An incredible 80% of Fortune 500 companies rely on SharePoint, ranking it the third most popular mobile enterprise application.
Whether you’re a business or organization looking to upgrade your current intranet, or just getting started with one and need help finding the right solution, it’s important to choose the right SharePoint consultant. Taking time upfront to select a reliable partner provides an invaluable resource for meeting and exceeding your goals – from creating custom web part development capabilities to rolling out an effective enterprise-wide governance plan and more.
However, gathering proposals and researching quotes without a thorough understanding of what factors can make or break success can be daunting. So let us simplify the process for you by outlining five key considerations when selecting a SharePoint consultant that will navigate you through all stages of implementation with expertise.
Research The Consultant’s Experience
Looking for a consultant for your next project can be daunting so you need to do your homework on prospective SharePoint consultants.
Consider your work history and experience when evaluating your options. SharePoint consultants who have worked for an organization with a long history of 10+ years will be more likely to help you solve your SharePoint issues than someone who is just out of college. A more experienced consultant is also more likely to be able to help you with complementary areas such as the Microsoft 365 ecosystem or deliver value using other technologies, like the Microsoft Power Platform. Although hiring more experienced SharePoint consultants is more expensive initially, they will save you money and time in the end.
Also, look at consultants’ track record of success and don’t hesitate to ask for references. Try to find testimonials online so you gauge what your project might be like with a potential SharePoint consultant.
Proper Industry Knowledge
A SharePoint consultant should be aware of the latest developments in the technology, both in the short and long term. The list of features for SharePoint and Office 365 changes almost every month. Ask your consultant about scalability, and what professional future they see for the project you are working with.
Look for someone who can anticipate your needs and work proactively to address them, rather than just reactively dealing with issues as they arise.
Discuss Their Availability and Project Timeline
A consultant’s availability and project timeline can be crucial factors that will determine whether or not you want to hire them. You want a consultant who is available and has a realistic timeline for completing the project. This will ensure that the consultant can start working on your project quickly and devote the necessary time and attention to it. A consultant who has limited availability or an unrealistic project timeline may lead to delays and frustration for both the consultant and the client.
Fee Structure and Payment Schedule
Many SharePoint consulting firms charge an hourly rate. This is a great deal for consultants but can be expensive for clients (especially non-profits or smaller organizations). It’s not a matter of right or wrong, but more a question of preference or business practice. Please ensure that whatever arrangement you choose, you are also in agreement with certain project deliverables and schedules.
Today’s hybrid workplace allows you to work with people from all over the world. There are advantages to working with consultants in the same time zone and location. Meetings can be scheduled more easily and work can be completed when it is urgent. A SharePoint consultant who is located near you can also meet with you to get some face-to-face time or become an extension of your team.
Assess Their Communication Style
In any collaborative effort, effective communication is crucial. It can mean the difference between a project succeeding or falling flat. That’s why assessing the communication style of your team members is so important. Good collaboration depends on understanding each other’s strengths and weaknesses, as well as any potential communication barriers.
By taking the time to evaluate your team’s communication style, you’ll be better equipped to create a framework that addresses their individual needs and supports effective collaboration. Remember, an investment in better communication is an investment in the success of your project.
When deciding on a SharePoint consultant for your business, it is essential to consider all aspects of the role. You need to do your research and ensure that the consultant you select has a strong understanding of SharePoint to ensure your business needs are met.
Make sure you understand their background and qualifications, ask for references from clients who have worked with them before, and discuss their availability and project timeline with them as well as assess their communication style. With careful consideration taken for each aspect discussed here, you can be sure to select a great SharePoint consultant that will be able to meet the needs of your business with accuracy.