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With so many different HR consulting services available, figuring out which is the right one for your HR needs is tough. You know you want additional expertise to help you optimize your core HR processes, but you need to figure out which HR consulting service is best. In this post, I'll help you make this choice easier by sharing my insights on the best HR consulting services to assist with strategic HR planning, performance management, employee relations, compliance, and more.

What are HR Consulting Services?

HR consulting services are specialized services provided to businesses to help them develop human resources strategies to meet their organizational goals. They offer specialized knowledge and expertise in areas like strategic planning, organizational design, talent management, compensation, benefits, and more.

With the right HR consultant, companies can efficiently navigate complexities, helping them attract, develop, and retain the best talent. HR consulting services can also improve employee relations, manage conflict resolution, and enhance operational efficiency in numerous areas.

Overviews of the 10 Best HR Consulting Services

Here are my summaries of the best HR consulting services, including their location, their hourly rate, some pros & cons, and the reason I included each one in this list.

Best for managing global team compliance

  • Free demo available
  • Flat rate user pricing
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Rating: 4.8/5

Deel is a comprehensive employer of record (EOR) service provider that helps businesses hire globally (in over 150 countries) without establishing any new entities.

Why I picked Deel: This provider made my list because of the company's expertise and services catered specifically to global hiring and staff management. With local legal experts on staff, any regulatory changes and legal obligations are monitored and met on your company's behalf.

Key Services: The company can take on your payroll processing, benefits administration, global compliance management, and local tax deductions. They can also sponsor Visas in over 25 countries on your company's behalf.

Customer Support: Local immigration and legal experts are on staff to provide support for your business and help you ensure compliance in your global hiring efforts. 24/7 support is available online.

Hourly Rate: Pricing is available upon request

Location: California, USA

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Software and services provided
  • Off-cycle payroll available
  • 10+ payment options for contractors

Cons:

  • Some add-ons have confusing additional fees
  • Limited customization options

Best for integrating HR into business strategy

Bain & Company, a global consulting giant, brings its sharp business acumen to meld HR seamlessly into an organization's overarching strategy. With their rich history in strategic consulting, they understand the pivotal role of HR in driving business success.

Why I picked Bain & Company: I chose Bain & Company due to their sterling reputation in strategic consultancy and their specific expertise in aligning HR practices with business goals. Their unique approach to weaving HR into the broader business fabric demonstrates deep understanding and forward-thinking.

Key Services: Bain offers a suite of HR services, with a special focus on talent strategy, organizational design, and change management. Their solutions are tailored to ensure that HR operations and strategies dovetail perfectly with a company's business objectives.

Customer Support: Clients of Bain & Company can expect prompt and expert-level assistance, backed by a global network of seasoned professionals in the HR and strategy domains.

Hourly Rate: $400/hr

Location: Boston, USA

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Global network of experts
  • Tailored solutions that fit unique organizational needs
  • Renowned expertise in business strategy and integration

Cons:

  • Engagement process can be extensive due to their thorough approach
  • Premium pricing might be a barrier for some companies

Best for targeted HR solutions for SMEs

Clear HR Consulting specializes in providing human resources strategies tailored for small to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). They focus on talent management, organizational design, and culture-building to ensure SMEs get the most from their teams.

Why I picked Clear HR Consulting: I chose Clear HR Consulting because their specific focus on SMEs sets them apart. The tailored HR solutions they offer align perfectly with the challenges SMEs typically face, justifying their position as the best in this niche.

Key Services: Clear HR Consulting offers services covering recruiting, employee retention, and talent management, helping companies attract and retain the right people. They can also help businesses develop their employer brand and design their organizational structures to maximize efficiency and nurture a positive workplace culture. Other services they offer include assistance with employee handbooks, performance management processes, pay & benefits strategies, and HR auditing.

Customer Support: They provide regular check-ins and offer both email and phone support.

Minimum Project Budget: From $5,000

Hourly Rate: $150/hr

Location: Vancouver, Canada



Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Proven track record with SME clients
  • Comprehensive talent management
  • Tailored solutions for SMEs

Cons:

  • Higher hourly rate than some competitors
  • Might not suit larger corporations

Best for HR growth and development planning

Boston Consulting Group (BCG), a top-tier global management consulting firm, excels in crafting strategic plans for human resources growth and development. They leverage their expansive knowledge and experience to assist businesses in nurturing their human capital, ensuring future readiness.

Why I picked BCG: I picked BCG due to their robust methodology in strategizing human resource development. Their distinctive approach is rooted in understanding both the current industry landscape and future trends, making their guidance indispensable for businesses focusing on long-term HR growth and planning.

Key Services: BCG offers a comprehensive suite of HR-related services including talent management, leadership development programs, workforce planning, and change management. They also emphasize technological advancements, ensuring that businesses remain at the forefront of HR evolution.

Customer Support: BCG provides continuous engagement and support to its clients, ensuring effective implementation of their strategies.

Hourly Rate: Pricing upon request

Location: Boston, USA

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Rich history of successful engagements with global corporations
  • Emphasis on future readiness in HR planning
  • Wide array of specialized HR services

Cons:

  • High demand might lead to waiting periods for project commencement
  • Engagements can be long-term, requiring commitment

Best for in-person HR training sessions

MaxPeople offers specialized HR services with a strong emphasis on hands-on training. Their in-person, on-ground training sessions cater to businesses that prefer tangible, face-to-face learning experiences.

Why I picked MaxPeople: In selecting companies for this list, MaxPeople stood out because of its dedication to physical, interactive training. While many offer digital solutions, there's a unique quality to on-site sessions. I determined MaxPeople is best for this due to the quality and effectiveness of their in-person offerings.

Key Services: MaxPeople offers a range of HR services, but its standout feature is in-person training. These sessions cover topics like HR fundamentals, leadership development, workplace conduct, team building, personal effectiveness, and employee engagement, tailored for diverse business needs.

Customer Support: Support from MaxPeople includes responsive email communication (same-day responses) and scheduled phone consultations.

Minimum Project Budget: From $7,000

Hourly Rate: $180/hr

Location: Toronto, Canada



Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Experienced trainers
  • Covers a diverse range of HR topics
  • Specializes in in-person training

Cons:

  • Hourly rate might be steep for smaller businesses
  • Limited to specific regions for on-site sessions

Best for change management services

KPMG, a renowned global network of professional firms, offers HR consulting services focused on people and change management, helping HR teams and businesses achieve HR transformations.

Why I picked KPMG: I chose KPMG because of their expertise in change management and HR transformation. Their HR advisors help design and implement effective change management programs to help organizations embrace and drive change, while minimizing risks to HR operations.

Key Services: KPMG offers an array of services that cover HR transformation, change management, talent management, and HR compliance. Their talent management practices include strategies for talent acquisition, performance, and development, providing a well-rounded approach. Their compliance service includes internal HR audit procedures, regulatory adherence checks, compliance training, and the development of HR policies that meet global standards.

Customer Support: KPMG's client support system is robust, offering ongoing assistance to ensure the recommended measures are efficiently implemented and maintained.

Hourly Rate: Pricing upon request

Location: Amstelveen, The Netherlands

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Strong reputation for meticulous auditing
  • Global presence ensures an understanding of varied regulations
  • Diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) reviews are also available

Cons:

  • An intensive audit process may require significant time investment
  • Best suited for larger enterprises rather than SMEs

Best for leading digital HR transformation processes

Accenture, a global leader in IT consultancy, stands out for its robust offerings in integrating digital solutions into HR functions. Their tech-forward approach ensures HR departments operate efficiently in today's digital age.

Why I picked Accenture: I selected Accenture because of their impressive track record in digital solutions across various sectors. Their specialization in merging HR with digital technologies means businesses can expect a modernized and streamlined HR function.

Key Services: Accenture offers a range of HR services, but they shine in areas like HR software integration, cloud-based HR solutions, and digital training platforms. Their methodologies focus on enhancing HR functions through advanced technology.

Customer Support: Accenture is known for its strong client support, ensuring that businesses have access to experts and tools for smooth digital transitions.

Hourly Rate: $350/hr

Location: Dublin, Ireland

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Strong global presence
  • Comprehensive support during integration
  • Extensive experience in digital transformation

Cons:

  • Potential for longer implementation timelines
  • Engagements can be complex due to the depth of services

Best for support with HR policies and due diligence

True North is an HR consulting company that helps Canadian companies with organizational design, staffing & recruiting, HR auditing, and policies & due diligence. Their dedicated team of experts are happy to tailor their services to match your specific business needs.

Why I picked True North: I included True North in this list because of their focus on auditing HR policies and due diligence, which made them stand out. They can advise you on your employment contracts, termination letters, employee handbooks, and other HR policy documents to ensure your corporate procedures are compliant and in line with industry best practices, giving you peace of mind.

Key Services: True North's HR advisory services cover polices and due diligence, recruiting and staffing, compensation and pay equity, organizational design, and performance management best practices.

Customer Support: True North provides robust customer support, offering both technical assistance and strategic guidance.

Hourly Rate: Pricing upon request

Location: Toronto, Canada

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Strong customer support framework
  • Experience working with Fortune 500 companies
  • Their HR services are specifically for Canadian companies

Cons:

  • Not suitable for US-based organizations
  • The hourly rate for services is unclear

Best for in-depth HR analytics

Deloitte stands as a global leader in professional services, delivering insights that matter. Within their vast spectrum of services, their prowess in HR analytics offers companies a deep dive into their human capital, shedding light on areas of growth, opportunity, and efficiency.

Why I picked Deloitte: Selecting Deloitte for HR analytics was a straightforward choice. Their long-standing reputation in the consulting world and the granularity of their analyses make them stand out. I believe that for businesses wanting a comprehensive look at their HR data, Deloitte offers the depth and expertise few can match.

Key Services: Beyond their capabilities in HR analytics, Deloitte provides a broad spectrum of human capital services, ranging from organizational transformation to workforce strategy. But it's their analytical approach, which combines technology and industry knowledge, that truly differentiates their offerings.

Customer Support: Deloitte ensures a dedicated team for every project, offering clients continuous support and regular updates throughout the engagement.

Minimum Project Budget: Pricing upon request

Hourly Rate: $200/hr

Location: New York, USA (head office) + 80 more locations across the US

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Diverse human capital solutions
  • Comprehensive HR analytical tools
  • Globally recognized expertise

Cons:

  • Might feel less personalized due to its size
  • Could be expensive for some companies

Best for tailored HR framework design

Jouta crafts unique HR solutions, focusing heavily on designing tailored HR frameworks. Their expertise lies in molding HR structures that sync seamlessly with a company's specific needs and culture.

Why I picked Jouta: I selected Jouta for this roster after judging their knack for personalization. While many HR firms use a one-size-fits-all model, Jouta's method stands apart. They carefully design frameworks in line with an organization's vibe and vision. Hence, I've pegged them as the best for bespoke HR framework designs.

Key Services: Jouta is primarily known for its customized HR framework designs. They dive deep into a company's DNA, understanding its essence, before crafting systems that address specific challenges and objectives. Alongside, they offer general HR consultancy and talent management services, as well as coaching services, training and development, and specialty Indigenous HR services.

Customer Support: Jouta offers a reliable customer support system, comprising dedicated account managers and accessible email support.

Minimum Project Budget: Pricing upon request

Hourly Rate: $150/hr

Location: Vancouver & Penticton, Canada

Pros and cons

Pros:

  • Comprehensive HR solutions
  • Understanding of diverse corporate cultures
  • Expertise in tailored HR design

Cons:

  • Limited to certain geographical areas
  • Might be pricey for startups
Tools Price
Deel Flat rate user pricing
Bain & Company No price details
Clear HR Consulting No price details
BCG No price details
MaxPeople No price details
KPMG No price details
Accenture HR No price details
True North No price details
Deloitte No price details
Jouta No price details
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Other HR Consulting Services

Below is a list of additional HR consulting services that we shortlisted, but did not make it to the top 10. Definitely worth checking them out:

  1. Randstad

    Best for HR staffing and talent needs

  2. TriNet

    Best for comprehensive HR services and software

  3. McKinsey & Company

    Best for research-driven HR insights

  4. Bambee HR

    Best for startup HR solutions

  5. PricewaterhouseCoopers LLP

    Best for expansive global HR expertise

Criteria for Choosing the Right HR Consulting Service

In my extensive search for the best HR consulting services, I've evaluated each of these companies in depth. Based on my analysis and experience, I've identified some key criteria that really matter when it comes to picking the right service for your business needs. Here's what I found:

Quality of Deliverables

Quality is paramount in HR consulting. A quality service in this domain means tailored solutions that fit the unique needs of an organization. It's about understanding the culture, goals, and challenges of a company, then offering actionable insights and strategies to drive results. A top-notch HR consulting firm should not only offer advice but also ensure that their suggestions can be feasibly implemented and are in line with industry best practices.

Key Services

HR consulting can cover a broad spectrum of services. However, when narrowing down the best, the following key services stood out:

  • Strategic HR Planning: Aligning human resource strategies with business objectives.
  • Talent Management: Ensuring the right people are in the right roles and developing them for future organizational needs.
  • Compliance and Risk Management: Ensuring that HR policies and practices comply with regulations and minimize potential liabilities.
  • Organizational Culture Assessment: Analyzing and recommending ways to improve or shift organizational culture.
  • Employee Engagement and Wellbeing: Strategies to improve morale, retain talent, and ensure employee wellness.
  • HR Tech Implementation: Integrating and optimizing the latest HR software technologies to streamline processes.

Value for Money

When I examined these companies, I looked beyond just the price tag. Value for money is about the ROI a business gets from the consulting service. Are the strategies and solutions provided translating into tangible benefits, be it in enhanced employee performance, reduced turnover, or better talent acquisition? It's crucial to ensure that the investment made in an HR consulting service reaps benefits that outweigh the costs in the long run.

Choosing the right HR consulting service can make all the difference in streamlining HR processes, enhancing employee engagement, and ultimately, driving business success. So, it's essential to weigh these criteria carefully in your decision-making process.

HR Consulting Services: Frequently Asked Questions

Still wondering how human resources consulting services work and what they have to offer? Here are some answers to frequently asked questions to help clear things up:

What kind of services do HR consultants offer?

HR consulting companies offer a variety of services to suite a diverse set of needs. The typical services they offer cover the following HR needs:

  • Talent acquisition & recruitment
  • Employee retention
  • Employee training & development
  • Compliance
  • Culture-building
  • Conflict resolution
  • Organizational design
  • Strategic insights
  • Change management
  • Mergers & acquisitions (M&A)

Businesses often partner with an HR consulting service when they face challenges in one of these core areas.

What are the primary benefits of HR consulting services?

HR consulting services offer several advantages to organizations, including:

  • Expertise Access: HR consulting services provide access to specialists with a depth of knowledge in HR best practices and trends, ensuring that businesses get top-tier advice.
  • Cost Savings: By optimizing HR processes and systems, companies can realize significant cost savings in the long run.
  • Risk Reduction: HR consultants stay updated with the latest compliance and legal requirements, helping businesses minimize potential risks and liabilities.
  • Strategic Planning: Consultants can help align HR strategies with business objectives, ensuring that human resources play a pivotal role in achieving company goals.
  • Objective Perspective: External consultants can offer unbiased insights into internal HR challenges, offering fresh perspectives and solutions.

How much do HR consulting services usually cost?

The cost of HR consulting services can vary widely based on the scope of work, the firm’s reputation, and the specific services required. Simpler services like basic HR audits or single training sessions tend to be cheaper. In contrast, comprehensive organizational restructuring, long-term strategic planning, or global talent management strategies tend to be on the pricier side.

Prices can range from a few hundred dollars for small tasks or assessments to several thousands or even millions for large-scale projects or long-term consulting engagements. It’s essential to get quotes and ensure clarity on deliverables for the price quoted.

What are the typical pricing models for HR consulting services?

There are several common pricing models in the HR consulting industry:

  • Hourly Rates: Consultants charge based on the number of hours worked.
  • Project-Based Pricing: A fixed fee for a specific project or deliverable.
  • Retainer Model: A monthly or annual fee for ongoing consulting services.
  • Performance-Based Pricing: Fees tied to achieving specific outcomes or results.

Are there any free or inexpensive options available?

While most professional HR consulting services come at a cost, some firms might offer initial consultations for free. Additionally, there are online platforms and communities where HR professionals share insights and advice, which can be a more affordable way to gather information, though they don’t replace the tailored expertise of a dedicated consultant.

Tips to Help You Choose the Best HR Consulting Company for You

Finding the best HR consulting service for your business depends on your organization's unique needs. Here are some tips to help you make the best choice:

  • Define Your Needs: Before embarking on your search, clearly outline what you hope to achieve by using an HR consultant. This can range from legal compliance, strategic HR alignment, or even tech system implementations.
  • Value for Money: Prices vary widely across the HR consulting landscape. Seek firms that provide a clear breakdown of costs and deliverables, ensuring you get meaningful results for your investment.
  • Expertise is Paramount: Always prioritize firms with a proven track record, demonstrated years of experience, solid case studies, and client testimonials. After all, the quality of the professional services firm you choose can significantly impact your organization's HR trajectory.

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By Finn Bartram

Finn is an editor at People Managing People. He's passionate about growing organizations where people are empowered to continuously improve and genuinely enjoy coming to work. If not at his desk, you can find him playing sports or enjoying the great outdoors.