What Is a Business Process Consultant, and How Do They Help Your Business?
Business processes are extremely important. While it’s possible to build and manage your own, it may not always be the easiest or most cost-effective option, especially if you’re not familiar with the ins and outs of certain processes. That’s where a business process consultant comes in.
If you need help documenting and identifying ways to improve your processes, working with a business process consultant is one of the best ways to get started. Here’s what you should know about working with a consultant and what they can offer to your company.
What is a business process consultant?
A business process consultant is someone hired to format and map your company’s processes and workflows, as well as document process policies and procedures. By mapping and documenting your processes and workflows, your company can gain visibility and operate more smoothly with easily repeatable systems.
In addition to mapping and documenting processes, this consultant can also help you identify how to improve your processes.
Pros and cons of hiring a business process consultant
You can gain a lot of value from hiring a process consultant for your company. Some of the main benefits of working with a business process consultant include:
- Accurate documentation of workflows and processes
- Knowledge of where you can make the easiest improvements
- A more consistent and efficient business
- A list of tasks that you can switch over to process automation
- Information on which processes are redundant and how to get rid of them
- An accurate picture of your company’s current operations
- Information on any of the gaps in your current processes
- Reengineering details, so you know which processes you’ll need to start from scratch
- Support to achieve operational excellence
However, hiring a process consultant — along with any additional resources required to implement continuous improvements — comes at a cost, and not all companies are equipped to make this financial investment. But keep in mind that that’s just what this is: an investment that may save your company money in the long run.
How does business process management consulting work?
Whether it’s done in person or virtually, business process consulting usually works as follows:
1. Meet with process owners and managers
The consultant will meet with stakeholders, like process owners or managers, to learn how the company is currently performing processes and managing tasks.
Talking to managers and employees gives the consultant a lot of information about how the company operates. Business process management consulting can bring up serious issues in your company, and resolving those problems gives your company a better chance of success.
2. Establish goals or expected results
In addition to gathering background information, process consultants will also work with managers and employees to establish the goals they want to achieve with this collaboration, whether it’s increasing productivity, reducing costs, or streamlining communication.
When you want to see your company succeed and grow, having the right processes is vital.
3. Review processes
Once they’ve gathered this background information, they will do an in-depth review of the processes that need assistance. They may also present opportunities and propose business process solutions to optimize and improve existing processes and systems to meet short- and long-term goals.
4. Implement updates and improvements
Implementing the updates that have been gathered through a process review is the final step.
For example, a consultant may suggest a low-code automation platform to get your operations in working order and fill process gaps. Then it will be your job to implement that, or work with someone who can help you turn the consultant’s suggestions into reality for your business.
Read too: Business Process Redesign (BPR): Definition and How It Works
How to know when you need to bring in a business process consultant
If your company is missing its targets and not hitting goals, that’s a good indication that you need a professional to take a look at the inner workings of your processes and try to find out how they are falling short and why they are impacting your goals.
You may also want to work with a consultant if you see that your employees are struggling or your managers are becoming ineffective. While this can be a morale problem or some other issue, it could also be a problem with the processes themselves.
Or, if you have a number of processes listed in your company’s handbook and training manuals that aren’t being followed, your company may not be operating at the ideal level you need and expect. In this case, a process consultant may help.
How to choose a great consultant
Choosing the right consultant is the best way to give your company the boost it needs. In order to determine whether a consultant is right for your company, it’s important to consider what your company will gain and how they will help your company grow and develop, as well as the total cost of working with them — but that’s not all. Below are some tips to help you choose the right consultant.
Take a look at the consultant’s track record.
Consultants who are good at their jobs will have a good track record. Finding someone like that may take some time, but it’s well worth the effort. You don’t want to hire just anyone.
If they don’t have a good track record, enough experience, or a specialized background, they may not provide you with the quality and value you’re looking for. Your company deserves a consultant you can really trust to help you succeed.
Tip: Don’t be afraid to tap into your professional network for suggestions.
Make sure they have good communication skills.
Not only should your consultant know what you need to do, but they have to be able to communicate that to you properly. If they’re good at finding the problem, but ineffective at communicating that to you, they won’t provide the help you need.
Look for a business process consultant to be good at conveying the issues they see, and explaining what you should do to correct those problems.
Tip: Ask the consultant how they communicate with clients during the initial hiring interview to gain insight into how they may work with you.
Choose value and quality over price.
For nearly any aspect of business, the old adage that you get what you pay for is very true — but price isn’t always everything. Rather than assuming that the most expensive consultant will get you quality or the least expensive will get you affordability, focus on their skillset and whether they possess the knowledge or background you’re looking for.
Remember: quality costs money, and your business is worth good, quality help — however, that doesn’t mean having to break the bank. Choose the best consultant based on their skills, not the price they’re charging, and don’t assume that price determines quality.
Find the right process with Pipefy’s help
Business process consultants help identify immediate changes and opportunities for improvement. But even when you work with a business process consultant, you still want to make sure you have the right software to manage and address your company’s process needs.
Pipefy’s low-code automation solution helps implement changes, automate workflows, and continuously improve processes defined by your consultant — easily and securely — so you can get back to seeing your business grow.