I had a conversation with an industry source yesterday about IT benchmarking. The back ground to this is the fact that many advisories and the like want good benchmarking skills.
The acquisition of benchmarking firm Compass by the International Services Group, which owns sourcing consultancy TPI, came up in the conversation.
He told me that some of his clients, who happen to be FTSE 100 companies, have expressed concerns about benchmarkers being swallowed up by groups offering other services.
They want a benchmarker to be completely independent and as a result not produce results that might lean the customer towards taking a particular service or service provider.
He said the outsourcing service providers also want benchmarkers to remain independent for obvious reasons.
This can also be applied to the sourcing consultancy sector where there is consolidation with big consultancies buying sourcing capability. An example of this is KPMG's acquisition of Equaterra.
One source told me said there are potential conflicts of interest. "After Enron three of the big four accountancy companies sold off their consultancy practices because government regulation said they had to. Today it seems that companies are building up again."