BUSINESS STRATEGIES

How to create a consultant business plan

  • Nirit Braun
  • Oct 30, 2023
  • 12 min read

How to create a consultant business plan

When launching your consulting business, one of the essential first steps is crafting a well-structured and detailed business plan. Your consulting business plan is like a strategic playbook that lays out your goals, tactics and financial projections. It not only steers you toward success but also equips you to adapt and thrive in the dynamic world of consulting.

Keep reading for tips on how to build a strong business plan for your business. Use the template provided at the end to get started on your own plan.

Looking to kick off your consultancy business? Create a business website today with Wix.

Why create a consultant business plan? Top benefits to consider

A business plan forces entrepreneurs to thoroughly evaluate their business idea, target audience and competitive landscape. This process clarifies their vision and mission, ensuring that they have a clear understanding of how their consultancy will provide value to clients. A business plan helps you in the following ways:

Create a business blueprint : With a business plan in place, entrepreneurs looking to start a business can make informed decisions based on a solid foundation of research and analysis. They can choose the most effective strategies for marketing, pricing and service delivery, enhancing their chances of success. Your business plan can also be used to explain what type of business you'll start - whether that's an LLC, Corporation or something else. Learn more about how to start an LLC .

Secure funding : The cost to start a consultancy business can range from around $60 to several thousand dollars . For those seeking external funding, a well-developed business plan demonstrates credibility and professionalism. Investors and lenders are more likely to support a venture with a thought-out plan that showcases its potential for growth and profitability.

Set measurable goals : A business plan sets measurable goals and performance metrics, which is vital with this type of business . This allows entrepreneurs to track their progress, adapt strategies as needed and celebrate milestones along the way.

Want to remind yourself of the basics? Learn more about how to start a service business .

How to create a successful consultant business plan in 6 steps

In this section, we'll break down the key components involved in crafting a successful consultant business plan in six steps.

Executive summary

Business and domain names

Market analysis and research

Operations plan

Marketing and advertising plan

Financial plan

01. Executive summary

An executive summary serves as a concise overview of the consultant's business plan, providing a snapshot of the key components and the business' essence. It's usually the first section investors, lenders and stakeholders read, so it must encapsulate the business' value proposition, objectives, strategies and projected growth. To write a clear executive summary for a consultant business make sure to keep it succinct yet informative. Clearly state the purpose of the business, the services offered, the target market and the unique value proposition. Avoid technical jargon that may confuse readers.

Then you can mention the business' strengths, such as the expertise of the consultants, unique methodologies or specialized services. Emphasize factors that set your consultancy apart from competitors.

Briefly discuss the market need for your services and how your consultancy plans to fulfill it. It’s worth noting that strategy and management consulting, as well as technology consulting, financial consulting and HR consulting are in high demand . Highlight any trends or changes in the industry that your business can capitalize on.

Remember to include a snapshot of your financial projections, indicating expected revenue, costs and profitability. This provides a glimpse into the business' potential financial success.

Example of an executive summary for a consultant business

"XYZ Consulting is a boutique consultancy firm specializing in digital transformation for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). With a team of seasoned professionals, we offer tailored solutions to help businesses harness the power of technology for growth. Our unique approach blends strategic consulting with hands-on implementation, ensuring tangible results. In a rapidly evolving tech landscape, XYZ Consulting is poised to be the partner SMEs need to thrive. Our financial projections forecast a steady growth trajectory, with a focus on achieving profitability within the first two years. With a proven track record and a finger on the pulse of industry trends, XYZ Consulting is well-equipped to guide businesses toward digital success."

02. Business and domain names

Knowing how to name a business is crucial for a consultancy venture and a key step before you register your business . It's the foundation of your brand and influences how clients perceive your services. With Wix , you can use a free business name generator or consulting company name generator as helpful tools for brainstorming unique and memorable names. Ensure the name reflects your expertise and the services you offer.

Similarly, the domain name for your business website is vital. It should be easy to remember, relevant to your services and ideally, match your company name. Check the domain's availability using domain registration platforms. Ensure the domain name aligns with your consultancy's focus and services. Generally, this means keeping it short and easy to spell and pronounce.

Learn more: How to make a consulting website

03. Market analysis and research

Incorporating a thorough market analysis within your consultant business plan is essential. Understand the competitive landscape, target audience and market trends. Research your competitors' strengths and weaknesses, pricing strategies and client base. This information will shape your business strategies and help you identify gaps in the market that your consultancy can fill.

04. Operations plan

The operations plan outlines the logistical aspects of your consultancy. It covers location, premises, equipment and staffing requirements. Determine whether your consultancy will be home-based, have a physical office or operate virtually. Define the equipment and software needed to deliver services effectively. Outline your staffing needs, including the roles and expertise required.

05. Marketing and advertising plan

Your marketing and advertising plan outlines how you will promote your consultant business. Identify the most effective strategies to reach your target audience. Consider content marketing, social media campaigns, networking events and speaking engagements to showcase your expertise. Emphasize how your marketing efforts will build brand awareness and attract clients.

You’ll need to develop a suite of brand assets to use in your marketing as well, starting with a company logo. You can use a free logo maker to get a professional logo in minutes.

06. Financial plan

The financial plan is a critical component of any business plan. It outlines how you will raise money for your business initially and provides a timeline for reaching profitability. Detail your startup costs, including equipment, marketing expenses and personnel. Present your revenue projections, taking into account different pricing models and growth scenarios. Highlight your break-even point and the strategies you'll employ to achieve profitability.

By addressing each part of their plan, entrepreneurs can create a robust business plan that guides them toward achieving their business goals and building a reputable consulting brand.

steps to developing a business plan

Consultant business plan examples

These templates illustrate two hypothetical consultant business plans, each tailored to a specific niche. These are just templates and should be adapted to your specific business goals and industry dynamics.

Consultant business plan template #1: XYZ Digital Consultants

XYZ Digital Consultants is a pioneering consultancy firm focused on digital transformation for businesses seeking to thrive in the digital age. Our team of experienced professionals offers strategic guidance and hands-on implementation to drive growth through technology adoption. With projected profitability within two years and a commitment to excellence, XYZ Digital Consultants is poised to lead businesses into a successful digital future.

Company and domain name

Company name: XYZ Digital Consultants

Domain name: xyzdigitalconsultants.com

Market opportunity: The rapid shift toward digital operations has created a substantial demand for expert guidance. Our analysis reveals a gap in the market for holistic digital transformation solutions tailored to the needs of SMEs.

Competitor research: We've identified key competitors and their strengths, which informs our strategy to emphasize personalized service and comprehensive implementation.

Location: Primarily virtual, with occasional in-person consultations as needed.

Premises: Home-based setup with access to modern communication tools.

Equipment: High-speed internet, latest software tools and virtual meeting platforms.

Staffing: Founder and lead consultant, supported by contract specialists as projects demand.

Content marketing: Regular blog posts on digital transformation trends, case studies and client success stories.

Social media campaigns: Active presence on LinkedIn and X to engage with potential clients and share valuable insights.

Networking events: Participation in industry webinars, seminars and local business events to showcase expertise.

Speaking engagements: Leveraging speaking opportunities at conferences and workshops to establish authority in the field.

Startup costs (equipment, website development, marketing materials): $15,000

Revenue projections (year one): $150,000

Revenue projections (year two) : $300,000

Break-even point: Achieved by the end of year one

Funding: Initial investment and savings from the founder

Consultant business plan template #2: LeadersEdge Consultants

LeadersEdge Consultants is a dynamic consultancy dedicated to leadership development and organizational excellence. Our experienced team offers customized programs that empower leaders to drive positive change. With a projected growth trajectory and a commitment to fostering impactful leadership, LeadersEdge Consultants is poised to transform organizations and elevate their success.

Company name: LeadersEdge Consultants

Domain name: leadersedgeconsultants.com

Market opportunity: Our analysis reveals a growing need for leadership development programs in diverse industries.

Competitor research: We've identified competitors' offerings and recognized an opportunity to provide a unique blend of coaching, training and strategy implementation.

Location: Virtual consultations, with the option for on-site workshops

Premises: Virtual office setup with video conferencing capabilities

Equipment: High-quality audiovisual tools, assessment software and learning platforms

Staffing : Founder will serve as the lead consultant, supported by certified leadership coaches

Customized workshops: Designing tailored leadership development programs for individual organizations.

Webinars: Hosting webinars on leadership best practices to showcase expertise and engage potential clients.

Thought leadership content: Publishing whitepapers, eBooks and video content on leadership topics.

Collaborations: Partnering with HR and talent development professionals to expand reach.

Startup costs ( making a website , training materials) : $10,000

Revenue projections (year one): $120,000

Revenue projections (year two): $250,000

Break-even point: Achieved within the first six months

Funding: Initial investment from the founder.

How much should you be charging as a consultant?

The amount you charge as a consultant will depend on a number of factors, including:

Your experience and expertise

The type of consulting services you offer

The value you provide to your clients

The market rate for consulting services in your field

In general, consultants charge between $100 and $500 per hour. However, some experienced and highly specialized consultants can charge upwards of $1,000 per hour.

To determine your consulting rate, you can use the following formula:

Consulting rate = Hourly rate * Value multiplier

Your hourly rate should reflect your experience and expertise, as well as the type of consulting services you offer. For example, if you have 10 years of experience and you offer specialized consulting services, you can charge a higher hourly rate than a consultant with less experience and who offers more general consulting services.

Your value multiplier should reflect the value you provide to your clients. For example, if you can help your clients to achieve significant results, you can charge a higher value multiplier.

Here is an example of how to use the formula:

Consultant: Experienced consultant with 10 years of experience offering specialized consulting services

Hourly rate: $200 per hour

Value multiplier: 2

Consulting rate: $200 per hour * 2 = $400 per hour

Can a consulting business be profitable?

Yes, a consulting business can be profitable. In fact, consulting is one of the most profitable industries in the world. According to a report by IBISWorld, the average profit margin for consulting businesses is 20%. This means that for every $100 in revenue, consulting businesses generate $20 in profit.

There are a number of factors that contribute to the profitability of consulting businesses. First, consultants are able to charge high fees for their services. Second, consulting businesses have relatively low overhead costs. Third, the demand for consulting services is high, and it's only expected to grow in the coming years.

Of course, not all consulting businesses are successful. Some consultants struggle to find clients or to charge high enough fees. Others may not be able to deliver the results that their clients expect. However, for consultants who are able to overcome these challenges, the potential rewards are great.

Here are some tips for increasing your chances of success as a consultant:

Specialize in a high-demand area of consulting. This will allow you to charge higher fees and attract more clients.

Build a strong reputation and network of clients. This will help you to generate word-of-mouth referrals and land new clients.

Market your services effectively. Make sure that potential clients know about your services and how you can help them.

Deliver high-quality results. This is the most important thing you can do to ensure that your clients are satisfied and that they continue to use your services in the future.

How much does it cost to start a consulting business?

The cost to start a consulting business can vary depending on a number of factors, such as the type of consulting services you offer, the size of your business and your location. However, in general, you can expect to spend between $10,000 and $50,000 to start a consulting business.

Here is a breakdown of some of the typical start-up costs for a consulting business:

Business formation: $100 to $1,000

Website and domain name: $100 to $2,500

Marketing and advertising: $500 to $5,000

Office equipment and supplies: $500 to $5,000

Professional liability insurance: $500 to $1,000

Other miscellaneous expenses: $500 to $5,000

Total start-up costs: $10,000 to $50,000

You can reduce your start-up costs by working from home, using free or low-cost marketing tools and purchasing used equipment. You can also start your consulting business part-time while you continue to work your full-time job. This will give you a chance to generate revenue and build a client base before you leave your full-time job.

If you need financial assistance to start your consulting business, you may be able to qualify for a loan from a bank or credit union. You may also be able to find investors who are willing to invest in your business.

Which clients to avoid and which to take on?

Here are some tips on which clients to avoid and which to take on in a consulting business:

Clients to avoid

Clients who aren't willing to pay your rates. If a client isn't willing to pay your rates, it's a sign that they don't value your services.

Clients who are unrealistic about their expectations. If a client has unrealistic expectations about what you can achieve, you're likely to set yourself up for failure.

Clients who are difficult to work with. If a client is demanding, rude or disrespectful, it's best to avoid them.

Clients who aren't a good fit for your business. If a client isn't in your target market or if their business isn't aligned with your values, it's best to decline working with them.

Clients to take on

Clients who are willing to pay your rates. This shows that they value your services and are committed to working with you.

Clients who have realistic expectations. This makes it more likely that you will be able to meet their needs and exceed their expectations.

Clients who are easy to work with. This will make the consulting process more enjoyable and productive for both of you.

Clients who are a good fit for your business. This means that they're in your target market and that their business is aligned with your values.

In addition to the above, here are some other factors to consider when deciding which clients to take on:

Your own skills and experience. Make sure that you have the skills and experience to help the client achieve their goals.

The client's budget. Make sure that the client has a budget that's sufficient to cover your fees.

The client's timeline. Make sure that you have the time and resources to meet the client's timeline.

Your gut feeling. If you have a bad feeling about a client, it's best to trust your gut and decline working with them.

It's important to be selective about the clients you take on. By avoiding difficult clients and focusing on good-fit clients, you can set yourself up for success in your consulting business.

Consultant business plan FAQ

What qualifies you as a consultant.

To qualify as a consultant, you need to have the expertise and experience in the area that you're consulting in. You also need to be able to communicate your ideas effectively and build relationships with clients.

How do you start off as a consultant?

How to make 6 figures as a consultant, how do you pay yourself as a consultant, do consultants pay their own taxes, want to create another business plan.

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How to write a consulting business plan

If you want to work as a consultant, you'll need a plan. Here's how to create one just for you.

A consulting business plan written up in a notebook

Consultants do things differently

If you’re a self-employed consultant your work isn't like other forms of business. Unlike retailers or manufacturers, you're not making and/or selling tangible products. And unlike service companies, you're not employing a team of people to provide solutions.

Remember you’re not not just selling your time. As a consultant, you will be paid for the skills, knowledge and abilities you've developed over your career.

We have some useful background reading about the benefits of becoming a consultant or contractor , which will help explain how such businesses work. But having decided to become a consultant, what's the next step?

Like all new small businesses, you'll need a plan. That plan will have to cover funding, growth, pay rates, expenses, marketing, equipment costs, training and qualifications. It will also have to cover your goals, and the strategy you'll use to reach them.

Consulting business plans are a little different to other business plans. Here's what you need to know to get your consulting career off the ground.

Who are you writing the plan for?

This is an important question to ask yourself before you start. For most conventional businesses the answer will be "For the bank and investors." That's because small businesses usually need startup funding to get off the ground.

But consultants setting up their own business might not need much funding – if any. It's still important to have a business plan though – not only to clarify the details in your own mind, but also to help you understand the potential risks and rewards.

A good business plan will combine elements of both finance and strategy, but the contents will vary depending on the target audience. We'll take a look at the options next.

A business plan for banks and investors

You may not need funding for capital equipment expenses or office rent. But you might need a loan to tide you over for the first few months, until you have a regular cash flow. The initial period for any new business can be a tough time – money worries will just make it tougher.

You may also decide that you want to make more of an impression by hiring office space, perhaps in a shared office environment. Or you might want funds to spend on marketing and advertising, particularly if you're offering consulting services in a competitive market.

For all of this, you'll need money. You could apply for a bank loan, look for grants, or try other forms of capital-raising such as crowdfunding. Whichever method you choose, any potential investors will want to see the important numbers. That means you'll need to cover the following points in your business plan:

  • target market and sector analysis
  • business objectives and USP (unique selling proposition)
  • startup expenses and assets, including equipment
  • overheads and fixed costs
  • marketing strategy and budget
  • funding requirements, loan collateral and cost of interest
  • pay rates, revenue and cash flow projections
  • sales forecasts in monthly intervals
  • ongoing expenses
  • growth projections and strategy

Some of this information will be difficult for you to estimate. It might be even harder for you to present clearly. Use your accounting software to help with figures and to produce professional tables and charts. Then, an accountant can help you include the right information in your plan.

A business plan for you

Of course, you might not need any funding. Perhaps you have enough savings to keep you going for a few months and clients already lined up. Or you may be starting your consulting career after an inheritance or unexpected windfall.

If money isn't an immediate concern, you can afford to be less formal when drafting your plan. That means making sensible predictions and setting goals for yourself, not just financial targets – though you should include those too.

This isn't an exercise in creative writing. The purpose of creating a plan is to help you concentrate on what you want to achieve. Some points to consider include:

Reasons for being a consultant

Why are you doing this? It's important to answer honestly. If the answer is “to make more money” or “because I'm good at what I do” then write that down. Write down all the reasons you can think of, then read them back. Do they sound convincing? Make sure you know your true motivation, as it will help you focus on your goals.

Consulting can mean you have an irregular income. Sometimes you might be busy, other times less so. It makes sense to keep some money in savings accounts, especially if you'll be paying tax at the end of the year instead of while you're earning.

Relationship risks

Think about the impact of consulting on your family or friends. Consultants often work irregular hours, sometimes from home, and they might be working at weekends. That can put a strain on relationships. Be realistic about this and set boundaries around when and where you will work.

Which clients to avoid and which to take on

You will already have an idea of the types of client you don't want to work for, because you know the industry you work in. For example, known late-payers can damage your cash flow so it's sensible to avoid them where possible. Look for clients who are reliable, as they’ll help make your business a success. Know that you can let go of clients who are more trouble than they're worth.

Training and certification

In many industries, especially IT, it's important to keep your skills up to date. But your clients are unlikely to pay for you to go on training courses – that's an expense you'll have to cover yourself. How will you stay up to date? Think about industry magazines, websites, forums, news feeds, conferences, courses, distance learning, peer groups and self-teaching strategies.

Personal goals

Perhaps you're planning to be a consultant for the rest of your working life. Maybe you want to do it for a couple of years and then move back in-house as an employee. Or you might want to start employing other consultants at some stage and build up an agency – maybe even sell it. It doesn't matter what your personal goals are, as long as you have some. Write them down and bear them in mind when making big decisions.

What to do with your profits

This is a good opportunity to think about how much money you want to make . Consider how much you will charge and what you will do with your commission. For example you may decide to use 50% to cover costs, pay yourself with 30% and put 20% back into your business.

Some of this information would be inappropriate to include in a financial business plan for banks or investors. But it can be very helpful in guiding you through the early part of your consulting career.

Five top tips for writing a good consulting business plan

Business plans can be difficult documents to write. If you've never done it before, thinking clearly and logically about your business strategy may not be easy. Here are some tips to help you succeed:

1. Write the first draft

Don't worry about grammar, structure or neatness. Just get the thoughts out of your head and onto the paper or screen. Some people find this easier to do in an informal setting, such as a library or café.

2. Do your research

Understand the market you're going to be working in. Get to know all the details, as it'll help you write a more effective consulting business plan.

3. Identify your USP

That's your unique selling proposition. Why should companies hire you and not one of your competitors? Think carefully about what you're particularly good at, then use that as a basis for marketing yourself.

4. Get feedback

Talk to your peers, friends, previous business associates and potential customers. Show them your plan and listen to their feedback.

5. Keep it simple

Don't write dozens of pages. You'll bore the investors and your plan will end up on a pile where nobody will ever look at it again – including you. Stick to the important points.

Update your business plan regularly

A business plan isn't a static document. It should change and evolve over time as your business grows. You will learn a great deal in your first few months working as a consultant, and that knowledge should be applied to your business plan. It's a good idea to review your plan every month.

You may find that some of what you initially wrote turns out to have been misguided, inaccurate or just plain wrong. That's normal. Nobody can predict every step a business will take. The important thing is to learn as you go along – and make use of that knowledge to improve your plan.

Plan for consulting success

A consulting business plan is written as much for you, the consultant, as for anyone else. The point of writing it is to concentrate on what's important. That clarity is what will help you succeed.

So don't look at a business plan as just another box to be ticked. It's a fundamental process when starting any business, particularly a consulting business where you will need initiative and drive to succeed.

Take the time to write a proper business plan, and keep it regularly updated as your business grows. You can use our free business plan template . You'll find it an invaluable guide to becoming a successful consultant.

Xero does not provide accounting, tax, business or legal advice. This guide has been provided for information purposes only. You should consult your own professional advisors for advice directly relating to your business or before taking action in relation to any of the content provided.

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How to Write a Consulting Business Plan + Free Template

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Are you someone people usually come to to get valuable business advice? Or do you really like sharing valuable business insights to help businesses grow? Well, starting a consultancy business can be one efficient move to monetize your expert skills.

Now, you wouldn’t start a business without solid planning, would you? Well, how about you take the first step and write an actionable management consulting business plan for your business idea?

Writing a business plan can be tough. But we are here to make it easier for you.

This step-by-step guide is here to help you write a forward-thinking, realistic plan in easy actionable ways and offers a free management consulting business plan template to kickstart your writing process. .

So let’s get started.

Key Takeaways

  • Craft a remarkable executive summary summarizing the concept, strategies, objectives, financial projections, and mission values of your consulting business plan.
  • Conduct in-depth industry analysis and market research identifying emerging trends and shifts that are likely to influence your consultancy business.
  • Introduce the services of your consultancy firm along with its pricing plan to give readers a thorough idea of your service offerings.
  • Conduct a SWOT analysis of your key competitors and determine your competitive edge over them to strengthen your competitive analysis.
  • Lay down a clear organizational chart highlighting the key skills, salaries, and experience of people working in your consulting firm. .
  • Create realistic financial projections for sales, revenue, costs, expenses, and cash flow for your consultancy after making room for contingencies and emergencies.
  • Draft a detailed operations plan highlighting the processes and procedures for everyday activities at your consultancy.
  • Devise a diversified marketing and sales plan to promote your business effectively to your target audience.

Key Elements of a Management Consulting Business Plan

  • Executive Summary
  • Company Overview
  • Competitor and Market Analysis
  • Service Offerings
  • Marketing Plan
  • Management Consulting Team
  • Operational Plan
  • Financial Outlook

Since we are talking about a consulting business plan, let us walk you through this step-by-step outline to help you write a stellar plan covering all the essential facets.

1. Executive Summary

The executive summary is the first and foremost section of your consulting business plan that will engage your readers and persuade them to dive further into details.

Begin by offering a brief overview of your business idea highlighting what it does. Take reference from the below example written using Upmetrics AI assistant .

Further, paint a picture, briefly highlighting your consulting services, market scenario, competition, USP, marketing and sales strategies, and financial objectives.

Ensure that you adopt a storytelling approach while crafting your executive summary. Ideally, this section of your business plan should concisely summarize your entire business plan in a page or two.

So ensure that you strategically place the information within this section to keep the readers hooked.

Now be smart and revisit this section after you are done writing for every other section of your plan. A thorough understanding of your business plan at that time will enable you to craft a compelling summary easily.

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management consulting business plan

2. Company Overview

This section of a business plan helps the reader get a thorough understanding of your consulting firm.

The company overview offers a detailed description highlighting what type of consultancy you would run, its physical location, legal structure, mission objectives, history, and all such related information.

Begin by clearly stating the concept and niche of your consulting firm. Further, highlight whether you would be running a sole proprietorship or partnership, and if it’s the latter discuss the profit-sharing ratio.

Don’t forget to mention your business structure and whether or not will you run a Limited Liability Company (LLC).

This section is your chance to introduce your business objectives, core value proposition, and mission objectives. Highlight any milestones you plan to achieve or have already achieved and make this section insightful.

Refer to this example describing the short-term objectives of a consulting firm from an Upmetrics plan.

Consulting Business Plan company overview example

3. Competitor and Market Analysis

An in-depth analysis of the consulting industry, market, and competitors is essential to build a successful consulting business. This is the most crucial part of your consultancy business plan helping you identify your target market, emerging trends, competitors, and your advantage over them.

Market analysis

The market analysis section of your consultant business plan will help you evaluate the market condition, target market, and business growth opportunities for your consultancy business.

Begin by researching and analyzing the consultancy market size and the serviceable obtainable market of your specific consultancy.

Further, determine your target audience by creating a buyer’s persona of your ideal customer. In this customer analysis section, determine their demographic and psychographic details to get a clear understanding of who your customer would be.

Refer to this buyer’s persona written using Upmetrics AI assistant:

Lastly, identify the emerging market trends within your industry, potential risks, and the shifts in consumer behavior likely to influence your business.

Competitors analysis

In the competitive analysis section of your plan, identify the consulting firms and other businesses that offer direct or indirect competition to your business.

Your direct competitors are other consultants in your local market, while your indirect competitors are in-house experts, software solutions, and an industry-specific business community extending resourceful help.

Conduct a SWOT analysis of your key competitors and analyze them based on their service offerings, target demographics, pricing, and other relevant factors.

Highlight your competitive advantage over these firms, suggesting that there are ample opportunities for you to succeed despite the competition.

competitive advantage example for consulting business

Here’s an example of a competitive advantage for a consultancy business using Upmetrics.

4. Service Offerings

Consulting businesses offer a variety of consulting services. In this section of your consulting business plan, you will create a clear list of all the services you will be offering.

The list can include various business consulting services such as:

  • Strategy consulting
  • Operation consulting
  • Human resources consulting
  • IT Consulting
  • Risk and compliance consulting

Now, elaborate on these services to help your readers understand what it truly entails. Refer to this example of legal and compliance services brief description:

As part of our risk and compliance service, the company will offer:

  • Draft, negotiate, and conclude ‘Joint Venture Agreements’, and ‘Memoranda of cases for one of our key clients. 
  • Legal Advice & Consultation
  • Case Litigation & Pleading
  • Legal Translation
  • Business Start-up Advice
  • Management Consultancy
  • Representation and Attorney Services
  • Legal Compliance

Determine the pricing of these services and place it alongside your service list. Ideally, you should create differential and tiered pricing plans for your services to cater to different target audiences.

All in all, make this section an informative read for your readers helping them understand your unique business offerings.

5. Marketing Plan

A well-defined marketing plan is among the most important components of your consulting firm’s business plan. Well, It’s time to design your marketing strategies using your market research about the target customers and the potential clients.

Multifarious marketing efforts are essential to make your new business visibly famous in the market. Well, here are a few strategies that a successful consultant follows religiously:

Social media marketing

Choose different social media platforms to build your consultancy brand online. LinkedIn can be a good choice for a consultancy business followed by FaceBook and Instagram. Create your marketing plans for different platforms and be consistent with your posting there.

Informative website

Build an informative website for your consulting business and enhance its ranking on search engines by creating a dedicated content marketing program.

Email marketing

A well-defined email marketing program to attract new clients, newsletters for subscribed customers, and promotional services offer to convert a potential customer base.

Targeted advertising

Running a paid ads program to reach targeted small businesses and potential clients.

Refer to this example of marketing and promotion programs for your consultancy from Upmetrics.

example of marketing and promotion programs for consultancy

In this section of your consulting business plan, also highlight your marketing budget and its allocation to different marketing activities.

6. Management Consulting Team

Introduce your managerial team in this section of your consultant business plan by showing how you have the right people to run a successful consultancy.

Begin by introducing the people at top managerial positions and offer a brief description depicting their skills, expertise, and experience in offering specific consulting services.

Refer to this example introducing the managing director of a consulting agency.

Mr. Ashton will serve as the Managing Director of CCI. A highly motivated and dynamic individual, Thomas boasts vast experience in the field of aesthetics having spent a career spanning 14 years essaying various white-collar roles for aesthetic companies across America. His ability to multi-task and expertly weave through operational pitfalls equips him with exceptional management and administrative skills. The US operations include sourcing, interacting, and building client relations across the industry value chain involving professional salons and end-user clientele. Mr. Ashton’s expert management and industry-specific skills will play an instrumental role in achieving the parent company’s goal of establishing a sustainable and reliable aesthetic brand in the US.

Don’t limit this section to the introduction of owners and managers. Instead, introduce every person who’s an asset to your business and can contribute significantly to your business goals.

In this section, you will also highlight the organizational design to offer a clear understanding of the hierarchy in your consulting firm. And lastly, don’t forget to add the salaries and wages of these people alongside their roles while creating your management plan.

7. Operational Plan

The operations plan shows that you don’t only have the means but also the knack to operate the consulting business efficiently.

This section of your business plan highlights the processes and procedures essential to run the everyday operations of your consulting business and the milestones you wish to achieve.

Confused what should you include in your operations plan? Let’s check this out:

Hiring plan

Mention the number of project managers, analysts, BD, administrative, and support workers needed for your business. Briefly describe the qualifications, skill sets, and experience for these roles and lay your hiring plan to hire employees.

Refer to this example of a hiring plan for a consultancy by Upmetrics.

hiring plan example for a consultancy business

Operational processes

Briefly explain the different processes and procedures of your business in the consulting industry. This includes processes for client acquisition, service delivery, project management process, quality assessment, and client retention.

Tools and equipment

Mention all the equipment you will require to deliver quality consulting services to the clients. Also, include the pricing of these equipment and how you plan to source them from the market.

Overall, think of smaller nuances and make this section as brief and detailed as possible. Consider it as a guidebook that will answer all the operational queries that arise while running the business.

8. Financial Outlook

A comprehensive financial plan is the most crucial component of your business plan and sometimes it is the only section investors or readers might be interested in.

So work on putting together a well-detailed financial plan with realistic financial forecasts to increase the weight of your consulting plan.

The projections in a financial plan are important because they help the readers gauge the financial viability of your business idea. They offer a clear picture of the profitability, growth potential, and cash-generating capacity of your consulting business.

To create a befitting plan, begin by offering a detailed insight into your startup costs, revenue streams, profit margins, operational costs, and cash flow projections. Gather these projections to work on your key reports.

Refer to different business plans to see what more could you add to your financial section apart from these key essentials:

  • Balance sheet
  • Profit and loss statement/ Income statement
  • Cash flow statement
  • Break-even analysis
  • Investment plan

While making a financial plan, ensure that you figure out the calculations for the next 3-5 years. And yes, we agree that calculating all these financial projections from scratch can get overwhelming. However, with this financial forecasting tool from Upmetrics , the entire task of creating a detailed plan will get much easier and more effective.

Simply enter the details in the tab and let the tool undertake all the manual calculations and create engaging visual reports to add to your plan.

Get Your Free Management Consulting Business Plan

Need help writing the contents of your management consulting business plan? Well, here you go. Download our management consulting business plan pdf and start writing.

Our intuitive and modern consulting business plan template offers a step-by-step guide with relevant examples to speed up your process of writing an effective business plan. It will get your actionable plan ready while ensuring that you add all the crucial details to it.

The Quickest Way to turn a Business Idea into a Business Plan

Fill-in-the-blanks and automatic financials make it easy.

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And here we are. Now that you are aware of how to write an effective business plan using our consulting business plan template, you are one step closer to starting your business with a bang.

But that’s not it. What if we tell you that your business planning process can be made easier and more efficient with a few cutting-edge tools? Well, the Upmetrics business planning app is here at your service.

With an AI assistant to speed up your writing process, financial forecasting tools to help you with projections, and thousands of free educational guides to help you set up the business- we think you get it all with Upmetrics.

Get started now.

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Frequently asked questions, what are the key components of a management consulting business plan.

While there are no fixed rules regarding what to include in your consulting business plan, you can ensure that you don’t miss adding these key components to your plan:

  • Executive summary
  • Company overview
  • Market and competitor analysis
  • Service offerings
  • Management team
  • Operations plan
  • Financial plan

What financial projections should be included in the business plan?

While making your consulting business plan, ensure that you add the financial forecasts for startup costs, expenses, revenue, cash flow, sales, and expected profitability to your plan.

How often should I update my Management Consulting Business Plan?

Ideally, you should update your business plan at least once a year since you operate in a highly dynamic industry. However, if you feel that the yearly updates are insufficient, you can also review and update your plan every quarter.

How should I approach the funding section of my business plan?

Begin by calculating your startup costs and the actual monetary situation to evaluate the funding needs for your business. Thereafter check the potential funding sources and their application procedure to avail required funding.

As a consulting business, you can choose one of these funding sources:

  • Private loan
  • SBA approved loans
  • Angel Investors
  • Venture Capitalist firms
  • Crowdfunding

Can the business plan help in securing funding or investments?

Absolutely it does. Investors, credit lenders, and banks will look after your business plan before accepting the funding request for your business. This is because a business plan offers a clear understanding of your business idea while simultaneously vouching for the financial feasibility of your plan.

What legal considerations should I include in my business plan?

Here are a few of the legal considerations you should make while writing your business plan:

  • Business licenses and permits
  • Health safety compliance
  • Insurance coverage
  • Legal business structure
  • Employment laws

About the Author

management consulting business plan

Vinay Kevadiya

Vinay Kevadiya is the founder and CEO of Upmetrics, the #1 business planning software. His ultimate goal with Upmetrics is to revolutionize how entrepreneurs create, manage, and execute their business plans. He enjoys sharing his insights on business planning and other relevant topics through his articles and blog posts. Read more

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Consulting Firm Business Plan Template

Written by Dave Lavinsky

Business Plan Outline

  • Consulting Firm Business Plan Home
  • 1. Executive Summary
  • 2. Company Overview
  • 3. Industry Analysis
  • 4. Customer Analysis
  • 5. Competitive Analysis
  • 6. Marketing Plan
  • 7. Operations Plan
  • 8. Management Team
  • 9. Financial Plan

Start Your Consulting Firm Plan Here

Consulting Business Plan

If you need a business plan for your consulting business, you’ve come to the right place. Our consulting business plan template below has been used by countless entrepreneurs and business owners to create business plans to start or grow their consulting businesses.

Important note: If you are looking for a business plan consultant , specifically, a consultant to help you write your business plan, we recommend Growthink who offers a business plan consultation service here.

Sample Consultant Business Plan & Template

Below are links to each section of your consulting business plan template:

  • Executive Summary
  • Company Overview
  • Industry Analysis
  • Customer Analysis
  • Competitive Analysis
  • Marketing Plan
  • Operations Plan
  • Management Team
  • Financial Plan

Next Section: Executive Summary >

Consulting Business Plan FAQs

What is a consulting business plan.

A consulting business plan is a plan to start and/or grow your consulting firm. Among other things, it outlines your business concept, identifies your target customers, presents your marketing plan, and details your financial projections.

You can  easily complete your consulting firm business plan using our Consulting Firm Business Plan Template here .

What Are the Main Types of Consulting Firms?

There are many types of consulting firms. Most consultant companies are in business concentrations such as Management, Strategy, Operations, IT, Human Resources, Financial Advisory, and Marketing/Sales. There are also firms that are singularly focused such as those that offer business plan consulting.

What Are the Main Sources of Revenue and Expenses for a Consulting Business?

The primary source of revenue for consulting firms are fees paid by the client. The client will either sign a contract or agreement of the services it will choose and the pricing for those services beforehand.

The key expenses for a consulting business are the cost of leasing the office, employee cost, marketing/advertising costs, and any office technology or software.

How Do You Get Funding for Your Consulting Business?

Consulting businesses are most likely to receive funding from banks. Typically you will find a local bank and present your consulting business plan to them. Angel investors and other types of capital-raising such as crowdfunding are other common funding sources.

What are the Steps To Start a Consulting Business?

Starting a consulting business can be an exciting endeavor. Having a clear roadmap of the steps to start a business will help you stay focused on your goals and get started faster.

1. Develop A Consulting Business Plan - The first step in starting a business is to create a detailed consulting business plan that outlines all aspects of the venture. This should include potential market size and target customers, the services or products you will offer, pricing strategies and a detailed financial forecast.  

2. Choose Your Legal Structure - It's important to select an appropriate legal entity for your consulting business. This could be a limited liability company (LLC), corporation, partnership, or sole proprietorship. Each type has its own benefits and drawbacks so it’s important to do research and choose wisely so that your consulting business is in compliance with local laws.

3. Register Your Consulting Business - Once you have chosen a legal structure, the next step is to register your consulting business with the government or state where you’re operating from. This includes obtaining licenses and permits as required by federal, state, and local laws. 

4. Identify Financing Options - It’s likely that you’ll need some capital to start your consulting business, so take some time to identify what financing options are available such as bank loans, investor funding, grants, or crowdfunding platforms. 

5. Choose a Location - Whether you plan on operating out of a physical location or not, you should always have an idea of where you’ll be based should it become necessary in the future as well as what kind of space would be suitable for your operations. 

6. Hire Employees - There are several ways to find qualified employees including job boards like LinkedIn or Indeed as well as hiring agencies if needed – depending on what type of employees you need it might also be more effective to reach out directly through networking events. 

7. Acquire Necessary Consulting Equipment & Supplies - In order to start your consulting business, you'll need to purchase all of the necessary equipment and supplies to run a successful operation. 

8. Market & Promote Your Business - Once you have all the necessary pieces in place, it’s time to start promoting and marketing your consulting business. This includes creating a website, utilizing social media platforms like Facebook or Twitter, and having an effective Search Engine Optimization (SEO) strategy. You should also consider traditional marketing techniques such as radio or print advertising. 

Learn more about how to start a successful consulting business:

  • How to Start a Consulting Business

Where Can I Get a Consulting Business Plan PDF?

You can download our free consulting business plan template PDF here . This is a sample consulting business plan template you can use in PDF format.

Don't bother with copy and paste.

Get this complete sample business plan as a free text document.

Business Consulting Business Plan

Start your own business consulting business plan

Growth Management and Strategies

Executive summary executive summary is a brief introduction to your business plan. it describes your business, the problem that it solves, your target market, and financial highlights.">.

Growth Management and Strategies (GMS) is an ambitious innovative new company that is attempting to turn the small business consulting business on its head. With an experienced consultant at the helm as President, GMS intends to grow at more than 50% per year through solid customer service, a great sales plan, proven competitive strategies, and a group of people that bring dynamic energy to the company and the sales process.

The goal for this plan is financial: GMS needs a Small Business Adminstration (SBA) loan, and this document is one step in the process. It is also a road map for the company. The document gives all present and future employees, as well as the owner a sense of purpose that may exist without the business plan, but becomes more relevant after the business plan is written, reviewed, shared, and edited by all. It is a living document that will last far beyond the SBA loan purpose, or if that doesn’t occur, to bring an investor on board.

GMS’s financials are realistic, and based on very conservative sales figures relative to the industry as a whole. That is because one of the goals of GMS is to build the business one client at a time, and to serve each client as if it were the last. This is how loyalty is generated, and cultivated. Customer service is what GMS will do best, and is a large part of the company’s overall mission.

Business consulting business plan, executive summary chart image

1.1 Objectives

The objectives for Growth Management and Strategies are:

  • Gain access to an SBA loan upon start up.
  • Grow the company from 2 employees in Year 1, to over 10 by Year 5.
  • Increase revenue to over $3 million by Year 3.
  • Increase client base by 450% in three years.
  • Maintain job costing that keeps margins above 70%.

1.2 Mission

The company mission is to serve small business clients that are in need of logistical, technical, and business strategy services. All projects will be chosen based on the availability of human resources, and each individual employee will be given the respect of a contract worker, and will share in profits for each job. Politics have no place at Growth Management and Strategies, and to limit the affects of favoritism, the company will implement and clearly communicate a performance review policy that applies to those at the bottom as well as the top of the leadership ladder. Credit will be given to the person who performed and/or innovatively modified a project, and compensation will be both financial and in the form of commendation.

Growth Management and Strategies is a company that respects the needs and expectations of its employees and clients. If either is compromised, adjustments will be made so that the company culture may remain intact.

1.3 Keys to Success

Our keys to success are:

  • To maintain client satisfaction of at least 90%.
  • To keep overhead low.
  • To ensure professional marketing and presentation of services.
  • To provide an active and functional website.

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Company summary company overview ) is an overview of the most important points about your company—your history, management team, location, mission statement and legal structure.">.

Growth Management and Strategies was established as a C corporation. The company’s headquarters are located in Boston, MA, near Copely Place. The company was established as a result of the efforts of its owner, Bill Dawson, and his experience in leading small businesses into prolonged periods of growth and innovation. Dawson worked for McKinsey before being hired away to Bain and Company. A Harvard graduate, Dawson spent hundreds of hours each week for nearly a year, slowly building the company to where it is now.

The company has had numerous successes this year, including one client that was purchased by a major multinational conglomerate, and another that experienced product sales growth of over 700% the first year.

2.1 Start-up Summary

This start-up summary table lists all the costs associated with establishing a lease, purchasing office equipment, and pulling together the other resources necessary to get the business off the ground. Furniture, LAN lines, and additional technology purchases are a must in order to properly communicate with clients, and to establish a website.

Other services included in the start-up summary are legal consulting fees, kept to a minimum thanks to resources provided by Nolo. Incorporation fees are included in the legal fees line item.

The free cash flow (cash balance) appearing in this start-up table is high relative to other small consulting businesses of its size. The owner is preoccupied with maintaining positive cash flow, and is risk averse enough to understand that during months in which contracts are not available, the corporation must sustain itself.  With this said, planned debt leverage is low, therefore risk to the lender is relatively low as well.

Business consulting business plan, company summary chart image

2.2 Company Ownership

Growth Management and Strategies is wholly owned by Bill Dawson, and is classified as an LLC.

Growth Management and Strategies offers a variety of services to the small business client. Many of the services are customized for each client, and a bidding process is observed. The company also offers a traditional fixed rate sheet for its services.

Market Analysis Summary how to do a market analysis for your business plan.">

The target customer owns a small business, and is generally dissatisfied with the revenue that the business is generating, or is dissatisfied with the daily management of their business. The customer is likely to operate a business worth between $200K and $10 million, with growth rates of between 1-10%, or even a negative growth rate.

Market growth, that is, the predicted growth in the small business sector within the Boston/Cambridge Metro area is expected to be around 3% per year. This may increase due to additional SBA lending programs designed to match the strengths of research and faculty grant work with the needs of the market and small businesses willing to take new products to market. Regardless of the market growth, the company’s customer base is far more dependant upon service needs, and a solid reputation. Mr. Dawson is well respected within the community, and has built a number of relationships with high profile individuals, and is a frequent contributor to the business section of the Boston Herald.

The corresponding market analysis table below breaks the potential market down into tactical sub-markets.

4.1 Market Segmentation

The market is divided up by revenue in the initial analysis, although other factors are very significant. It is important that the client business is operating at about the same level as the general economic growth rate, or is underperforming. The need for a turnaround within the client company is necessary for Growth Management and Strategies’ expertise to become useful. The following are other differentiators:

  • Debt of more than 30% yearly revenue.
  • Free cash flow frequently in the negative, requiring deep pocket borrowing or investment.
  • Long-term growth underperforming relative to competitors.
  • Management discord and performance issues.

These are not the only differentiators used to determine the market potential for a client, they are simply a starting point for the sales team as they reach out to this group of small businesses, owners and investors.

Business consulting business plan, market analysis summary chart image

4.2 Target Market Segment Strategy

The target market strategy involves isolating potential customers by revenue, then drilling down to very specific needs via the sales team’s needs analysis methodology.

The first tier customers, businesses with over $3 million in revenue, is more experienced in outsourcing and may find themselves more comfortable hiring Growth Management and Strategies on retainer. Strategically, a retainer helps maintain consistent cash flow, even if during some months these customers will require more services than what they have paid for that month. This issue will be addressed in the Personnel topic.

The second tier customers, those businesses operating at revenue levels of $501K – $3 million, typically are very excited to have moved out of the home office stage, and into a new level of stability. If they are self-funded, these businesses can be the most challenging to work with because they are often not willing to part with company shares, and don’t yet have a sense of what kind of marketing investment is necessary to grow a business at this stage. The company will serve these small businesses based on a bid cycle, and needs analysis.

The third tier customers are easier to identify, and more ubiquitous than the rest. These small businesses are operating on $200K – $500K in revenue, often are operating out of a home, and have a firm sense of their market and potential, yet have trouble executing their plans effectively, or following through on growth strategies that generate wealth. Again, the strategy is to provide these businesses with a short needs analysis, and focus on the quantity of such customers to maintain a solid revenue stream.

4.3 Service Business Analysis

This industry is split up between a variety of players, including small businesses advising small businesses, such as the case with Growth Management and Strategies, to large conglomerate multinational consulting firms that send in newbie MBAs and use their name recognition to convince their clients that every one of these MBAs will generate over $300K a year in value. Sometimes they do, but when they don’t, GMS plans to be there.  

At the other end of the spectrum, there are a wide variety of mom and pop consulting firms owned by very talented people who simply don’t have the marketing resources or expertise to reach a broader spectrum of customer.

GMS is somewhere in between. With years of guerrilla marketing experience, and a long-term plan for success, Mr. Dawson is determined to build the company each client at a time, and to focus on a sales team that outperforms all the competitors.

GMS is planning to grow exponentially within the first two years, to over $2 million in consulting revenue. At this point the service business analysis will be re-evaluated from the outside in.

4.3.1 Competition and Buying Patterns

Typically small business clients will learn about the consulting services market through word-of-mouth experience passed on through a friend or contemporary. Still, outbound sales teams dominate this category, and the stronger your sales team and name recognition, the greater your odds of finding clients willing to place your company on retainer or accept your company’s bid. The most competitive players in this market tend to have some of the best sales teams in the industry, that is, people who know not only how to communicate the technical needs analysis in a non-technical way, but in addition, are able to follow through and execute on promises and provide accurate, industry specific information that is useful to the client even before the deal is made.

Price is also important, and operates on a complex tiered system that is dependant upon the effectiveness of a particular salesperson, the word-of-mouth (WOM) advertising already in the mind of the potential client, and the ability of the client to reform the way they think about their own business. The demands of turning a business around, or pushing it to the limits of its potential are in direct proportion to the price of each bid. GMS must be careful not to be lured into out bidding a competitor, only to find that the customer has no plans to modify their business plan, and are seeking a “magic bullet” that may or may not exist. Competition in this industry leads to frustration and burnout for many people, and it takes a strong sense of purpose to push the business beyond the realm of the high-intensity, low-return client.

Strategy and Implementation Summary

GMS will pursue a strategy in line with the experience of the owner, and implementation will be performance based and follow a clear path. Milestones are important to the implementation of this plan, and so is the vision and the will of the company’s owner, Mr. Dawson. The overall company strategy is tied very closely with the sales strategy, that is, with the front lines of the business. One of the biggest threats to any strategy is that they can become too high-minded, and not literal enough to translate into action. This will not be the case with GMS, a solid company that hires top talent and achieves it’s goals on time and on budget.

5.1 Competitive Edge

GMS has a significant competitive edge in the following areas:

  • Customer service mobility – As a customer-centric firm, GMS offers no hold phone lines, same day email responses, and callbacks within one hour. In addition, the phone technology is set up in such a way as to provide salespeople with all databased information about the customer before they say “hello”. 
  • “Needs Analysis” service – Possibly the best competitive edge in an industry fraught with agressive outbound sales teams and your run of the mill ego-centric, customer alienating, consultants.
  • A considerable network of contacts – Mr. Dawson is well connected in the area of general consulting, and his Harvard degree opens doors via simple bragging rights, and an extensive alumni network.

5.2 Marketing Strategy

GMS’s marketing strategy revolves around a three-tiered focus. At the top of pyramid one, imagine a customer service ideal. This ideal is also included in the competitive comparison.

Pyramid two is focused on the execution level of all sales efforts. Not just as a goal, but execution as a strategy for building a stronger focus and building on what has already been accomplished. There are many tactics available in this pyramid, and those details are available in the marketing plan upon request.

Pyramid three has at the top a team-centric company culture. Tactics revolve around building this culture from the ground up so that it rewards innovation and determination, and management shows no personal bias or favoritism except when a salesperson or consultant is outperforming the mean. Although this strategy appears to be an internal management goal or company summary object, it is highly relevant to marketing’s performance because without integrity standards and a consistent company culture, GMS’s marketing will feel disconnected and unsupported, and will suffer as a result. A more detailed breakdown of tactics and programs related to this strategy is available in the full marketing plan. 

5.3 Sales Strategy

GMS plans to develop and train 5-6 new salespeople by year two. Upon start up, the primary sales contact will be Mr. Dawson, but this will change as the revenues increase, and the company is able to invest in human capital.

GMS has a sales strategy that focuses on an initial needs analysis. Once the results of the needs analysis has been forwarded or described over the phone to a potential client, the salesperson will ask for a personal interview, a chance to sit down and discuss specifics. At no time should this be perceived by the potential client as “pushy” or “agressive.” 

The goal of this sales process is to get behind the numbers, and the business successes, to identify where the client’s needs lie. Once this is mapped out, GMS will decide how these problems can be best addressed, and will offer both a bid and some action points. If the client wants to use the action points to move forward on their own, this is very acceptable. GMS’s research has in fact shown that the clients that choose this path, often come back to seek additional information, and more often than not, accept the bid.

This strategy differs from the course often taken by large consulting firms in that the customer is not condescended to, or treated as if the knowledge isn’t right there in their own heads. Often, consulting companies will send a large ego to clean up a client’s mess, and find that the strategy backfires when the client only chooses to give the consultant the chance to bid. GMS’s sales strategy revolves around customer service and empowerment, not condescension and sales “closers.”

5.3.1 Sales Forecast

Sales forecast is based on the assumption that most of the revenue will be the result of consulting bids. The growth in retainer revenue is about 30% lower than the expected yearly growth in consulting bids of 80%/year. This may seem like an agressive number at first glance, but this is not a large company being discussed in this business plan. The smaller the company, often the larger the opportunity for exponential sales growth, and especially if the firm uses sound sales and marketing strategies to take share from the larger, less nimble consultancies.

The Needs Analysis service is listed only to highlight the fact that some outside information gathering firms/consultants will be used to compile the necessary information. This poses some risk because there are no costs associated with the Needs Analysis efforts. Nevertheless, GMS is confident that this product will set the company apart from the competition, and generate sales far in excess of the costs incurred.

Business consulting business plan, strategy and implementation summary chart image

5.4 Milestones

The milestones table includes one listing each for the business plan and the marketing plan. Each of these are crucial to the long-term and short-term success of GMS. The other milestones are also important, but most are simply tasks necessary in starting up almost any business. Nevertheless, the most important milestone in this table is financial. The SBA loan will determine whether this company will have the working capital to operate for 5-12 months with little or no immediate revenue. If GMS cannot find the working capital to meet the minimum cash flow expectations set forth in this document, the company will dissolve and the owner will turn his talents elsewhere. Therefore, it is possible that the line item for “SBA Loan” may be changed to acquire family or friends as investors. Ideally it will not come to that and Mr. Dawson will be able to retain full control of the company, and direct it entirely based on his vision.

Business consulting business plan, strategy and implementation summary chart image

Management Summary management summary will include information about who's on your team and why they're the right people for the job, as well as your future hiring plans.">

The management team will initially consist of Bill Dawson. A Harvard MBA, and world-renowned consultant for major Fortune 500 companies, Mr. Dawson has built a reputation based his customer-centric approach to consulting, a relative anomaly in the world of high profile consulting. Many consultants are trained to believe they are right and the client was put on this earth to learn from the consultant. That is not the case for GMS, as the management team (Dawson) takes a different tact. The consultant acts as an interviewer, learning all that is possible to learn about the client in a one or two week period. As a management tool, this approach is very effective because it gives the sales team flexibility in dealing with potential customers, and relieves the uncomfortable pressure to close the sale.

Mr. Dawson’s approach to managing customers is also the approach he will take in dealing with his salespeople. GMS doesn’t need a hefty management structure, or administrative overhead. Many of those processes may be handled through outsourcing and Internet technology. On the contrary, the management structure at GMS is designed to reward the performer and educate the underperformer. Each salesperson is given a battery of psychological and rational tests, and most importantly, are screened based on how well they will fit into the Dawson management style. This leaves little to chance, and encourages a team atmosphere that remains light-hearted and fun.

6.1 Personnel Plan

This table demonstrates how GMS plans to start acquiring clients. One salesperson will be trained initially, and that person will later head a team of salespeople as the company expands. The promise of growth, and chance to work for a strategically positioned consulting business is enough to have three major players bidding for the job. Although each will see a major cut in salary from their current position, the chance to share in company profits (10%) and growth is enough to draw them to a low base, high commission position that offers no guarantees.

Financial Plan investor-ready personnel plan .">

The Financial Plan is based on a pending SBA loan, and a corresponding cash flow amount held in a highly liquid account.

7.1 Important Assumptions

The General Assumptions table explains various tax rates, personnel burden, and other financial inputs.

7.2 Break-even Analysis

The Break-even Analysis table is based on the assumption that each hour worked can be billed at approximately $70 per unit, and the employees will start at approximately $25/hour. This doesn’t include the cost of the payroll burden, however the assumptions are fairly accurate. Fixed costs are related to the lease and other monthly costs.

Business consulting business plan, financial plan chart image

7.3 Projected Cash Flow

The following table and chart show the Projected Cash Flow figures for Growth Management and Strategies.

Business consulting business plan, financial plan chart image

7.4 Projected Profit and Loss

The following table and charts are the Projected Profit and Loss and Gross Margin figures for Growth Management and Strategies.

Business consulting business plan, financial plan chart image

7.5 Projected Balance Sheet

The following table is the Projected Balance Sheet for Growth Management and Strategies.

7.6 Business Ratios

Business ratios for the years of this plan are shown below. Industry profile ratios based on the Standard Industrial Classification (SIC) code 8742, Business Management Consultants, are shown for comparison.

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management consulting business plan

How to write a business plan for a management consulting firm?

management consulting firm business plan

Putting together a business plan for a management consulting firm can be daunting - especially if you're creating a business for the first time - but with this comprehensive guide, you'll have the necessary tools to do it confidently.

We will explore why writing one is so important in both starting up and growing an existing management consulting firm, as well as what should go into making an effective plan - from its structure to content - and what tools can be used to streamline the process and avoid errors.

Without further ado, let us begin!

In this guide:

Why write a business plan for a management consulting firm?

What information is needed to create a business plan for a management consulting firm.

  • How do I build a financial forecast for a management consulting firm?

The written part of a management consulting firm business plan

  • What tool should I use to write my management consulting firm business plan?

Being clear on the scope and goals of the document will make it easier to understand its structure and content. So before diving into the actual content of the plan, let's have a quick look at the main reasons why you would want to write a management consulting firm business plan in the first place.

To have a clear roadmap to grow the business

It's rarely business as usual for small businesses. The economy follows cycles where years of growth are followed by recessions, and the business environment is always changing with new technologies, new regulations, new competitors, and new consumer behaviours appearing all the time...

In this context, running a business without a clear roadmap is like driving blindfolded: it's dangerous at best. That's why writing a business plan for a management consulting firm is essential to create successful and sustainable businesses.

To write an effective business plan, you will need to take stock of where you are (if you are already in business) and where you want the business to go in the next three to five years.

Once you know where you want your management consulting firm to be, you'll have to identify:

  • what resources (human, equipment, and capital) are needed to get there,
  • at what pace the business needs to progress to get there in time,
  • and what risks you'll face along the way.

Going through this process regularly is beneficial, both for startups and existing companies, as it helps make informed decisions about how best to allocate resources to ensure the long-term success of the business.

To get visibility on future cash flows

If your small management consulting firm runs out of cash: it's game over. That's why we often say "cash is king", and it's crucial to have a clear view of your management consulting firm's future cash flows.

So, how can you achieve this? It's simple - you need to have an up-to-date financial forecast.

The good news is that your management consulting firm business plan already includes a financial forecast (which we'll discuss further in this guide). Your task is to ensure it stays current.

To accomplish this, it's essential to regularly compare your actual financial performance with what was planned in your financial forecast. Based on your business's current trajectory, you can make adjustments to the forecast.

By diligently monitoring your management consulting firm's financial health, you'll be able to spot potential financial issues, like unexpected cash shortfalls, early on and take corrective actions. Moreover, this practice will enable you to recognize and capitalize on growth opportunities, such as excess cash flow enabling you to expand to new locations.

To secure financing

Whether you are a startup or an existing business, writing a detailed management consulting firm business plan is essential when seeking financing from banks or investors.

This makes sense given what we've just seen: financiers want to ensure you have a clear roadmap and visibility on your future cash flows.

Banks will use the information included in the plan to assess your borrowing capacity (how much debt your business can support) and your ability to repay the loan before deciding whether they will extend credit to your business and on what terms.

Similarly, investors will review your plan carefully to assess if their investment can generate an attractive return on investment.

To do so, they will be looking for evidence that your management consulting firm has the potential for healthy growth, profitability, and cash flow generation over time.

Now that you understand why it is important to create a business plan for a management consulting firm, let's take a look at what information is needed to create one.

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Writing a management consulting firm business plan requires research so that you can project sales, investments and cost accurately in your financial forecast.

In this section, we cover three key pieces of information you should gather before drafting your business plan!

Carrying out market research for a management consulting firm

As you consider writing your business plan for a management consulting firm, conducting market research becomes a vital step to ensure accurate and realistic financial projections.

Market research provides valuable insights into your target customer base, competitors, pricing strategies, and other key factors that can significantly impact the commercial success of your business.

Through this research, you may uncover trends that could influence your management consulting firm.

Your market research might reveal that your management consulting firm could see an increase in demand for data-driven solutions and services, as businesses become increasingly focused on analytics and strategy. Additionally, your market research might indicate that your management consulting firm may experience an uptick in demand for technology-based solutions, as businesses look to become more efficient and cost-effective.

Such market trends play a significant role in forecasting revenue, as they offer valuable data about potential customers' spending habits and preferences.

By incorporating these findings into your financial projections, you can present investors with more accurate information, helping them make informed decisions about investing in your management consulting firm.

Developing the sales and marketing plan for a management consulting firm

As you embark on creating your management consulting firm business plan, it is crucial to budget sales and marketing expenses beforehand.

A well-defined sales and marketing plan should include precise projections of the actions required to acquire and retain customers. It will also outline the necessary workforce to execute these initiatives and the budget required for promotions, advertising, and other marketing efforts.

This approach ensures that the appropriate amount of resources is allocated to these activities, aligning with the sales and growth objectives outlined in your business plan.

The staffing and equipment needs of a management consulting firm

As you embark on starting or expanding your management consulting firm, having a clear plan for recruitment and capital expenditures (investment in equipment and real estate) is essential for ensuring your business's success.

Both the recruitment and investment plans must align with the timing and level of growth projected in your forecast, and they require appropriate funding.

A management consulting firm may incur staffing costs such as salaries for employees, benefits for employees, and recruiting fees. They may also incur equipment costs such as office computers and software licenses, office furniture, and other necessary equipment.

To create a realistic financial forecast, you also need to consider other operating expenses associated with the day-to-day running of your business, such as insurance and bookkeeping.

With all the necessary information at hand, you are ready to begin crafting your business plan and developing your financial forecast.

What goes into your management consulting firm's financial forecast?

The financial forecast of your management consulting firm's business plan will enable you to assess the growth, profitability, funding requirements, and cash generation potential of your business in the coming years.

The four key outputs of a financial forecast for a management consulting firm are:

  • The profit and loss (P&L) statement ,
  • The projected balance sheet ,
  • The cash flow forecast ,
  • And the sources and uses table .

Let's look at each of these in a bit more detail.

The projected P&L statement

Your management consulting firm forecasted P&L statement enables the reader of your business plan to get an idea of how much revenue and profits your business is expected to make in the near future.

forecasted profit and loss statement in a management consulting firm business plan

Ideally, your reader will want to see:

  • Growth above the inflation level
  • Expanding profit margins
  • Positive net profit throughout the plan

Expectations for an established management consulting firm will of course be different than for a startup. Existing businesses which have reached their cruising altitude might have slower growth and higher margins than ventures just being started.

The projected balance sheet of your management consulting firm

The balance sheet for a management consulting firm is a financial document that provides a snapshot of your business’s financial health at a given point in time.

It shows three main components: assets, liabilities and equity:

  • Assets: are resources owned by the business, such as cash, equipment, and accounts receivable (money owed by clients).
  • Liabilities: are debts owed to creditors and other entities, such as accounts payable (money owed to suppliers) and loans.
  • Equity: includes the sums invested by the shareholders or business owners and the cumulative profits and losses of the business to date (called retained earnings). It is a proxy for the value of the owner's stake in the business.

example of projected balance sheet in a management consulting firm business plan

Examining the balance sheet is important for lenders, investors, or other stakeholders who are interested in assessing your management consulting firm's liquidity and solvency:

  • Liquidity: assesses whether or not your business has sufficient cash and short-term assets to honour its liabilities due over the next 12 months. It is a short-term focus.
  • Solvency: assesses whether or not your business has the capacity to repay its debt over the medium-term.

Looking at the balance sheet can also provide insights into your management consulting firm's investment and financing policies.

In particular, stakeholders can compare the value of equity to the value of the outstanding financial debt to assess how the business is funded and what level of financial risk has been taken by the owners (financial debt is riskier because it has to be repaid, while equity doesn't need to be repaid).

The cash flow forecast

A projected cash flow statement for a management consulting firm is used to show how much cash the business is generating or consuming.

cash flow forecast in a management consulting firm business plan example

The cash flow forecast is usually organized by nature to show three key metrics:

  • The operating cash flow: do the core business activities generate or consume cash?
  • The investing cash flow: how much is the business investing in long-term assets (this is usually compared to the level of fixed assets on the balance sheet to assess whether the business is regularly maintaining and renewing its equipment)?
  • The financing cash flow: is the business raising new financing or repaying financiers (debt repayment, dividends)?

As we discussed earlier, cash is king and keeping an eye on future cash flows an imperative for running a successful business. Therefore, you can expect the reader of your management consulting firm business plan to pay close attention to your cash flow forecast.

Also, note that it is customary to provide both yearly and monthly cash flow forecasts in a business plan - so that the reader can analyze seasonal variation and ensure the management consulting firm is appropriately funded.

The initial financing plan

The sources and uses table or initial financing plan is a key component of your business plan when starting a management consulting firm.

It shows where the capital needed to set up the business will come from (sources) and how it will be spent (uses).

sources and uses table in a management consulting firm business plan

This table helps size the investment required to set up the management consulting firm, and understand how risks will be distributed between the business owners, and the financiers.

The sources and uses table also highlights what the starting cash position will be. This is key for startups as the business needs to have sufficient funding to sustain operations until the break-even point is reached.

Now that you have a clear understanding of what will go into the financial forecast of your management consulting firm business plan, let's have a look at the written part of the plan.

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The written part of a management consulting firm business plan is composed of 7 main sections:

  • The executive summary
  • The presentation of the company
  • The products and services
  • The market analysis
  • The strategy
  • The operations
  • The financial plan

Throughout these sections, you will seek to provide the reader with the details and context needed for them to form a view on whether or not your business plan is achievable and your forecast a realistic possibility.

Let's go through the content of each section in more detail!

1. The executive summary

The executive summary, the first section of your management consulting firm's business plan, serves as an inviting snapshot of your entire plan, leaving readers eager to know more about your business.

To compose an effective executive summary, start with a concise introduction of your business, covering its name, concept, location, history, and unique aspects. Share insights about the services or products you intend to offer and your target customer base.

Subsequently, provide an overview of your management consulting firm's addressable market, highlighting current trends and potential growth opportunities.

Then, present a summary of critical financial figures, such as projected revenues, profits, and cash flows.

You should then include a summary of your key financial figures such as projected revenues, profits, and cash flows.

Lastly, address any funding needs in the "ask" section of your executive summary.

2. The presentation of the company

The second section in your management consulting firm's business plan should focus on the structure and ownership, location, and management team of the company.

The structure and ownership part provides an overview of the legal structure of the business, who the owners are and how much each has invested and owns. If you are seeking financing it is important that the reader gets a clear picture of which legal entity is receiving the funds, and who controls the business.

The location part should give an overview of the premises from which the company is operating, and why that location is of particular interest (catchment area, accessibility, amenities nearby, etc.).

When describing the location of your management consulting firm, you could emphasize the potential access to a large, diverse population of professionals. You may be able to highlight the potential for a variety of nearby transportation options, as well as potential access to a wide array of amenities. You might also point out the potential for a low cost of living, which could make it attractive for potential employees. Additionally, you could note the potential for potential clients and partners to easily access the area. Finally, you may be able to emphasize the potential to draw on a wide range of talent from a variety of nearby educational institutions.

Finally, you should introduce the management team. Explain each member's role, background, and experience.

It is also important to emphasize any past successes that the members of the management team have achieved, and how long they've been working together, as this will help potential lenders or investors understand why they should trust in their leadership.

3. The products and services section

The products and services section of your management consulting firm business plan should include a detailed description of what your company sells to its customers. 

For example, your management consulting firm could offer services such as strategic planning, risk mitigation and process optimization to its customers. Strategic planning would help customers develop long-term plans for their businesses, while risk mitigation could help identify and assess potential risks and recommend ways to minimize them. Process optimization, on the other hand, could help customers streamline their operations and reduce costs while increasing efficiency. Ultimately, all these services would help customers achieve their goals and objectives more effectively.

The reader will want to understand what makes your management consulting firm unique from other businesses in this competitive market.

When drafting this section, you should be precise about the categories of products or services you sell, the clients you are targeting and the channels that you are targeting them through. 

4. The market analysis

When presenting your market analysis in your management consulting firm business plan, you should detail the customers' demographics and segmentation, target market, competition, barriers to entry, and any regulations that may apply.

The goal of this section is to help the reader understand how big and attractive your market is, and demonstrate that you have a solid understanding of the industry.

You should start with the demographics and segmentation subsection, which gives an overview of the addressable market for your management consulting firm, the main trends in the marketplace, and introduces the different customer segments and their preferences in terms of purchasing habits and budgets.

The target market section should follow and zoom on the customer segments your management consulting firm is targeting, and explain how your products and services meet the specific needs of these customers.

For example, your target market might include large companies with complex business models. These companies need help in streamlining their operations and adapting to changing conditions. They may need help in areas like strategy, operations, technology, or finance.

Then comes the competition subsection, where you should introduce your main competitors and explain what differentiates you from them.

Finally, you should finish your market analysis by giving an overview of the main regulations applicable to your management consulting firm.

5. The strategy section

When you write the strategy section of your management consulting firm business plan, remember to cover key elements such as your competitive edge, pricing strategy, sales & marketing plan, milestones, and risks and mitigants.

In the competitive edge subsection, elaborate on what makes your company stand out from competitors. This becomes especially important if you're a startup, aiming to carve a place for yourself amidst established players in the marketplace.

The pricing strategy subsection should demonstrate how you plan to maintain profitability while offering competitive prices to attract customers.

Outline your sales & marketing plan, detailing how you'll reach out to new customers and retain existing ones through loyalty programs or special offers.

For the milestones subsection, outline your company's achievements to date and your main objectives for the future, complete with specific dates to set clear expectations for progress.

Lastly, the risks and mitigants subsection should address the main risks that could affect your plan's execution. Explain the measures you've put in place to minimize these risks, assuring potential investors or lenders.

Your management consulting firm could face the risk of losing high-value clients who may be unsatisfied with the services provided. The firm could also face the risk of facing a lawsuit due to negligence or mistakes from the consultants; this could lead to financial losses and a tarnished reputation.

6. The operations section

In your business plan, it's also essential to provide a detailed overview of the operations of your management consulting firm.

Start by covering your team, highlighting key roles and your recruitment plan to support the expected growth. Outline the qualifications and experience required for each role and your intended recruitment methods, whether through job boards, referrals, or headhunters.

Next, clearly state your management consulting firm's operating hours, allowing the reader to assess staffing levels adequately. Additionally, mention any plans for varying opening times during peak seasons and how you'll handle customer queries outside normal operating hours.

Then, shift your focus to the key assets and intellectual property (IP) necessary for your business. If you rely on licenses, trademarks, physical structures like equipment or property, or lease agreements, make sure to include them in this section.

You may have key assets such as proprietary methodologies or data sets that could help you provide unique insights to your clients. Additionally, your firm could have intellectual property such as copyrighted materials or trade secrets that might be used to give your firm a competitive advantage.

Lastly, include a list of suppliers you plan to work with, detailing their services and main commercial terms, such as price, payment terms, and contract duration. Investors are interested in understanding why you've chosen specific suppliers, which may be due to higher-quality products or established relationships from previous ventures.

7. The presentation of the financial plan

The financial plan section is where we will present the financial forecast we talked about earlier in this guide.

Now that you have a clear idea of what goes in your management consulting firm business plan, let's look at the solutions you can use to draft yours.

What tool should I use to write my management consulting firm's business plan?

In this section, we will be reviewing the two main solutions for creating a management consulting firm business plan:

  • Using specialized online business plan software,
  • Outsourcing the plan to the business plan writer.

Using an online business plan software for your management consulting firm's business plan

The modern and most efficient way to write a management consulting firm business plan is to use business plan software .

There are several advantages to using specialized software:

  • You can easily create your financial forecast by letting the software take care of the financial calculations for you without errors
  • You are guided through the writing process by detailed instructions and examples for each part of the plan
  • You can access a library of dozens of complete business plan samples and templates for inspiration
  • You get a professional business plan, formatted and ready to be sent to your bank or investors
  • You can easily track your actual financial performance against your financial forecast
  • You can create scenarios to stress test your forecast's main assumptions
  • You can easily update your forecast as time goes by to maintain visibility on future cash flows
  • You have a friendly support team on standby to assist you when you are stuck

If you're interested in using this type of solution, you can try The Business Plan Shop for free by signing up here .

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Screenshot from The Business Plan Shop's Financial Forecasting Software

Hiring a business plan writer to write your management consulting firm's business plan

Outsourcing your management consulting firm business plan to a business plan writer can also be a viable option.

Business plan writers are experienced in writing business plans and adept at creating financial forecasts without errors. Furthermore, hiring a consultant can save you time and allow you to focus on the day-to-day operations of your business.

However, hiring business plan writers is expensive as you are paying for the software used by the consultant, plus their time, and their profit margin of course.

From experience, you need to budget at least £1.5k ($2.0k) excluding tax for a complete business plan, more if you need to make changes after the initial version (which happens frequently after the initial meetings with lenders or investors).

You also need to be careful when seeking investment. Investors want their money to be used to grow the business, not spent on consulting fees. Therefore, the amount you spend on business plan writing services (and other consulting services such as legal services) needs to be negligible relative to the amount raised.

The other drawback is that you usually don't own the business plan itself: you just get the output, while the actual document is saved in the consultant's business plan software - which makes it difficult to maintain the document up to date without hiring the consultant on a retainer.

For these reasons, outsourcing the management consulting firm business plan to a business plan writer should be considered carefully, weighing both the advantages and disadvantages of hiring outside help.

Ultimately, it may be the right decision for some businesses, while others may find it beneficial to write their business plan using online software.

Why not create your management consulting firm's business plan using Word or Excel?

I must advise against using Microsoft Excel and Word (or their Google, Apple, or open-source equivalents) to write your management consulting firm business plan. Let me explain why.

Firstly, creating an accurate and error-free financial forecast on Excel (or any spreadsheet) is highly technical and requires a strong grasp of accounting principles and financial modelling skills. It is, therefore, unlikely that anyone will fully trust your numbers unless you have both a degree in finance and accounting and significant financial modelling experience, like us at The Business Plan Shop.

Secondly, relying on spreadsheets is inefficient. While it may have been the only option in the past, technology has advanced significantly, and software can now perform these tasks much faster and with greater accuracy. With the rise of AI, software can even help us detect mistakes in forecasts and analyze the numbers for better decision-making.

And with the rise of AI, software is also becoming smarter at helping us detect mistakes in our forecasts and helping us analyse the numbers to make better decisions.

Moreover, software makes it easier to compare actuals versus forecasts and maintain up-to-date forecasts to keep visibility on future cash flows, as we discussed earlier in this guide. This task is cumbersome when using spreadsheets.

Now, let's talk about the written part of your management consulting firm business plan. While it may be less error-prone, using software can bring tremendous gains in productivity. Word processors, for example, lack instructions and examples for each part of your business plan. They also won't automatically update your numbers when changes occur in your forecast, and they don't handle formatting for you.

Overall, while Word or Excel may seem viable for some entrepreneurs to create a business plan, it's by far becoming an antiquated way of doing things.

  • A business plan has 2 complementary parts: a financial forecast showcasing the expected growth, profits and cash flows of the business; and a written part which provides the context needed to judge if the forecast is realistic and relevant.
  • Having an up-to-date business plan is the only way to keep visibility on your management consulting firm's future cash flows.
  • Using business plan software is the modern way of writing and maintaining business plans.

We hope that this practical guide gave you insights on how to write the business plan for your management consulting firm. Do not hesitate to get in touch with our team if you still have questions.

Also on The Business Plan Shop

  • In-depth business plan structure
  • Key steps to write a business plan?
  • Free business plan template

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Guillaume Le Brouster

Founder & CEO at The Business Plan Shop Ltd

Guillaume Le Brouster is a seasoned entrepreneur and financier.

Guillaume has been an entrepreneur for more than a decade and has first-hand experience of starting, running, and growing a successful business.

Prior to being a business owner, Guillaume worked in investment banking and private equity, where he spent most of his time creating complex financial forecasts, writing business plans, and analysing financial statements to make financing and investment decisions.

Guillaume holds a Master's Degree in Finance from ESCP Business School and a Bachelor of Science in Business & Management from Paris Dauphine University.

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This Toolkit includes frameworks, tools, templates, tutorials, real-life examples, best practices, and video training to help you:

  • Launch a consulting practice and excel as a Management Consultant with our 5-phase approach: (I) Create a business plan for your consulting practice, (II) Create your consulting proposal and legal agreements, (III) Identify your client’s problem, (IV) Find a solution using world-class frameworks & Tools, (V) Present effectively.
  • (I) Create a business plan for your consulting practice: (1) Business plan canvas, (2) Problem to solve and solution, (3) Mission, vision and values, (4) Strategic objectives, (5) Market analysis, (6) Competitor analysis, (7) Marketing plan, (8) Business structure, (9) Financial plan, (10) Business valuation, (11) Next steps.
  • (II) Create your consulting proposal and legal agreements: (1) Consulting proposal: Situation and key challenge, Proposed solution, Business case and financial model, Approach, Our value proposition, Proposed team, Consulting fees, Next steps, (2) Legal agreements: Business consultant agreement Non-disclosure agreement, Non-compete agreement.
  • (III) Identify your client’s problem: (1) Internal analysis: Financial analysis, HR analysis, Marketing analysis, Customers analysis, Suppliers analysis, (2) Market Analysis: Target market, Market sizing with TAM, Market attractiveness with Porter’s 5 Forces, Environment analysis with PESTLE, (3) Competitor Analysis: Competitor identification, Benchmarking, Strategic group mapping, Competitor profiling, (4) Problem identification tools: Issue tree, Five whys, Fishbone diagram, Problem definition worksheet, (5) SWOT summary.
  • (IV) Find a solution using world-class frameworks & Tools: (1) Frameworks to answer common strategic questions: What caused the company’s profit to decrease?, Should we enter a new market?, Should we introduce a new product?, Should we acquire this company?, (2) BU/Product portfolio management tools: GE-McKinsey Matrix, BCG Growth-Share Matrix, (3) Growth strategy tools: 7 Degrees of Freedom for Growth, Ansoff Growth Matrix, Blue Ocean Strategy, McKinsey Seven-S, Porter’s Generic Corporate Strategies, Product Life Cycle, (4) other frameworks and tools: Value Chain Analysis, Value Driver Tree, Pareto Principle, etc.
  • (V) Present effectively: (1) Presentation structure: Situation, complication and question, Pyramid principle, Storyboard, (2) Top 300 ready-made consulting diagrams and charts: Business roadmaps, Conceptual charts, Dashboards, Editable maps, Funnel diagrams, Logical & decision trees, Matrix, Organizational charts, Process maps, Project plans, timelines & Gantt charts, Speedometer charts, Tables, Virtuous cycle charts, Waterfall charts, Etc.

Benefits of our Management Consulting Toolkits

Improve the growth & efficiency of your organization by leveraging Management Consulting Toolkits created by ex-McKinsey, Deloitte & BCG Consultants.

Make a great investment for your career & organization. It cost us US$8M+ over the past 10 years to create all our Toolkits. Get them for a fraction of this cost.

Get a competitive advantage. It’s like hiring Management Consultants to create all the practical Frameworks, Tools & Templates you need.

Get the job done quicker and never start from scratch again with our ready-made and fully editable Frameworks, Tools & Templates in Powerpoint & Excel.

Don't reinvent the wheel. We have already worked 30,000+ hours over the past 10 years to create all the Management Consulting Toolkits you need.

Improve the capabilities of your organization by learning how the Fortune 100 and Global Consulting Firms do it.

Get free support and advice from our ex-McKinsey, Deloitte & BCG Management Consultants.

Decrease your costs. Hiring tier-1 Consultants for a project would cost you $300k+. Way more expensive than our Toolkits, which will last you a lifetime!

Become your organization’s subject matter expert and impress your stakeholders with world-class approaches to resolve common business problems.

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'Imagine having a team of ex-McKinsey, Deloitte and BCG Management Consultants at your disposal at any time of the day to help you solve your business problems and improve the growth and efficiency of your organization. How much more confident would you be about the future performance of your organization and your own career progression? How much more time could you save?

If you have ever tried solving business problems that you haven’t encountered before, you know how frustrating it can be to start from scratch. And even then, you still aren’t sure if what you’re doing is going to end up wasting your time and money. Having someone by your side who has already solved these business problems would be a huge help. That’s why businesses hire management consultants for support in the first place.

The only problem is that hiring a couple of tier-1 Consultants for a management consulting project would cost you at least $300,000! Not every business or team can afford this.

I wanted to do something about this because I believe everyone deserves to receive high-value business guidance, regardless of their budget!

That’s why in 2012, I decided to team up with other ex-McKinsey, Deloitte and BCG Consultants to create all the Management Consulting Toolkits required to solve your business problems and improve the growth and efficiency of your organization!

Whether you're an executive, entrepreneur or consultant from a small or large organization, you can now leverage the know-how and best practices of our ex-McKinsey, Deloitte & BCG Management Consultants without breaking your budget.'

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I hired Aurelien Domont and one of his consultants to help me value and sell our company to potential buyers. Very happy with their consulting services.

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Helped conceptualize and clarify our offering

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Chief Business Development Officer at GroupM

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The Sales, Marketing & Communication Toolkit seems to be very prorevimising and structured. However, lower pricing should be adopted for students and startups.

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Wondereful Toolkits

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Director at RRBA Business Advisory

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management consulting business plan

How to Start a Project Management Consulting Business

Managers who have to juggle complex business projects are under a lot of stress. This is why project management consultants are so valuable. They use their expertise within a specific field to help other businesses and firms to develop and manage a project. It reduces the stress managers experience and helps a business complete a project on schedule and within its budget.

Consultants typically assist upper level management in overseeing a project from its beginning to its completion, providing a "soup to nuts" service that's often very "hands on."

You may also be interested in additional low cost business ideas .

Learn how to start your own Project Management Consulting Business and whether it is the right fit for you.

Ready to form your LLC? Check out the Top LLC Formation Services .

Project Management Consulting Business Image

Start a project management consulting business by following these 10 steps:

  • Plan your Project Management Consulting Business
  • Form your Project Management Consulting Business into a Legal Entity
  • Register your Project Management Consulting Business for Taxes
  • Open a Business Bank Account & Credit Card
  • Set up Accounting for your Project Management Consulting Business
  • Get the Necessary Permits & Licenses for your Project Management Consulting Business
  • Get Project Management Consulting Business Insurance
  • Define your Project Management Consulting Business Brand
  • Create your Project Management Consulting Business Website
  • Set up your Business Phone System

We have put together this simple guide to starting your project management consulting business. These steps will ensure that your new business is well planned out, registered properly and legally compliant.

Exploring your options? Check out other small business ideas .

STEP 1: Plan your business

A clear plan is essential for success as an entrepreneur. It will help you map out the specifics of your business and discover some unknowns. A few important topics to consider are:

What will you name your business?

  • What are the startup and ongoing costs?
  • Who is your target market?

How much can you charge customers?

Luckily we have done a lot of this research for you.

Choosing the right name is important and challenging. If you don’t already have a name in mind, visit our How to Name a Business guide or get help brainstorming a name with our Project Management Consulting Business Name Generator

If you operate a sole proprietorship , you might want to operate under a business name other than your own name. Visit our DBA guide to learn more.

When registering a business name , we recommend researching your business name by checking:

  • Your state's business records
  • Federal and state trademark records
  • Social media platforms
  • Web domain availability .

It's very important to secure your domain name before someone else does.

Want some help naming your project management consulting business?

Business name generator, what are the costs involved in opening a project management consulting business.

A project management consulting business is a low overhead business. You only need access to a computer, a phone, and a small office to run this business. You can start for less than $1,000.

What are the ongoing expenses for a project management consulting business?

Ongoing expenses are minimal and include costs for office space, computer maintenance and software maintenance and upgrades for project management applications. These costs may range from several hundred dollars per month to several thousand dollars, depending on how large the agency is.

Who is the target market?

Target market for this service are reasonably successful businesses that need help planning and completing complex business projects.

How does a project management consulting business make money?

Project management consulting businesses make money by charging clients a fee for service (per project) or a per-hour fee for consulting. Service contracts are common in some industries, but many businesses hire consultants on a per project or even a per-month basis.

Project management consultants can charge anywhere between $100 and $500 per hour for consulting. Consultants can also charge on a "per-project" basis, with fees ranging from $1,000 to several hundred thousand dollars.

How much profit can a project management consulting business make?

Project management consultants can make anywhere from $50,000 per year per consultant to $1 million or more in fees for large projects with large corporate clients.

How can you make your business more profitable?

If you want to make the business even more profitable, consider partnering with other non-competing consultants. For example, a project management consultant may need the help of a marketing consultant, a customer service consultant, or some other outside agency which can implement some or all the solutions your agency proposes for your client. By becoming a "one stop shop," you can simplify the process for your clients, making it more convenient to do business with you.

This, in turn, can command higher consulting fees.

Want a more guided approach? Access TRUiC's free Small Business Startup Guide - a step-by-step course for turning your business idea into reality. Get started today!

STEP 2: Form a legal entity

The most common business structure types are the sole proprietorship , partnership , limited liability company (LLC) , and corporation .

Establishing a legal business entity such as an LLC or corporation protects you from being held personally liable if your project management consulting business is sued.

Form Your LLC

Read our Guide to Form Your Own LLC

Have a Professional Service Form your LLC for You

Two such reliable services:

You can form an LLC yourself and pay only the minimal state LLC costs or hire one of the Best LLC Services for a small, additional fee.

Recommended: You will need to elect a registered agent for your LLC. LLC formation packages usually include a free year of registered agent services . You can choose to hire a registered agent or act as your own.

STEP 3: Register for taxes

You will need to register for a variety of state and federal taxes before you can open for business.

In order to register for taxes you will need to apply for an EIN. It's really easy and free!

You can acquire your EIN through the IRS website . If you would like to learn more about EINs, read our article, What is an EIN?

There are specific state taxes that might apply to your business. Learn more about state sales tax and franchise taxes in our state sales tax guides.

STEP 4: Open a business bank account & credit card

Using dedicated business banking and credit accounts is essential for personal asset protection.

When your personal and business accounts are mixed, your personal assets (your home, car, and other valuables) are at risk in the event your business is sued. In business law, this is referred to as piercing your corporate veil .

Open a business bank account

Besides being a requirement when applying for business loans, opening a business bank account:

  • Separates your personal assets from your company's assets, which is necessary for personal asset protection.
  • Makes accounting and tax filing easier.

Recommended: Read our Best Banks for Small Business review to find the best national bank or credit union.

Get a business credit card

Getting a business credit card helps you:

  • Separate personal and business expenses by putting your business' expenses all in one place.
  • Build your company's credit history , which can be useful to raise money later on.

Recommended: Apply for an easy approval business credit card from BILL and build your business credit quickly.

STEP 5: Set up business accounting

Recording your various expenses and sources of income is critical to understanding the financial performance of your business. Keeping accurate and detailed accounts also greatly simplifies your annual tax filing.

Make LLC accounting easy with our LLC Expenses Cheat Sheet.

STEP 6: Obtain necessary permits and licenses

Failure to acquire necessary permits and licenses can result in hefty fines, or even cause your business to be shut down.

State & Local Business Licensing Requirements

Certain state permits and licenses may be needed to operate a project management consulting business. Learn more about licensing requirements in your state by visiting SBA’s reference to state licenses and permits .

Most businesses are required to collect sales tax on the goods or services they provide. To learn more about how sales tax will affect your business, read our article, Sales Tax for Small Businesses .

Certificate of Occupancy

Businesses operating out of a physical location typically require a Certificate of Occupancy (CO).  A CO confirms that all building codes, zoning laws and government regulations have been met.

  • If you plan to lease a location :
  • It is generally the landlord’s responsibility to obtain a CO.
  • Before leasing, confirm that your landlord has or can obtain a valid CO that is applicable to a project management consulting business.
  • After a major renovation, a new CO often needs to be issued. If your place of business will be renovated before opening, it is recommended to include language in your lease agreement stating that lease payments will not commence until a valid CO is issued.
  • If you plan to purchase or build a location :
  • You will be responsible for obtaining a valid CO from a local government authority.
  • Review all building codes and zoning requirements for your business’ location to ensure your project management consulting business will be in compliance and able to obtain a CO.

Services Contract

Project management consulting businesses should require clients to sign a services agreement before starting a new project. This agreement should clarify client expectations and minimize risk of legal disputes by setting out payment terms and conditions, service level expectations, and intellectual property ownership.

STEP 7: Get business insurance

Just as with licenses and permits, your business needs insurance in order to operate safely and lawfully. Business Insurance protects your company’s financial wellbeing in the event of a covered loss.

There are several types of insurance policies created for different types of businesses with different risks. If you’re unsure of the types of risks that your business may face, begin with General Liability Insurance . This is the most common coverage that small businesses need, so it’s a great place to start for your business.

Another notable insurance policy that many businesses need is Workers’ Compensation Insurance . If your business will have employees, it’s a good chance that your state will require you to carry Workers' Compensation Coverage.

FInd out what types of insurance your Project Management Consulting Business needs and how much it will cost you by reading our guide Business Insurance for Project Management Consulting Business.

STEP 8: Define your brand

Your brand is what your company stands for, as well as how your business is perceived by the public. A strong brand will help your business stand out from competitors.

If you aren't feeling confident about designing your small business logo, then check out our Design Guides for Beginners , we'll give you helpful tips and advice for creating the best unique logo for your business.

Recommended : Get a logo using Truic's free logo Generator no email or sign up required, or use a Premium Logo Maker .

If you already have a logo, you can also add it to a QR code with our Free QR Code Generator . Choose from 13 QR code types to create a code for your business cards and publications, or to help spread awareness for your new website.

How to promote & market a project management consulting business

Promote your business locally through networking, local pay-per-click advertising, website advertising, email marketing, and direct mail. Once you get your first few clients, you can work off referrals.

How to keep customers coming back

Attract more clients through referral business. This will become your main source of leads and clients. In addition to this, you can retain existing clients by providing exceptional customer service and by making projects profitable for your clients.

STEP 9: Create your business website

After defining your brand and creating your logo the next step is to create a website for your business .

While creating a website is an essential step, some may fear that it’s out of their reach because they don’t have any website-building experience. While this may have been a reasonable fear back in 2015, web technology has seen huge advancements in the past few years that makes the lives of small business owners much simpler.

Here are the main reasons why you shouldn’t delay building your website:

  • All legitimate businesses have websites - full stop. The size or industry of your business does not matter when it comes to getting your business online.
  • Social media accounts like Facebook pages or LinkedIn business profiles are not a replacement for a business website that you own.
  • Website builder tools like the GoDaddy Website Builder have made creating a basic website extremely simple. You don’t need to hire a web developer or designer to create a website that you can be proud of.

Recommended : Get started today using our recommended website builder or check out our review of the Best Website Builders .

Other popular website builders are: WordPress , WIX , Weebly , Squarespace , and Shopify .

STEP 10: Set up your business phone system

Getting a phone set up for your business is one of the best ways to help keep your personal life and business life separate and private. That’s not the only benefit; it also helps you make your business more automated, gives your business legitimacy, and makes it easier for potential customers to find and contact you.

There are many services available to entrepreneurs who want to set up a business phone system. We’ve reviewed the top companies and rated them based on price, features, and ease of use. Check out our review of the Best Business Phone Systems 2023 to find the best phone service for your small business.

Recommended Business Phone Service: Phone.com

Phone.com is our top choice for small business phone numbers because of all the features it offers for small businesses and it's fair pricing.

TRUiC's Startup Podcast

Welcome to the Startup Savant podcast , where we interview real startup founders at every stage of the entrepreneurial journey, from launch to scale.

Is this Business Right For You?

This business is perfect for seasoned business owners and advisors who have extensive experience in business management, project management, and who perform well under stress. Because many high level business projects are under strict deadlines, consultants must also be excellent at managing their time well.

Want to know if you are cut out to be an entrepreneur?

Take our Entrepreneurship Quiz to find out!

Entrepreneurship Quiz

What happens during a typical day at a project management consulting business?

A typical day at a project management consulting firm consists of meeting with clients, reviewing a project's scope, analyzing key performance indicators, and assessing the viability of various projects a business wants to undertake.

Consultants must perform detailed analysis of a project and submit reports to management and sometimes the board of directors to get approval for funding and even the project itself.

A project management consulting business may juggle many different projects at once, relying on an organized system of assistants and templates to complete various project milestones.

Consulting companies must also manage client expectations, behaviors, and attitudes toward the project and set realistic expectations about completion times and budgets.

What are some skills and experiences that will help you build a successful project management consulting business?

Business consultants are highly specialized in their education. They often have extensive experience in business management, project management, and financial management. Project managers must have excellent time management and communication skills. Finally, the consultant must understand all aspects of the project management process that most corporations use.

What is the growth potential for a project management consulting business?

This type of consulting business can grow into a large enterprise, but most businesses are run as small agencies. This is because project management consulting is a highly specialized industry where only one or a few individuals have the expertise to advice a business through all stages of a project. Therefore, it's difficult to scale this business.

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Take the Next Step

Find a business mentor.

One of the greatest resources an entrepreneur can have is quality mentorship. As you start planning your business, connect with a free business resource near you to get the help you need.

Having a support network in place to turn to during tough times is a major factor of success for new business owners.

Learn from other business owners

Want to learn more about starting a business from entrepreneurs themselves? Visit Startup Savant’s startup founder series to gain entrepreneurial insights, lessons, and advice from founders themselves.

Resources to Help Women in Business

There are many resources out there specifically for women entrepreneurs. We’ve gathered necessary and useful information to help you succeed both professionally and personally:

If you’re a woman looking for some guidance in entrepreneurship, check out this great new series Women in Business created by the women of our partner Startup Savant.

What are some insider tips for jump starting a project management consulting business?

Work with local businesses that you already have relationships with. Consider approaching local businesses and offering them complimentary services in exchange for testimonials or referrals for successfully completed projects. You may have to offer discounted rates until your name recognition is enough to command higher fees.

How and when to build a team

Building a team isn't necessary, but some agencies decide to hire assistants to handle various aspects of the consulting process. Sometimes, an assistant can reduce some of the workload of a consultant by performing routine tasks, working from a template. This can save clients money and simultaneously increase total revenue for the consulting business by streamlining various processes.

For example, the project management process is mostly the same for all businesses. Initial interviews reveal basic information, like costs, project goals, scope, and budgets. This information can be gathered and analyzed by an assistant before a consultant comes in to take over the project. Maintaining a "pipeline" of leads this way, where assistants are completing the initial phases of the consulting work, helps optimize workflow for the consulting business.

Useful Links

Industry opportunities.

  • International Project Management Association
  • Project Management Institute (Certification)
  • IMC USA(Certification)

Real World Examples

  • Blue Beyond Consulting-Castro Valley, CA
  • PM Solutions-Chadds Ford, PA
  • Line Of Sight- Ellicott City, NJ

Further Reading

  • Interview With A Project Manager at Boston Consulting Group
  • Discover more Consulting based Business Ideas

Have a Question? Leave a Comment!

ProfitableVenture

Project Management Consulting Business Plan [Sample Template]

By: Author Tony Martins Ajaero

Home » Business Plans » B2B Sector

Are you about starting a project management consulting company? If YES, here is a complete sample project management consulting business plan template & feasibility report you can use for FREE .

Project management consulting is one of many business niche ideas in the consulting industry which someone with certification in project management can successfully launch in the United States and still break even within record time, if indeed they know their worth.

Project management is a methodical approach to planning and guiding project processes from conception to completion; it is a temporary endeavor initiated with the sole aim of creating a unique product, service or result as the case maybe.

A Sample Project Management Consulting Business Plan Template

1. industry overview.

Project management consulting is a niche idea in the Management Consulting industry and management consultants advise businesses, nonprofits and public-sector agencies in the following areas: organizational design, human resources, corporate strategy, information technology strategy, marketing and sales, finances and logistics.

It is important to note that firms that are involved in providing day-to-day administrative services and establishments that are concentrated in recruitment, training, public relations, market research, engineering design, computer systems design and investment advice et al are not considered as part of the management consulting industry.

A close study of the management consulting industry shows that over the years, the industry has been experiencing success as stronger corporate profitability and increasing business expenditure resulted in higher demand for advisory services.

In recent years, the demand for this industry has come from a number of different sectors and services. Demand was strong from financial institutions and professional firms and healthcare companies have also been a boom to the industry .

So also, the ongoing transition toward digital technology has provided new opportunities for operators. Going forward, the industry is expected to grow with the general US economy. Information technology will continue to be a key growth area for firms, while other sectors such as healthcare also provide new business opportunities.

The Management Consulting industry is indeed a large industry that is very active in developed countries. Statistics has it that in the united states of America alone, there are about 723,001 registered and licensed management consulting firms (project management consulting firms inclusive) scattered all across the United States responsible for employing about 1,517,845 and the industry rakes in a whooping sum of $223 billion annually.

The industry is projected to grow at 3.1 percent annual growth within 2012 and 2017. It is important to state that Accenture, DTT and McKinsey have a lion market share in the industry.

A recent report published by IBISWORLD shows that the Management Consulting industry is in the mature stage of its life cycle.

The report highlighted the fact that the industry is characterized by growth in line with the overall economy, an increasing number of industry players and technological change based on improving efficiency rather than developing entirely new services.

The report also stated that over the past five years, the industry has experienced strong growth as a result of surging corporate profit and new demand for advisory services as digital technologies change the way companies do business.

Furthermore, consultants continue to be a key component in helping firms navigate a constantly changing business landscape. The report further reveals that over the 10 years to 2022, industry value added (IVA) is projected to increase at an annualized 3.4 percent.

Lastly, one good thing about project management consulting business is that there are readily available markets for their services.

This is so because in most cases, organizations that are looking towards achieving excellence and good results in any of their projects would naturally want some professional touches hence the need to hire project management consulting firms.

2. Executive Summary

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is a standard and licensed project management consulting firm that will be located in Los Angeles – California, United States. We have been able to secure a long term lease for a standard office facility in a good business district in the heart of Los Angeles.

We will handle all aspects of project management consulting service for players in various industries. We are aware that to run a standard project management consulting firm can be demanding which is why we are well trained, licensed and equipped to perform excellently well.

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is a client-focused and result driven project management consulting firm that provides broad-based experience at an affordable fee that won’t in any way put a hole in the pocket of our clients.

We will offer a complete range of project management consulting services to our local, state, national, and multinational clients and we will ensure that we work hard to provide the required consulting services and staffing solutions needed by our clients to accomplish their business goals and objectives.

At GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP, our client’s interest come first, and everything we do is guided by our values and professional ethics. We will ensure that we hire certified project management consultants who are well experienced in a wide variety of project management consulting services.

We will ensure that we hold ourselves accountable to the highest standards by meeting our client’s needs precisely and completely. We will at all times demonstrate our commitment to sustainability, both individually and as a firm, by actively participating in our communities and integrating sustainable business practices wherever possible.

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is founded by Gerald Thompson Clarkson. GT Clarkson graduated from University of California – Berkley (First Degree), and Brock School of Business at Stamford University (MBA).

He is a Certified Project Management Professional with over 15 years of hands-on experience working as a senior project management consultant with one of the leaders in the management consulting industry.

3. Our Products and Services

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is going to offer varieties of related project management consulting services within the scope of the staffing, recruitment and workforce solutions industry in the United States of America.

Our intention of starting our project management consulting business is to make profits from the industry and we will do all that is permitted by the law in the US to achieve our aim and ambition. Our business offerings are listed below;

  • Project planning and economic assessments
  • Quality management assessment and accreditation
  • feasibility studies, including environmental impact assessment and community consultation
  • Cost management
  • Scheduling management
  • Compliance management
  • Contract administration

4. Our Mission and Vision Statement

  • Our vision is to become the number one project management consulting firm in the whole of Los Angeles – United States of America.
  • Our vision reflects our values: integrity, service, excellence and teamwork.
  • Our mission is to provide professional, trusted and result oriented project management consulting services that assist businesses and non-profit organizations in operating sustainably and maximizing profits in the business.

Our Business Structure

Starting a small scale project management consulting firm would require that you settle for two or three staff members, but as part of our plans to build a world class project management consulting business in Los Angeles – California, we have perfected plans to get it right from the beginning which is why we are going the extra mile to ensure that we get competent, qualified, honest and hardworking employees to occupy all the available positions in our firm.

The picture of the kind of project management consulting firm we intend building and the business goals we want to achieve is what informed the amount we are ready to pay for the best hands available in and around Los Angeles – California as long as they are willing and ready to work with us.

Below is the business structure that we will build GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP;

  • Chief Executive Officer/Lead Consultant
  • Project Management Consultant

Legal Secretary

Admin and HR Manager

  • Business Developer (Marketing and Sales Executive
  • Customer Service Executive

5. Job Roles and Responsibilities

Chief Executive Office/Lead Consultant:

  • Increases management’s effectiveness by recruiting, selecting, orienting, training, coaching, counseling, and disciplining managers; communicating values, strategies, and objectives; assigning accountabilities; planning, monitoring, and appraising job results; developing incentives; developing a climate for offering information and opinions; providing educational opportunities.
  • Makes, connects, and gears the organization’s vision, mission, and overall direction – i.e. leading the development and implementation of the overall organization’s strategy.
  • Accountable for fixing prices and signing business deals
  • In charge of providing direction for the business
  • Responsible for signing checks and documents on behalf of the company
  • Evaluates the success of the organization
  • In control of drawing up contracts and other legal documents for the company
  • Welcomes guests and clients by greeting them in person or on the telephone; answering or directing inquiries.
  • Produces information by transcribing, formatting, inputting, editing, retrieving, copying, and transmitting text, data, and graphics; coordinating case preparation.
  • Provides historical reference by developing and utilizing filing and retrieval systems; recording meeting discussions; maintaining transcripts; documenting and maintaining evidence.

Project Management Consultant 

  • Handles project planning and economic assessments
  • Handles quality management assessment and accreditation
  • Handles feasibility studies, including environmental impact assessment and community consultation
  • Responsible for handling cost management, scheduling management, compliance management, and contract administration
  • Handles any other responsibility as assigned by the Lead Consultant
  • Responsible for overseeing the smooth running of HR and administrative tasks for the organization
  • Design job descriptions with KPI to drive performance management for clients
  • Regularly hold meetings with key stakeholders to review the effectiveness of HR Policies, Procedures and Processes
  • Maintains office supplies by checking stocks; placing and expediting orders; evaluating new products.
  • Ensures operation of equipment by completing preventive maintenance requirements; calling for repairs.
  • Defines job positions for recruitment and managing interviewing process
  • Carries out staff induction for new team members
  • Responsible for training, evaluation and assessment of employees
  • Responsible for arranging travel, meetings and appointments
  • Updates job knowledge by participating in educational opportunities; reading professional publications; maintaining personal networks; participating in professional organizations
  • Oversees the smooth running of the daily office activities

Business Developer (Marketing and Sales Executive)

  • Identify, prioritize, and reach out to new partners, and business opportunities et al
  • Identifies development opportunities; follows up on development leads and contacts; participates in the structuring and financing of projects; assures the completion of development projects.
  • Responsible for supervising implementation, advocate for the customer’s needs, and communicate with clients
  • Develop, execute and evaluate new plans for expanding increase sales
  • Document all customer contact and information
  • Help increase sales and growth for the company
  • Responsible for preparing financial reports, budgets, and financial statements for the organization
  • Provides managements with financial analyses, development budgets, and accounting reports; analyzes financial feasibility for the most complex proposed projects; conducts market research to forecast trends and business conditions
  • Responsible for financial forecasting and risks analysis
  • Performs cash management, general ledger accounting, and financial reporting for one or more properties.
  • Responsible for developing and managing financial systems and policies
  • Responsible for administering payrolls
  • Ensuring compliance with taxation legislation
  • Handles all financial transactions for the company
  • Serves as internal auditor for the company

Client Service Executive

  • Ensures that all contacts with clients provide the client with a personalized customer service experience of the highest level
  • Through interaction with clients on the phone, uses every opportunity to build client’s interest in the company’s products and services
  • Manages administrative duties assigned by the manager in an effective and timely manner
  • Consistently stays abreast of any new information on the company’s products, promotional campaigns etc. to ensure accurate and helpful information is supplied to clients when they make enquiries
  • Receives clients on behalf of the organization
  • Receives parcels/documents for the company
  • Handles enquiries via e-mail and phone calls for the organization
  • Distribute mails in the organization
  • Handles any other duties as assigned by the line manager

6. SWOT Analysis

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP engaged the services of a core professional in the area of business consulting and structuring to assist the firm in building a reputable and result oriented project management consulting firm that can favorably compete in the highly competitive management consulting industry.

Part of what the team of business consultant did was to work with the management of the firm in conducting a SWOT analysis for GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP. Here is a summary from the result of the SWOT analysis that was conducted on behalf of GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP;

Our core strength lies in the power of our team. We have a team that are considered experts in the industry, a team with excellent qualifications and experience in project management consulting.

Aside from the synergy that exist in our carefully selected workforce and our strong online presence, GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is well positioned in a business district with the right demography and we know we will attract loads of corporate clients from the first day we open our doors for business.

As a new project management consulting firm, it might take some time for our organization to break into the market and work for some high profile and high paying clients; that is perhaps our major weakness.

  • Opportunities:

Digital technology has provided new opportunities for project management consulting firms to assist multiple businesses per time. No doubt, the opportunities available to project management consulting firms are indeed massive and we are ready to take advantage of any opportunity that comes our way.

Some of the threats that we are likely going to face as a project management consulting firm operating in the United States are unfavorable government policies , the arrival of a competitor within our location of operation and global economic downturn which usually affects spending/purchasing power.

There is hardly anything we can do as regards these threats other than to be optimistic that things will continue to work for our good.

7. MARKET ANALYSIS

  • Market Trends

Notable trends have emerged in recent time in the management consulting industry which is why project management consulting firms are positioning their organizations to survive the peaks and troughs of an ailing economy.

As a matter of fact, most of these trends aid project management consulting firms and organizations to become more creative, competitive, efficient, and productive in a global market. Some other trends in the consulting industry could be attributed to changing demographics, attitudes and work styles.

As the cost of management consulting services continue to increase and as corporate spending falls, new consulting delivery methods will continue to emerge and gain momentum going forward. Fast adjustments made to changing regulations are also key to the growing trends in this industry.

Lastly, it is now becoming trendy in the management consulting industry for smaller project management consulting firms to merge with bigger management consulting firms and for bigger consulting firms to acquire smaller project management consulting firms.

Smaller project management firms continue to enter the industry due to strong profit and also many project management consulting firms all over the United States are coming to the conclusion that the bigger the better for them.

8. Our Target Market

Although GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP will initially serve small to medium sized business, from new ventures to well established businesses, but that does not in any way stop us from growing to be able to compete with the leading project management consulting firms in the United States.

We hope to someday merge or acquire other smaller project management consulting firms and expand our project management consulting services beyond the shores of the United States of America.

As a full service and standard project management consulting firm, GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP has a variety of practice areas to help startups grow especially as it relates to starting and completing projects.

While we work with a variety of organizations and industries, GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP will also specialize in working with startups, real estate investors, contractors, manufacturers, distributors, banks, lending and financial institutions.

Our target market cuts across people of different class, people from all walks of life, local and international organizations as well. We are coming into the industry with a business concept that will enable us work with the highly placed people and companies in the country and at the same with the lowly placed people and smaller businesses.

In other words, our target market is the whole of the United States of America and subsequently other parts of the world. Below is a list of the people and organizations that we have specifically design our products and services for;

  • Banks, Insurance Companies and other related Financial Institutions
  • Businesses and Entrepreneurs
  • Blue Chips Companies
  • Corporate Organizations
  • Manufacturers and Distributors
  • Real Estate Owners, Developers, and Contractors
  • Research and Development Companies
  • The Government (Public Sector)
  • Households and families
  • Schools (High Schools, Colleges and Universities)
  • Sport Organizations
  • Entrepreneurs and Startups

Our Competitive Advantage

The level of competition in the management consulting industry depends largely on the location of the business and of course the niche of your project management consulting business. If you can successfully create a unique niche for your project management consultancy business, you are likely going to experience little or no competition.

For instance; if you are the only project management consultancy firm that consult for player in the construction industry in your location, you are sure of monopolizing that aspect of staffing.

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP might be a new entrant into the management consulting industry in the United States of America, but our management staff and board members are considered gurus. They are core professionals, licensed and highly qualified project management consultants in the United States. These are part of what will count as a competitive advantage for us.

Lastly, our employees will be well taken care of, and their welfare package will be among the best within our category in the industry meaning that they will be more than willing to build the business with us and help deliver our set goals and achieve all our aims and objectives.

9. SALES AND MARKETING STRATEGY

  • Sources of Income

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is established with the aim of maximizing profits in the management consulting industry and we are going to go all the way to ensure that we do all it takes to attract clients on a regular basis.

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP will generate income by offering the following project management consulting services for individuals and for organizations;

  • Feasibility studies, including environmental impact assessment and community consultation

10. Sales Forecast

We are well positioned to take on the available market in the U.S. and we are quite optimistic that we will meet our set target of generating enough income/profits from the first six months of operation and grow the business and our clientele base beyond Los Angeles – California to other states in the U.S.

We have been able to critically examine the project management consultancy market and we have analyzed our chances in the industry and we have been able to come up with the following sales forecast. The sales projection is based on information gathered on the field and some assumptions that are peculiar to startups in Los Angeles – California.

  • First Year: $200,000
  • Second Year-: $500,000
  • Third Year-: $1,000,000

N.B : This projection is done based on what is obtainable in the industry and with the assumption that there won’t be any major economic meltdown and there won’t be any major competitor offering same additional services as we do within same location. Please note that the above projection might be lower and at the same time it might be higher.

  • Marketing Strategy and Sales Strategy

We are mindful of the fact that there are stiffer competitions amongst players in the management consulting industry in the United States of America; hence we have been able to hire some of the best business developers to handle our sales and marketing.

Our sales and marketing team will be recruited base on their vast experience in the industry and they will be trained on a regular basis so as to be well equipped to meet the target and overall goal of the organization.

We will also ensure that our excellent job deliveries speak for us in the market place; we want to build a standard project management consulting business that will leverage on word of mouth advertisement from satisfied clients (both individuals and organizations).

Our goal is to grow our project management consulting business to become one of the top 10 project management consulting firms in the United States of America which is why we have mapped out strategy that will help us take advantage of the available market and grow to become a major force to reckon with not only in the U.S but in the world stage as well.

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is set to make use of the following marketing and sales strategies to attract clients;

  • Introduce our business by sending introductory letters alongside our brochure to organizations and key stakeholders in Los Angeles – California
  • Promptness in bidding for project management consulting contracts from the government and other cooperate organizations
  • Advertise our business in relevant business magazines, newspapers, TV and radio stations
  • List our business on yellow pages ads (local directories)
  • Attend relevant international and local expos, seminars, and business fairs et al
  • Create different packages for different category of clients in order to work with their budgets and still deliver quality project management consulting services to them
  • Leverage on the internet to promote our business
  • Engage in direct marketing approach
  • Encourage word of mouth marketing from loyal and satisfied clients

11. Publicity and Advertising Strategy

We have been able to work with our in-house consultants and other brand and publicity specialists to help us map out publicity and advertising strategies that will help us walk our way into the hearts of our target market. We are set to take the management consulting industry by storm which is why we have made provisions for effective publicity and advertisement of our project management consulting firm.

Below are the platforms we intend to leverage on to promote and advertise our project management consulting business;

  • Place adverts on both print (community based newspapers and magazines) and electronic media platforms
  • Sponsor relevant community programs
  • Leverage on the internet and social media platforms like Instagram, Facebook, twitter, et al to promote our brand
  • Install our billboards in strategic locations all around Los Angeles – California and major cities in the United States of America
  • Engage in roadshows from time to time in targeted communities
  • Distribute our fliers and handbills in target areas
  • Position our Flexi Banners at strategic positions in the location where we intend getting clients to start patronizing our services
  • Ensure that all our staff members wear our customized clothes, and all our official cars are customized and well branded

12. Our Pricing Strategy

Hourly billing for consulting services is a long – time tradition in the industry. However, for some types of consultancy services especially project management services, flat fees make more sense because they allow clients to better predict consultancy costs.

As a result of this, GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP will charge our clients a flat fee or per head for many basic services such as one-off project consultancy services et al.

At GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP we will keep our fees below the average market rate by keeping our overhead low. In addition, we will also offer special discounted rates to startups, nonprofits, cooperatives, and small social enterprises.

  • Payment Options

The payment policy adopted by GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is all inclusive because we are quite aware that different customers prefer different payment options but at the same time, we will ensure that we abide by the financial rules and regulation of the United States of America.

Here are the payment options that GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP will make available to her clients;

  • Payment via bank transfer
  • Payment with cash
  • Payment via credit cards
  • Payment via online bank transfer
  • Payment via check
  • Payment via mobile money transfer
  • Payment via bank draft

In view of the above, we have chosen banking platforms that will enable our clients make payment for our services without any stress on their part. Our bank account numbers will be made available on our website and promotional materials.

13. Startup Expenditure (Budget)

Starting a project management consulting firm can be cost effective because on the average, you are not expected to acquire expensive machines and equipment.

What you should be concerned about is the amount needed to secure a standard office facility in a good and busy business district, the amount needed to furnish and equip the office, the amount needed to pay bills, purchase relevant software apps, promote the business and obtain the appropriate business license and certifications.

These are the area we are looking towards spending our startup capital;

  • The total fee for incorporating the business in the United States of America – $750
  • The budget for basic insurance policy covers, permits and business license – $2,500
  • The amount needed to acquire a suitable Office facility in a business district for 6 months (Re – Construction of the facility inclusive) – $40,000
  • The cost for equipping the office (computers, software applications, printers, fax machines, furniture, telephones, filing cabins, safety gadgets and electronics et al) – $5,000
  • The cost for purchase of the required software applications (CRM software, recruitment software and Payroll software et al) – $10,500
  • The cost of launching our official Website – $600
  • Budget for paying at least three employees for 3 months plus utility bills – $10,000
  • Additional Expenditure (Business cards, Signage, Adverts and Promotions et al) – $2,500
  • Miscellaneous: $1,000

Going by the report from the research and feasibility studies, we will need about $150,000 to set up a small scale but standard project management consulting business in the United States of America.

Generating Startup Capital for GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is a business that will be owned and managed by Gerald T Clarkson and other business partners. They are the financier of the firm, but may likely welcome partners later which is why they decided to restrict the sourcing of the startup capital for the business to just three major sources.

  • Generate part of the startup capital from personal savings
  • Source for soft loans from family members and friends
  • Apply for loan from the bank

N.B: We have been able to generate about $50,000 (Personal savings $40,000 and soft loan from family members $10,000) and we are at the final stages of obtaining a loan facility of $100,000 from our bank. All the papers and documents have been duly signed and submitted, the loan has been approved and any moment from now our account will be credited.

14. Sustainability and Expansion Strategy

The future of a business lies in the number of loyal customers that they have, the capacity and competence of the employees, their investment strategy and the business structure. If all of these factors are missing from a business, then it won’t be too long before the business closes shop.

One of our major goals of starting GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP is to build a business that will survive off its own cash flow without the need for injecting finance from external sources once the business is officially running.

We know that one of the ways of gaining approval and winning customers over is to offer nothing short of excellent and result oriented services.

GT Clarkson & Co® Project Management Consulting, LLP will make sure that the right foundation, structures and processes are put in place to ensure that our staff welfare are well taken of. Our company’s corporate culture is designed to drive our business to greater heights and training and re – training of our workforce is at the top burner.

As a matter of fact, profit-sharing arrangement will be made available to all our management staff and it will be based on their performance for a period of ten years or more. We know that if that is put in place, we will be able to successfully hire and retain the best hands we can get in the industry; they will be more committed to help us build the business of our dreams.

Check List/Milestone

  • Business Name Availability Check: Completed
  • Business Incorporation: Completed
  • Opening of Corporate Bank Accounts various banks in the United States: Completed
  • Opening Online Payment Platforms: Completed
  • Application and Obtaining Tax Payer’s ID: In Progress
  • Application for business license and permit: Completed
  • Purchase of all forms of Insurance for the Business: Completed
  • Conducting Feasibility Studies: Completed
  • Generating part of the startup capital from the founder: Completed
  • Applications for Loan from our Bankers: In Progress
  • Writing of Business Plan: Completed
  • Drafting of Employee’s Handbook: Completed
  • Drafting of Contract Documents: In Progress
  • Design of The Company’s Logo: Completed
  • Graphic Designs and Printing of Promotional Materials: Completed
  • Recruitment of employees: In Progress
  • Purchase of the needed furniture, office equipment, electronic appliances and facility facelift: In progress
  • Creating Official Website for the Company: In Progress
  • Creating Awareness for the business (Business PR): In Progress
  • Health and Safety and Fire Safety Arrangement: In Progress
  • Establishing business relationship with key players in the industry: In Progress

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Project Management Business Plan Template

Written by Dave Lavinsky

project management business plan

Project Management Business Plan

Over the past 20+ years, we have helped over 500 entrepreneurs and business owners create business plans to start and grow their project management companies.

If you’re unfamiliar with creating a project management business plan, you may think creating one will be a time-consuming and frustrating process. For most entrepreneurs it is, but for you, it won’t be since we’re here to help. We have the experience, resources, and knowledge to help you create a great business plan.

In this article, you will learn some background information on why business planning is important. Then, you will learn how to write a project management business plan step-by-step so you can create your plan today.

Download our Ultimate Business Plan Template here >

What Is a Business Plan?

A business plan provides a snapshot of your project management business as it stands today, and lays out your growth plan for the next five years. It explains your business goals and your strategies for reaching them. It also includes market research to support your plans.

Why You Need a Business Plan

If you’re looking to start a project management business or grow your existing project management company, you need a business plan. A business plan will help you raise funding, if needed, and plan out the growth of your project management business to improve your chances of success. Your project management business plan is a living document that should be updated annually as your company grows and changes.

Sources of Funding for Project Management Businesses

With regards to funding, the main sources of funding for a project management business are personal savings, credit cards, bank loans, and angel investors. When it comes to bank loans, banks will want to review your business plan and gain confidence that you will be able to repay your loan and interest. To acquire this confidence, the loan officer will not only want to ensure that your financials are reasonable, but they will also want to see a professional plan. Such a plan will give them the confidence that you can successfully and professionally operate a business. Personal savings and bank loans are the most common funding paths for project management companies.

Finish Your Business Plan Today!

How to write a business plan for a project management business.

If you want to start a project management business or expand your current one, you need a business plan. The guide below details the necessary information for how to write each essential component of your project management business plan.

Executive Summary

Your executive summary provides an introduction to your business plan, but it is normally the last section you write because it provides a summary of each key section of your plan.

The goal of your executive summary is to quickly engage the reader. Explain to them the kind of project management business you are running and the status. For example, are you a startup, do you have a project management business that you would like to grow, or are you operating a chain of project management businesses?

Next, provide an overview of each of the subsequent sections of your plan.

  • Give a brief overview of the project management industry.
  • Discuss the type of project management business you are operating.
  • Detail your direct competitors. Give an overview of your target customers.
  • Provide a snapshot of your marketing strategy. Identify the key members of your team.
  • Offer an overview of your financial plan.

Company Overview

In your company overview, you will detail the type of project management business you are operating.

For example, you might specialize in one of the following types of project management businesses:

  • Marketing project management : this type of project management involves overseeing projects related to marketing and advertising.
  • Construction project management: this type of project management involves overseeing responsibilities related to planning and the logistics of a construction project.
  • Engineering project management: this type of project management is responsible for overseeing engineering projects to ensure they’re completed appropriately.
  • IT project management: this type of project management involves overseeing job duties such as establishing IT goals, overseeing the IT team’s processes and ensuring all project-related employees have the necessary resources to complete the project.

In addition to explaining the type of project management business you will operate, the company overview needs to provide background on the business.

Include answers to questions such as:

  • When and why did you start the business?
  • What milestones have you achieved to date? Milestones could include the number of clients served, the number of clients with positive outcomes, reaching X number of clients served, etc.
  • Your legal business Are you incorporated as an S-Corp? An LLC? A sole proprietorship? Explain your legal structure here.

Industry Analysis

In your industry or market analysis, you need to provide an overview of the project management industry.

While this may seem unnecessary, it serves multiple purposes.

First, researching the project management industry educates you. It helps you understand the market in which you are operating.

Secondly, market research can improve your marketing strategy, particularly if your analysis identifies market trends.

The third reason is to prove to readers that you are an expert in your industry. By conducting the research and presenting it in your plan, you achieve just that.

The following questions should be answered in the industry analysis section of your project management business plan:

  • How big is the project management industry (in dollars)?
  • Is the market declining or increasing?
  • Who are the key competitors in the market?
  • Who are the key suppliers in the market?
  • What trends are affecting the industry?
  • What is the industry’s growth forecast over the next 5 – 10 years?
  • What is the relevant market size? That is, how big is the potential target market for your project management business? You can extrapolate such a figure by assessing the size of the market in the entire country and then applying that figure to your local population.

Customer Analysis

The customer analysis section of your project management business plan must detail the customers you serve and/or expect to serve.

The following are examples of customer segments: small businesses, midsize companies and corporations.

As you can imagine, the customer segment(s) you choose will have a great impact on the type of project management business you operate. Clearly, corporations would respond to different marketing promotions than small businesses, for example.

Try to break out your target customers in terms of their demographic and psychographic profiles. With regards to demographics, including a discussion of the ages, genders, locations, and income levels of the potential customers you seek to serve.

Psychographic profiles explain the wants and needs of your target customers. The more you can recognize and define these needs, the better you will do in attracting and retaining your customers.

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Competitive Analysis

Your competitive analysis should identify the indirect and direct competitors your business faces and then focus on the latter.

Direct competitors are other project management businesses.

Indirect competitors are other options that customers have to purchase from that aren’t directly competing with your product or service. This includes in-house employees, online programs, or software. You need to mention such competition as well.

For each such competitor, provide an overview of their business and document their strengths and weaknesses. Unless you once worked at your competitors’ businesses, it will be impossible to know everything about them. But you should be able to find out key things about them such as

  • What types of clients do they serve?
  • What type of project management business are they?
  • What is their pricing (premium, low, etc.)?
  • What are they good at?
  • What are their weaknesses?

With regards to the last two questions, think about your answers from the customers’ perspective. And don’t be afraid to ask your competitors’ customers what they like most and least about them.

The final part of your competitive analysis section is to document your areas of competitive advantage. For example:

  • Will you provide your own staff?
  • Will you offer products or services that your competition doesn’t?
  • Will you provide better customer service?
  • Will you offer better pricing?

Think about ways you will outperform your competition and document them in this section of your plan.  

Marketing Plan

Traditionally, a marketing plan includes the four P’s: Product, Price, Place, and Promotion. For a project management business plan, your marketing strategy should include the following:

Product : In the product section, you should reiterate the type of project management company that you documented in your company overview. Then, detail the specific products or services you will be offering. For example, will you provide consulting, scheduling, budgeting, or staffing?

Price : Document the prices you will offer and how they compare to your competitors. Essentially in the product and price sub-sections of your plan, you are presenting the products and/or services you offer and their prices.

Place : Place refers to the site of your project management company. Document where your company is situated and mention how the site will impact your success. For example, is your project management business located in a business district, a standalone office, or purely online? Discuss how your site might be the ideal location for your customers.

Promotions : The final part of your project management marketing plan is where you will document how you will drive potential customers to your location(s). The following are some promotional methods you might consider:

  • Advertise in local papers, radio stations and/or magazines
  • Attend industry events and tradeshows
  • Reach out to websites
  • Distribute flyers
  • Engage in email marketing
  • Advertise on social media platforms
  • Improve the SEO (search engine optimization) on your website for targeted keywords

Operations Plan

While the earlier sections of your business plan explained your goals, your operations plan describes how you will meet them. Your operations plan should have two distinct sections as follows.

Everyday short-term processes include all of the tasks involved in running your project management business, including answering calls, planning and providing project services, client interaction,  billing clients and/or vendors, etc.

Long-term goals are the milestones you hope to achieve. These could include the dates when you expect to book your Xth client, or when you hope to reach $X in revenue. It could also be when you expect to expand your project management business to a new city.  

Management Team

To demonstrate your project management business’ potential to succeed, a strong management team is essential. Highlight your key players’ backgrounds, emphasizing those skills and experiences that prove their ability to grow a company.

Ideally, you and/or your team members have direct experience in managing project management businesses. If so, highlight this experience and expertise. But also highlight any experience that you think will help your business succeed.

If your team is lacking, consider assembling an advisory board. An advisory board would include 2 to 8 individuals who would act as mentors to your business. They would help answer questions and provide strategic guidance. If needed, look for advisory board members with experience in managing a project management business or successfully running a small consulting firm.

Financial Plan

Your financial plan should include your 5-year financial statement broken out both monthly or quarterly for the first year and then annually. Your financial statements include your income statement, balance sheet, and cash flow statements.

Income Statement

An income statement is more commonly called a Profit and Loss statement or P&L. It shows your revenue and then subtracts your costs to show whether you turned a profit or not.

In developing your income statement, you need to devise assumptions. For example, will you manage 5 clients per day, and/or offer consulting services? And will sales grow by 2% or 10% per year? As you can imagine, your choice of assumptions will greatly impact the financial forecasts for your business. As much as possible, conduct research to try to root your assumptions in reality.

Balance Sheets

Balance sheets show your assets and liabilities. While balance sheets can include much information, try to simplify them to the key items you need to know about. For instance, if you spend $50,000 on building out your project management business, this will not give you immediate profits. Rather it is an asset that will hopefully help you generate profits for years to come. Likewise, if a lender writes you a check for $50,000, you don’t need to pay it back immediately. Rather, that is a liability you will pay back over time.

Cash Flow Statement

Your cash flow statement will help determine how much money you need to start or grow your business, and ensure you never run out of money. What most entrepreneurs and business owners don’t realize is that you can turn a profit but run out of money and go bankrupt.

When creating your Income Statement and Balance Sheets be sure to include several of the key costs needed in starting or growing a project management business:

  • Cost of equipment and office supplies
  • Payroll or salaries paid to staff
  • Business insurance
  • Other start-up expenses (if you’re a new business) like legal expenses, permits, computer software, and equipment

Attach your full financial projections in the appendix of your plan along with any supporting documents that make your plan more compelling. For example, you might include your office location lease or a list of project management services you plan to offer.

Writing a business plan for your project management business is a worthwhile endeavor. If you follow the template above, by the time you are done, you will truly be an expert. You will understand the project management industry, your competition, and your customers. You will develop a marketing strategy and will understand what it takes to launch and grow a successful project management business.

Project Management Business Plan Template FAQs

What is the easiest way to complete my project management business plan.

Growthink's Ultimate Business Plan Template allows you to quickly and easily write your project management business plan.

How Do You Start a Project Management Business?

Starting a project management business is easy with these 14 steps:

  • Choose the Name for Your Project Management Business
  • Create Your Project Management Business Plan
  • Choose the Legal Structure for Your Project Management Business
  • Secure Startup Funding for Your Project Management Business (If Needed)
  • Secure a Location for Your Business
  • Register Your Project Management Business with the IRS
  • Open a Business Bank Account
  • Get a Business Credit Card
  • Get the Required Business Licenses and Permits
  • Get Business Insurance for Your Project Management Business
  • Buy or Lease the Right Project Management Business Equipment
  • Develop Your Project Management Business Marketing Materials
  • Purchase and Setup the Software Needed to Run Your Project Management Business
  • Open for Business

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Since 1999, Growthink has developed business plans for thousands of companies who have gone on to achieve tremendous success.   Click here to see how a Growthink business planning advisor can create your business plan for you.

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Best free task management software in 2024

Mehdi Punjwani

Sierra Campbell

Sierra Campbell

“Verified by an expert” means that this article has been thoroughly reviewed and evaluated for accuracy.

Published 7:24 a.m. UTC Feb. 15, 2024

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A good task management software will give you the tools you need to organize projects for your business and help individuals, teams and businesses stay organized and productive. They offer a range of features and capabilities depending on the complexities of your business and projects, allowing you to set deadlines, assign tasks to team members, allocate resources and track and report on progress.

Finding the best task management software for your business means considering a range of factors, like the core features on offer, the customer service you’ll get and the ability to scale up according to your needs. We’ve tried and tested some of the biggest platforms available to give you our list of best task management software in 2024.

Featured project management software offers

management consulting business plan

Via Monday.com’s site

Monthly fee

$10 per user, with a minimum of three users

Free version

Yes, for two users

24/7 customer support

Yes, with paid plans

management consulting business plan

Via Clickup’s website

$10 per user

Yes, for unlimited members

Best free task management software

  • Notion : Best for flexibility.
  • ClickUp : Best for customization.
  • Trello : Best for automation.
  • Hive : Best for collaboration.
  • Zoho Projects : Best for startups using Zoho.
  • Teamwork : Best for client task management.
  • Monday : Best for individuals and freelancers.
  • Asana : Best for complex tasks.
  • Podio : Best for app building.
  • GoodDay : Best for scaling up.

Why trust our small business experts

Our team of experts evaluates hundreds of business products and analyzes thousands of data points to help you find the best product for your situation. We use a data-driven methodology to determine each rating. Advertisers do not influence our editorial content. You can read more about our methodology below.

  • 62 companies reviewed.
  • 164 products reviewed.
  • 2,028 data points analyzed.

Best for flexibility

Notion

Cheapest paid plan (billed monthly)

Number of users, number of projects/tasks, what you should know.

Notion is a versatile task management platform that gives you a high degree of control and customization even on its free plan. With an abundance of views and formats, including Kanban boards, Gantt charts, calendar views and to-do lists, it offers users multiple ways to track and organize projects. You can also make use of thousands of templates built by Notion and its users, catering to an array of health and fitness, work and office and day-to-day home management needs.

You won’t need to pay anything to get unlimited pages and workflows as an individual, but you’ll need to upgrade to give multiple users full functionality. While you can upload unlimited files on the free plan, you’ll be limited to 5 MB per file, as well as a seven-day history and one synced database.

We’d recommend it if you want to use one platform to manage a variety of project and task types with flexible views and displays; it’s particularly good for content creators.

Pros and cons

  • Multiple views, including Kanban boards, Gantt charts and to-do lists.
  • Thousands of versatile templates for things like health and fitness, work and home.
  • Free version offers individuals unlimited pages and workflows.
  • Custom automation features only available on paid plans.
  • Maximum file upload of 5 MB on free plan.
  • Limited admin and security features on free plan.

Best for customization

ClickUp

ClickUp’s free platform gives you a highly capable and customizable task management platform with an unlimited number of tasks and members. It also offers 24/7 customer service on all plans. You’ll be able to view tasks in unlimited lists, boards and calendars, but you’ll only get 60 uses of Gantt charts, timelines and workloads.

The free plan also allows custom statuses and up to 20 custom task types, as well as other useful features like multiple assignees, checklists, dependencies and a basic custom field manager. However, you’ll only be able to create five “spaces” as part of the free plan — unlimited spaces are only available on paid plans. There are also no time-tracking features and very limited other reporting capabilities.

  • Free version offers unlimited free plan members and tasks.
  • A range of views, including Kanban boards and Gantt charts.
  • 24/7 customer support on all plans.
  • Limits on how many views, custom fields and workloads you can use.
  • No time tracking features.
  • Only five ‘spaces’ on free plan.

Best for automation

Trello

While Trello’s free platform only offers its Kanban-style board view, its two main highlights are its automation services and unlimited power-ups. With its Butler automation, you’ll be able to create rules, buttons and commands, and repetitive actions are recognized with suggested automations that help increase productivity. Third-party apps you can integrate include Slack, Jira, Gmail, Microsoft Teams and Google Drive.

You’ll be limited to 10 MB file uploads and only 10 boards per workspace, though with unlimited storage and workspaces for all plans, this isn’t too restrictive. It’s not ideal if you want to see projects and tasks in calendar or timeline views, but as a basic task manager with smart automation tools, it can be a useful platform for individuals and small businesses.

  • Very straightforward and easy to use.
  • Built-in automation features, including an automation bot called Butler.
  • Unlimited power-up feature lets you integrate third-party apps.
  • File uploads are limited to 10 MB per file.
  • You only get up to 10 boards per workspace.
  • Limited view options.

Best for collaboration

Hive

Hive comes with its own native communication tools, allowing for straightforward collaboration with up to 10 workspace members on its free plan. As a task manager, it’s fairly capable, offering unlimited tasks and subtasks as well as multiple views such as Kanban, Gantt, calendars and tables. However, you’ll only get two pages and 100 workflows, and while Kanban views are unlimited, the free plan only offers 100 uses of Gantt, calendar and table views.

Your ability to customize projects and tasks will also be fairly restricted with no custom fields or labels, and your storage limit on the free plan will be 200 MB overall. Its free plan also comes without a few other features, such as AI assists, custom dashboards and analytics. We’d recommend it as a simple free task manager for small teams working together that will benefit from its native collaborative tools.

  • Native collaboration and communication tools.
  • Multiple views and layouts.
  • Unlimited tasks and sub-tasks.
  • 200 MB storage limit.
  • 10 projects and two pages on free plan.
  • No custom project fields or task labels.

Best for startups using Zoho

Zoho projects.

Zoho Projects

Zoho offers a project manager as part of its larger suite of tools and products, offering a free version for up to three users as well as a 10-day free trial on its paid plans. You’ll be able to manage two projects, create feeds, share documents and custom statuses and set up task dependencies within projects. It’s particularly useful for startups already making use of other Zoho products like CRM, Meeting and Sprints, all of which integrate into the free platform.

You can also use third-party app integrations for Microsoft Teams and Office 365, Slack, Dropbox, Zendesk and Zapier. However, there are some significant limitations to the free version, including limited customization — you can’t create custom fields or views, and there are only basic reporting capabilities.

  • Integrates with Zoho CRM, Meeting and Sprints.
  • Straightforward and easy to use.
  • Offers useful core features, including document sharing, subtasks and custom statuses.
  • Only three users and two projects on free plan.
  • No Gantt charts, custom views, time tracking or custom fields.

Best for client task management

Teamwork

Teamwork will be particularly useful for agencies needing to manage client tasks, as it comes with built-in billable time-tracking features and estimated time management. It also offers client-level insights and client-company management, though you’ll only get client users with premium paid plans. With Teamwork, you’ll also get a range of automation features, including automatic Slack updates, HubSpot deals and Microsoft Teams messages.

It does have drawbacks in the shape of limited reporting capabilities — while all plans come with a dashboard, only premium paid plans offer reports on status, portfolio health, time, utilization and profitability. You also won’t have any phone, live chat or email support options on its free plan.

  • Billable time-tracking and invoicing features useful for agencies.
  • Client views and management features.
  • Wide range of automation features.
  • No phone, live chat or email support.
  • Limited reporting and customization options.
  • No client users on free plan.

Best for individuals and freelancers

Monday

Monday is a popular task management platform with businesses worldwide, but we’d recommend its free plan specifically for individuals and freelancers managing their businesses. It offers a straightforward Kanban interface only, with over 200 templates available, so you’ll be able to create up to three boards with two users and unlimited documents.

However, Monday’s free plan is missing a number of wider features like timeline, Gantt and calendar views, as well as offering no integrations or automations. It’s a relatively simplistic platform compared to others, so we’d recommend it more for individuals than teams that will need more advanced collaboration and reporting capabilities.

  • Over 200 templates available.
  • Apps for iOS and Android.
  • Intuitive and easy to use interface.
  • No integrations on free version.
  • Only offers Kanban view.

Best for complex tasks

Asana

We’d recommend Asana’s powerful platform as an ideal choice for small businesses managing complex tasks or projects with plenty of moving parts. With unlimited tasks, projects, file storage, assignees and messages alongside multiple views such as boards, calendars and lists all included on its free plan, it’s a capable piece of software. You’ll also have access to over 100 free third-party integrations such as Microsoft Teams, Adobe Creative Cloud, Okta and Tableau.

However, you won’t be able to use timelines, Gantt views, goals or portfolios with the free plan, nor time-tracking, workflows or various automation features. The free plan is also fairly limited when it comes to reporting, with only status updates and CSV and PDF exports available.

  • Unlimited project management essential features.
  • Multiple views available.
  • Over 100 free integrations.
  • Limited reporting features.
  • No 24/7 support.

Best for app building

Podio

Podio offers a unique solution for businesses that will benefit from building their own customized project management apps to suit their specific needs. As well as the ability to design a bespoke task manager for your team, you’ll have access to hundreds of user-created apps online. It allows you to keep all important aspects of your business and projects in one central place, depending on the requirements of you and your team.

However, its free version is limited in the other features it offers — including the number of items and client users you can support. It also doesn’t offer automated workflows or visual reports, so keep this in mind if you’re considering Podio.

  • You can build your own customizable apps for project management.
  • You’ll also have access to hundreds of pre-made apps.
  • Live chat support available.
  • Limited features on the free plan.
  • Takes a while to set up and customize to your exact specifications.

Best for scaling up

GoodDay

With a robust set of features and capabilities as well as relatively affordable price plans for upgrading, we’d recommend GoodDay for businesses looking to scale up their operations. Its free version is already quite powerful, offering unlimited projects and tasks for up to 15 users, with views including lists, boards, tables, calendars, event summaries and portfolios. You can customize views, priorities, workflows and statuses, as well as set up dependencies, reminders and to-do lists.

Other customization options are only available on paid plans, such as task, project and user fields, as well as task types and IDs. Additionally, many security features and all CRM features are only available when you upgrade, but with the next price plan up only costing $6 per month, it’s an affordable choice for scaling up.

  • Unlimited projects and tasks.
  • Unlimited views, with most available on free plan.
  • Powerful features for big businesses with affordable plans for scaling up.
  • Many customization options unavailable on free plan.
  • No finance, time tracking, chats or automation.

Best task management software comparison

Methodology

We extensively research the key competitors within an industry to determine the best products and services for your business. Our experts identify the factors that matter most to business owners, including pricing, features and customer support, to ensure that our recommendations offer well-rounded products that will meet the needs of various small businesses.

We collect extensive data to narrow our best list to reputable, easy-to-use products with stand-out features at a reasonable price point. And we look at user reviews to ensure that business owners like you are satisfied with our top picks’ services. We use the same rubric to assess companies within a particular space so you can confidently follow our blueprint to the best free task management software.

The best task management software has positive user reviews on customer review sites and app stores. Task management software companies should provide customers with fast and reliable support. Using a combination of phone support, live chat and knowledge bases, customers should be able to quickly resolve issues 24/7.

Task management software should have role assignment features, timelines and dependencies. It should also allow businesses to use customizable templates, track expenses and track milestones.

And the best task management software should offer client access, billing and invoice capabilities and budgeting features.

What is task management software and how does it work?

Task management software is a digital tool you can use as an individual or a business to manage, organize and prioritize tasks. While levels of features and capabilities will vary between platforms, many also offer the ability to communicate between team members, share files and updates and track progress toward objectives. 

You’ll be able to use task management software to create and assign tasks, set deadlines, allocate resources and allow for collaboration between colleagues. These tools can help you and your business increase productivity and efficiency. However, it’s important to be aware of how complex your needs are. 

Some task management programs can be complex and could end up reducing your productivity and organization, which is why it’s so important to find the right platform for your needs.

Benefits of free task management software

Using task management software can offer a number of benefits for individuals and businesses, including:

  • Free forever: A good free task management software will offer unlimited projects or workflows without any extra costs — not just a free trial before you have to pay.
  • Productivity: Task management platforms can increase your team’s productivity through automation, progress tracking and reporting, saving time on repetitive tasks.
  • Centralized workflow: You can use task management software to keep all workflows centralized, allowing easy access for all team members and collaborators to stay updated and informed.
  • Collaboration: You’ll be able to clearly assign roles and allocate resources on projects and tasks to different team members, and many platforms also allow team members to work together and communicate. 
  • Manage big projects: Complex and lengthy projects can be broken down into separate tasks and workflows with multiple teams and team members. 
  • Remote workers: If you rely on remote workers or freelancers, many task management platforms allow all team members to collaborate online from any location.

Who needs task management software?

Task management software can prove useful for a variety of individuals and businesses. You might be a freelancer with a number of client tasks to manage or a hobbyist running a side hustle — in which case, a free task manager will be ideal. 

Likewise, small teams and businesses can also benefit from using task management software to organize and track workflow progress for team projects. A free plan or trial period offers a great way to try out different platforms and products so you can find one that suits your needs best before committing to a paid plan with more features and capabilities required by your business.

How to choose the best task management software

Choosing the best free task management software for your business means considering a range of factors and how each of these will best suit your needs. You will need to think about the core features offered by each platform, as well as whether it plugs into any existing software you have and how easy and intuitive it is to use. 

Additionally, you should look into the customer support options each platform offers, as this will be crucial in case things go wrong and your work is at risk.

Key features to look for

Levels of complexity and customization will vary between platforms, but in general, you should look out for the following features as part of your task management software:

  • Sub-tasks: Key to keeping big projects organized, task managers should allow you to split tasks and assign different deadlines and workers to each sub-task.
  • Views and visualizations: You should also be able to see your tasks and projects in different views, like Kanban dashboards or Gantt charts. You may find these to be limited in free versions of some platforms, so check price plans to ensure you’re getting what you need.
  • Integration: If you have any existing software or hardware in use for your business, such as finance and accounting apps, design tools or communication platforms, it’s worth seeing if these will plug into the task management software you want. It helps keep everything synchronized and centralized.
  • Tracking and reporting: Your task manager should also allow you to track task and project progress against deadlines and objectives, as well as generate reports. 
  • Automation: Some platforms will even offer automation services that let you set up automatic tracking and reporting.
  • Collaboration: Lastly, if you’re managing a team’s workload, it’s vital they can work together, so look for task management software that allows for communication and role delegation.

Ease of use

Some task management tools will be relatively simple and easy to use, with intuitive drag-and-drop interfaces that allow for straightforward organization. However, others offer more complex capabilities, including multiple views like Gantt charts, calendars, lists and galleries, automated reporting and collaboration between multiple team members. 

Consider what you’ll need the software for, how many people and tasks you’ll be managing and what kind of insights you’ll want when making your choice.

Security 

You should also factor in any security requirements you might have, especially if you’re a big organization or you use third-party apps, providers or even freelancers. Being able to control access on multiple levels may be particularly important. Additionally, consider things like two-factor authentication, secure sharing and data protection when choosing platforms.

Customer service

If something goes wrong with your task manager, it can affect your business’s ability to complete projects and assure stakeholders of progress. Customer service is a key part of being able to resolve issues, so look for providers that offer both round-the-clock availability and instant contact by phone or live chat as a priority.

How much does task management software cost?

When looking for free task management software, consider whether it’s truly free forever — meaning you’ll have access to all the features on the free plan forever without having to pay. 

While this might mean many advanced features are hidden behind paywalls, you’ll at least be able to rely on the software for your basic needs without restriction. This is in contrast to free trials that often give you access to the entire platform for a limited time, after which you won’t be able to use it without paying.

If you’re looking to try a free plan in order to get a feel for a specific task management software before committing to a paid plan, you’ll likely be more on the lookout for usability as well as scalability. Consider which paid plans offer the most bang for your buck to narrow down your options, but focus on which free software feels the most natural to use for your business. 

You may find that some software platforms offer prices on a per-user basis while others offer a set number of users for each plan. Others may even have a minimum-user requirement, so if they charge a set price per user and require at least three users, you’ll need to pay three times the price you see given as a minimum.

Frequently asked questions (FAQs)

The best free task management software will depend entirely on your needs and requirements as an individual or business. ClickUp and Notion both offer great customization features, with Notion especially good for content creators.

Paid task management software plans offer a range of extra benefits, including more users or projects, additional features and advanced integrations and security. These will often be more useful for bigger teams and companies managing complex projects with multiple moving parts and stakeholders that need to be kept informed. 

When prioritizing tasks in project management, you should consider the resources available, any dependencies on the task being completed and the urgency of the request. 

Task management software lets you manage multiple tasks at work by allowing you to create, organize and assign tasks, set deadlines, track progress and, if required, add sub-tasks. All tasks are kept in one place and accessible for anyone who needs to see them, often in digestible formats like calendars, boards and timelines.

Improving task management skills will require you to be disciplined and attentive to detail in order to get the best from task management software and boost your productivity. You should: 

  • Focus on prioritizing tasks on your to-do list.
  • Create a manageable schedule for delivery with realistic deadlines. 
  • Ensure you’re communicating with stakeholders to keep everyone on the same page.

The best software will make this easy and help you manage your workload efficiently and effectively — but it’s made even easier when you know you’ve picked the right task management software for your requirements.

Blueprint is an independent publisher and comparison service, not an investment advisor. The information provided is for educational purposes only and we encourage you to seek personalized advice from qualified professionals regarding specific financial decisions. Past performance is not indicative of future results.

Blueprint has an advertiser disclosure policy . The opinions, analyses, reviews or recommendations expressed in this article are those of the Blueprint editorial staff alone. Blueprint adheres to strict editorial integrity standards. The information is accurate as of the publish date, but always check the provider’s website for the most current information.

Mehdi Punjwani

Mehdi is a writer and editor with many years of personal finance expertise under his belt. He's a spirited money-saver, with a passion for making personal finance accessible and manageable. When he isn't writing, Mehdi likes to read about history and travel, hike along coastlines and in forests, and watch his beloved team Manchester United underperform.

Sierra Campbell is a small business editor for USA Today Blueprint. She specializes in writing, editing and fact-checking content centered around helping businesses. She has worked as a digital content and show producer for several local TV stations, an editor for U.S. News & World Report and a freelance writer and editor for many companies. Sierra prides herself in delivering accurate and up-to-date information to readers. Her expertise includes credit card processing companies, e-commerce platforms, payroll software, accounting software and virtual private networks (VPNs). She also owns Editing by Sierra, where she offers editing services to writers of all backgrounds, including self-published and traditionally published authors.

How to start a small business: A step-by-step guide

How to start a small business: A step-by-step guide

Business Eric Rosenberg

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