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Great relationships matter: How consultancy lays the foundations for success and reduces risk

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Sometimes it feels like good sense to just get on with the task at hand. Too much input causes concerns for IT managers who are keen to roll out new projects quickly. However, great relationships with external parties can help your business make quick progress – and the right consultancy can lay the foundations for project success and risk reduction.

Rather than being an additional and potentially expensive layer of advice, cost effective consultancy is critical to the planning and preparation stage of an IT project. As we will see below, a great consulting partner reduces manageable risk, enables a clear understanding of project requirements and helps identify potential pitfalls in advance.

Reducing manageable risk

Great relationships matter - How consultancy lays the foundations for success and reduces risk-Body Text ImageModern IT management is all about successful business outcomes. In the past, IT managers might have purchased technology and hoped the organisation could make the most of the technology. Today, technology chiefs must find ways to make the most of systems and services across a broad range of business areas. They must find ways to manage IT and reduce the risk of project failure.

This is where consultancy is key. External experts can draw on deep knowledge to help your business create IT-enabled change. It is a sentiment recognised by researcher IDC, who suggests consulting services can help technology departments deliver the digital transformation their businesses crave.

However, CIOs also need more flexibility than is offered through traditional consultancy arrangements. Technology Business Research says IT directors are looking for tailored consultancy arrangements, rather than one-size-fits all services deals. They want bespoke services that offer extras around key concerns, like integration, implementation and on-going management.

Enabling a clear understanding of project requirements

The clamour for flexibility means businesses are shifting from traditional IT service contracts to ‘as-a-service’ cloud models. That shift produced a 4.7 per cent year-on-year decline in IT outsourcing between 2014 and 2015, according to Technology Business Research. What your business requires is a full and flexible suite of consulting and project services from concept to completion.

Access to the right knowledge, methodologies and tools will mean your business can approach new investments with more confidence. Take a key area like software-defined networking. Industry experts believe SDN will help businesses use their hardware resources more efficiently and effectively. IDC recognises the power, but says big businesses need help in order to make the most of SDN.

The researcher suggests a consultancy-led approach will be crucial. IDC says businesses will need to work with a services partner who helps push SDN to the centre of IT strategy. The right services firm will understand the business intimately and posses the certifications to help CIOs use SDN to their advantage.

Identifying potential pitfalls in advance

Not all IT projects, of course, will be an instant success. Planning and preparation are absolutely crucial. CIOs looking to make the most of consultancy in an on-demand era must find a partner that has a proven reference library, with the experience of great approaches and evidence of successful business outcomes.

Your business might face a specific case scenario, where your consultancy partner can help you focus on the priority projects. Drawing on experience, your consulting partner can help you understand requirements, assess capabilities and establish scope.

The great news is that, across all areas of business IT, a trusted consulting partner can help you create the foundations for success. Great relationships really matter in modern business – and your consultant should work as part of your team, helping your organisation deliver great business outcomes.

If you would like to learn more about how Dell approaches Consultancy to lays the foundations for success and reduce risk, please either click here or contact your Dell sales representative.


Mark Samuels

Mark Samuels

Mark Samuels is a business journalist specialising in IT leadership issues. Formerly editor at CIO Connect and features editor of Computing, he has written for various organisations, including the Economist Intelligence Unit, Guardian Government Computing and Times Higher Education. Mark is also a contributor for CloudPro, ZDNetUK, TechRepublic, ITPro, Computer Weekly, CBR, Financial Director, Accountancy Age, Educause, Inform and CIONET. Mark has extensive experience in writing on the topic of how CIO’s use and adopt technology in business.

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