At this time of year, many people make and break New Year’s resolutions. Some even keep them. These resolutions, however, are typically considered for our personal lives. How many take time from their busy professional schedules to take stock, learn from experts and set goals for their services organization based on anything besides their own internal performance?  

In running your professional services organization, it’s probably a given that you set and track certain metrics. Common metrics include employee utilization, billing rates and/or revenue per employee, and project profitability that are critical to your organization’s financial success.  Getting a solid understanding of exactly how you’re doing now is the underpinning for knowing where to focus future improvements.

The challenge is that “current performance” changes every day and even within a day, and having an accurate picture of it at any point in time is not as easy as it might seem. With a services resource planning (SRP) system like NetSuite with NetSuite OpenAir, the dream of real-time visibility can be achievable in an average of five months.

With NetSuite’s cloud-based enterprise resource planning (ERP) and project management system, not only can the P&L manager have real-time visibility into accurate data, but so can every project and account manager. Instead of information locked in silos like spreadsheets on individual laptops or in unintegrated applications, NetSuite’s approach ensures that everyone in the organization who is given permission can access the same, current data.  

Thus, they can quickly adjust resources or project scope to ensure profitability. If you conduct business in multiple countries, this system can also provide an updated view as currencies fluctuate or customers come and go. According to the soon-to-be-released SPI 2012 Maturity Benchmark Study on professional services organizations, companies who use NetSuite OpenAir had a tremendous 19.1% EBITDA (earnings)—significantly higher than those with no PSA solution or a homegrown one.1 If you set the single goal of contacting NetSuite and implementing our cloud SRP system, you can quickly put your organization on the path of being an industry leader.

Knowing your performance relative to similar organizations is a second challenge. Without external information, it’s hard to know whether your revenue per consultant, margin or bid-to-win rates are fabulous or merely average. Even if you’re making continual strides in your own metrics, wouldn’t it be good to know if there were other organizations doing significantly better whose practices you could emulate?

By spending just one hour of your time learning about key industry metrics, you’ll have critical information to decide where to improve or to arm yourself for a discussion with your boss about a nice raise. Join us for a professional services benchmark webinar with tips from a leading professional services practitioner.

2012 Professional Services Maturity Benchmark Results Webinar—Ways to Be the Best!

Webinar:   2012 Professional Services Maturity Benchmark Results

Date:  Wednesday, February 8

Time:  9 am PT / noon ET

At this webinar, Jeanne Urich, Managing Director, SPI Research, will reveal the key trends, challenges and results that shaped the PS industry in 2011. She’ll share enlightening industry benchmarks and some best practices that you can implement.

Sometimes numbers don’t provide sufficient insight on their own, so to ensure you’ll be able to set at least one new positive resolution for your organization, Beat Neuhaus, VP of Global Service Operations for Siemens, will share his experience. Siemens uses NetSuite OpenAir to track real-time customer project status in the cloud and is recognized as one of the top PS organizations in the world with PSA practices in 26 countries. He will give you suggestions for improving your organization that he’s seen work in a complex multinational services organization and discuss how he’s created real-time project dashboards that give him both “transparency and simplicity.”

Experts who have studied resolution-setting say that a key is to break the goal into very small steps. So register here and spend one hour on February 8 and you’ll have a head start on implementing better practices for your professional services organization. Plus, we believe you’ll have an extra bit of motivation and enthusiasm by hearing how well a reasonable amount of effort has paid off for others. 

Best wishes for a happy and profitable 2012!

Ed Marshall, General Manager, Services Vertical


1 David Hofferberth, pre-release information from The 2012 Professional Services Maturity Benchmark, Service Performance Insight.