Our business has the same problems that many consulting organizations have that support more than one ERP product.
While prospects like choice and being recommended the appropriate product, consulting organizations go through frequent periods where consultants on product A are too busy while consultants on product B are not busy enough…then 6 months later…the opposite is often the case.
Clients want consultants who know their products intimately. If the consultant has 8-10 years of experience with the product they are helping with—that’s ideal for client and consultant.
I will say that Boyer & Associates was a more profitable organization when we had three consultants on staff that considered themselves ERP consultants rather than a consultant for Dynamics GP or Dynamics SL only.
I’ve allowed this “I only can do one product and be very good at it” mentality to grow at Boyer. After all, who wants to be the “expert” on a product they don’t know as well. I, for one, like speaking English rather than the broken Spanish I learned living in Lima, Peru 29 years ago. So, I get it. But I also know people who have grown up in Europe and speak multiple languages with great ease.
Here in Minneapolis and St. Paul, we don’t have too many opportunities to learn other languages, but that’s not the point. The point is learning multiple accounting products is something within the capabilities of an accountant if you reach them soon enough in their careers.
Our way out of this utilization trap is finding the right consultants with our next hires. While we need to and want to keep people with deep expertise in their chosen products, we need to select our next batch of new hires as people that consider themselves product-agnostic.
They will of course need to have the other numerous qualities we need and clients crave: a great listener, creative, resolute (a digger), a team player, a good accountant, a collaborative thinker and a strong communicator.