How many consultants does it take to change a light bulb?
“Well, it depends.”
Sure, consultants sometimes get a bad rap for their approach to decision-making, and some of those consultant stereotypes, well, they’re true. Consultants tend to come with a price tag and a controversial mission: Helping solve problems you haven’t been able to solve yourself.
In our experience, there are many good reasons to consider hiring a consultant for your ARM business and the purpose of this blog is to share those with you. Maybe there are challenges in your business that are worthy of a new perspective – anything from growth and profitability to collector turnover and technology optimization.
Consultants work with many different companies and have likely helped solve similar problems, taking note of what does and what doesn’t work. So, if you have contemplated or are actively considering hiring a consultant, here are three reasons you should go ahead and make the leap:
Reason #1: You have blind spots, we all do.
As a business leader, it’s not uncommon to retain and reuse strategies based on popularity, past success or basic productivity. And while these strategies may have worked before, they don’t account for blind spots in your business. The problem with blind spots, is, well, we can’t even see that they are there.
However, simply acknowledging that they exist is a great first step. If you are trying to evolve, grow at new levels, or expand, you need someone who can shine light in those areas that you and the existing resources can’t see.
A good consultant provides that much-needed objectivity that is based on real data, and they don’t generally care about appeasing leaders like a typical member of your staff might. They focus on getting results and making decisions based off data.
You might have blind spots if:
- You’ve recently lost a client (or clients) and it surprised you
- Your year-over-year growth is stagnant
- You’re buying the same data and using the same prioritization models without making updates
- Your collection rates are dropping
- You haven’t responded to decreased margins with an ROI focus for working accounts
Reason #2: You need specialized experience.
Your challenges exist whether or not you have the means to solve them. Bringing in someone who can specialize in solving your problem is the most active thing you can do to improve your business outcomes. However, you may struggle to find a full-time employee with the right skill set in the ARM industry. Which is why a consultant can basically serve as temporary, highly skilled employee.
Hiring a consultant works great when you don’t have the time or resources to train an employee to develop a certain skillset. Consultants move around from company to company, and are used to the fast learning curve. They allow your full-time employees to not be pulled away and they can focus on their day-to-day tasks.
Specialized experience might be right for you if:
- You need help in your collection platform and don’t have the internal resources
- Your staff is overloaded
- You are taking on a new line of business and want to adjust workflows
- You are getting sued a lot
- You aren’t sure how to interpret ROI on your data spend
Reason #3: You’re unique…just like everybody else
It probably doesn’t come as a surprise to you that many of the challenges you face are impacting a lot of your peers. That’s why we love a good industry get-together where we can exchange ideas and collectively progress.
A great consultant can help benchmark your organization to determine how you are performing in comparison to others in all areas. ARM consultants also understand how you stack up when it comes to compliance nuances, collector behavior, and workflow optimization.
Staying on top of trends and news, a good ARM consultant understands with depth the standards and best practices that all highly profitable firms have in common.
Benchmarking can help you if:
- You aren’t sure how others are managing against decreasing margins
- You don’t know if you’re paying too much for data
- You are certain your collection rates are as competitive as they once were
- You aren’t sure if you should be offering expanded services or if it’s a bad investment
Now that you recognize a need for a consultant, here’s what to look for.
In our experience, what differentiates a good consultant from a big-waste-of-money is simple: data. Data to illustrate the impact they’ve had in other similar organizations, data to measure your performance against standards and data to drive your strategies.
Our passion for consulting comes from over 20 years of experience serving ARM organizations with data-driven strategy. We’re so proud of our results that we are happy to conduct a free consultation for you at any time. Simply fill out the form below and one of our consultants will reach out to you.