All the reasons why businesses need IT consulting
The main goal of IT consultants is to increase business efficiency through IT solutions.
Today’s enterprises rarely realize the full benefits of innovative IT solutions. Internal IT specialists should focus on supporting existing solutions.
Meanwhile, IT vendors should concentrate on building a competitive advantage for the customer and not just on sales. Now, the business needs concrete, reasonable proposals for developing IT solutions in the company.
Consumers want to understand what benefits new IT products will bring; they also want to know about the return on investment from their implementation.
In this article, we will discuss in which cases businesses may need IT consulting.
Most common issues when you should hire an IT consultant
Businesses want innovative IT solutions to deliver specific goals, support business strategies, and improve the efficiency of core business operations.
The main goal of IT consultants is to increase business efficiency through IT solutions. Also to create competitive advantages for the customer through IT products, ensuring the smooth operation of the customer’s IT department.
Cooperation with reliable IT consulting specialists allows the company to receive recommendations on IT department development, methods for making strategic decisions, and IT market analytics.
IT consultants also provide companies with an independent assessment of the current state of the IT solutions, options for improving them, as well as recommendations for troubleshooting.
Let’s consider the most common cases when the company needs external IT consultants
Lack of experience in the formation of strategic planning processes for the development of IT
If we analyze the activities of a typical CIO, in most cases, this is a technical specialist whose experience allowed him to take the position of an IT department manager.
Thus, for most managers of IT departments in companies, the issues of strategic planning for the development of IT are perplexing.
Note that any wrong decision in strategic planning can result in huge financial losses for the company and the loss of competitive advantages.
Therefore, cooperation with external IT consultants in such a situation is an excellent solution that will allow the company to optimize operations and save its resources.
Nevertheless, suppose we consider the issue of creating an IT development strategy. In that case, we need to think that the process should be developed jointly by internal IT specialists and external IT consultants.
IT consultants are responsible for the methodology, experience, and market knowledge. Still, the IT specialists of the company will be responsible for implementing the strategy in the future.
Thus, it is important not only to develop an IT strategy but also to form a mechanism through which it is possible to manage the implementation of the strategy.
For the strategy to be an effective tool for strategic management, use the Balanced Scorecard – BSC (Balanced Scorecard) technology. This approach allows the company to ensure that implementing the IT strategy has become a priority for all company employees.
Lack of mechanisms for making informed strategic decisions in the field of IT.
A common reason for the failure of an IT project is the incorrect choice of the supplier of the IT product and the product itself.
Large enterprises remain the main customers of IT solutions, but medium-sized companies are also showing interest in business digitalization.
If the choice of CIS for large companies is largely determined by the scale of the business and is limited to only a few alternatives, then for a medium-sized business, choosing the right solutions can become problematic.
Currently, there are many different corporate information systems for all industries. In addition, all offers differ in price and functionality. Moreover, certain products have multiple suppliers whose teams differ in service quality.
All this diversity can lead to errors in choosing a corporate information system and its supplier and the lack of the desired effect from automation.
To avoid these mistakes, it is necessary not only to analyze the needs of the business correctly but also to ensure the independence of the analysis.
Inviting IT consultants is a great solution to carry out an independent analysis, based on which the right strategic decision will be made.
Lack of qualified internal resources to carry out projects
At the stages of describing and improving business processes before implementing an IT solution, trained employees are needed, both in describing business processes and in the information technologies used.
IT consulting specialists, as a rule, have experience and knowledge of industry specifics, so their involvement in the project may be justified.
Effectiveness evaluation of IT solutions
The internal effectiveness of IT solutions is an issue not only for management but also for external auditors.
Nowadays, for most huge enterprises, the requirements of the SOX law are relevant and these standards more and more affect the operations of IT departments. They have to adapt to new rules to avoid problems with regulators.
Most CIOs have already experienced the rigor of external audits in this area; they must implement a system of process, risk, and control procedures.
Only IT consultants have enough knowledge and experience to meet the standards; it’s quite difficult and expensive to accumulate this competence within one company.
Lack of organizational support for IT implementation activities at the top level
The professional opinion of an external IT consultant very often has a huge impact on the decisions of top managers.
Therefore, cooperation with external consultants allows you to accelerate the optimization of business processes in a company. This will improve the company’s financial performance and support its competitive advantages.
The partnership with external IT consulting specialists is justified in many cases. However, external consulting in the field of information technology must be used correctly, considering all the pros and cons.
The benefits of using IT consulting are the following:
- a huge pool of highly qualified employees;
- excellent knowledge of practices for implementing IT solutions, and optimizing business operations;
- impressive experience, ability to solve specific problems;
- knowledge of how to apply standards in the IT field;
- the opinions of external IT professionals have a high level of influence on management decisions.
Intellectsoft helps customers automate and digitalize business processes, optimize the software portfolio, and implement innovative solutions.
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