“We don’t know what we don’t know.”
This is one of the most common phrases we hear from our clients. I’ll start by saying - recognizing this in your role takes great self-awareness, a rare quality. It’s also the first step toward learning more of what you don’t know and using that knowledge to focus your efforts on highest impact changes.
Often business leaders are too close to the day-to-day to see beyond the surface level issues and get down to the root causes causing performance problems. We see leaders who want to take a step back to conduct their own in-depth business assessment and analysis, but they don’t have the bandwidth or expertise to do so. There is also tremendous value in understanding how your business compares to peers, which is something industry experts specialize in.
Additionally, consultants provide an unbiased view. Leaders oftentimes have relationships or emotional ties to things within the business that create challenges in seeing the objective reality. Frequently, this reality is that things need to change. Consultants are not restricted by those relationships or emotional ties when conducting a business assessment.
Below are some of the questions you can ask yourself when considering a Business Assessment.
- Are we growing as fast as we should be?
- Are we reaching our goals on a competitive timeline?
- Is my team properly trained?
- Is my organization keeping up with changing rates?
- Is my team selecting the right capacity provider for each shipment?
- When do we escalate to manual booking?
- Are our carrier payments streamlined?
- Is our compensation properly aligned to our company objectives in a fair and incentivized manner?
Enlisting the help of a consultant may seem risky or like a big investment, but with a Business Assessment you get the opportunity to experience working with an industry focused consultancy and see the outcomes for yourself at an affordable price and in a reasonable timeframe. We’re sharing this overview in an effort to help business leaders like yourself understand the benefits and process of a Business Assessment.
What is a Business Assessment?
A Business Assessment is a top to bottom review of your business. This includes internal and external research, expert insights, competitive analysis, identification of pain points & opportunities, future state visioning, actionable recommendations, and quick wins.
What are the objectives of a Business Assessment?
The objective of a Business Assessment is to get a top to bottom evaluation of your business, an understanding of how you compare to peers in the space, and recommendations on what changes could be made. This gives you an independent, industry-informed perspective to drive your growth strategy.
Current State Assessment
We work with you to understand areas including:
- Day-to-day operations and processes
- Tech strategy
- Organizational structure
Identify Pain Points & Opportunities
- Identify pain points that are preventing your business from reaching growth and profit goals
- Identify opportunities for business improvement
Develop Recommendations for your Business
- We take those pain points and opportunities and craft them into tangible, actionable recommendations that can be carried out by your business directly.
- From quick wins to longer term recommendations, you’ll get expert advice and roadmapping toward reaching your goals
What’s involved in the process of a Business Assessment?
Typical engagements include the following components. These steps serve to help us understand your needs and the various options that will be most beneficial to your goals.
In our kick off call, our team will get to know your points of contact so we can align on:
- Engagement objectives
- Key meetings & workshops
- Leadership team
- Key stakeholders
- Communication cadence
We request specific types of data based on the project type. We then analyze your data to find trends that we can drive insight from.
Business Stakeholder Interviews and/or Shadowing Sessions
While we’ll spend some time understanding leadership’s perspective of the business, the real insights come from shadowing and interviewing the floor employees. We’ll interview team members across your organization to identify strengths and pain points around areas including: current compensation, understanding motivation, role responsibilities, and day-to-day processes.
Maybe we’ll discover that your lack of focus on carrier experience is a cause of lost business. Perhaps inconsistent organization structures or roles & responsibilities cause confusion for your employees. Sometimes we uncover fragmented systems, performance issues, or process bottlenecks standing as blockers to reaching your goals.
Observation steps also serve to help determine business and technical requirements. Shadowing employees will allow our team to understand current and future business needs.
Workshops are collaborative, long-form sessions that aim to design the program needed to meet your company objectives.
- Where do you see your business in 5, 10 years?
- What are the long-term goals for your business?
- What is our winning aspiration?
- Where will we play?
- What capabilities do we need?
- What management systems do we need?
We document what we’ve learned about your current state and help create documentation needed for your future state.
Examples of documentation:
- Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs)
- Updated Organizational Charts
- Rules of Engagement (ROEs)
- Updated Job Roles and Responsibilities
- New-Hire and Ongoing Employee Training
Benchmarking measures your company against industry leading competitors: brokerages, 3PLs, shippers, etc. We will research and compile profiles for major competitors to promote awareness of industry standards and provide you with benchmarks to be used for future business growth.
When conducting an assessment it’s important to meet regularly with stakeholders to share findings and align on next steps. This ensures that our teams stay aligned on expectations and allows us to course-correct if necessary.
Last but not least, the consulting team presents their final, expert recommendations. We provide high level recommendations using a prioritization framework. These recommendations could also include roadmapping for your future state and ROI estimates on recommended initiatives. We could recommend a new compensation plan, more intentional training, updating your tech strategy, a new organizational structure - it all depends on your unique business.
What are the typical outcomes?
A typical Metafora Business Assessment results in clients saving 5-10% on SG&A, reaching their goals faster than if they hadn’t brought in consultant help, and refined focus on high impact initiatives. Business Assessments provide an assortment of the following outcomes.
- High level recommendations regarding:
- Actionable Quick Wins
- Prioritization Framework (illustrated below)
- Guidance for Streamlined Processes
- Imperatives for Growth
- Estimated ROI for recommendations based on business assumptions
- Future State Vision
How long does it take?
A typical assessment engagement is completed on a timeline of 4 - 6 weeks.
How much does it cost?
The typical cost of an assessment engagement is approximately $45,000 - $60,000.*
*Exact pricing will vary based on the size and complexity of your business.
Want to learn more about TMS? Check out this blog: Where Does it Hurt?
Metafora has extensive experience assessing, transforming, and growing transportation and logistics companies. From this, we have developed a proprietary framework to rapidly assess the strategy, planning, and operations of TL brokerages and 3PLs. We work with 3PLs, brokerages, carriers, shippers, and managed transportation providers to overcome obstacles toward progress and growth, so we can contribute to a more efficient world together.
Interested in learning more about how Metafora can help your organization make faster, smarter progress?
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