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Calling for Reinforcements: When, Why & How to Work with Technology Consultants. Trainer: Emily Bancroft NPower www.npower.org. Session Objectives. At the end of this session you will: Be able to decide when a consultant will be useful to your organization

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calling for reinforcements when why how to work with technology consultants

Calling for Reinforcements: When, Why & How to Work with Technology Consultants

Trainer: Emily Bancroft

NPower

www.npower.org

session objectives
Session Objectives
  • At the end of this session you will:
  • Be able to decide when a consultant will be useful to your organization
  • Be familiar with the recommended process for engaging with a subject area expert
  • Understand how to use a RFP to jumpstart your search for a consultant and to define your own project needs
  • Understand your rights and responsibilities, and those of a consultant, in any technology consulting engagement
  • Know how to distinguish volunteer opportunities from paid consulting opportunities
how strongly do you agree with the following statements
How strongly do you agree with the following statements?
  • I feel comfortable articulating my technology needs to someone technical.
  • I believe my organization follows a sound process for choosing the right technology expert to help meet our needs.
situations when consultants are useful
Situations when Consultants are Useful
  • What are some situations when a technology consultant is useful?
    • Don’t have the time of expertise in house
    • Needed a third party to mediate and make progress
    • Tried ourselves and were not successful
    • Wanted an outside perspective
    • Needed confirmation that we were on the right track
slide5
Even though you have decided to use a consultant or volunteer for a project, you still have a lot of work to do . . .
  • What are some of the things that you can do to prepare your organization for a successful engagement with a consultant?
define your project needs
Define your Project & Needs
  • No one knows your needs better than you. Don’t leave project definition up to a consultant.
  • Process Mapping
    • Definition of process mapping
    • When do you use process mapping?
  • Brainstorm ideal qualities of a consultant
  • Understand your responsibilities
process for engaging consultants
Process for Engaging Consultants
  • Write a request for proposal
    • Benefits and challenges
    • Components
    • Types of projects
  • Interview consultants
    • Prep your team
    • Know what you are looking for
  • Create a scope of work
    • Agreement of timeline, budget, and deliverables in writing
    • Review and joint sign off
  • Close the project
    • Documentation
    • Final meeting
using volunteers
Using Volunteers
  • What project characteristics should you consider when deciding whether to engage a volunteer or a consultant?
      • Length of time of engagement
      • Importance to mission
      • Urgency
      • Scope of project
      • Time commitment
      • Follow-up needed
  • What technology project on your priority list might make a good volunteer project? Why?
final tips resources
Final Tips & Resources
  • Remember that you are in charge!
  • Visit TechSoup (www.techsoup.org) for articles and how-to’s that will help you define and manage projects
  • Follow the process for engaging consultants, even if you are working with a volunteer
  • Refer to the other resources in your handouts for assistance