5 Benefits of Working for a Small Firm

Professionals clapping for achievement

Once again, I'm proud to announce that Citisoft has been recognized by Consulting Magazine as one of 2018’s “Best Small Firms to Work For.” The list of top consulting firms was ranked based on survey responses from over 9,000 consultants, representing 300 firms. This is Citisoft’s third time placing on this annual list and our highest ranking at #4.

Survey respondents ranked consulting firms across six categories measuring employee satisfaction: Compensation & Benefits, Career Development, Work/Life Balance, Culture, Leadership, and Client Engagement. Citisoft received positive reviews across all categories and was ranked #1 in Firm Culture, #2 in Leadership, #4 in Client Engagement, #6 in Career Development, and #7 in Work/Life Balance.

Consulting Magazine's 2018 Best Firms to Work ForI was asked by Consulting Magazine a specific question after hearing the news of our ranking – what is unique about your firm and what sets it apart? My answer was pretty simple: From a client standpoint, which is the most important standpoint, there are four pillars that set Citisoft apart: domain expertise, depth of experience, industry relationships, and breadth of services. We’re dedicated to servicing the investment management industry exclusively, with the industry’s foremost technology and operations experts. This is the model we were built on and the one that has brought success to countless clients over our 30+ year history.

Image: Consulting Magazine

The Best Small Firms recognition is particularly special to us because it is based on the feedback from our own employees. Because we employ the best talent in the business, it’s important that our consultants love working here, especially when so many other firms are vying for great talent. Making this list is an affirmation of the incredible company we’ve built and the industry-leading programs that we’ve brought to fruition for our clients.

This reminds me of an article I wrote a couple of years ago about the lure of working for a Boutique “Small” Consulting firm and how smaller firms like Citisoft, can attract and retain the best talent in the industry. There are five things smaller firms can do:

Senior level exposure

One thing that boutique consultancies can offer junior staff is more senior level exposure. That interaction is invaluable experience and can help a consultant build his or her career path.

Open culture

In a boutique firm, it is more attainable to ensure that the consulting team is excited about its work and where you are headed as a firm.

People investment

Any successful consulting firm, be it large or small, must be continually investing in its most important asset – its people. Smaller firms have more flexibility in tailoring professional development benefits for each consultant based on their specific skillsets and areas of interest.

Compensation and benefits

Smaller firms have smaller overhead costs which allows them to offer more competitive compensation packages that includes revenue sharing and other discretionary bonus and/or profit-sharing benefits.

Ensuring a work/life balance

The nature of the consulting industry often necessitates building hours around a client’s needs and all consultants have experience of demanding schedules. Boutique consultancies should strive to ensure that its consultants are never over-utilized by offering them support from management and setting the right expectations with clients.

For example, Citisoft schedules its engagements around our ‘More Nights at Home’ program, which ensures that our consultants are at the client site three nights per week, giving them more time with their families. This balance is made possible by building out the right team for each project, coupled with careful management of timelines and workload.

In summary, boutique consultancies may not be able to compete with the Big Four in terms of scale but, if they work smart, they can offer a more compelling case to top talent.