Mar 23, 2007

No thought leadership from HR consulting firms

So says Fiona Czerniawska, the author of White Space 2007, a research report that evaluates the latest thought leadership published by the top global consulting firms. (Hat tip: Mike McLaughlin)

If you take a look at the article which says that more HR related thought leadership is driven by the strategic consulting firms than by HR specific ones.

Interestingly, McKinsey produces by far the most material on organisational design and change with 37 percent of the market, and Accenture produces as much as Hewitt Associates and Towers Perrin on recruitment and retention.

Amongst the HR consulting firms her verdict is:

Most of the HR firms struggle to find anything new to say about the issues they focus their attention on. Mercer and Hay Group stand out from a wide array of specialist HR firms, largely because they have something a little more original to say. Hewitt Associates produces more commercially astute material than most of its peer group: it succeeds in presenting issues that clients might choose to act on rather than just think about. But none of the specialist HR firms appears in the White Space top ten ranking of thought leadership quality.

I guess the writing is on the wall as far as thought leadership goes. You produce more value as a HR or Organizational practice in a larger strategic consulting firm than as a standalone HR specialist firm. Isn't that the advice the same firms give to their HR clients in organizations: that they should link more with business to produce more value? Looks like they need to follow their own advice :-))