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Monday, 25 May 2015

Career Guest Post; Business Consultancy



Name: Taylor

Bloghttp://www.taylormhawkins.com/

Industry: Consulting

Job Title: Senior Business Consultant

Brief description of job role and industry

Consulting is kind of like being a temporary employee at a bunch of different companies! A company will hire a consulting agency when they need an unbiased set of eyes to solve a problem or specialized expertise for a short enough period of time that it doesn’t make sense to hire a full-time employee. There are many different types of consulting from management and supply chain to information technology consulting. I’m in the information technology sector of consulting where most of the projects involve redesigning a website for a client. 
The high level process is:
1. Define the business requirements to make sure the site will be useful to the end users.
2. Define the design requirements to make sure the site meets the branding needs and looks good!
3. Define the technical requirements to make sure it’s possible.
4. Build the site!
My role is mainly in the defining phases. I am in charge of gathering all of the business and design requirements as well as assisting in turning those into technical requirements!

An average day consists of…

The most interesting and yet most challenging part of the job is that there is no average day. Each day brings unique challenges and triumphs that are different from the last. For example, I worked with a client based out of Chicago, Illinois where my responsibilities ranged from creating detailed documentation of the site we were building to project management and status reports. The client I am working with now is based out of Atlanta, Georgia and my role is to create a visual prototype of their site and interview their employees to make sure the site will be useful to them. Each client, project and role is completely different!

Career progression

Typically, the business consultant role is for entry-level or recent college/uni grads. After 2-3 years, you can get promoted to a senior business consultant where you start to take on more client and project management tasks. From there, you will become a project manager where you work less on the documentation and analysis work and more on project oversight. The progression can happen as fast as you want it to - the harder you work, the faster you move up

Qualifications/experience required

The entry level position requires a degree but it really doesn’t matter what type of degree as long as you are willing to learn! No experience in needed but it is the best way to get noticed by an employer above the other candidates (completely unplanned segue into the next question :))

Best tip to crack the industry

Experience is the best way to get into the industry. I know it’s hard to get experience in a job that requires experience :) but any sort of part time exposure is helpful! If you can’t find a job where you can gain experience, try starting a blog or creating a site where you can show your writing skills and work ethic!

Best thing about my job

The best thing about the job is the flexibility. You get to choose your own hours and work from home whenever you want. All of the people at my company are extremely close and there is a great sense of trust that no one will take advantage of the flexibility.

Worst thing about my job

The worst thing about the job is also the working schedule :). The nice thing about 9-5 jobs is that there is always a start and end to the day. In consulting, you work until the job is done which may mean nights and weekends at the end of a project when you’re trying to get it over the finish line. If you love the people you work with, though, it’s not so bad!
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2 comments

  1. This sounds like a wonderful job! I always wondered what consultancy really entailed, so this was a brilliant insight. It sounds like the job requires a lot of hard work, especially with the unpredictable hours, but it sounds very rewarding too.

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  2. This is such a great insight! I do my job full time but there are a lot of consultants / contractors in my line of work too. It's very true that the company hiring you do just expect it to be done without having the visibility of all the extra hours that have to be put in when requirements change or things don't go quite to plan, so I do get how the schedule balance is something that you have to be on board for!! x

    Laura | Loved By Laura

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