New report rates the e-consultants

In his weekly column, Tom Rodenhauser, president and founder of Consulting Information Services, follows trends in e-services and management consulting. This week, he reports on the findings from the ITSA's study of the e-business market.

IT Services Advisory unveils key findings from its new study of the Internet Professional Services market. The report, “An Analysis of Internet Professional Services Market,” lets some air out of the e-consultant hype.

ITSA profiled 34 firms, from Andersen Consulting to ZEFER, to provide the most objective e-business market study to date. Management, capabilities, average contract size, repeat business breakdown, and preferred billing methods were among the several points analyzed for each firm. These and other factors allowed ITSA to provide unbiased reviews of the major and minor players.

At more than 300 pages, the report is a library of data on this emerging sector. One of the surprising findings: e-services contract sizes are quite tiny when stacked against traditional IT services engagements. Most engagements fall well under $2.5 million. Ironically, the small contracts get full press coverage while the billion-dollar outsourcing announcements barely register a blip.

ITSA reports that ongoing industry consolidation will inevitably lead to a reach for the bigger projects. In turn, the demand for more personnel and a greater services commitment will cause much consternation as e-consultants struggle to achieve scale.

To order ITSA’s Analysis of Internet Professional Services Market, call (908) 355-8878 or e-mail The ITSA report retails for $4,995.

Heard on the street
Here’s how one e-consulting partner describes the difference between e-firms and traditional mega-consultancies: “We’re end-to-end and they’re soup-to-nuts.” Now technically, end-to-end describes a continuous journey rather than start-to-finish. And soup-to-nuts, which doesn’t include the entrée or dessert, depicts a rather paltry meal.

Clichés aside, little philosophical difference exists between the two camps: both sides do whatever the client needs done. So why use trite phrases to describe the obvious?
Inside Consulting is written by Tom Rodenhauser as a free weekly supplement to The Rodenhauser Report. The report informs senior advisors and business executives of consulting trends and best practices. Subscription cost is $295 per year for 10 issues. Copyright 2000, Consulting Information Services, LLC. Reproduction is prohibited. Quotation with attribution is encouraged.

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