How To Choose
RIGHT IT consulting FIRM


Freshcode Guide


HOW TO CHOOSE RIGHT
IT CONSULTING FIRM


FRESHCODE GUIDE

BUSINESS
ARTEM BARMIN
Co-founder at Freshcode
ALEXANDRA LOZOVYUK
Content writer at Freshcode

Your team may do a stellar job, but if your business tools are old or don't work well, it ultimately leads to a negative impact.

This is where IT consulting services come into play.

In this post we will explain:

  • what is IT consulting and what does it include
  • main advantages of hiring an external IT consulting company
  • hints and tips on how to choose the right IT consulting partner

1. IT Consulting Is More Than Giving Advice

According to Statista, spending on IT services is expected to amount to around USD 1.2 trillion globally by the end of 2021. This is 9.8 % more than the previous year, and it's one more argument in favor of the fact that IT services are one of the fastest-growing IT industry segments in terms of year-over-year growth.

From fledgling startups to Fortune 500 giants, companies of all sizes use IT consulting services, and the demand continues to grow. New technologies and business models are introduced and businesses seek advantages to get ahead of the competition.

Your team may do a stellar job, but if your business tools are inefficient or don't work well, it ultimately leads to a negative impact. Here is where IT consulting comes into play.
Information technology (IT) consulting services are advisory services that help clients assess different technology strategies and, in doing so, align their technology strategies with their business or process ones.

These services support customers' IT initiatives by providing strategic, operational, architectural, and implementation planning.
Let's focus on types of planning in accordance with Gartner IT Glossary.
    Strategic planning
    Assessing client's IT needs
    Creating system implementation plans
    Architecture planning
    Architectural design decisions
    Supporting infrastructure to meet customer requirements
    Benchmarking
    Assessing the operational efficiency of the IT environment
    Сapacity utilization rate
    Implementation planning
    Testing
    Rollout & deployment

    2. Why Are Consulting Sessions Valuable?

    what is it consulting
    IT consulting is meant to help companies achieve greater success through suitable technologies, intelligent use of data, and deep insight into their business goals.

    In this block, we've briefly described
    some types of IT consulting services.
      Software ideation
        • Eliciting and prioritizing client's business pains and needs
        • Creating a software requirements specification
        • Building an MVP
        Project design
          • Creating a business case and ROI improvement strategy
          • Preparing time and cost estimation of the project
          • Creating a risk mitigation plan
          Software architecture design
            • Designing software architecture with a focus on scalability and performance
            Software integration
              • Making software products interoperable and compatible with other business solutions via integrations implementation
              Software cybersecurity & compliance
                • Security and compliance requirements engineering
                • Penetration testing
                • Training on security vulnerabilities
                Maintenance and support
                  • Software maintenance and troubleshooting, including issues on the code and database level
                  IT consulting is not only the best solution for non-tech-savvy businesses.

                  Two heads are better than one. A trusted IT consulting partner is kind of a guard for your business — it gives you an outside take on your operations, helps to focus on your core business functions, and, finally, reduces risks. As well as it provides:
                    Increased development capacity
                    Cost and time efficiency
                    Broadening the range of digital tools and business solutions
                    Market mapping and competitive landscape analysis
                    List with a pool of companies regarding the collaboration opportunities

                    Solve the IT pain points in your business with Freshcode

                    3. What Are The Best Questions to Ask IT Consultant

                    Have you decided your business finally needs an IT consultant? First, get referrals for IT consulting firms from colleagues, business partners, and social media connections. Determine what issue you need help with, is it a short-term or ongoing concern; what is a general range for your budget.

                    Here is a checklist of questions for IT consulting companies you can use:

                    • How much experience does the company have in general?
                    • How much experience do they have with your domain?
                    • Have they worked on similar projects/systems/software before?
                    • What industry certifications do they have, and how up-to-date are those?
                    • Are they vendor-authorized? (is a team trained to meet a specific vendor's standards)
                    • Who will be you be working with — a consultant, a business analytic, or a technical specialist?
                    • Are they fluent in the language you speak?
                    • How often will the consultant meet with you, and what channels do they use?
                    • Do they provide training for you and your team after new technology is introduced?
                    • What are the payment terms?
                    • How are the fees set (hourly, per project, etc.)?
                    • How are unforeseen costs handled and billed?
                    • Do they have liability insurance? What guarantees do they provide? How are you compensated if the last are not met?
                    • How do they respond to emergencies?

                    Pay attention to how much time the IT consulting firm representatives spent on the response. How quick and thoughtful are these responses? Is this company proactive? (not to be confused with annoying!)

                    In good communication we trust. Firstly, it's about:
                      1
                      Mutual understanding
                      2
                      Client's data safe & security
                      3
                      Passion for technology and business management

                      4. Where To Look For IT Consulting Company and how to choose

                      The client is always looking for a trustworthу service provider who can provide a fully-fledged IT consulting process.

                      Where to entrust your product development is particularly important due to differences in several aspects. Let's highlight them briefly.

                      RESEARCH

                      Based on the goals you have in place already, then you research to discover IT consulting agencies that fit your plans and budget the best.

                      Where to look for the best IT consulting firm and how not to be mistaken?
                        how to find an IT consulting firm

                        The most popular searching channels are:

                        When the shortlist of ≈10 consulting companies is ready, you can switch to the process of optimizing your list and carry out the 'filtering' of applicants. There are some main criteria you should note:
                        Company size
                        This factor often impacts the cost rate regulation based on the range of specialists and their rate of employment.
                        Location
                        Despite globalization and multiculturalism factors, location still matters. It relates to such crucial factors as time zone, language barriers, and cultural orientation.
                          Domain Expertise
                          IT companies with knowledge in specific areas (FinTech, EdTech, Real Estate, etc.) know about real-life challenges you can face from personal experience
                          Agility and Versatility
                          Being versatile implies being an IT multi-instrumentalist who can provide IT consulting involving a wide range of services.
                          Why Are Ukrainian Software Development Companies Worth Trying?
                          There are a number of reasons

                          EVALUATE

                          Once you have found consulting agencies that match your requirements, the next step is to evaluate them.

                          1) Reviews. Get insides about the consulting company's previous partnership. Check independent ratings and reviews on such platforms as Clutch.co, GoodFirms, etc. With the mentioned sources, you'll get useful information about the firm's relationship with clients, its attention to detail, and its expertise.
                            Freshcode

                            2) Team members. Since you are looking for a whole IT consulting company, you should have complex information on the members of the team. How skilled they are? Are there specialists with experience in your business domain? What kind of experts are available? Apart from devs, do they also have engineers, DevOps, business analysts?

                              3) Portfolio. An extra step of reaching out to the company's successful projects can give you detailed information about its skills and expertise. At this point, you should be looking to ensure that the IT firm has consulted a similar company to yours.
                                User case

                                4) Infrastructure. One of the core benefits of IT consulting services comes from the lack of needed infrastructure. Therefore, it only makes sense that your consulting partner has all the required infrastructure that your business lacks.

                                  GET IN TOUCH

                                  After researching consulting agencies you prefer, the next step would be to have a physical meeting or a video call.

                                  The aim is to understand the company's work conditions and agree on the most crucial details, including:

                                  • Necessary clarifications regarding tech background
                                  • Rough cost estimation
                                  • Rough time estimation
                                  • Failure response

                                    5. From Consulting To Collaboration — Freshcode Case

                                    From day-to-day management to top-level support, Freshcode is on-hand to help, working towards your business improvement.

                                        We want to share a story about our collaboration with HiRasmus, the digital platform providing access to specialized medical care via eConsultation.

                                        Our partnership started as consulting, which subsequently developed into a comprehensive collaboration.
                                            HIPAA compliant app development


                                            Here are the main reasons why the client needed an IT consultant to solve his business challenges.
                                                Client's business pain points
                                                = reasons for searching IT consultant
                                                1
                                                Lack of seed-stage funding to outsource the project
                                                2
                                                Lack of experience with Vue.js
                                                3
                                                Need to conduct code review constantly

                                                We handled consulting service in the following communication channels:


                                                Over time, the project has expanded and grown. Together we drew up a business plan that helped get funding and bring on new business partners. Today HiRasmus is a HIPAA-compliant app that provides access to the leading autism treatment programs and specialists for children.

                                                For 7 years now Freshcode has been helping organizations to improve and modernize their IT strategies. Some of our IT experts have worked in the industry for over 15 years. This has allowed us to craft a profitable approach to IT consulting that enables us to deliver maximum benefits in the shortest possible time.
                                                    it consulting services
                                                    Click on the image to enlarge

                                                    6. TAKEAWAY

                                                    Today is the best time to reevaluate your existing business tools and replace outdated and inefficient ones.

                                                    A professional IT consulting company should be a multifunctional and 'full-stack' partner providing the right services at the right time for the partners' product growth.

                                                    We at Freshcode are ready to enrich your workflow and improve productivity with digital technologies, delivering greater business results. Our team provides a full-service package of assistance for IT projects – we plan, design, implement and continuously support technology-powered solutions.

                                                    Do you want to discover more digital solutions for your business as well as ways to implement them through consulting services?

                                                    The Freshcode team is ready to help and discuss all possible opportunities in confidence. Book a free consultation here.

                                                    7. FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

                                                    What are IT consulting services?
                                                    IT consulting includes a wide ring of services, from the advisory stage to the implementation of a strategy of leveraging the suitable technologies for positive business line modification:

                                                    • Software ideation
                                                    • Project design
                                                    • Software architecture design
                                                    • Software integration
                                                    • Software cybersecurity & compliance
                                                    • Maintenance and support
                                                      Why do you need IT consulting?
                                                      Impactful IT consulting rely on cooperation between the client and the IT firm. These services help businesses to

                                                      • implement tech strategies and market solutions to achieve business-IT alignment
                                                      • drive max value from the current initiatives
                                                      • boost profit

                                                      Decade-long expertise of IT consulting partner and deep tech background allow you to create a comprehensive IT strategy.
                                                      Is IT consultations free?
                                                      Initial IT consultation with a Freshcode representative helps a potential client to gain a better understanding of his/her IT needs and details about the collaboration with our company.

                                                      The first conversation is free and allows you to get basic recommendations of how to solve your business challenges.

                                                      To know the price of customized IT consulting and outsourcing services provided by Freshcode, please, contact us.
                                                      What happens after you fill this form?
                                                      • Our representative will contact you within one business day

                                                      • We sign an NDA to keep your ideas confidential

                                                      • You share essential requirements with us

                                                      • Our analysts and developers estimate the budget and timeline
                                                      Shall we discuss your idea?
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