Frequently Asked Questions

Using PDP As Your Consulting Partner

Why should my organization hire an outside consulting firm?

Organizations hire outside consulting firms for a number of different reasons:
Lack of internal expertise
Lack of internal resources to assign to a key project (i.e., internal staff are not able to handle the workload)
Desire to have an objective third party analysis of a situation
Desire to have an outside party corroborate or endorse a problem diagnosis or action plan that has been developed internally

Why should my organization consult with People Development Partners?

PDP is a firm of experienced management consultants with a track record of proven results
PDP prides itself on the relationship we have with our clients – we are committed to providing high levels of customer service, and we work diligently to ensure that our clients are satisfied
PDP provides customized services to meet the needs of our clients – you can rest assured that our recommendations will take into account your desired outcomes, your corporate culture, your budget, and the size and scope of your organization
PDP can help supplement your current Human Resource practices and other management initiatives, and we can seamlessly integrate our programs with your current processes
PDP can assist with all aspects of the Talent Management Lifecycle – from hiring entry-level employees to selecting and developing managers and executives
If you do not have a current Human Resources Department, or are under-staffed in this area, PDP can help provide needed services and support

What typical issues or problems does PDP help organizations with?

PDP typically focuses on the human capital of the organization, including the following activities:

Hiring decisions – establishing systems and processes to select candidates for all levels of the organization, including executives, manager-level candidates, and entry-level applicants
Leadership Development – helping organizations determine the skills that leaders need to possess, and then designing training and development programs and services to address these needs
Talent Identification — helping the organization identify incumbents who have the potential and the interest to assume leadership roles in the future
Succession Planning — profiling the “key jobs” in the organization in terms of skill and experience requirements, and then evaluating which internal incumbents are potential replacement candidates, and identifying any positions where external recruitment will be needed
Executive Coaching — PDP works one-on-one with executives (or groups of executives) to improve overall efficiency, strategic decision-making skills, and interpersonal effectiveness skills
PDP also helps with macro-level issues such as:
Organizational Surveys – topical surveys on issues such as employee satisfaction/morale, perception of corporate culture and communication, surveys on supervisory practices, etc.
Organizational Development and Change Initiatives – analyzing workflow between departments, recommendations on organizational structure and design, etc.
“Best Practices” research in a number of different human resources and management areas
Strategic HR Management and Workforce Planning Consultation

What industries does PDP have experience in?

PDP has worked in successfully in virtually all industry areas, including transportation and logistics, manufacturing, energy, government, service/retail, academic institutions, and the finance industry

As a client, what can I expect from working with PDP?

You will be partnering with a consulting firm committed to meeting your business needs
You will be partnering with a firm that will take the time to research your company and your company’s needs, allowing us to craft a customized approach to your issues and problems
You will be partnering with a firm that is committed to professional integrity and the highest levels of customer service
You will be partnering with a firm that can help you meet future challenges
What are some of the outcomes I can expect when using PDP?

Specific outcomes vary by the type of intervention or project that is undertaken – and PDP will work to ensure that desired outcomes and “deliverables” are agreed-upon at the beginning of each consulting engagement
Typical outcomes realized by organizations include the following:
Employees with enhanced skill sets, with improved job performance and enhanced managerial skills
Employees with higher levels of satisfaction and morale (as well as longer tenure)
Employees placed in jobs that match-up well with their skills and interests
Employees who are capable of moving into more senior-level roles
Leaders who are a good fit with the corporate culture of the organization
Supervisors who are more skilled in their jobs, and who bring out the best in their team members
Entry-level employees who are motivated, dependable, and thorough, and who are easy to supervise
Improved communication and coordination between individuals, groups, and departments
A clearer understanding of corporate culture, organizational norms, strategic initiatives, and leader expectations

What is the background of PDP consultants?

PDP consultants are well-versed in the fields of industrial and organizational psychology, organizational behavior, organizational development, human resources management, survey and research design, and statistical analysis – our consultants have served in a variety of corporate settings and consulting roles, and also have experience in academic settings and international assignments

Are PDP’s services available in multiple languages?

Several of PDP’s services and programs are available in multiple languages and, if desired, we have the ability to utilize consultants who are multilingual

How long does a PDP consulting project take?

Understandably, projects vary according to their scope and complexity – most projects will involve some fact-finding and investigative work, after which PDP will prepare a formal project proposal — with this as a background, some PDP programs and services can be implemented and completed within a few days, while others (such as an executive coaching assignment) typically involve an engagement spanning 6-9 months

What is the cost of an initial consultation with PDP?

There is no cost for an initial consultation with PDP – normally, a PDP consultant will schedule a conference call to gather preliminary information, and may also wish to schedule some on-site time to further discuss the situation at hand – PDP will then prepare a “Proposal of Services” document for client review and discussion — all of the above steps involve no charge to the client

How does PDP charge for services offered?

PDP works with clients to determine a fee schedule that is suitable for the project at hand – some projects will be amenable to an hourly or daily billing rate, while others will be amenable to a monthly or quarterly fee schedule – for certain products or services, a per usage rate will apply – contact PDP with any specific pricing questions

Questions About Specific PDP Services

Does PDP offer in-depth screening and evaluation of candidates for executive-level positions?

Yes – PDP has a well-established protocol for evaluating candidates for these positions — depending upon the position and the wishes of the organization, our approach might include the administration of personality-based and cognitive (i.e., thinking and problem-solving) testing instruments, along with a behaviorally-based interview that integrates the results of the assessment testing – many of our clients also desire a final written report summarizing our findings (and our hiring recommendation) — as an initial step, PDP helps the client organization identify the key attributes, characteristics, and competencies that they desire in an executive-level candidate, and PDP then develops an assessment approach to measure these desired characteristics

Can PDP help my organization hire better managers and supervisors?

Yes – PDP offers well-established methodologies for selecting both manager-level and supervisor-level candidates – ideally, PDP would spend time with the client organization to identify the characteristics, aptitudes, and behaviors that are desired for incumbents in these roles, and then an assessment process would be devised to identify candidates who possess these desired characteristics

Can PDP help my organization identify those employees with leadership potential?

Yes – PDP has methods and processes for profiling the key requirements of the leadership roles in your organization, and we also have methods for assessing and evaluating the potential of employees who are potential candidates for these roles — PDP can help you identify employees who have both the ability and the motivation to be successful leaders (key hint – it is important that future leaders possess both of these characteristics!)

We have a crisis situation at my organization – can PDP respond quickly in such instances?

PDP prides itself on being responsive to customer needs – should you have a human resource-related or management-related crisis, you can always expect to hear from us by the close of the business day — in most situations, we should be able to meet on-site with short notice, as well

We have an employee who is not performing well – can PDP assist in such situations?

PDP is experienced in dealing with these situations – whether the situation requires simple role clarification for the employee, or whether the situation involves investigating the work relationship of the subordinate and supervisor in question, PDP is equipped to deal with such situations in a professional but straightforward manner, helping to ensure resolution of the problem

Is it legal to use tests and other assessment tests to hire and promote employees?

The appropriate tests for employee selection and promotion involves adherence to the legal and scientific guidelines that exist governing test use – all procedures used by PDP adhere to the Uniform Guidelines on Employee Selection Procedures (used by the EEOC and the Department of Labor to evaluate the fairness of employment practices), as well as the Principles for the Validation and Use of Personnel Selection Procedures (produced by the Society for Industrial and Organizational Psychology, a division of the American Psychological Association) – in addition, any selection procedure developed by PDP will be monitored to ensure that no adverse impact exists against any protected class of employees

Does PDP provide executive coaching services, and how long do these engagements typically last?

Yes – PDP provides an in-depth and engaging executive coaching experience that is focused on improving the participant’s overall efficiency and overall performance — this coaching can be conducted in one-on-one or in small group settings — while the length of these programs is dependent upon the specific situation(s) being discussed, most engagements last in the 6-9 month range

Can PDP help “on-board” and train new managers and leaders?

Yes – PDP has a protocol to assist the transition of managers and leaders as they move into new roles, whether they are external hires or have been promoted internally – our process involves coordinating the activities of the participant’s supervisor, their designated HR representative, and other key stakeholders, and ensuring that goals and objectives are clearly specified, that performance barriers and enablers are identified, and that channels for feedback are in-place and are understood — PDP also serves as a confidant and “sounding board” for the participant as they begin working in their new role

Can PDP help us launch a corporate mentoring program?

Yes – PDP has extensive experience in helping organizations design, implement, and evaluate corporate mentoring programs – it is essential that mentoring programs have stated goals and objectives, that mentors and mentees receive training on how to work together, and it is vitally important that programs be continually monitored and improved – PDP can help with all aspects of the mentoring process

Can PDP help my organization hire and train entry-level employees?

Yes – PDP can design and implement cost-effective systems for hiring entry-level employees who will be dependable, who will work well with others, who will have integrity, and who will show strong customer service skills — a system can even be developed to also identify entry-level hires with future supervisory and managerial potential

Can PDP provide individual career coaching and counseling?

Yes – PDP can provide career coaching and counseling services for incumbent employees, as well as for individuals seeking such assistance for their own growth and development – our process involves career and vocational interest testing, an assessment of motives and values, and an in-depth interview process that allows the participant to discover their personal strengths, their areas for development, and possible career fields that match-up well with their aptitudes and interests

Does PDP provide facilitation services for group meetings, for teambuilding sessions, and for focus group meetings?

Yes – PDP offers facilitation for all groups (large or small, executive-level to entry-level) – PDP will not only facilitate the meeting to ensure maximum input and contribution from all present, but will also ensure that the meeting ends with outlined deliverables, next steps, and assigned responsibilities, which will help ensure continued progress after the initial meeting has taken place

Does PDP do formal job analysis studies and competency modeling projects?

Yes – PDP can conduct comprehensive job and position analyses that document the needed knowledge, skills, abilities, and other requirements needed by incumbents for successful job performance (including needed job competencies) — such job studies form the foundation for other HR activities such as selection, training, and performance management

Can PDP conduct large-scale corporate surveys and other data-intensive projects?

Yes – PDP is well-equipped to design, administer, and analyze surveys on a wide variety of topics (such as employee satisfaction/motivation, perception of communication and leadership practices, 360 surveys for management development, etc.) – PDP can administer such surveys quickly and efficiently, and will present findings in an easily understood format that will enable the organization to quickly act on key issues

Does PDP do “Best Practices” research and other benchmarking studies?

Yes – PDP offers research and benchmarking studies on a wide variety of issues and topics, including HR and Talent Management strategies, workforce planning strategies, emerging trends in leadership and management research, marketing strategies, and other topics of interest

Can PDP collect and analyze “exit interview” data for our organization?

Yes – analyzing exit interview data can be an invaluable experience, as it can help the organization identify key factors that are impacting employee tenure – frequent factors include a perceived lack of growth opportunities, poor supervisory practices, poor or infrequent communication, and/or a corporate culture that is not engaging or inviting — PDP can help your organization identify and address such issues

Does PDP offer executive or management-level recruiting for organizations?

PDP does not offer management recruitment services, but will happy to provide referrals for other organizations that provide these services

Does PDP provide outplacement services?

PDP does not provide outplacement services, but we are happy to provide referrals for other firms that specialize in this area

General Questions on Consulting Services

How will I know what type of consulting service or program is right for my organization?

PDP, will always want to engage in fact-finding and problem identification before proposing a recommended course of action – in addition, in most situations, PDP will strive to provide your organization with several different recommendations, so your organization will have options from which to choose when moving forward

Can’t I solve my problems by offering employee and/or leadership training programs?

Training programs can be part of the solution to a problem, but they are rarely the sole answer to problem situations – in fact, focusing a training “solution” when other issues are present will often result in underlying issues and problems being overlooked

How does my organization integrate PDP’s services with our own internal Human Resources activities and other current initiatives?

PDP prides itself on partnering with the key stakeholders inside of your organization – human resources members, department heads, executives, and other key leaders — PDP will focus on ensuring that any new initiatives and/or processes are well-aligned with existing corporate policies and procedures, and that any new activities are extensions of the practices that you have in-place

My company has no formal Human Resources Department – can we still use PDP?

Yes — if you do not have a formal HR Department, PDP can assist with the activities normally associated with a Human Resources department

Can our internal resources (i.e., human resources members, other managers) be trained in PDP’s tools and methods, so that we can use these methods ourselves going forward?

Many of PDP’s methods, processes, and procedures can be implemented by internal corporate staff members — PDP will ensure that a clear understanding exists of which activities are appropriate for internal staff implementation, and which activities will require continued external consultation

Is People Development Partners right for your organization?

Find out how we can achieve your HR objectives.