It appears we’ve finally turned the corner, but is it full speed ahead?
Is this momentum? It sure feels like it. There’s simply no denying this fact: based on our findings—the numbers look good. Really good. If there’s a sentiment that sums up the way consulting firm leaders are feeling as we head into 2012, it’s “optimistic.” When we asked firm leaders to look out over the next 12 months and give us a pulse check on the profession, each one responded with optimism… and a bit of caution thrown in for good measure.
And who can blame them? There’s still an awful lot of uncertainly in the market, particularly in Europe. But still, all in all, firm leaders are feeling pretty good about new prospects in the New Year. Of course, some much needed economic stability and a little revenue can have that effect.
In our exclusive survey of 282 Partners and Vice Presidents, three-quarters saw revenue growth in 2011 and nearly half saw double-digit growth from the previous year. And when we asked them how they felt about the year ahead, the numbers looked even better—91 percent and 54 percent, respectively. So, have we turned the corner once and for all? It sure seems that way, according to our data, which is based on exclusive interviews with 15 firm leaders and proprietary market research of leaders at the top consulting firms.
This Executive Outlook is our effort to bring some clarity and closure to last year while also setting the stage for what lies ahead in 2012.The SurveyAs part of our exclusive 2012 Executive Outlook story, Consulting surveyed 568 consultants in November and December 2011. Because of the nature of the data examined above, only the responses from the 282 Partners and Vice President were analyzed. We asked them about their businesses, including revenue, profits, opportunities and challenges ahead. The findings follow:
Looking at the results of Consulting
’s latest Executive Outlook survey, one would have to believe the economy is humming along in the midst of a great bull run, not stuck in the stubborn grip of the Great Recession. Consulting firm leaders, for sure, are under the impression that we’ve turned the corner and are clearly moving full-speed ahead into a robust recovery.
Some 75 percent of consulting firm leaders said their firm grew revenue in 2011—including more than 48 percent who said their firm grew by double digits, according to a recent Consulting magazine survey conducted at the end of 2011. Good news, indeed. However, the really good news emerges when you ask firm leaders to prognosticate about what lies ahead for their firm in 2012. A whopping 91 percent of firm leaders anticipate growth to their top line, three-quarters expecting at least 6 percent growth and more than half—54 percent—anticipating double-digit improvements.
Even if some of the forecasts prove to be overly optimistic, these survey results should provide confidence to those experiencing improving market conditions. (For the record, last year’s projections were pretty close to what firm leaders reported in reality this year. When we asked them last year to predict 2011, for instance, 80 percent said they would grow—and 50 percent said they’d grow by double digits. The reality, as reported in this year’s survey, was 75 percent and 48 percent respectively.)
So, top-line growth is significant, but does this rebound make it all the way to bottom line? Nearly 70 percent of firm leaders reported improvements to their net profits in 2011, while another 17 percent said net profit will not change. In 2012, almost 82 percent of firm leaders anticipate net profits will improve and only 5 percent say net profits will be down. Some of this rebound in profitability is a response to just how badly firms suffered during the downturn. For the better part of the last three years, nearly every profitability driver was headed in the wrong direction.
Fees were under (and remain under) tremendous pressure as clients slashed costs, compensation was inching upward as firms tried to retain top talent and leverage ratios were knocked out of whack as layoffs reset staffing ratios.
As part of the survey, we also asked firm leaders about the relative level of concern with specific internal and external issues at their firm. Among external issues, the focus seems to be moving away from concerns that were paramount during a downturn. Specifically, far fewer leaders say they are concerned with pricing pressure and sales cycles.
During the worst of the downturn, it was taking longer and longer to book consultants’ time at lower and lower hourly rates. Firm leaders also report improvement in engagement opportunities, specifically: client retention and new client business development. When we asked firm leaders about internal issues, positive signs emerged. Unlike a year ago when profitability levers were keeping firm leaders up at night, their focus is now on forward-looking, longer-term concerns.
After a year-plus of layoffs and other firm-culture killing decisions, firm leaders are reporting that morale is on the upswing, and seeing improvement in resetting new strategic directions and goals, a clear signs that firms are turning the corner from downturn to recovery.The ExecutivesAs part of our 2012 Outlook, Consulting conducted interviews in November and December 2011 with leaders of consulting firms and asked them how they felt about the year ahead. We asked them to share their brightest growth opportunities, as well as forecasts for their firms, their clients and the markets they serve. We also asked them to shed some light on what they view as their biggest challenges heading into 2012, and how they plan to overcome them. Their answers, in part, to these and others questions, appear below.Jim Moffatt
Chairman and CEO
“Deloitte Consulting LLP is ending the year in a very strong position. Our accelerated growth compared to that of the consulting market has been a consistent theme again this year. Despite the ups and downs of the market, we again experienced strong double-digit growth and we anticipate significant new opportunities in 2012. We expect to have another very good year.
The areas that will lead the way for Deloitte are those in which we can combine our sector specific knowledge with the depth and breadth of our services, particularly in the areas of Health Reform and Financial Reform. We also see tremendous opportunity in emerging technologies and data analytics. We
expect to see the biggest opportunities in Health Reform, Financial Reform, emerging technologies, data analytics, mobility and cyber. The emerging markets will continue to be strong, particularly Brazil, China, and Mexico.
We expect the economy to moderate in 2012 relative to last year. Fears of a double dip recession along with the European credit crisis will dampen overall demand. We see ongoing strength in demand in certain sectors including: Financial Services, Life Sciences and Healthcare, as well as in Technology, Media and Telecommunications. Certain regulatory activities will keep demand strong for consulting services in the areas of Health Reform and Financial Reform, as will the increase of disruptive technologies.
While consumer spending has held up well in the U.S., consumer confidence has not. As the two come closer together, that could reduce consumer spending. We see 2012 as another year of uncertainty, and a year in which we continue to watch the marketplace very closely, remaining focused on hot markets and adapting quickly to changes in demand, a strategy that served us well in 2011.” Dave Deiters
“At North Highland, we find ourselves growing—and growing at increasing rates across all industries. We have had no slump, no tapering of demand whatsoever. We’re going into 2012 with the highest hard backlog ever. That sort of pipeline would indicate a sustained increase. We are starting to see signs of economic stability—hopefully, that will set the foundation for continued, accelerating growth.
We are a privately held company—100 percent employee owned—and we don’t release specific revenue figures or forecasts, but we have experienced revenue growth of roughly 30 percent in each of the last two years, with even higher income growth. We are seeing continued demand in Financial Services, Healthcare, Media & Entertainment, and Retail—as well as surprising stability from our public sector team. [From a macro-economic standpoint], an election year can be a wild card; however, current indications point to economic stability, at least for the first half of 2012.
North Highland will be establishing its brand in completely new markets (at least two are planned for 2012) as well as building on thought leadership momentum in areas such as Customer Experience, Healthcare, Financial Services—and feeding explosive growth in our established major markets.
Our biggest challenge is simply finding the right resources—talented consultants who are good fits with the North Highland culture. Our unique model of employee ownership and delivering experienced consultants with world class expertise, locally, has proven to yield great success in upward economic cycles as well as downward ones. Our model allows us to simply do the right things for our clients and the right things for our employees—and the results are strong growth, year after year.”Paul Meehan
Regional Managing Director Asia-Pacific
Bain & Company
“We’ve had a year that we are proud of, with strong growth in the midst of a highly uncertain macro environment. Despite Europe’s economic challenges, growth has been high in markets like Germany, Spain, Nordics and the U.K. Additionally, Bain’s growth in developing markets remains incredibly robust and demand is running well ahead of our planned expectations. In the Asia Pacific region, we head into 2012 coming off a record quarter and with strong demand from our core clients. Overall, we anticipate a strong first quarter in 2012 and beyond.
We expect high single-digit growth in 2012, with strong demand for Bain’s work in the Oil & Gas, Minerals & Mining, Healthcare and Financial Services industries. In terms of practice areas, our ongoing work on customer loyalty continues to reinforce our leadership in this area. We additionally foresee strong growth in the year ahead for our organization and performance improvement practices, building upon already-established market leadership positions in these areas.
While we expect that the economic environment will remain turbulent and uncertain in the near term, Bain’s research indicates that some meaningful structural solutions will emerge over the next few years.
Bain believes there are eight major trends which will each contribute more than $1 trillion of global GDP by 2020, including: new opportunities to cater to the emerging tastes of the ‘next billion’ consumers moving into the global middle class; infrastructure demands in developed markets for replacement and developing markets for expanded, wealthier urban populations; and new or modified businesses catering to an elderly population of a scale not seen before, in sectors ranging from Healthcare to Technology to consumer products. These trends bode well for companies that have the strength and foresight to invest for the future.”Bob Patton
Americas Vice Chair of Advisory Services
Ernst & Young
“As we close out 2011, I believe the best way to sum up where the firm is today is reflected in the achievement of debuting at the highest rank in Consulting
’s “Best Firms to Work For” in the Business Advisory Services category. While we still face market challenges and the growing pains of a relatively young practice, we have, in fact, exceeded our expectations on all levels—our growth rates, the building of the best talent pool and the impact our brand is making.
We were surprised this year—in fact pleasantly surprised—by the market’s return in 2011 to the art of true consulting. With less focus on bandage software solutions and more attention to a specific, strategic look at the root cause of business problems, we are in a great position to continue helping our clients create and implement the strategies that deliver improved business performance. From information we draw insights, from risk we help create results and from innovation we help our clients take action—this is our mission. We are excited about the opportunities we see in 2012.
While we do not offer an annual profitability outlook by service line, Ernst & Young reported 2011 global revenues of $22.9 billion. Global Advisory Services grew by 17.5 percent, representing the most growth of any of our practice areas.
While experiencing healthy growth we, much like our peers, are not exempt from the pressures of continued compensation increases and rate challenges. Our strategy in Advisory Services will continue to take a sector approach, focusing on Financial Services, Power and Utilities, Oil and Gas, Healthcare, Life Sciences, Federal Government and Consumer Products. This will allow us to maintain maximum relevance for our clients and offer them the opportunity for increasing value.”Lynne M. Doughtie
Americas Advisory, Leader, Vice Chair
“The pace of business has grown dramatically in recent years. Beyond the impacts of 24/7 communications and globalized workforces, even the best-managed organizations are recalibrating their expectations and abilities to respond quickly to shifting technologies, public policy reforms and other competitive pressures.
Our clients are continuing to raise the bar on operational efficiencies and risk management to remain competitive in the ‘new normal,’ post-recession environment. They’re responding quickly to fast-moving changes in customer behavior with new approaches to acquiring and maintaining customer relationships. They’re embracing digital media and cloud-based technologies in innovative ways. As a result, despite an uneven recovery and continued uncertainty, it’s clear that clients are investing in their future.
There’s also a huge data story that continues to emerge, particularly as companies upgrade from 20-year old ERP systems, which were in many cases designed to generate reams of data and complex spreadsheets. Today it’s about utilizing enabling technology and emerging capabilities that can identify, analyze and effectively interpret and gain actionable insights from the most relevant data.
At KPMG, these trends were a key driver behind our Advisory business’s record 2011. Demand remains strong across several industries. In Financial Services, we’re helping to navigate the fast-moving changes impacting their businesses. We’re also seeing extensive activity in the energy sector and healthcare.
I’m bullish on 2012 because I think there’s a growing understanding about how to operate in the post-recession economy, including how to gain efficiencies while maintaining growth and being nimble while appropriately managing risk. This leads to confidence, notwithstanding the unsettled macro issues and uncertainty likely to be with us through 2013.”Mike Pongon
“Point B experienced a very healthy 2011, with strong revenue and profitability growth. We are entering 2012 with momentum and excitement. Our client relationships are stronger than ever, enhanced by our commitment to high impact results. Our service offerings are broader than ever as we’ve invested in growing our capabilities to support client needs.
And our team is deeper than ever, as we’ve continued to hire new consultants during the downturn, many with significant functional and industry expertise. We’ve been surprised by the overall strength of demand for our services in spite of the difficult economy and the nature of these engagements as clients increasingly involve Point B in their most strategic challenges.
We carefully monitor our pipeline of potential engagements and see continued, steady client demand. The nature of this demand has changed since the depths of the recession, which we see as a positive sign about the economy. Proposed engagements are typically longer than in the past as clients feel more comfortable committing to more substantive projects.
We expect 2012 will provide continued opportunities for double-digit revenue and profitability growth. Our biggest opportunity in 2012 is continued expansion of our service offerings, bringing deeper expertise and thought leadership to client engagements. The response from clients to this expansion in 2011 has been extremely positive as we’ve invested in our capabilities to serve them across key industries like Healthcare, Financial Services and Retail, and functions like M&A, operations improvement and change management.
We remain cautiously optimistic that the underlying strength of the U.S economy will allow it to avoid another recession in spite of the European debt crisis. That being said, we don’t see much likelihood of real GDP growth above 2.5 percent.”
Vice Chairman and U.S. Advisory Leader
“It’s an exciting and challenging time to be in the consulting profession. We have the opportunity to help our clients navigate through what might be one of the most difficult economic environments any of us have ever experienced. We don’t know what lies ahead. The only certainty is that things will continue to change and evolve. In many ways, this has brought us closer to our clients, as we work together to create new opportunities for their businesses, their customers and their employees.
Our Advisory Practice is well positioned to meet our clients’ needs across every aspect of their business, from strategy through execution. We have enhanced our capabilities through hiring and developing key talent in the areas that best meet our clients’ needs, and we have made a number of strategic acquisitions over the past few years—including PRTM Management Consultants, Diamond Management & Technology Consultants, and BearingPoint North American Commercial Services—that today allow us to combine the strength of over 35,000 global professionals with deep industry knowledge to deliver custom solutions for our clients.
We continue to see companies who are seeking ways to grow their business, be more innovative, find new ways of delivering value to their customers, manage talent, and create a sustainable—and in many cases, global—business. Companies continue to seek growth through strategic acquisitions, and they’re doing more work earlier in the deal process to help ensure success.
Another area of focus for our clients is risk mitigation, including around the issue of cyber crime. Senior executives in many companies today perceive cybercrime as an increasing threat, and we are seeing a corresponding increase in demand for our services in helping to prevent, detect and respond to security breaches, theft and fraud.” Steve Sashihara
“We had a significant influx of project work despite—and perhaps because of—a very tough economy. Many companies are keeping their powder dry: they are hoarding cash and at the same time looking to optimize every asset under management. We found it surprising, although gratifying, that senior executives and the mainstream press are now focusing on “optimization,” “big data,” and “business analytics.”
We see an upsurge in interest in optimization in response in part to the tsunami of big data that is hitting most organizations. A senior vice president at an insurance company recently told us, ‘All our core business processes are in the target zone for optimization over the next two years.’
We find that in this economic climate, clients are demanding that consulting firms bring significant intellectual property to the table, coupled with high performance teams with deep expertise. Because of the optimization revolution taking place around us, now is a great time for consultants with both deep quantitative insight and business intelligence.
As a boutique U.S.-based firm, we have traditionally been highly focused in North America. We recently initiated a partnership arrangement with a global software provider to provide customized optimization consulting services. There are countless opportunities to apply and embed optimization in all types of organizations and to help executives re-invent decision making—and drive up the value of their human, financial and capital assets.
Our plan is to grow 15 to 20 percent in 2012. Our niche in Transportation and Supply Chain will remain solid, and we anticipate expansion into other companies that are looking to bring optimization techniques to their own asset management. The president of a major transportation company recently told us: ‘Our customers—the largest retailers—are cautiously optimistic about the year ahead.’ And then he added: ‘Their emphasis was on cautiously. We concur.’ ”John Drzik
“I started in the industry over 25 years ago, and I think this is one of the most interesting and exciting times to work in consulting. The world is going through enormous changes—geopolitical, technological, economic and societal—and the complexity of decision-making has never been higher. As a profession, we need to be at the top of our game to help our clients navigate through, and thrive in, this very challenging environment.
Oliver Wyman is on a good trajectory. We’ve been growing at a healthy pace since the downturn in 2009, and expect to stay on this course into next year. Our client pipeline is healthy, and we’re expecting client demand in aggregate to grow in 2012 relative to 2011. Of course, there is a high degree of uncertainty in the current macro-economic environment and current events in the Eurozone and elsewhere suggest there could be further turbulence ahead.
We’ve been growing at high-single digit rates over the last couple years and expect to stay on this rough trajectory for the next couple of years. We also expect our profitability to grow steadily through the next few years. I think the healthcare sector will be a high growth area for us, especially in geographies like the U.S. where there’s significant regulatory change underway.
In addition, I also see energy as a growth sector given the degree of long-term investment and change needed to meet higher levels of global energy demand. Financial Services will also continue to be a major source of growth for us. We also see significant growth opportunity in emerging markets, such as Brazil, the Middle East and Russia. We expect that these and other emerging markets will continue to provide robust growth for Oliver Wyman in 2012.”Jaideep Bajaj
“Growth in our primary sectors continues to be strong, although a little lower than last year. The business need is there from our clients. In fact, most companies see the value in engaging consulting firms like ours—whether they’re growing, need to increase efficiency, or both. It is about really understanding our clients’ circumstances, needs and opportunities to improve and helping them create and follow a practical roadmap to achieve their goals, regardless of the situation.
While client pressure to cut costs in every way (including consulting engagements) was quite significant, focusing on creating value, even in a challenging environment, has played an important role in our continued success.
Demand continues to be strong as our clients look to the future and how they will either grow their offerings and/or footprint or drive higher efficiency into their business; both of those scenarios creates the opportunity for ZS Associates to help. We will continue to adapt offerings to help our clients
be efficient—that will be the key for our continued growth.
I am seeing demand and opportunities with our clients that point to a revenue growth over 2011 of 15 percent and see our strongest growth in the areas of Marketing Services, as well as Operations and Technology. We will continue to expand in select industry verticals, including High Tech, Insurance, and Healthcare Providers. We see tremendous opportunity to help our pharmaceutical clients as they adapt to significant changes in their industry.
We are cautiously optimistic about 2012, although there is certainly enough volatility and uncertainty in the global markets to have concerns. I believe that, if you help your clients address their challenges with innovative and practical solutions that significantly improve their performance, you have a value proposition that sustains through volatile markets.”Jim Roth
“Huron is in a solid position as we head into 2012, which will mark our 10th anniversary as a company. We are continuing to see strong demand for our service offerings, primarily a reflection of the significant economic and structural change that is taking place in the industries that we serve. We are anticipating that demand will remain strong in our core businesses. There is very little about the economic and regulatory environment that would lead to stability in the healthcare, education, life sciences and legal services markets.
Huron is well positioned in these sectors, and we expect that the same factors that affected our clients this year will continue in 2012, and that the level of change affecting their business is likely to accelerate.
In Healthcare, which represents more than 45 percent of our business, we expect that there will continue to be on-goinging uncertainties around healthcare reform, reimbursement pressures for Medicare and Medicaid patients, and the need to align physicians to accommodate the transition away from fee-for-service toward value-based pricing. There is no question that a bulk of the challenge—and for us, a bulk of the work—is focused on the operational aspects associated with implementing strategies related to these issues.
We believe our solid results in the first nine months of 2011 are further evidence that the economic, financial, regulatory and legal challenges affecting many companies continue to create an environment that is favorable for our business. We are well-positioned to help our clients address the strategic and operational uncertainties impacting their organizations. We remain optimistic about the opportunities across all of our businesses in 2012 as market demand for our services continues to grow.”Andy Smith
“Our firm is having its best year to date. We’ve hired many new high-quality and exceptional associates, while retaining the best and brightest as well… our attrition rate is very, very low. We are very proud that we not only attract, but retain, the best associates through our focus on building an outstanding culture and a great place to work. This year looks to offer us with the opportunity to continue the overall, consistent growth of our firm. We have always met our profitability goals, and we expect to manage growth and expenses to ensure that is the case in 2012, as well.
We will continue to grow at a double-digit pace as long as we find appropriate associates to hire into our organization, but we will continue our practice of hiring high-quality, focused and dedicated associates. Impact Advisors only provides services to healthcare providers and demand remains very high for our services, particularly for strategic implementation services for electronic medical records and healthcare information data exchanges.
In addition, we will continue to deliver strategic advisory services that assist healthcare organizations leverage technology to better manage their clinical and business operational areas, including managing overall IT costs, developing appropriate technology roadmaps and plans, meeting key regulatory demands such as Meaningful Use attestation, and so on.
We believe cost pressures will mount for many of our clients in the coming year or two, but we think the demand for quality consulting services will remain strong in this market. The result will be that firms, like Impact Advisors, will now focus more on helping clients optimize the electronic medical records and other solutions that have been and continue to be implemented, to fully achieve their value.” Rich Lesser
Chairman, North and South America
The Boston Consulting Group
“The Boston Consulting Group had another strong year in 2011 with double-digit growth and strong performance around the world. Clients clearly face macro-economic headwinds heading into 2012, and our ability to help them work through their most difficult challenges and convert opportunities into tangible impact enables us to thrive in this environment. We are gaining share and expect to continue to do so.
In most of our markets, we feel we have strong momentum heading into 2012. Certainly in some of the more challenged economies, the environment will be very tough and budgets will be tight. But even there, many clients recognize the need to drive fundamental change and near-term impact. We expect to be a part of that. Clients around the world face immense challenges to thrive amid the macro-economic headwinds in the developed world and tremendous opportunities to capitalize on dynamic growth in the emerging markets. The challenges facing the Eurozone are particularly substantial and present the greatest source of risk in 2012.
Growth in emerging economies remains robust, confidence is high and the opportunity is great. We cannot lose sight that literally hundreds of millions of people are shifting from deep poverty to more middle-class status. It is truly a two-speed world, and we expect to be a part of both sets of opportunities. We’re expecting another strong year in 2012.
As in the past two years, we anticipate broad-based growth across our practice areas, not an over-reliance on any one area. In the short term, it's very difficult to predict which practices will be particularly active in a given year. In the medium term, we see substantial opportunities and expect solid growth across our entire portfolio.”Joe Santucci
Managing Partner, Consulting Services
“Our investments in the geographic markets of California, New York, Dallas and Atlanta, as well as our industry sectors of financial services, private equity, healthcare, manufacturing and distribution and government services, positioned us well domestically and internationally. We’re already seeing these investments pay off.
When the recession started, consulting was a very easy cost to cut and demand decreased. But now organizations have realized that spending with consultants can actually help reduce costs, so we expect to see demand continue to increase. We are seeing more opportunities as evidenced by growing pipelines, increased sales and higher win rates in many areas of the practice. The profitability in our consulting and advisory practice has improved. We continue to look for ways to do more with less, which impacts profitability in a positive way. But because we continue making strategic investments in the markets of California, New York, Dallas, Chicago and Atlanta, the overall firm’s profitability may remain relatively flat.
We see growth in most areas of the practice with tax services, financial advisory and operational consulting leading the firm. From an industry view, healthcare and private equity are both very strong. The financial services industry consulting has always been and continues to be strong for Crowe Horwath. Regulations are driving demand for risk services in both financial services and healthcare.
There are opportunities in many aspects of the practice. Functionally, tax services, financial advisory and performance services are the strongest. Across the industries we see continued strength in healthcare, private equity, financial services, manufacturing as well as distribution and government. We also continue to service clients globally and as we grow these capabilities, we see this as a significant opportunity.”Nathaniel Greene
CEO and Managing Partner
“We have experienced strong growth throughout the recession and 2011 was another record year for us. We opened a new office in Calgary, Allberta, Canada and continued to invest in our delivery processes. The most surprising thing was seeing how fast our brand is growing and translating into tangible results.
There is a huge untapped market for our services, and we expect 2012 will be another year of strong growth. We see many opportunities ahead to continue to expand in energy and primary material extraction and processing.
For us, great delivery has driven growth and with growth comes the usual challenges. As a professional services firm we need to cross the chasm from a firm of under 100 to a firm of over 200. These are known problems with known solutions that we look forward to tackling.”
| What’s Your Biggest Challenge for 2012?
No big surprises here... It’s People, People, People
It’s a new year, but it’s the same old challenges for executives at consulting firms—recruiting and hiring the very best people. In 2012, however, the other side of the hiring coin—developing and retaining that top talent—was on the minds of the executives Consulting spoke with as part of the 2012 Executive Outlook.
“The war for talent war is back and I expect it to continue,” says Joe Santucci, Managing Partner, Consulting Services for Crowe Horwath. “Retention and development of talent” will be one of our biggest challenges in 2012, he says. “We need to continue providing our people with an exceptional experience to meet their diverse needs, career goals and objectives. Our people don’t want to necessarily work in traditional office environments. By continuing to expand in major markets, while also focusing on work-life balance and mobility of the workforce, we’re learning to adapt to their needs.”
That focus was echoed by most of the executives that Consulting spoke with about their biggest challenges in 2012.
“Our continued success of our business depends on the talent, dedication and commitment of our people. Our challenge is to attract and retain the very best talent; and it’s a challenge we continue to successfully meet. We are committed to providing our people with ongoing opportunities for professional development and growth,” says Dana Mcilwain, Vice Chairman and U.S. Advisory Leader of PwC. “Our ‘global mobility’ program provides the opportunity to live and work in other countries, creating a valuable experience for our people and the clients they serve. Our innovative training programs offer a ‘blended’ experience that combines formal and information education, in-person programs and technology-based learning.”
This focus on training and development, which, of course, leads to the retention of top employees, is top of mind for several leaders, including Mike Pongon, CEO of Seattle-based Point B.
“We have a relentless focus on building a values-driven company and culture that allows exceptional people to thrive. Our consultants know they are truly the foundation of our firm, and this has led to a very low attrition rate,” Pongon says. “But as the job market improves, the challenge of attracting the best
talent will be more intense than ever. A major area of focus for our firm’s leadership is ensuring we continue to strengthen our value proposition to recruits by offering great professional development opportunities.”
At Deloitte, the new Deloitte University just upped the ante on those professional development opportunities. “Deloitte University is a state-of-the-art learning facility that’s transforming our approach to developing our people,” says Jim Moffatt, Chairman and CEO of Deloitte Consulting.
“We continue to look for growth opportunities for our professionals and the fact that our 2011 class of principals and directors is our largest ever is evidence of this commitment. In 2012, we will continue to make investments in the development of our people, a top strategic priority.”