TSIA has recently launched our very first Partner Advisory Board, consisting of technology, service provider and consulting partners in the TSIA partner network. This is a great opportunity for us to stay current on marketing and spending trends in other industries, as well as track emerging best practices in our own industry. We have an impressive list of partners on the board; here is a link to view the complete list.
Over the next few weeks, I will be bringing you interviews with our Partner Advisory Board members. Today’s interview is with Randy Mysliviec, CEO, RTM Consulting. A long time TPSA and TSIA partner, RTM works with consulting, professional services and shared services organizations to improve operational efficiency and revenue.
John Ragsdale: I’d like to thank Randy Mysliviec from RTM Consulting for joining me today, and agreeing to participate in this blog interview. Randy, I know you were a founding member of the TPSA, now part of TSIA, and have served on the TPSA advisory board before joining the TSIA partner advisory board. Would you give us some background on RTM Consulting and the types of projects you help TSIA members tackle?
Randy Mysliviec: Hi John, glad to be here. RTM Consulting provides strategic and operational advice to help technology companies increase revenues and grow margins by leveraging services more effectively. We specialize in Global Resource Management and Services Business Optimization, helping IT hardware and software companies, pure consulting businesses and support/shared services organizations get better at what they do.
In the past we have worked with many TSIA members including Adobe, Bullhorn, Compugen, EMC, Informatica, Mentor Graphics, MicroStrategy, NCR, TriZetto and others assisting with improving services strategy and operational performance.
John: We are hearing from many members that there may be some belt-tightening ahead in 2012 due to risk in the economy. When professional services organizations talk budgets, one metric always drives the conversation: utilization. Why is utilization such a key metric for PS teams?
Randy: In a professional services organization, the largest cost line item by far is people. Therefore efficient utilization of that resource is paramount. We have done literally dozens of resource management assessment and transformation projects, and we find most organizations continue to struggle with some aspect of getting the right person in the right place at the right time. And the issue is much larger than just cost efficiency – proper resourcing impacts project timeliness, profitability and quality in a big way. Interestingly, most PS teams have invested in a quality method, and a Project Management methodology, but not a Resource Management (RM) methodology. We think the industry has it up-side down. An RM methodology should come first, not last. If you cannot resource a project correctly, what’s the point of tracking quality and PM status – the outcome is quite certain!
John: So let’s talk about effectively managing those expensive PS resources. One of RTM’s specialties is resource management, and I know you have a practice built around Just-in-Time Resourcing® (JITR), including a YouTube video on the topic. Can you give us an overview of JITR?
Randy: We introduced Just-in-Time Resourcing® (JITR) solutions to help companies with the complex task of getting the right person in the right place at the right time. It is our brand of human capital management solutions. JITR provides a systematic and disciplined solution to managing human capital in a hyper-efficient manner, while enabling more productive application of PM and quality methodologies. I believe that over the next decade, growing competition and marketplace change will continue putting unprecedented pressure on service providers to rapidly adapt and innovate in every facet of service delivery. Effectively and efficiently sourcing and managing resources will be the new high water mark for the industry and by utilizing Just-in-Time Resourcing® companies build the right set of capabilities to accomplish the most efficient use of human capital.
John: Do companies have a difficult time transitioning away from the old project schedule approach? What are some of the common problems you see regarding resourcing with TSIA members?
Randy: The industry in general still views RM as the last priority vs. PM and quality methods. It should be their first priority. There is so much waste in PS process spending today! Getting the right person in the right place at the right time does require substantial sophistication in human capital management, but given that it’s by far the largest line item in their budgets, it’s a no brainer investing in an RM methodology and solution.
John: With the recent launch of Consumption Economics, TSIA has a big push around making products more customer centric so technology is more easily adopted and time to value is accelerated. This is a topic RTM Consulting has been discussing for some time, with your Value Realization Framework. Can you talk about the link between user adoption and company revenue?
Randy: You’re right John, we have been discussing this very trend for some time and it’s something we feel very strongly about. Today’s increasingly complex technology solutions are making it more and more difficult for customers to adopt all of the available features and functionality and achieve maximum value from their investments. Ultimately, this diminishes client satisfaction and loyalty, threatening client retention and future revenue streams for technology vendors.
As with most challenges, this trend represents a tremendous opportunity for services organizations within technology companies to increase their value by aligning their services portfolio with their clients’ most pressing need – achieving real value from the product. If these companies evolve their services teams from product implementation and support to valued advisors, they will drive user adoption – the most critical element in growing company revenues. Services is the key! Shortly after J. B. Wood released ‘Complexity Avalanche’, we introduced a very comprehensive methodology designed to help companies improve value realization for their customers.
John: We’ve focused on professional services so far in this interview, but before we close, I wanted to be sure our readers know that you also have a lot of hands-on experience in the customer support and outsourcing arena. What sort of projects are a good fit for RTM Consulting on the support services side of TSIA’s membership?
Randy: At our heart we help technology companies make services work better for them in every respect. We know as much about Work Force Management (WFM) for support services as we do about Resource Management (RM) for PS teams. This is true for every other aspect of running a support or education services operation. For support service providers we can help with customer acquisition, retention, revenue management, work force management, channel strategies (contact optimization), infrastructure support, or overall support service strategies.
John: Thank you for taking the time for this interview, and for providing such excellent content!
Randy: Thank you for the opportunity John. It’s been an absolute pleasure serving on the TSIA Partner Advisory Board.