Case study: Independent strategic consultant for property reviewer and surveyor
Adam Gates, Head of Odgers Connect, speaks to Ian Morton, independent strategic consultant, about a recent consulting assignment for a leading property reviewer and surveyor
Following a recent reorganisation of management and the new challenges brought by the global pandemic, the client, one of the UK’s leading provider of residential valuation and surveying services, required strategic advice. With a strong B2B proposition, the company needed to reconsider its position in an increasingly competitive market and identify new revenue channels.
The client turned to Odgers Connect for an independent consultant to lead on the future strategy of the organisation and make recommendations on how to increase profitability in a disrupted market. The project required a strategy specialist with experience delivering change and transformation. To fulfil this need, the client appointed Ian Morton. Ian is an independent consultant focused on strategy and has previously supported a number of organisations to optimise operations with a focus on profitability. He has worked across the private and public sectors but critical to this assingment, he has a significant amount of experience in the construction and property space.
Ian’s initial approach to the project was an assessment process in which he carved out three terms of reference. First, he looked to conduct market and competitor research. In recent years the market has been expanding rapidly and Ian needed to identify the market trends and new competitor offerings. With this information, Ian was then able to assess the state of the client, focusing on the drivers of profitability. In this, he did an intensive interview-based analysis with the leadership team to get into the finer detail of the organisation and profit channels. Through this information gathering phase, Ian could then identify new opportunities for the client.
After considering the competitors and the general market outlook as well as the client and the opportunities available, Ian set out his strategic recommendations and areas of change to drive the business forward.
Ian identified an opportunity to strengthen the client’s already strong B2B proposition by modifying their account management strategy. Working closely with the account directors, Ian established a new process to categorise retail banking clients into different levels of size and profitability. For each grouping, he put in place plans for how to build stronger relationships with the clients and better serve their specific needs.
While the client remained a strong player in the B2B market, Ian set out strong reasoning for why the organisation should establish itself in the emerging B2C space and diversify its revenue channels. To do this, Ian carved out capacity to develop the offering. He put plans in place to build a new directorate to initially develop the new product set and, going forward, oversee and manage the additional proposition.
A key activity throughout the project was a review of the organisations’ IT capabilities. With each recommendation, Ian ensured he considered technology and new digital opportunities. He put forward a number of recommendations to develop the IT infrastructure of the business and successfully integrate both the B2B and B2C sides of the business in a digital capacity.
In his role as strategic consultant, Ian supported the managing director in gaining approval from the board for the new direction for the organisation and the changes necessary to realise the strategy. Once the plan passed through the group governance processes, Ian was critical in setting the steps in motion. He was involved in bringing a new proposition director on board to oversee the B2C business and the team is now developing out the new product set. On the B2B side, the account director has adopted the new account management process to better serve their clients’ needs.
For more information please contact Adam Gates.