Why use consultants?
A critical decision to make up front is whether to use external consultants. A good consultant will save you time and money, as a value-add member of your team.
Having gone through several similar projects a good consultant can help you avoid costly and troublesome mistakes in every aspect of the project, from basic logistics to important technical details. They can:
- provide a broad technology perspective,
- Identify future technology trends,
- bring in more competing vendors, thus lowering the cost of the project,
- cut through internal political tensions and provide objective views and recommendations,
- add credibility to your project,
- help in vendor negotiations.
For example, even in the early stages of your project, a consultant will have enough experience and current market data to easily and quickly help you with the replace/upgrade/do nothing/join a larger system question.
So unless the scope of your project is very limited, or your internal resources include someone with recent and broad system replacement experience, the strong recommendation is to use a consultant.
However, consultants are not cheap. It takes some time, money and effort to find the appropriate expert for your needs and then to set him/her up in the most effective way.
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