Diamond Industry Pioneer Pulls Off Global Transformation Initiative with Ex MBB/Big Four Independent Consultant

The Client

The Science and Art of Diamonds

As the industry leader in the diamond industry, this non-profit organization works hard to maintain a certain level and standard for diamonds, colored stones, and pearls. And over the years, it has played a role in establishing itself as an authority for all things gems to ensure the public's trust.  

The Situation

Polishing its Global Transformation Approach

The key to maintaining one's market position in a highly competitive business environment is to evolve as business needs and economic conditions change. That's the challenge this non-profit luxury goods company was facing.

Interdependent and changing industry dynamics pushed this company to an inflection point. Its performance was undermined, and its leadership market position was threatened. Knowing that it had to do something to change the trajectory of its business on an expedited timeline, the company decided that its best option to save on both time and cost was to onboard an expert to enable it to undergo a global transformation. 

But the company couldn't just bring in any independent corporate strategy consultant to help it out. It would need to onboard someone as a senior consultant with over 5-10 years of market mapping experience in the retail space that could support the company. 

More importantly, the individual selected would have to do a deep dive into the diamond industry to extract the current challenges impacting the sector. The goal? To develop and evaluate strategic growth options before creating a business case and roadmap for the most viable solution out of all the ones presented. 

The Solution

Striking the Right Match With An Ex MBB/Big Four Consultant

Finding top-tier on-demand talent in today’s tight labor market is not easy. So when a colleague shared information about Graphite with the VP of Operations and Acquisitions, the company decided to look deeper into the platform to see if it was a good fit. 

After engaging with an Account Executive (AE), the company realized the value of Graphite’s unique vetting process, expert network of specialized expertise, and ease of managing and paying talent on the platform. Once the internal team at the company was onboard with working with Graphite, the VP reached out to the AE to move forward. 

The AE collected the necessary information for the project’s scope, creating a detailed project summary that would be shared with the talent team to source the platform’s network of highly qualified experts for the right fit. About 75 experts were invited to apply for the project. Five were shortlisted by the AE and presented to the VP. 

Of those five experts interviewed using Graphites in-app meeting rooms, the VP decided to move forward with an ex-Bain and EY strategy consultant with over 10 years of experience in market mapping and relevant retail sector experience. 

Results

Mining the Market to Develop A Roadmap For Success

Once onboard, the expert worked with an internal team to collect the necessary data to understand existing challenges impacting the diamond industry. The information was then compiled into a report of the company’s current state assessment. 

With this initial exercise complete, the expert developed several strategic options that the company could take while also evaluating and prioritizing them. The one option that made the top of the list? To find other operational bases closer to Southeast Asia. And here's why. 

The luxury goods company is a non-profit organization based in the US. But its operations are in India. As a result of its current operating model, the company's ability to enjoy the advantages of its tax-preferred status was being impacted. 

Another challenge impacting the business was the geographic shift in purchasing power in the diamond industry. Previously, the US was the largest buyer of diamonds, but now emerging markets like China have replaced it. This shift in the economic landscape meant that manufacturing centers have also moved to be closer to those emerging markets. Hence the business case and roadmap for this strategic option. 

With the company in agreement with the expert's business case, the expert moved forward with developing the roadmap for execution. The expert worked with his internal team to define all the moving parts of the global transformation initiative  — detailing every part to ensure its success.

Pleased with the expert's work, the company reached out to its AE to retain the expert for the execution of the project. Throughout the engagement, the AE connected with the company and the expert to ensure the project was moving smoothly, with both company and expert expressing their satisfaction with the platform and the engagement.