One of the highlights of the IE Technology Summit 2015 was how digital business models change the competitive landscape. The IE Technology & Innovation Club was lucky to host Mariano Blanchard, Digital VP at McKinsey Digital Labs. Mariano spoke to us about how digital business models disrupt the consulting industry.
Many of us noticed in the previous years that consulting firms such as McKinsey & Company, BCG, Bain, Deloitte, or Accenture have put increasing efforts in specializing in digital business consulting by setting up dedicated consulting practices. Equally, since 2013, McKinsey has formed Digital Labs – a network of studios around the globe. Mariano spoke to us about this development and shared three core messages with us.
1. Clients are getting more savvy
“Digital is changing everything – Yes it is a blown over cliché, but… “ – Indeed, clients require the additional mile to get their questions answered. Analysis and recommendations are required to be deeper than previously practiced. Project timelines are getting shorter and the time frame for strategic planning is shrinking. Furthermore, consultants are challenged to apply the latest thinking and be aware of the latest technological trends.
2. The Traditional Gap in Management Consulting is Unsustainable
According to Mariano, much of the consulting industry was previously focused on two core areas: C-suite strategy consulting and implementation. With strategy being: “strategize, define, design” while implementation focused on “build, pilot, deploy”. In-between, there was a gap, a “no man’s land” that would lead to communication issues and translational challenges between projects. Today, a digital consulting practice is required to encompass the entire process from ideation, to designing a strategy, to building, piloting, and finally deploying.
While slide decks and spreadsheets still have their place in board rooms, a cutting edge digital consulting project finished with more tangible deliverables, such as final ready-to-market tools. This could be a customer self-service app, a management information system dashboard, interactive big data analytics visualizing, and anything your creative mind could think of as a deliverable of tomorrow.
Certainly, for the IE community, to learn from Mariano was eye opening. The IE Business School is not only very strong in digital business topics because of the course offering and excellent faculty. It is the passionate drive of our student community to innovate, create a startup, or choose a technology firm. It seems, that digital business consulting fits right into the interest of our student community and Mariano has further fueled this excitement with his presentation.