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3 Misconceptions About Technology Consulting You Should Avoid

Posted by Ellen McKewen on Jan 12, 2016 8:00:00 AM

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In our rapidly advancing technology world today, many misconceptions seem to be about the use of technology consultants.Technology consultants help businesses decide what computer tools and technologies are best able to help them sustain and grow a profitable business.  

You may have formulated a preconceived idea or misconception based on a prior experience with a technology consultant. Or, maybe you are unsure of when you should use a technology consultant versus when you can rely on your in-house team. 

When it comes to technology consulting, there are three prominent misconceptions that manufacturers should avoid.

The Misconceptions

Technology is a large driver of the innovations and successes of the manufacturing industry. As a vital aspect of this industry, technology consulting is expected. However, organizations may have a few common misconceptions about the selection and implementation of technology. The following are some of the most common misconceptions that many organizations may have about involving technology consulting services.

1. “Technology consultants are too expensive”

This is one of the most popular misconceptions as to why organizations are reluctant to use technology consulting experts. We all know that technology is expensive, but what is the alternative? For example, organizations may have their own in-house IT department which is adequate for day to day operations. However, when it comes to transformational technology projects, it may be better to have individuals whose sole concentration is application of information technology in manufacturing companies. Instead of focusing on the expense of technology, maybe focus on what that technology will give you in the successful use of business improvement processes, business models and strategy.  

If an organization decides to hire experts from a technology consulting company, they can expect more efficient and proper diagnoses coupled with a future forecast mix of expected problems and solutions. The initial price may seem costly. However, you will save on costs by using experts in the industry who are likely to make fewer mistakes and provide future guidance. The goal is to know when to select the right tool to solve your problem and using the right expert to help you implement that tool correctly.  

2. “A consultant doesn't know enough about my business”

In most cases, consultants don't need to know the specifics of your business or your industry because you have that knowledge. Additionally, the consultant may have decades of experience in other industries with companies that have similar applications that are in your company.  What a technology consultant brings to the table is objectivity, experience, methodologies and a resource pool you may not otherwise have access to. Today's technology problems are complex and require many types of skill sets that a trusted advisor/consultant can access as needed. Most manufacturers don't have this kind of expertise in-house.  

In addition, it is hard for a business owner to give control of something so important, such as information technology, to an outside source. A consultant can provide the information and choices, along with experience, that the business owner needs to effectively make technology and business decisions about their company. A technology consultant may also be able to assist with generating new approaches.  

3. “My software vendor will assist us"

Most software vendors are technology people, but they may not be trained to help you solve your business problems. Software vendors are skilled in what their software can do, not necessarily experts in developing business strategies or models. They may not have the time and expertise to reengineer business processes that involve organizational dynamics, rewards, metrics, facilities, and job descriptions. A software vendor may not be able to help you with business process re-engineering or project management; however, a technology consultant has the skills to look at your software and business practices, and the expertise to marry the new technology with your business needs. Since most technology consulting firms are proactive in managing and problem solving, they are in a better position to assist and troubleshoot if or when something goes wrong.

End Result?

Having misconceptions about technology consulting, whether when to solicit assistance or how to use that assistance, is an important and challenging issue. If manufacturers are able to successfully select and implement new technologies, rely on specific experts to assist them, then costs will be reduced and overall benefits will be achieved. 

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