Companies in this industry provide management, scientific, and technical consulting services, including specialized services such as environmental, human resources, IT, logistics, and marketing consulting. Major global companies include Accenture, Booz Allen, Deloitte Consulting, IBM Global Services, McKinsey & Company, Roland Berger, and Tata Consultancy Services.
The worldwide consulting services industry generates more than $450 billion in revenue annually, according to Plunkett Research. The US and Europe are the largest markets for consulting services, but global firms are targeting other industrialized regions with emerging economies for growth. Economic reform efforts have boosted demand for consulting services in the Middle East, particularly Saudi Arabia.
The US consulting services industry includes about 165,000 establishments (single-location companies and units of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $260 billion.
Demand is driven primarily by corporate spending. The profitability of individual companies depends on the efficiency of their operations and their ability to maintain a steady flow of business. Large firms have advantages in being able to offer broad ranges of services and to take on more complex projects. Small firms can compete effectively by specializing. The US industry is fragmented: the top 50 companies account for about 30% of industry revenue.
PRODUCTS, OPERATIONS & TECHNOLOGY
Management consulting services, including consulting related to strategic planning, marketing, and human resources, account for about 80% of US industry revenue. Other major revenue sources include scientific and technical consulting and environmental consulting.