Streamlining Your Project Management Process: A Guide For Consultants
Consultancy is a fast-growing and lucrative market that spans almost every niche in the corporate world. As such, more and more people are entering into the world of consultancy. Consulting is one of a selection of markets to have grown throughout 2021 despite the pandemic and the other challenges that businesses have faced.
Establishing yourself as an experienced consultant in your chosen market can be an enticing experience for any industry expert.However, like any business, if you want to succeed in consulting, you need to provide a high-quality and efficient service.
This can be difficult, particularly when you’re juggling multiple projects. As your consulting agency grows, you might find yourself dealing with several clients and working on a variety of different assignments for each one.
No matter how busy you are, your clients will still expect and demand a high standard of service, so you need to make sure that you’re able to provide it. While there are consultants from almost every sector in the business landscape, they all need to be providing an efficient and effective service.
If you’re one of them, then you need to learn the basics of project management and create an approach that will benefit your clients and save your precious time. Want to find out more about streamlining your project management process and optimising your business?
Keep reading, and we’ll share some practical tips for consultants looking to save time and effort while still delivering the exceptional service your clients rely on.
Get all the information for the brief in one go
The brief is the most important document for any project that a consultant undertakes. It will inform your work, and if it doesn’t include the information that you need, then you might find that you end up making a lot of changes or not providing the results that the client expects. Depending on your niche, you might need specific information from your client, so you need to make sure that they provide everything you require at the beginning. To reduce the back and forth that you have to do at the start of the project, you should consider using a project intake form. Service Provider Pro offers a customisable solution that you can put together to save you time when onboarding new clients and make the process smoother and more efficient.
Create a process for every project
Each project is unique, so it’s understandable that your approach will probably be different for every piece of work you complete. That being said, you still need to create a rough process that allows you to reduce human error and ensure that every project you undertake is given the correct amount of attention. So, even if you don’t feel that you need a process, you should create one to reduce your chances of overlooking something or forgetting to provide a vital part of the project to your client.
Write email templates for each stage of the process
Once you’ve created a basic outline of your process, you can consider writing some email templates for specific sections. While your project intake is already taken care of with a personalised form, you might also need to send over contracts, payment details, and other information during the onboarding process. Later in the process, you’ll need to discuss any questions you might have and eventually deliver the project to your client and make changes for them as required. Some of these messages can be made into templates so that you don’t have to keep typing out the same information again and again. You can then adjust these templates as required and tailor them to meet the needs of specific clients and projects.
Find cutting-edge ways to automate time-consuming tasks
Automation is a great way to make your business more efficient while at the same time ensuring that you remain effective and able to deliver your services. Many small, repetitive tasks, such as data entry, can easily be automated if you choose the right tools. There are plenty of apps and software products designed to automate duties for consultants and make their lives easier, so explore all the options to find one that will work for you. These automations can save your team time, but they often cost to implement and if you don’t use them correctly then they can cause more harm than good to your consultancy business. As such, it’s vital that you do your research and find the perfect automated software tools to save you time as you provide your clients with the consultancy support they need.
Keep adapting your process as your consultancy business grows
As your consultancy company grows, you might find that you need to adapt your project management process. For example, if you hire more staff, then you might need to spread out the work among them and give them each specific parts of the process to manage. As part of this change, you might need to add sections into your process to check their work, at least when they initially start working with you. Alternatively, you could adjust the process to allow multiple people to work on it at once. Also, if your business starts offering new services, then you’ll need to incorporate these into your project management process or create a new one. Whatever changes you make to your consulting agency, you need to make sure that your process remains fit for purpose. That means that you might have to adjust your process over time. Keep reviewing your project management process and checking that it still works for both you and your clients. Being adaptable will ensure that you are always able to meet the needs of your clients, even as your business grows and diversifies.
Every consultancy business is unique, and as a result, each one will need a bespoke project management process. These tips should help you to find inspiration and get you started on creating the perfect approach to project management.