get a feel for what is involved in your scenario, what skills may be required to achieve the objectives, and how long it is likely to take. Of course, the conversation is a two way street and the prospective client also gets an opportunity to assess the consultancy as regards expertise, suitability and how good a fit they seem to be, personality wise. This latter point is very important in practice.
Added Value Can Prove To Be Priceless
In logistics, transport planning and supply chain management in general, deep experience is an extremely valuable asset. Intangible though it may be, even one relevant piece of advice, one gem, can be worth a great deal to a business. It is commonplace therefore, for a client to expect a consultant to share knowledge generously while on site and for client staff to hang on every word the consultant utters.
Consultancies Want To Build Long Term Relationships
While many clients believe that they only need a one-off piece of consultancy, it very frequently happens that a new requirement pops up, perhaps a year or two later. For that very reason, a reputable consultancy is not going to screw a potential client to the wall regarding fees. By the same token, clients should accept that the fees quoted by the reputable consultancy are reasonable and represent excellent value for money, given the knowledge and expertise that will be at the client’s disposal. Having said that, no consultancy will take at face value a claim by a client during an initial free consultation that there may be repeat business down the road “if the fees could just be a little bit lower”. That logic simply does not wash.
The whole area of logistics is one that impacts on multiple parts of a business, from receiving raw materials onto the production line to successful fulfilment of sales orders and delivering customer satisfaction. Transport is an expensive activity and a big overhead. Every efficiency and productivity improvement is reflected in better numbers on the bottom line.
Engaging a good logistics consultant is an investment that usually delivers a satisfactory and measurable ROI, depending on the issues to be resolved. Sometimes the ROI is spectacular. Call today and have an initial discussion with one of our logistics professionals. You have nothing to lose and potentially a great deal to gain.