Business Status Assessment Overview
A Business Status Assessment helps business owners to get a general overview of their business and work towards identifying the root causes of issues or concerns that they could have in their business. The reality of a business is that any issue, situation, or concern typically has many dependencies, conflicting objectives, different ideas, diverse experiences, and multiple characters all pulling in different directions and creating an impact on the bigger picture. We navigate this complexity together with the business owners to identify what core issues are causing the scenario at hand.
Identifying the root causes within a business before attempting to suggest actions is very important to ensure that any recommendations will deliver longer-term results to the business instead of actions that that deliver instant yet temporary relief. A Business Status Assessment is designed to ensure that these core causes are uncovered to ensure that any recommended actions are directed at addressing the cause rather than what appears to be the result.
Through a Business Status Assessment, clients are given an external view of their business from the outside-in. They typically gain a more in-depth understanding of their business, feel its pulse, take a snapshot, and look ahead at some gains and wins through several recommended actions. This type of project can be quite comprehensive, and it can involve a very high-level review of the major aspects of the business such as:
- Its products and services as well as their sourcing.
- The business’ sales and billing together with the delivery aspects
- Internal systems and processes.
- Human resources capabilities and challenges; and
- The business’ financials and cash flow.
Process of delivery – Business Status Assessment
The process of carrying out a Business Status Assessment involves working closely with the business owner as well as the client accountant (internal or outsourced) to gain an understanding of the core areas mentioned above over a 4-to-6-week period depending on client availability for meetings. In reviewing these aspects, CMG Consulta analyses the dependencies between the different areas as well as how all these interact together to get the business moving. These are also considered in the light of where the business says it would like to get to and finally the exercise gives two outputs:
- Quick wins – several actions that the business should work on immediately in order to make some short-term gains (increase revenue or efficiency or reduce cost); and
- Longer-term focus areas – several areas that the business should focus on in the longer term to prepare for achieving its future direction.
Business Status Assessment – Typical Clients
Typical clients for the Business Status Assessment are micro to small and medium sized businesses who are looking for an external view of their business or seeking to take a snapshot of where their business is at a point in time with the objective of improving things, planning, and managing the transition to a desired state.
Benefits of a Business Status Assessment
Based on CMG Consulta’s experience, below are some of the situations where we would recommend that a Business Status Assessment is considered.
Some businesses spend a lot of effort on business development, yet they feel that their success does not measure up to all the effort. CMG Consulta can work with the business to identify the root cause and recommend actions that lead the business to firstly identify clear customer segments and secondly carry out targeted business development efforts on this segment that lead to increased success rates for a greatly reduced effort.
Each business is unique, offering a unique blend of products/services to the market. In reviewing each offering, CMG Consulta can guide the business to ensure that they are focusing on the geographic markets and correct demographics that will give them the highest chances of success. In addition, CMG Consulta are also able to help the business identify niche products and markets and, therefore, guide the client to re-focus efforts on these various foreign markets leading to revenue increases through more focused efforts.
Product Portfolio Mix
Most businesses offer multiple products/services to the market and their total revenue is made up of a mix of these individual sales. In working with the business, CMG Consulta can dig deep into each product/service to understand its performance and profitability while also relating this to the other products/services since many cannot be simply seen in isolation. In reviewing the business, CMG Consulta can assist to identify the ideal constitution of the business product/service mix that will deliver higher revenues while causing lower resource loads on the business therefore resulting in higher profitability and longer-term sustainability.
Through time, businesses tend to take on more work, people, and processes and to grow without necessarily planning each addition in detail. This is frequently done since many decisions are taken during periods of ‘busyness’. Therefore, operational inefficiencies tend to be created in the use of resources, deployment of employees and achievement of organisational goals. CMG Consulta can work closely with the business to understand the required state of the business and its structure and to guide the business through a plan of changes that could be made to increase efficiency of resource usage and people deployment while ensuring that organisational objectives are met.
A business’ external environment changes with time. There could be technological advancements, social changes, changes in customer taste and economic factors amongst others. These frequently result in a business’ product/service not remaining as relevant to the customers as it originally was. In essence, what this usually means is that the whole organisation’s business model might not be as aligned to current realities as it used to be. CMG Consulta can work very closely with the owners to identify core strength areas that could be further developed in the business while strengthening weaknesses and, as a result, transform the business model to leverage opportunities that might be present to transform the business for the future.
Organisation Structure Evolution
Many businesses grow organically over time, some from a one-man band to a much larger and more complex setup employing multiple employees. Because of this organic growth over time, many businesses tend to grow the operation without necessarily evolving the organisation structure to suit the larger operation. This tends to end the business with a structure that creates much dependence on a core set of owners/managers resulting in operational efficiencies. CMG Consulta can recommend actions on how to transition the organisation structure to create a small management structure that supports the owner rather than depending on him therefore enabling the business to transition into a more autonomous and efficient operating structure.
In growing, many businesses face situations were retaining employees and having them grow in the business becomes more challenging. Consequently, many businesses feel that they end up playing a role of ‘training grounds’ for employees who then move on to other companies to grow. Many times, this tends to also result in the daily operations feeling a little disorganised. In reviewing the operations, roles and structure, CMG Consulta can recommend actions that enable more clear role definitions and assumption of responsibilities as well as clear growth paths for employees. This is the very first step to creating a more inclusive workplace where employees feel they could grow in the longer term.