How to Become a Consultant
If you can become a consultant, there is the opportunity tomake much more money.
IT Consultants make more money than the run of the mill IT contractor. They have an area of expertise and experience. It may be a broad expertise or it may be a narrower one.
The important thing to know, therefore, is that it pays very good money.
It can pay anything from 750 a day to 5,000 a day if you become a consultant.
Most contractors are good with particular skills or tools.
Consultants are usually experts in a narrower area – and it is usually the less technical areas.
What companies want from a consultant is advice or expertise. Here are some areas where, if you have some expertise, you can make the jump over to being a consultant:-
1) Being able to give companies advice on their hardware and software, and which they should be using.
2) Being an expert on a particular methodology or in methods in general.
3) Being an ace estimator. Companies are always getting their estimates wrong, and if you have an expertise in Function Point Analysis or some other method of estimating projects, your expertise will be valued by companies.
New Tool Expertise
4) Having an expertise in a particular new tool or technology. Most contractors sell themselves just as bodies if they have a spanking new skill. Companies have to pay a fortune for consultants‘ from the tool companies. You should sell yourself, therefore, as a consultant who will bring on and mentor, and possibly train, the existing members of staff who have done no more than a course on the skill. Don‘t sell yourself short.
5) Being able to offer Project Management advice. Most companies don‘t run projects well – and they know it. So, if you have used methods that work then you can sell your knowledge of these.
It‘s helpful if you have used an international standard for this like the Capability Maturity Model. Try to get a position as a consultant to the IT manager rather than the Project Manager, as you can then roll out your changes across all projects
How to Market Yourself as a Consultant
There are several ways that you can do this:-
1) Get in touch with other consultants who already have clients. Allow them to take 20% of your fee for finding work for you with their clients. You can do the same for them some day.
2) If the skill that you have is related to a company who sells it on, get in touch with them and offer your services. They will want to sell their own consultants first, but if it is a new tool or method, then they might be stretched and may be able to make use of you.
3) Tell agencies about your area of expertise. Let them know that, if they get you taken on it may mean more work for them, e.g. if there are projects that need doing with the new skill, and contractors are needed. If they think you‘ve got something, they will be proactive on your account.
If you are using an agency make sure that they don‘t put any restrictive clauses in your contract preventing you from seeking other business from the company or bringing in anybody else.
4) Do what contractors fear most and cold call companies that you think may need your expertise. If you can‘t do that then email them. Then, if they respond, follow up with a call and a request to come to see them.
If you are no good at that sort of thing then get someone to do it for you. Of course, you‘ll have to pay them to do it. You might even use a specialist telemarketing company.
Marketing Your Consultancy Skills
Once you have made some money from consulting you can hire someone to market your skills for you. When you have more work than you can do, you can then take on new consultants that you can hire out.
It takes a little effort to make the jump from being a contractor to a become a consultant, but if you do succeed then it is well worth the effort.
Simply Umbrella – Simply the Best
New kid on the block Simply Umbrella is simply the best umbrella company around.
It adheres to all the tax rules. They created it after the Chacellor’s spring statement.
It’s just like other umbrella companies in that the contractors is an employee of Simply Umbrella but they get to keep far more of their money than through an oridinary umbrella company.
To find out more just click on Simply Umbrella.