The management consulting industry is at a crossroads. The days of traditional consulting are giving way to newer and more automated solutions. The race is on to leverage new technologies such as AI, machine learning, and natural language processing (NLP) to keep offerings competitive.
Automation will significantly reduce the time required to complete projects and enable consultants to solve problems with greater speed and accuracy. The upshot is that AI is expected to move away from a supporting role and become a central part of many engagements.
Read on to learn more about this and other management consulting trends that are predicted to shape the year ahead.
Top Management Consulting Trends in 2023
1. AI automation
The hype around ChatGPT at the beginning of the year is a solid indication of the direction that many industries are taking. AI-driven technologies are being used to automate mundane tasks, reduce manual labour and provide more detailed insights into data.
In management consulting, this equates to automated big data processing and analysis for more accurate forecasting and decision-making with less effort.
This general trend will have a knock-on impact in other areas of management consulting such as…
2. Hiring skill sets
In many sectors, the emphasis is shifting away from traditional methods of recruitment. Companies are now much more likely to look for employees with the right skill sets and experience, rather than relying on academic qualifications from top universities.
As management consultants catch up with other industries with regard to digitisation and automation, the need for specialists with a specific set of skills will become increasingly important. For example, business analysts and data scientists with a speciality in (or at the very least familiarity with) AI, machine learning, and NLP will be more highly sought after.
3. Training and development
Additionally, management consulting firms will need to invest more in the training and development of their employees for the digitisation era to ensure they are comfortable using new technologies.
This also extends to clients, who will need to be guided through this transition and provided with an understanding of the technology and how it can help them.
4. Deep specialisation
Continuing a general trend we’ve seen for a few years now, firms are increasingly moving away from general consulting and towards deep specialisation. With a distressed labour market, the need to hire experienced specialists has become more urgent.
Companies are shifting their focus from general consulting projects to more niche engagements that require a deeper level of expertise in a specific area or sector. This will result in an increased demand for management consultants with more targeted skills.
5. Legislation and compliance
As ever, management consulting firms must fully inform themselves of new regulations and legislation impacting their clients. In 2023, the UK is still grappling with how Brexit impacts business operations. More generally, radical changes in working patterns since the pandemic are causing legislative bodies to review and adapt existing policies that are no longer fit for purpose.
6. Actionable thought leadership
The content you generate must be more than just a list of ideas; it must add value and provide practical solutions in order to draw interest. Management consultants must become adept at turning their ideas into actionable insights that can be used by clients for decision-making.
In 2023, demonstrating that your firm can be trusted to offer actionable advice and guidance on the most pressing issues that businesses face is the best way to build your client base.
7. Real-time consumer insights
In an uncertain economic climate, the need for real-time consumer insights will become more important than ever for data-based decision-making. Consumers are changing their behaviours and expectations in response to global events and new technologies, meaning businesses must adjust their strategies quickly.
This means that management consultants will have to focus on rapidly sourcing and processing data from digital platforms such as social media and eCommerce websites to get a more accurate picture of customer behaviour. And how do you gather and analyse this data? You guessed it – AI.
AI automation dominates many of the management consulting trends anticipated in 2023. Consultants will need to become adept at leveraging AI technologies and consumer insights to create actionable solutions for their clients. Additionally, firms looking to court a new breed of client would be well placed to focus on developing specialised expertise in a specific area or sector.
Get Started With Symanto
Management consultants are increasingly turning to AI and automation platforms like Symanto for help with making sense of large quantities of consumer and market data. With its data mining, insights, and analytics capabilities, you can get accurate and near-instant insights into market trends and customer sentiment.
Find out how Symanto can help your management consulting firm stay ahead of the competition in 2023, get in touch or register to start your free 21-day trial of our insights platform.