How Can IT Consultants Grow Your Business

By Charles

May 18, 2017

digital, it services, SQL Server consulting

Does your business use IT Consultants?

To take your business to new heights, you need to grow your existing customer base, increase the transaction value per customer or increase the margin you are making.

So either sell to more customers, sell more to your current customers or improve the efficiency of the business by doing more with fewer resources. 

Each option is going to need several tasks to be completed.

For that, you will need a project to-do list.

How IT consultants help your business

Get more done faster with a boost in project resources by using IT Consultants.

To-do lists help you get more done and help individuals achieve more, so every successful person and successful business uses them.

The downside is that to-do lists can seem like they are constantly growing and never-ending. Business priorities are fluid and continually changing, and some items never get off the start line.

You should make sure you have two different lists. One is your traditional to-do list, and one is your completed list.

When a project is completed, it tends to get removed from the to-do list and forgotten, but you should keep a separate list of tasks you have delivered.

This second list is the list that should constantly be growing. The longer it is, the more you have accomplished.

It can also tell the rest of the business what you and your team have been doing. Individuals can even use it to justify a promotion or pay raise.

Businesses have to do more with less, but now and then, throwing that little bit of extra resource at a project to ensure it is completed and off your to-do list is acceptable.

Project non-starters

Take a quick look at your list.

Can you see items that have been there for a while?

Do you keep track of when a task or project was added?

The worst part of delaying a project is that it stays on your list. This is one of the reasons that your list constantly grows.

You will continually add new projects as businesses are always moving forward with market trends; if you do not re-evaluate what is on the list occasionally, it will become a never-ending list of unfinished or non-started projects.

A growing list can demotivate and increase stress, which does not need to be there.

If a project is never started, you should remove it from your list. Just having it on the list is going to be a constant reminder of failure, of what you are unable to deliver.

You can reduce the stress and pressure you are under by clearing off non-started/needed projects.

This will allow you to focus on the actual business priorities. Keeping an ever longer list is neither good for your morale nor your team’s morale.

If it stays on the list, it must be started and completed. 

If you remove it and it becomes a priority again, you can add it back on.

The hard bit

There are two tricky parts to any project: starting and finishing it.

Sometimes the best way to finish a project quicker is simply by starting it.

Once it is moving, the momentum can carry you forward to the end, but starting is the hardest part.

Increase business efficiency by using the extra resources to finish never-ending projects quickly. 

IT Consultants can give you that extra passion for getting a project done. Using that additional resource where needed allows you to get temporary push forwards to get over a bump slowing down the rest of your business.

Never-ending projects

Worse than the never started projects are the never-ending projects.

There are three things that every good project and every good story should have; a beginning, a middle, and an end.

If you leave projects in a never-ending state, you will always be short of resources.

The only way to manage your resource is to start a project and complete it.

If you do this, then you are constantly moving forwards.

Old projects are closed down, and the implementation is reviewed to find lessons learned which can help to improve future project performance.

Not every project implementation will succeed, but you should still learn lessons from every project.

People need closure. It gives a definite end to a process, time frame or project and allows us to draw a line psychologically to concentrate on what is next.

Having constant loose ends open can be very frustrating and affect our focus.

By closing off these projects, we tie up loose ends and can put the experience behind us, giving us the focus and excitement of starting something new.

Time to finish up and clear down

So you have now removed anything on your list that does not need to be completed at all.

This will leave two mini lists, one with projects that have been started and not completed and one with projects that have not even been started.

You can hire some IT Consultants to do one of two primary roles.

They can either complete a project that needs to be done. This is a nice clean, and easy option.

They do a set piece of work and leave without disrupting your day-to-day business.

The second option is they come in; you train them to backfill your perm people while they work on the fun project.

This takes longer as you may have to train the consultants on your systems and processes, but it may keep your staff happier as they are not doing all the tedious BAU work for the length of the project.

Whichever option you choose, IT Consultants are there to help you jump over a few hurdles in a temporary capacity.

Using them effectively can hit your objectives faster and power forward with minimum costs.


About the author

Microsoft Certified SQL Server DBA with over a decades experience including work for large FTSE 250 companies amongst others. The SQL Server stack has been the focus of almost all of my career in IT. I have experience designing, supporting and troubleshooting large Data Platform deployments.

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