With so many technology consulting firms to choose from, it is often difficult for decision-makers to sort through the options and offerings and determine the best partner for their organization. Over the past 15 years in the IT industry and business applications realm, I've noticed some key traits that set top consulting firms apart. I hope my insights will help you make the right decision for your organization.
An Adviser versus a Technician
The two different approaches I’ve seen technology consulting firms take with their clients are acting as an adviser or acting as a technician. A technician will offer clients their assistance with technology issues once they receive specific direction. Many firms provide customers with one or several technicians who simply adjust and/or replace their existing technologies. Unlike an adviser, a technician has a narrow skill set and can only go so far to help their customers.
An adviser will focus on identifying the needs of a client organization and on providing an all-encompassing solution. At C5 Insight we take the adviser approach, which means providing guidance and support throughout every stage of the project. Before selecting an adviser, make sure the firm has a project team with subject-matter expertise and a variety of complimentary skill sets. For example, our team of developers, solutions architects and consultants work together on all phases of client project to come up with a comprehensive solution, not just a shiny, new tool.
A Prescription versus a Patch
While a technician will offer you a short-term solution (patch) to cover up a problem and provide a temporary remedy, an adviser will provide you a long-term solution (prescription) to address every aspect of an issue over a long period of time. In this instance, I want to remind you to look for the cure, not just a quick fix that will last only for a day, week, month or year. And make sure your adviser takes a holistic approach and implements a long-term solution prescribed to meet the needs of your organization.
Ultimately, it comes down to trusting the firm/partner to put your needs first. Are you working with someone who you can rely on for guidance, support and expertise throughout the process? Do their values align with your organization? A good adviser is someone who shows compassion for your organization by giving you direct answers to the difficult questions and by helping you maximize your investment and within budget to meet your organizational goals.
If you are looking for an adviser/partner, please reach out to our team so we can show you how to take your software, budget and business much, much farther.
For more information on C5 Insight or this blog entry, please fill out our Contact form.
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