Over the past few years Business Consultancies have been expanding their client services to include marketing, which is nudging in on traditional agencies’ turf. Clients are often wooed by consultancies, because there’s a perception that if you work for Accenture, PwC, etc., you must be a genius. However, not all consultancy-lead projects end up happily ever after for clients.
Take the example of Hertz’s digital overhaul as a cautionary tale. In early 2016 Hertz hired Accenture to handle an ambitious project to transform its digital identity, which included the design, building, testing, and deployment of Hertz’s new website and apps. The new platform was supposed to go live in late 2017. However after a series of deadline misses, cost overruns, and code writing flaws, Accenture was eventually fired in May, 2018. Hertz subsequently filed a $32M lawsuit against Accenture for breach of contract, in what’s now become known as the “website from hell” case.
While Accenture probably has its own version of what went wrong with Hertz, it’s safe to assume they were over their skis with this project. It goes to show that just because a vendor comes in with “Expert” on their name tag, you can’t just assume they have the expertise needed for the task at hand. Unfortunately Hertz learned this lesson the hard way.