About Consultants 500

Tap into the global professional services market!
 Create a profile, find business consultants, rate & review work done!

Consultants500.com is a new marketplace for advisors where you can search, compare and review a wide range of business advisors.

It is our single mission to help connecting businesses in search for professional service providers with the right person for the job. After a match has been made you can do business with each other in any way you like.

As such, it is our explicit goal not to interfere in any way you do business with each other, because you know best how this should be done and how you would like to do this.

You remain responsible for project management and our platform is never involved in any payments between a Client and an Advisor. We are only here to help finding the best person for the job, nothing else.

WHY

The internet is literally loaded with millions of business advisors who say they can deliver exactly what you need. The problem is how to find and be found in a quick and easy way.

Ideally, you create a shortlist of advisors that meet your demands, compare them, select the best one for the job and that only within a few minutes. Our Platform is just the tool for that! STOP SEARCHING and START FINDING / BEING FOUND. Create a profile, define your services and get found.

We make the advisory world more transparent by sharing advisor’s specialization, their work and their clients’ feedback.

OUR STORY

More than 15 years ago multiple matching platforms have been established, for freelancers specifically, that operate on the low-end market. Just recently, comparable platforms have been and are being established, also for freelancers, but these professionals operate more on the high-end market. What all these platforms have in common is that they target freelancers only, the platform operates as the middleman charging project fees averaging 10% — 15% of the project price, they have commoditized freelancing work and last but not least you are obliged to manage, run and pay the project via the platform.

Personally, I, the founder of Consultants 500, thought that all of these similarities have some major drawbacks:

  • Why service freelancers only — Generally speaking and depending on the project, clients work both with freelancers and consultants and they can be from well-established large firms but also from the smaller firms.
  • The artificial nature of project fee charges — The only reason why these platforms are able to charge 10% to 15% transaction fees is because they force you to perform and manage the project via the platform and as such operate as the middleman. We always thought that many opportunities on the internet were and are about getting rid of the middleman and not about creating one. Nobody gains from this, except for the middleman.
  • Commoditization of freelancing work — Especially the platforms on the lower side of the freelancing market have standardized project work and put enormous pressure on freelance prices. A freelancer in the US literally competes with a freelancer is India. This maybe good for prices but it has not increased the quality of work performed and in the end quality is what makes the difference.
  • Inflexibility — The platform forces you to manage, run and pay all projects via the platform. For some type of projects this may work. However, it is my personal experience that more complex type of projects are just not suited for these constraints and in contrary this inflexibility just causes extra work for all parties, lowers the quality of the work performed and just does not help any of the parties except for the middleman.

For these reasons, amongst others, our Consultants 500 platform has been made in such a way that we only help connecting businesses in search for professional service providers with the right person for the job. Which can be a freelancer, a consultant or a company. After you have selected your ideal candidate, you contact each other and do business with each other in any way you like.

MARKET

Online platforms for the professional services industry are on the rise as a channel of matching professionals with clients. According to a 2015 study from McKinsey & Company, digital talent platforms are set to revolutionize business, holding the potential to add $2.7 trillion to GDP on an annual basis by 2025. The professional services industry, including accounting, engineering and management consulting, is one of the largest beneficiaries of the forecasted value added. Not surprisingly, across the globe platforms are being established to tap into the market potential.

Some market trends and expectations are:

  • More and more businesses have difficulties of finding talent with the right skills. The growing use of online talent platforms begin to address these problems and are fundamentally altering the way professionals are searching for work opportunities and the way many businesses approach searching for advisors and hiring them.
  • Online talent platforms create transparency around a company’s or a consultant’s expertise, skills, experience and what clients think of the professionals they have worked with.
  • Currently, less than 1% of total freelance work is captured by online freelance platforms. For traditional service provider firms this percentage is even lower or non-existent / negligible. However, the use of these platforms is growing rapidly and it is expected that these platforms will change markets like the Amazon’s and Uber’s of this world did and still do.
  • Online talent platforms have the greatest potential for high-tech and high-end professional services firms, both of which depend on specialized, expensive, and hard-to-find professionals.
  • While hundreds of millions of people around the world already use these type of platform services, their capabilities and potential are still evolving and they may change the world of work in ways that we can only begin to imagine today.

BACKGROUND

I, Rufus Franck and the founder of this platform, have 16+ years experience working in the professional services industry as an International Tax Advisor. I started with the Big 4 and worked there for about 9 years, then worked on the other side for a multinational for 3 years and finally continued my advisory career as an interim / freelance professional for about 4 years. So I have seen the full spectrum of the professional services industry.

During one of my interim projects I needed to work with many different advisors on a worldwide basis and I noticed how difficult is was to find the right advisor for the job, even for someone who has worked 15 years in that industry. At the same time I knew that the professional services industry still operated in a very traditional way, whereby the professionals are hiding behind the big company names they are working for and hardly making any use of technology opportunities which was already wide spread among other industries and markets.

By combining these two insights, the idea of the Consultants 500 platform was born. It was not very difficult to see that there was a huge market potential, so soon I started working out the idea with some great web developers.

And now we are here, ready to facilitate and change the professional services industry and we are just at the beginning!


Originally published at www.blog.consultants500.com.