If you’ve hired an IT consultant and you’re preparing to overhaul your business’s technology, you probably have a whole lot of questions. The first is probably, “What should I ask?”
If you’re not overly familiar with the IT consulting procedure or you haven’t worked extensively with business technology before, this entire process may seem confusing and even intimidating at first. Don’t worry. The fact that you’ve already committed to modernizing your technology and procedures is a key first step that many managers never take.
No one knows your business like you do. To make effective recommendations your IT consultant will need to know your business just as well as you do. Your earliest meetings will include a discovery process in which your consultant asks you plenty of questions—and you may want to ask some in return.
Here are three questions you should ask your IT consultant before you get to work implementing solutions.
1. What’s wrong with my current infrastructure?
This question serves two purposes. First, it will help you learn about the complexities of IT infrastructure. If something was set up wrong in the past, you’ll be able to identify it. Second, it will challenge your consultant to identify specific areas of weakness.
Once you know the problem areas in your network, you’ll know your IT goals. This positions you to be a part of the solution, rather than a passive spectator.
2. What did you do for the last client with my challenges?
Most reputable IT consultants are highly experienced veterans of the trade who have seen a wide variety of problems. As you’re identifying your business’s needs and concerns, make sure to ask how your consultant helped solve similar problems the last time they encountered them.
This gives you some peace of mind, but it also offers insight as to what you can expect going forward in the process.
3. How long will implementation take and how disruptive will it be?
Good technology partners will complete projects with as little interruption to your business as possible, but some more intensive solutions can cause brief downtime or inconvenience. For planning purposes, it’s good to know as early as possible how much interruption you should expect. Complications may arise from building design, office layout and other factors.
A good IT consultant will be able to answer each of these questions to your satisfaction. You may even learn a little something about IT solutions along the way.
If you think your business could benefit from the services of an IT consultant, give PRO OnCall a ring. It’s our mission to help Midwest businesses reach their full potential through technology. We’d love to visit with you.