It was a shame to see that CNP has become the first big-name QS/project management casualty. At the end of the day consultants are all about people and my sympathy goes out to all who have and will lose their jobs, shareholdings, and so on. Consultants have been hanging in there for the past year, it’s just that this damn recession won’t go away

One thing is for sure – unless the profession consolidates in the same way the accountancy and business consulting professions have, there will be more casualties. There are at least 10 firms claiming to be global. In truth, there is probably only room for six of them. If fees are cut any more, all the firms will quickly become loss-making. If I was a betting man I would expect more takeovers and mergers over the next year.

Big well-funded firms can survive this recession; it is much more difficult for the medium-sized players.

Patrick Murdock