Deloitte Consulting, BCG, PwC, Mercer and IBM are internationally the leading players in the field of 'Human Capital Strategy Consulting'. This concludes Kennedy, an analyst firm specialised in the consulting industry, in a recent competitor analysis research. Traditional HR giants Aon Hewitt and Hay Group and strategy firm Bain have lost ground in the fast-growing segment that combines HR, strategy and analytics.
Strategy HR advisory services
Human capital strategy is the management consulting segment that combines expertise in strategy, human resources (HR), operations management (OM), and information technology (IT). Kennedy’s definition of Human Capital Strategy Consulting consists of five different services. Each of these services is supported by two end-to-end capacities: change management and HR analytics.
Human Capital Strategy Consulting market
The Human capital strategy consulting market is one of the fastest growing segments within the consulting branche. According expectations, the global market will on average grow with 6% annually in the upcoming 3 years – significantly higher than for example strategy consulting- (~2%p/y) and operations management segment (~3%p/y). For more information about market developments, check out the item ‘Market analysis of Human Capital Strategy Consulting’.
In mapping capacities concerning human capital strategy, Kennedy assessed skills of the most important organizations in the market based on five types of services. Scores were determined based on an analysis of this services offered, executed projects and interviews with analysts, consultants and customers. After that, consultancy firms’ data was graphed on two dimensions – the breadth and depth of services.
According to analysts there is no clear-cut winner: Deloitte and BCG score the highest, closely followed by PwC, Mercer and IBM. In line with the high growth ratio within the industry, the majority of organizations heavily invest in their human capital strategy capacities. This results in ‘advanced’ quality services. Bain & Company is the only clear-cut exception.
A concise summary of the strongest top five players:
Of the established strategy consulting organizations, Boston Consulting Group has the best track record in the field of HR services. BCG thanks its high position primarily to two factors. First of all, BCG developed in 2012 a revolutionary model (‘Workonomics’) to measure the economic impact of their human capital. This makes it possible to quantify soft factors accurately. Apart from this, the strategy advisory firm has executed over 1,000 human capital strategy projects globally since 2008.
Deloitte Consulting is, according to Kennedy, a leader in human capital strategy since years. The recent acquisition of Bersin (HR) and the take-over of Monitor (strategy) gave their capacities a significant boost. Above all, Deloitte integrates its data analytics skills in HR projects effectively.
Also Mercer is consistently recognized as a leader in human capital strategy. Mercer scores distinctively high in the field of talent management and workforce analytics. A more intensive cooperation with Oliver Wyman led to improvement in analytical skills for Mercer’s strategy consulting practice.
In the past three years PwC made huge steps within the human capital practice. The take-over of PRTM in 2011 served as a basis for improving strategy & operations capacities, and ever since there has been massively invested in both the HR- and the It Consulting practice. Changes in the operational model (HR advisory is growing and is integrated more and more within the industry teams) made the top five quotation of PwC decisive.
IBM’s leading position could be realized because of its technological capacities. IBM is trend-setting in the field of: linking the HR strategy with IT, HCM software and talent & workforce analytics. The investments in its HR Consulting branche (Organization and People practice in Global Business Services) caused an improvement in change management skills.