What Do Document Management Consultants Ask?

Document management systems can range from small to enterprise content management systems. There are a number of common issues that are involved in managing documents, whether the system is an ad-hoc, paper-based method for one person or a formal, structured, computer enhanced system for thousands of people across multiple offices and countries.

Document Management Consultants provide a range of document and information management solutions and services that help companies to more efficiently manage their company documentation and business data.

A document management system (DMS) is a system used to track and store electronic documents and images of paper documents. Document management consulting will advise on systems which can provide capabilities such as; Metadata, Integration, Capture, Indexing, Storage, Retrieval, Distribution, Security, Workflow and Collaboration.

A document management consultant will typically address the following areas asking these types of questions:

1) Where will we keep our documents?

2) How much can we spend to store them?

1) How can people find needed documents?

2) How much time can be spent looking for them?

1) How do we organise our documents?

2) How do we ensure documents are filed appropriately?

1) How do we protect against the loss, tampering or destruction of documents?

2) How do we keep sensitive information hidden?

1) How do we ensure the readability of documents in the future?

2) How can we protect our documents against fires, floods or natural disasters?

1) How do we decide what documents to retain?

2) How long should they be kept? How do we remove them afterwards?


1) How do we get documents into the hands of people who need them?

2) How much can we spend to distribute the documents?

If documents need to pass from one person to another, what are the workflow rules?

If more than one person is involved in creating a document, how will the people collaborate?

Document management solutions are becoming more common place and this provides a superb niche for anyone with the knowledge and desire to become an independent document management consultant.

Consulting Logo Design & Branding Your Consulting Business

Every consulting company needs an attractive and eye catching logo design as a branding element. Your consulting identity need not be an exquisite piece of art – it can be a simple design that works well and gets your point across.

Why You Need a Custom Consulting Logo Design

To understand what constitutes an appropriate identity for your consulting business, we must first look at the purpose that is achieved by having a logo. A logo for your consulting business is an essential branding element because it can be instrumental in building the identity that you seek among potential clients and customers. Your logo should exude your company attitude, character, values, and skills. Those looking at your new identity must gain some knowledge about your company just from its design. But an effective design does much more. Your logo can help to foster a long lasting and positive impression about your company. When existing and potential clients see your new identity, the goal is that your company is immediately recognized. Logos can be that powerful!

When working with a designer, think of the most recognizable logos in the world, like McDonald’s Restaurants and Nike. When we see these, we instantly think of the product(s) that they represent and the company that makes these products. This is proof positive that your consulting logo, with the right design and delivery, can do the same for you, even if it is on a much smaller scale and you are a small firm just starting out!

Making a Strong Impression

How you can you be ensured that your consulting logo will pack the “punch” that is found with these infamous brands? The key to making a lasting impression and strong brand identification is to make certain that your design is memorable. Many companies make the mistake of assuming that a complicated and expensive design will ensure instant acceptance by the target market for their businesses. They could not be more wrong. Complicated logos have the opposite effect – becoming just cluttered images that the brain does not easily and readily recall.

Thinking Ahead When Designing Your Consulting Logo

You should also consider the possible places and items that will display your logo when you design it. You will likely use more than one medium to get your identity out there, and your design will be used to brand your efforts in the future. Be sure your designer knows of your plans for future growth. For example, perhaps you will be using your logo immediately for business cards and letterhead, but plan to add it to your company website or maybe in a direct mail piece. Make sure that the consulting logo design that you establish for your business can be easily used in any or all places that you might choose to use it now and in the future.

The Benefits of Using a Consultant

As a top solutions provider, the last thing you may be thinking of is hiring and working with a consultant yourself. But maybe you should move that item up higher on your priority list. Even though you’re the professional who works with your customers and vendors day in and day out, you can find value in some fresh insight.

If you are going to grow and prosper as a Super VAR, you must constantly replenish your own well of knowledge. Take the steps to learn from others – like sales strategists, marketing consultants, and business development professionals – and then apply that knowledge to creating and delivering innovative solutions for your customers. If you continue to offer the same ideas over and over again, eventually your customers are going to realize you don’t have much else to offer – the one-trick pony – and they will find someone who will.

Continuing to learn and stay at the forefront of ideas is key to continued success, and turning to some of the consultants you use on a regular basis is a great way to check the pulse of the economy and the world outside of your inner circle. You can begin a conversation about marketing ideas with a consultant and turn the conversation to his business. Wouldn’t it be interesting to find out what a marketing consultant is doing to grow his own business? What else could business and marketing consultants provide you? Do they give you great ideas that you don’t implement? If so, why not? Is it lack of time or resources? Or aren’t you buying into those ideas with the conviction you need to take the next step?

In today’s economy, most small business owners are splashing about in uncharted waters. They don’t have the ability to look at past successes and failures and then mirror future plans and strategies based on them. But what they do have is each other – and the knowledge from outside resources. What you may learn from one consultant could be tailored to work for your customers as well. Knowledge is power. Here are a few things to think about as you work with your own consultants and partners, in order to develop new ideas and solutions for your customers:

- Learn from professionals outside of your industry. Ask these pros what they’re doing to create new business and find new clients. For example, a marketing pro tells you she hosts a monthly breakfast for both her existing customers and then requests each one of those customers was to bring along a colleague. At the end of the breakfast – where she discusses a timely topic of interest to this group – she offers a white paper to the attendees which discusses the findings in-depth. In order to obtain this information, attendees must give their contact information, so they also become a part of the marketing pro’s growing list of leads on her e-newsletter permission-based subscription list. How can you do that with your customers? This one idea that came from someone outside of your industry can easily be applied to your world as well, allowing you to capture new leads and new business as the economy begins to recover.

- If someone gives you sound advice, take it and use it. Advice and ideas that come from someone outside of your world are sometimes even better than from within it. They offer a fresh view or different approach to a sometimes common problem. However, if a consultant is showing you multiple PowerPoint presentations and preaching to you why you should or could be doing something differently, ask for proof as to why it worked. Do they have first-hand knowledge with results to support the idea’s ROI? If a marketing person is recommending that you invest in a website, blog, and Facebook page, but doesn’t have one herself, you might want to find someone with more experience to guide you. On the other hand, if she is the king of social media, and has the platform to prove it, then listen closely and use the knowledge to your benefit!

In order to stay ahead of the competition today, you must continue to look for new ideas to build your business and your customer relationships. One way to do that is by tapping into the thought process of other business leaders and consultants who work outside of your field, and then applying that knowledge to your own constituency. Being a knowledge expert is extremely important. You must find ways to keep your bucket of knowledge full at all times.

Process Consulting – Understanding Consulting

Process consulting is one of the most invaluable but underused services in the field of business as more and more organizations feel that they don’t need a third party to solve their internal problems. This type of consulting is designed to enhanced group effectiveness, address conflict, and shorten meeting times. It aims to help teams to work together effectively so they can easily reach their pre-set goals.

Process consulting, when done correctly, can offer the following benefits to clients; better decisions, more productive but shorter meetings, increased participation or potency, and most importantly, greater satisfaction.

A process consultant does not intervene in a group in accomplishing its goals — that is not part of his job. He is usually called in to help groups in solving their problems with their members and concentrate on how the team works. He will come into play when there is conflict within the group that they cannot solve by themselves. An effective process consultant deeply understands conflict resolution, leadership development, and group dynamics. A process consultant is most useful during the stages of group development or when the group is either on its normative or formative stage.

When a group finds itself in conflict over values, facts, goals, and methods, the process consultant will help the group to reach a consensus over a particular conflict. This is to avoid unnecessary confrontation that can affect all the people involved.

A consultant usually does not participate in a group meeting instead, he acts as an observer. He observes group dynamics to easily figure out the various interpersonal relationships that can lead to conflict later on. He will be allowed to participate when the group is starting to take so much time and having a hard time reaching a decision. He will ask clarifying questions and eventually, offer his feedback and observations to the group.

If you want to sink your teeth into this endeavor, these are some requirements that you need to meet. For starter, you need to have a background in small group learning and a degree in psychology. Possessing analytic skills and experience in reading body language are also helpful. It will also work to your advantage if you have relevant trainings and relevant experiences.

Although this service industry is usually being ignored by business owners, you can still succeed in this endeavor if you know how to convince those few individuals who need such services to hire you.

Marketing Consulting Services – A Strategy to Be Used For Marketing?

Small and big companies nowadays heavily rely on marketing consulting services because they want to distinguish themselves from their competitors in order to gain advantages and, if possible, take the lead in the marketplace. Companies and agencies that offer such marketing consulting services look very promising especially if you access their Internet pages and see that they actually make huge pledges as to the success you are going to have once you hire them as consultants.

Indeed, for someone who has made the debut in business only recently, it seems like a good idea to have a specialist think the plans and strategies, doing market research, discovering ways to improve the provided service or product, coming up with enticing methods and techniques to promote the product, working on public relations and web page design. All kinds of similar assistance qualify as marketing consulting services.

Marketing consulting services can be hired online. Agencies and consultancy companies present their business offer on web sites and reach all sorts of customers who need some form of marketing advice or service via the Internet. To put it otherwise, this is their strategy of marketing the services that they themselves have to offer. Another strategy they use to attract customers is to answer any three questions coming from those likely to contract them for marketing consulting services.

When people come and ask questions, they will be more easily talked into getting a full consultancy service afterwards. You can imagine that their tactics include the fact that any site visitor is a potential customer and they would do their best to convince that particular potential customer that they are the ones he or she needs to help business grow.

The quality standards ought to remain high according to the agreement you sign for the marketing consultancy services, and should it be necessary, make sure to demand that your rights be respected. First and foremost, one needs to aim at improving business and overall marketing strategy together with improving the clients database and the profit margin. If the marketing consulting services you receive from a certain provider do not bring any results or if the results are insignificantly better, perhaps you ought to focus your attention on finding another company to help you with your business.

Deciphering The Secret of Internet Marketing Consulting in a Global Market

Even for those who know how to decipher the clues of the international market, tendencies are truly paradoxical and sometimes hard to predict. While not all real life businesses turn to marketing experts, there are few exceptions on the Internet that do not have serious Internet marketing counseling to back decisions, strategies and campaigns. To put it otherwise, 90% of the companies that operate on the virtual market, rely on expert advice to make profit and stay in business. Why is online marketing consulting so important? The growing need for good online business presence is rooted in the features and operational modes of search engines.

Based on a user’s query, search engines display the web pages that are the most relevant for the typed keywords. The presence in the search result pages is the one that matters most, hence, the tendency is to somehow get displayed on the first or second page. Internet marketing consulting is built on various techniques and methods whose implementation enhances the performance of the web page in searches. Good searches and more visitors equal a better profit. And the best way to prove it is to refer to search engine optimization. SEO represents one of the most common services provided as part of Internet marketing consulting.

The product or service a business promotes will be best defined by the features resumed in keywords or key phrases. These very relevant lexical associations are the words that any Internet user will type in the search box of a search engine. Internet marketing consulting will therefore start with identifying those exact terms that best define your domain of activity, which will eventually target the most significant of web users. Not only site content but ads or links are optimized too as part of a continuous process of monitoring a company’s performance online.

Internet marketing consulting represents a permanent necessity for a business that grows online, the virtual market is subject to sudden changes that can ruin or enhance the business opportunities. Internet marketing consulting facilitates the adaptation to the new standards, allowing the adjustment of methods, the switch of strategies, the reinvention of keywords and so on. Therefore, when you hire an Internet marketing consulting service, make sure it is for the long term, since the tasks performed by marketing professionals are unparalleled and vital for the existence and success of a company online.

So You Want to Be a Home Based Business Independent Consultant?

As someone who has made their living exclusively online and from home for many years, and now runs a global Internet marketing training service, I’ve run into my share of business owners who’ve needed consultations.

In fact, I was an independent certified webmaster for a significant company called SiteSell(TM).

In my capacity as an independent certified webmaster, which was a side gig for me, I consulted with dozens and dozens of individuals and small business owners who wanted to achieve more success online.

If you’re looking for a home based business independent consultant to help grow your company there are plenty of them out there.

If you’re looking to become one, there’s a large demand for your services.

Let’s take a quick look at each side.

First, from the business owner side (or wannabe business owner.)

What you need to do before you hire a consultant is get clear on what your objectives are. Don’t just say “I want to start a business from home, help me.”

Do some research first. Identify some of your interests and income goals. Is a business that you’re personally passionate about more important than income potential–or does the income potential come first?

Be honest. There is no right or wrong answer. Just preferences. Being clear will help your consultant help you.

There was nothing more frustrating for me than when I had a client who really had no clue what he was after. Those people rarely succeeded.

If you want to become an independent home based business consultant yourself, get ready to market your services well.

Have a plan of attack. How will you generate leads and referrals to keep the pipeline full? Trust me, you’re not going to want to take on every client who comes to you. Not even close.

What will you charge? What kind of work will you do?

I did actual hands on site building, keyword analysis, and helped boost a company’s web site conversions. I would typically charge $2,000 to $3,000 a month for my services part-time.

I no longer do this anymore, so I’m not selling you my services in this article. I’m telling you for informational purposes what the market will bear price wise.

My telephone consultation rates were $100 per hour. The Internet is still in its infancy and many individuals are willing to pay healthy fees for help in their home based business endeavors.

I decided to leave the consulting world because I believed that starting a training service and helping hundreds of people build financial freedom would be more satisfying than helping one client at a time who may or may not take my advice.

So I willingly left. That’s the luxury that financial freedom creates in your life. It gives you choices.

I could have continued doing what I was doing as a side gig. But it turns out I was correct. I am much more satisfied teaching people how to create lifetime income via affiliate marketing than I was as a consultant to individuals.

But you may feel differently. There is no such thing as one size fits all.

Naming a Consulting Company

With the economy on the skids, many experienced mid and upper level professionals are striking out on their own, leveraging their expertise to build their own future and control their own destiny. For many of these aspiring entrepreneurs, creating a compelling brand name is new territory, a complete and utter mystery. They know it’s an important part of the equation, and they may have even had a full time marketing department at their previous firm. But now it’s “do-it-yourself-time,” and there’s a dearth of information on how to brand a new consulting company successfully. Fear no more. The first step in branding a consulting company is to know your objectives. Here are four key questions to clarify your goals…

1. Do you want your company name to stand out, or fit in? This may seem like a trick question, but there is not a right or wrong answer. Some new consultants are so concerned with gaining acceptance in their industry, they are much more comfortable with a name that sounds established and credible, right from the outset. If that’s the case, try looking up a list of others in your industry on sites such as dmoz.org. You will then gain a sense of the nomenclature used in your field. You may be able to emulate the feel, much like other industries have done (i.e. Microsoft’s Outlook, Apple’s Safari, Netscape’s Navigator, etc.) If want to gain notice, then do just the opposite. Look at the company names in your field and use interpretive naming strategies. For example, if nearly everyone in your category uses proper names (sometimes known as “legacy” names) then go with a metaphor (i.e. Jaguar, Caterpillar, Amazon, Monster, etc.) to convey your company’s attributes. Or try positive connotation words to create an entirely new identity (i.e. RedHat, OnStar, FireDog, etc.) Just make sure you have a rationale that can explain why you chose that name, and one that leads to a deeper dialog about your company.

2. Have you explored all the possibilities? Frequently, new business owners become frustrated and discouraged when naming their new businesses, simply because they’ve attempted only one or two naming strategies. Many times they’ve created a list of literal/functional names, (i.e. Custom Software Consulting) only to find the domain names are gone. Or they’ve attempted some obvious metaphors (i.e. Summit, Pinnacle, etc.) and found dozens of companies with similar names. The trick is to employ several methods. These include…

* Key attributes — For an example, we named one staffing company BrightHire.com based on their desire to attract the most intelligent candidates. You can see this employed with company names such as SirSpeedy, EconoLodge, Priceline and Smart Cuts. Is there an overarching benefit you provide that you can incorporate into your name?

* Invented names — This is a favorite with consultants but proceed with caution. It’s easy to get caught up in with the chase of a new name and gradual twist the spelling and message until it’s unintelligible. It’s okay to use Latin word parts and obscure references if the name can still be spoken and spelled easily. Small firms have the advantage of conveying part of the brand message in person, over the phone, or at a trade conference. But don’t push it. If you find yourself having to constantly spell or correct the spelling, then it’s a miss. And keep in mind the name can be invented and still carry a sense of meaning. We named one company Claricent, because they were able to provide clear insight and direction to their client base. So you can still convey an attribute, even in an invented name. (i.e Verizon = Horizon, Agilent =Agile, etc.)

* Descriptive Hybrid Names — These names combine an industry descriptor word and marry it with an evocative word. Examples include companies such as Emisstar, consultants in the emissions control industry. Big brand examples include JetBlue and CarMax. If you use this approach, just be sure that your industry descriptor is one that won’t change over time.

* Metaphors — Since the proverbial “picture paints a thousand words”, then metaphors are a great way to convey multiple company attributes with a single image. FourBridges Capital, for example, expresses this investment banking firm’s ability to “bridge the gap” and “connect business with capital,” etc. With four major partners and four major bridges in Chattanooga, TN, the story gains even more traction.

3. Have you prioritized your wants? Starting a new consultancy provides a beautiful blank page upon which to craft your story. Take time to determine what is most important in that story.

* Do you want a name that’s memorable?
* Do you want a name that’s easy to say and spell?
* Are you most concerned with trademark?

* Are you adamant that to have the exact matching.com domain name? Figure out the key driver(s) behind your naming challenge, so that when you come down to a final list, you can look back and pick the one that meets your top criteria. Often the process can get foggy and unfocused after a prolonged search for a name, and all the words start sounding alike. So be sure you know what you want before you begin. That way it will help you when it’s 3 a.m., your eyes start to cross, and your spouse no longer wants to be your sounding board.

4. Are you seeing the big picture? — Create a short list of your favorite names, and then test them out. Make sure you choose people who are either in your potential market, or who understand good branding. Rather than randomly tossing names around, create some context for each name, so that when the name is said, it falls into place. You may even want to invest in some quick logo treatments to help visualize the brand. Many major brand names would ring hallow if only spoken. Judge the whole package… name, rough tagline, sketch of logo, to get the real feel. A consulting name such as BearingPoint gains traction once it has a logo, tag line, and a story line. Decide if you want to fit in or stand out, utilize multiple naming strategies, prioritize your “wants” list, and test your ideas, and you’ll be well on your way to a great consulting company brand name. Once you make your selection, be sure to run it by your trademark attorney and to acquire the matching, or closely matching, com domain name. Continue to integrate your brand message throughout your web site, corporate identity, collateral materials and advertising to further strengthen your presence. If done properly, you will have a company name that serves you well, both now and for years to come.

Outsource My IT Department: 5 Ways To Know You Can Trust Outside IT Consultants

In today’s technologically-advanced world, companies have to face many different kinds of challenges due the ever-changing and dynamically-challenging environment that surrounds them.

One of the most important items that companies need to watch out for is connectivity and greater speed. These hold much significance in the success of a business. IT has become an integral part of a business to achieve that connectivity and speed. In case your firm is currently unable to meet the dynamic IT requirements of the present business world, then you may benefit from outsourcing your IT department and hiring outside IT consultants.

These days, many business owners fear this because the IT department holds many different kinds of confidential files and secrets of a firm. In other words, data security is paramount. Nevertheless, there are a lot of reliable and trustworthy IT consultants out there who take pride in their business and respect your privacy.

Here are 5 ways to know that you can trust an outside IT consultant:

1. Check out their history

Before you hire any consultancy firm or plan on outsourcing your IT department you should be well aware of the firm, how they began, what services they are offering and what kind of experience do they hold. Once you get to know about their history you will have a clearer view of whether or not they are the perfect choice for your company.

You would obviously want to hire IT consultants who have been in business with quite an experience and understand the changing requirements of the internet technology.

2. Request a client list

Checking for their clients will serve you as their testimonials only it will be better than checking out the testimonials. You will have an idea what kind of companies your prospective IT consultants have been working for and what fruits have their services brought into the businesses of their clients. Client satisfaction actually reflects the reliability and trustworthiness of a company. In addition, at times their client company might turn out to be your greatest competitor and hence, you would know who you are hiring. At other times, you can consult with their clients and ask for their feedback before you hire the consultant.

3. Check out their technology

Technological improvements are being brought into this ever progressing world at highly fast speed and if you want your firm not just to compete with these technological changes but also meet them face on then you should most definitely make sure that the firm you are hiring as your IT consultants use up to date and state-of-the-art technology in providing the solutions for your success.

4. Checking their products and services

This is another important aspect as it provides you a clear view as to if they actually provide what you are looking for. If you feel that the firm you plan to hire as your IT consultants provides the kinds of products and services that will help you in improving the efficiency of your business then they are the right choice for you.

5. Communication

This is perhaps, one of the most important tools. Communicate your needs and requirements and see where things go.

Internet Business Consultant – Can it Help Your Online Business?

Although many entrepreneurs have made their fortunes through e-commerce, setting up business on the web has no guarantee of success. Building an online business can be very demanding and frustrating as the competition in the world of e-commerce is increased. A lot of companies have plunged unprepared into e-business only to discover that there is more to it than merely develop a website and waiting for the orders to start pouring in.

Having a website brimming with catchy photographs of products is only the very tip of the iceberg. You have to be able to generate traffic and lead qualified prospects to your website. This could be a very difficult task as you need the source of past, present, and future customers. And this where an experienced internet business consultant can help you.

Simply put, an internet business consultant is a trustworthy organization or group that provides ways and formulas to help you increase your visibility and profit online. Nevertheless, many people still wondering, how internet business consultant accomplishes such difficult task.

Basically, the internet business consultant will take a look at your company site as a whole and try to get a clear understanding of where your company wants to be. Once they get the clear picture, they will come up with the plan to get you there. It is not rare that the consultant recommend some changes on current copy, graphic, and structure of the site in order to permit better usability for the customers.

In several occasion, the consultant will also provide special training if there is a need for that. Depending on your company’s need and request there might be some training on article marketing, design and graphics for the web, or even training on profitable pay per click campaign

One of the objective indicators that can be used to measure the success of your internet business consultant is their ability to do well in search engine optimization (SEO). They should be able to put together an effective SEO campaign that will position your company in the marketplace uniquely. By giving the right solutions to the problems faced by customers, a good internet business consultant should be able to position you as an expert in your field.

In conclusion, choosing a credible internet business consultant is a key to your company’s online success. Not only accelerating the exposure of your business faster, a stable working relationship between you and your consultant will also result on more targeted prospects in your website, and benefiting both parties for years to come.