Saving clients from the “Big Boys” – (again)

Posted by: Clay Nelson, Relationship Unlimited Founder

At Relationship Unlimited, working within the Salesforce ecosystem is all we do and we’ve been doing it for over 20 years. So for us, Salesforce is not just a small part of a much broader offering, our sole focus is on being New Zealand’s deep-niche Salesforce experts and specialists.

And to be honest, that’s no small feat as the Salesforce ecosystem is MASSIVE. So it both amuses and puzzles me when we routinely see the big multi-disciplinary consulting firms touting themselves as THE Salesforce specialists (along with being the specialists in everything else under the sun).

Now, I’m sure there are plenty of excellent Salesforce consultants that work in the big consulting firms, but in my experience there is not the depth (or width) in those organisations to really deliver when it comes to development and implementation.

Over the years, Relationship Unlimited has often been tasked with taking over from another (usually much larger) vendor or consultant because they were simply not able to deliver the required development or implementation in a timely enough manner.

While Relationship Unlimited can deliver all aspects of a Salesforce project rapidly, development and implementation is something that can truly be done at a pace that (we believe) simply cannot be matched by any other New Zealand provider.

This is due to our unique and proven hybrid on-shore/off-shore model, perfected over 20 years, it’s the ideal combination of deep local and global expertise, speed and quality.

The masters of all trades

Now, clearly the big consulting firms have a prestigious reputation for a reason, but it is also a fundamental truism of life that you cannot excel at everything.  That’s as true collectively as it is individually.

While the big consultants will have a truly diverse set of consulting capabilities to help large enterprises with complex issues in a multitude of areas, that does not mean they are the right fit for everyone.  And, in a complex world of increasing specialisation, a “niche” consulting firm with a focus on a narrower area of expertise can have much more impact than one of the “Big 4” firms.

Now more than ever, speed is of the essence

Just due to their size (and the associated bureaucracy) the big consultants are invariably slower in not only delivery, but also tend to move slower in the adoption of new methodologies and technology.

I’ve seen this play out over many, many years and it’s so often where Relationship Unlimited have been called upon to step in to get the project back on track, because the actual DOING just didn’t get done fast enough.

Time equals money, and never more so than when a project drags out (not to mention the opportunity cost of not using the very latest technology to solve your business challenges).

Which brings me to my next point – cost.

So, are the big consultants worth the premium you pay? 

Well my 2 cents is that in some instances yes – but that’s a very qualified yes.

While I understand the attraction of “calling in the big-boys” – believe me, you will be paying a premium to get them through the door.

Even then, what often happens is that the partners and senior staff that sold you on the engagement will actually just pass the project off to their subordinates. If you’re a medium or smaller organisation then in my experience this is just about guaranteed unfortunately.

The big consultants have the breadth of consulting capability to help large enterprises with complex issues in a multitude of areas, so if that’s what you need (and you can afford the ticket price) then – yes, they’ll deliver value, no question.

The value of a “niche” focus (without the “Big 4” price tag)

However, if your requirements are more focused and concentrated on a specific area of your business (like say customer experience or sales optimisation) then my money is on the deep-niche specialist consultancy every time.

By engaging a smaller (but well-established) specialist Salesforce consultancy like Relationship Unlimited, you can be assured that the principals are going to be handling your project.

Your project will not only be delivered on time and to budget, but your whole relationship will just be more a lot more authentic and engaged.  In addition, 9 times out of 10, a smaller consultancy will simply care more about your business’s success than a larger consultancy will (and they will go the extra mile to achieve that success for you).

So, if you’re a medium sized New Zealand business that needs to get their sales, or customer ecosystem quickly transformed for today’s challenges (using today’s technology!) then get in touch with us here at Relationship Unlimited to learn more. 

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