Sometimes, the existing talent pool of an organization isn’t enough to solve a problem. In such cases, CEOs must turn to consultants. This is when you have to learn how to get the most of your IT consultant in 2020.
But what exactly is a consultant? What do consultants do and how do they do it?
In the first place, consultants are experts in their fields (so there are consultants for every niche/industry) and they focus and excel on a specific set of skills and knowledge.
Of course, this can lead to a long list of benefits when hiring one to join the team.
Think about the hardest obstacles that your business has to overcome right now. An expert consultant might get you to new heights of success.
Their experience and outsider’s perspective could bring a lot of growth to you and your team, without having to go through all the barriers of hiring an actual team member.
All of the previously exposed is even truer when we refer to IT consultants in 2020 (a year full of biological and technological risks).
So, how can you forge a sustainable relationship with an IT consultant?
6 Steps to Get the Most Out of your IT Consultant
1) Analyze and Understand your Current Situation: Do you recognize what kind of IT service your company needs? This is something you must know before looking for a consultant.
As a CEO, it will be easy for you to know if your team has good communication and understand what are the real problems that the company face.
And yes: consultants can oftentimes diagnose your problems, to get a solution, but do not expect fortune tellers. They can only start moving and help you with your goal, once you understand what the real goal is (and better if you set different milestones).
That clear view will also help you to select the right consultant, easier and faster.
2) Assign your budget: Prepare yourself to analyze if it’s now worth risking the cybersecurity investment (which it’s worth in 90% of the times)
Make sure to learn how much do Consultants charge and get a reasonable price tag, according to the offered solutions.
You can get this information online (from directories or marketplaces) or ask friends and family for references.
While consultants themselves will tell you their rates without problems, you need to be aware of which budget quote is realistic and which is not.
3) Establishes SMART KPIs: Nothing should be taken for granted. Both parties (your team and the IT consultant) must be clear on what the goals are, and how does the goals will look like.
Once you know what to expect, then it comes the time to discuss it openly and plan a step-by-step blueprint of a contract being signed.
Such a plan has to include specific, edible, actionable, relevant, and timely metrics for you to measure success. Set short-term & long-term expectations and avoid getting disappointed after a while.
4) Be as Transparent as Possible: Again, consultants aren’t fortune tellers. They’re experts, but they are humans as well. So it will be only possible for them to fully understand what must be done if they have full visibility of your company.
This includes both the good and the bad. Although I understand it’s harder to expose the negative aspects to external partners. But believe me, show as much as you possibly can, if you expect a business-reviving experience.
5) Train your Employees: From now on, employees should know what will be done and why this is important for them and the company.
Awakening this curiosity will boost the overall happiness and productivity of the team, considering you’re all as unaware of topics like this one (cybersecurity).
Even more, if you consider that telling someone what to do and what to think it’s not as productive as helping understand the situation and let them discover things for themselves.
You can integrate them into the process, to make them feel and work as firefighters, always thinking about solutions for continuous improvement.
6) Establish terms from the beginning: Nothing lasts forever. And it’s very clear that at some point, the IT consultant must delay or stop the process completely (and hopefully, let’s be it for good reasons).
So, better to keep things clear, and know what to expect before, during, after the work is done. Especially after, to disclose what information must be kept confidential and what can be shared. Early agreements can avoid bad breakups.
Do you see it? It’s not too hard.
You have probably gone through a similar process before, and finding the right consultant will be easier than finding a new employee.
That’s why our team of IT and cybersecurity Houston-based experts never find issues while working with new teams.
Luckily for you, they’re now available to talk about the different ways to leverage emerging technologies
Are you ready to get rid of the fuzz and implement an actionable transformation?