I might get asked this in my phone interview and have no idea.
Short and simple is:
Short term: Currently most firms are requiring a lot of consulting over next year as most have been saving money over past two years by not hiring consulting firms due to the economic crisis. So there is now bigger demand as clients fix/update existing systems.
In the long term: We are seeing big consulting firms develop and those firms are getting most of the contracts from the major businesses. Also most major businesses are developing a list of trusted suppliers for consulting. This means that smaller consulting firms are not getting as much access to the major firms. The demand for the major consulting firms will increase and as such they will start having to outsource to smaller firms.
Hope this is useful and good luck with the interview.
that is useful - thank you. i also mentioned emerging markets in my interview - a lot of companies based in emerging markets requiring IT solutions, whether they are growing within their own region or looking to expand geographically.