Today on Dilbert, Scott Adams uses Dogbert to effectively illustrate what happens when you use a Walmart consultant.
What you have to remember with consultants is that you get what you pay for. If you pay a cut rate, you get a job with corners cut, as illustrated today in Overboard …
… and you get the pleasure of the consultant blaming you for their incompetence!
When hiring a consultant, it’s important to remember that it’s all about the value they can deliver, directly or indirectly. For example, a consultant with the skills and to help you devise a new business strategy that ends up increasing your sales by 30% is worth his weight in platinum. You should gladly fork over a few thousand a day for that kind of expertise as it will end up netting your company millions in the long run. A consultant who can help you select the right optimization or data analysis system for your business that can help it save an average of 10% on corporate buys is worth her weight in tantalum. And a technical resource who can adhere to a schedule and get the job done right the first time is worth his weight in gold — and it still amazes me that in 2010 the vast majority of companies haven’t figured this out! Everyday I hear another example of a company that went with the lowest bid and either got a system that didn’t work (and had to be scrapped) or, after exceeding the schedule and budget by 50% to 150% got a system that only did most of what it was supposed to do and required timely, and costly, manual workarounds. So, instead of paying 30% more for skilled resources who could do the job right the first time within the quoted timeframe and budget, the company spent 50% to 150% more for unskilled resources who delivered a shoddy product with a higher operational cost.
So stop hiring Walmart consultants, especially when, all things considered, Expert Advice is Cheap!