As the world of IT and cybersecurity continues to grow and change at a rapid pace, it’s important to have the human expertise to keep pace. While companies are focusing on recruiting and retaining skilled employees with the necessary qualifications, it’s not always in a company’s best interest to try to create a whole, full-time role to fill a specific, small need.

If your company is in one of the following situations, it might actually make more sense to hire an IT consultant: a short-term contractor brought in to address something particular.

You Need Someone to Work on a Specific Project

One of the most common reasons for hiring an IT consultant is to boost a special project that needs particular attention. Most IT departments already have a significant workload, and “distracting” them with special projects can lead to unnecessary stress and an uptick in errors as they scramble to reshuffle their priorities. Still, those projects can be critical from time to time, especially when they’re targeting some area that needs improvement or updating.

For many teams, the solution is to bring in an IT consultant. Hiring a consultant will cost less than hiring a full-time employee, especially when the need is project-based rather than full-time, and sidesteps many of the complications inherent in a new hire. Instead, these consultants can come in, learn about your company and its needs, and then focus their energy completely on the specific project that needs extra attention. Your full-time team can have as much or as little involvement as preferable, without being stretched too thin.

You Need Someone to Share Specific Expertise

Perhaps it’s not a specific, individual project that needs addressing, but a particular topic. IT consultants can help here, as well. With extensive and varied expertise, and without the boundaries of needing to deal with day-to-day tasks above all, an IT consultant can bring a helpful voice to your company.

IT consultants can serve teams in a variety of capacities. They might be brough on in an advisory role, either on a particular project or on a more general scale to take a look at certain teams, practices, or other aspects of the business. They might have a unique perspective on how to best implement tech into the overall business strategy. They might even be brought on specifically as educators, with the explicit mission of sharing their specialized expertise, offering training, and helping to upskill existing staff to meet new needs and utilize new tools.

You Need Someone to Evaluate an Existing Concern

As we all know, sometimes it takes an outsider to really provide helpful—and different—perspectives on something. An IT consultant can serve as an auditor to evaluate your current systems and make recommendations for how to improve. Whether you have something specific that you suspect needs addressing or you’re just looking for general suggestions for improvement, a consultant can offer a fresh perspective and bring their own expertise to work for you on a short-term basis.

IT consultants often bring with them significant experience, certifications, and other experience. When you’re looking to hire a consultant to audit and evaluate, it makes sense to look for a professional with the specific expertise in the area you’re hoping to address. These consultants can offer insights on upgrading systems and security, closing gaps, improving system efficiency, and much more.

All of this is done without having to add the costs of hiring someone full-time just to do a temporary or occasional task. Consultants will typically get paid a premium, but because of the niche skills and faster timeline, the interview process is streamlined. Companies don’t get hung up on certain attributes they may pass on when hiring full timers; you can focus on the core skillset above all, and candidates will either have the skills or they won’t. This streamlined process takes less time away from the manager, their teams, and their core work. Think about it: how much backlogged work builds up when a company has to go through interviewing 20 different candidates for one role, with three, multi-hour rounds each? Hiring a consultant is often faster, easier, and gets your team back to what they’re best at sooner.

No matter the reason for hiring an IT consultant, Velocity can help! Our quality-centered approach and robust pipeline of IT talent means that we can provide our clients with top candidates who bring the unique qualifications needed for each and every consulting role. We also work closely with candidates to ensure that they understand the parameters of roles, including these temporary consulting positions, and that they are enthusiastic about the opportunity before we even present them to you.

By Daniel Midoneck