The consulting industry is a field of professionals who offer expert advice, guidance, and practical solutions to companies that have problems they cannot solve internally. Consulting firms are hired to address a wide range of business issues, from researching new markets to completely rethinking an organization's strategy. There are more than 460 consulting firms in South Africa, employing 20,000 people and generating 15 billion rands in revenue. The largest and most prestigious consulting firms are organized in a hierarchical structure, with consultants working in-house or as independent freelancers.
Consulting is a complex process that requires professionals to demonstrate methods outside their area of expertise. It involves an evaluation of the organization's overall effectiveness and helps reduce any barriers to improvement that are discovered. Consultants must be prepared for a job that is never nine-to-five, as resistance can often indicate important sources of information.