Top 3 Mistakes When Hiring an IT Consultant

Top 3 Mistakes When Hiring an IT Consultant

We all make mistakes. I know I do. What matters is how we learn from them. Often I hear clients say that they are struggling to get the most out of a new consultant. Without the right approach, hiring consultants can be complicated. When troubleshooting consultant issues, quite often I see the same issues crop up. Many of these issues transcend companies and most of them could be remedied by a change in perspective.

1. Consultants are people too!
The biggest mistake hiring managers make is a lack of empathy, so to speak. More times than not a consultant is thought of as an object; a tool used in the execution of a project. They are there for a reason and you have taken the time to interview them for the job. You have assessed their skills and expertise that you need but once on boarded communication comes to a halt.

My suggestion: Treat them like one of the team and get better results.

2. Consultants are as welcomed as a skunk at a lawn party.
All those things that happen when a person joins the team, not so for a consultant. Understand that the consultant will not be going through an orientation process that covers everything from “access permissions” to scanning. These tasks may seem insignificant but when amassed, it may actually be cutting into your consultant’s ability to be efficient.

My suggestion: As a manager/supervisor, think through and arrange for equipment, provide any special instructions, and give them all the tools they need to succeed.

3. Expectations: establish them.
This sounds simple, but more times than not the interview was not enough for your consultant to fully understand the job. Setting expectations first requires planning and communication skills. The more time you invest on the front end, the more effective your consultant will be in operation mode.

My suggestion: Take the time to set clear expectations and to make sure that they are understood.

In summary, really, it all comes down to taking a little time in advance to set your consultants up for success. That time will pay off with a positive and productive engagement.

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Bill Marshall About the author