Should You Hire an Enterprise IT Architect?

Should You Hire an Enterprise IT Architect?

Information technology (IT) is a crucial component of any enterprise, as it touches every digital aspect of a company ranging from computer systems to payment processing. Various software tools and know-how are needed to keep IT architecture operational, whether using in-house staff or outsourced managed IT services. However, enterprise resource planning software (ERP) is not only expensive to integrate but often has monthly per-user fees attached to them. That can cause expenses to escalate.

Trimming IT costs by just 1-2% can translate to high annual savings. On average, businesses spend around 4-6% of their revenue on IT. The smaller the company, the higher the yearly costs are compared to its revenue. That is further varied by industry, as retail can be as low as 1.2%, while financial services can reach over 11.4%.

With many long-standing businesses having more mature IT architecture, it’s made it challenging to reduce IT costs. Part of that difficulty is finding ways to streamline the workflow and reduce unnecessary monthly-paid services. That has created a need for more experienced specialists, like enterprise IT architects, to provide input into improving established systems and reducing spending wastage.

What Is an Enterprise IT Architect?

An enterprise IT architect supports and guides a business’s most difficult technology systems. They take a high-level view, looking at how everything from hardware to software interacts with each other and the employees using them. Enterprises often have more complicated infrastructure than a standard business structure, requiring a deeper understanding of IT and business strategy. Due to the higher needs and expectations, enterprise architects are more skilled and experienced than typical IT specialists.

What Does an Enterprise IT Architect Do?

An enterprise is built around the products or services they offer, making its IT similarly focused on enhancing its business flow. Enterprise IT architects look at the technical and business elements, allowing them to have a broader insight into the most beneficial changes. That guidance is centered on the needs and goals of the company.

Technology is constantly changing, making IT systems that were once competitive become outdated and burdensome if not properly maintained. Outdated technology alone can cost employers almost $4,000 per year for each full-time employee. Extra productivity can be lost in other areas, too, like poorly implemented or inefficient systems.

An enterprise architect will stay informed about the latest trends and understand what adjustments can benefit each business individually. Since ERP software can be involved with many processes, they also must know how it’s used and what impact any changes might have.

Due to their involvement with the business and IT functions, enterprise architects also participate in technical discussions and IT staff usage. Even when outsourcing, they’re expected to take a leading role on assigned projects. That means understanding the solutions, the implementation, the problems being solved, and clearly communicating that information to anyone who needs it.

How Much Do They Cost to Hire?

The cost can vary depending on various factors, though they’re paid more than most IT specialists due to the higher level of guidance they provide. Below are some of the factors to consider before reaching out to one for a quote.

  • Region or city size
  • Type of industry
  • IT complexity
  • Years of experience
  • Staff required
  • Length of the project
  • Impact on revenue
  • Staff training

With that in mind, the smaller and more manageable the task, the cheaper it will be. With large-scale IT overhauls, they’ll be more expensive and involve more staff, but they can also have more of a positive impact. Higher cost of living areas can also influence the baseline pricing. An experienced IT architect may also charge a higher rate, but they’ll bring a greater level of services and knowledge.

When Is One Worth Using?

Hiring an enterprise IT architect depends primarily on three factors: the size of the business, the industry they’re in, and the status of the IT infrastructure. Hiring a consultant or having an assessment done can help with those determinations. Some IT architects will provide those services as part of the price quoting process.

Different industries rely on IT in varying amounts, with the tech industry itself being the second largest contributor to the US economy at 10.5% of the total GDP. Some enterprises may not have as much flexibility if they have strict internal guidelines, minimal technology usage, or plan to maintain outdated systems. Other industries may get a higher return on investment (ROI) by prioritizing their IT before shifting to other aspects.

The main reason to hire one is when the improvement is greater than the time and cost. A common area of change is cloud services. As recently as 2019, non-cloud & dedicated infrastructure held over 50% of the market share. By 2025 it’s expected to drop to 33.9%, with cloud & dedicated and cloud & shared systems projected to overtake it.

Benefits from changes can come in many forms, whether it’s increasing productivity, reducing costs, overhauling systems, or indirectly supporting other business areas. While most infrastructure can be improved no matter how well established it is, whether the ROI is worth it varies case by case.

How Can You Get the Most Out of Hiring One?

Be prepared before contacting them. It can be helpful to prepare a quick overview of the software installed, staff usage statistics, what issues they run into, areas they would like to see improvement in, and other related topics. Having information gathered ahead of time will save time for both the company and the IT architect, allowing them to move to the next phase quicker and reduce the overall cost of service.

Closing

With matured IT systems and complex interactions, enterprises have demanding IT needs. An enterprise IT architect can guide companies through most challenges, giving a level of support and leadership not always offered by other IT specialists. They can improve established infrastructure, overhaul old systems, and provide new solutions. That is done with industry experience, knowledge of the latest trends, and client partnerships.

Even with all the benefits of hiring an enterprise IT architect, finding the right person and business to partner with can take time. The longer a business waits to fix its IT issues, the more revenue and productivity can be lost over time. Third-party companies like ITonDemand have specialists who can provide high-level IT guidance, along with the staff and resources to install proven solutions. For enterprises who want to improve their IT from top to bottom, hiring an enterprise IT architect is well worth the cost.

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Everything You Need to Know About IT Consulting

Everything You Need to Know About IT Consulting

Information Technology (IT) is an integral part of any business, making IT consulting a valuable tool to support it. As more companies embrace technological innovations, Global IT spending is expected to reach $4.5 trillion in 2022. Not only is the industry growing, but new software, applications, and devices are reaching the market ongoing. With this trend expected to continue, IT consultants have become essential to keep pace with these changes.

Administering an in-house IT staff is both expensive and time-consuming. With an increasing reliance on outsourcing, consultants provide added flexibility. They’re used as needed for many tasks, such as overhauls or to offer a second opinion. Once hired, an IT consultant can provide many types of services to their clients.

This guide will go over everything you need to know about IT consulting. That includes what an IT consultant is, what they do, what types there are, industries that use it, and how it can help your company.

Table of Contents

An Introduction to IT Consulting

IT consulting is a $500 billion industry that many consider a standard for any business with technology needs. They cater to unique circumstances with on-demand services. This removes the need for companies to fill and maintain the role full-time. Whether it’s a small business looking to expand, or an established corporation looking to rework its infrastructure, an IT consultant can support those changes.

The biggest hurdle for the IT industry is not the lack of need but rather a shortage of skilled talent. Due to this, IT consultants are often involved with the implementation process too. For those wondering how to get into IT consulting, having hands-on IT experience goes a long way.

What do IT consultants do?

IT consultants tell clients how to best use technology based on their needs and goals. This can include assessing security, networks, hardware, software, applications, workflow, and staff training. Through this process, they can provide IT solutions consulting tailored to areas that need improvement. It also involves coordinating with in-house or outsourced IT staff on implementing the desired changes.

They can also provide support with the latest IT trends. Once-specialized technology, like artificial intelligence, is becoming more mainstream. For example, automated chatbots can provide basic FAQ answers or redirect users to a live agent. Behind the scenes, AI can track data, automate tasks, and increase efficiency. The future of IT consulting involves adapting to these shifts.

The main undertone of a consultant’s work is trimming IT costs while finding ways to improve productivity and uptime. Impactful changes are prioritized over minor shifts with minimal effect. Doing so creates a better return on investment and increases the value of hiring a consultant.

How much do IT consultants make?

An IT consultant with less than a year of experience starts at an average of $51,000-$65,000 annually. This translates to an hourly rate of around $25 to $31. The base salary can vary depending on the types of IT consulting services and whether the position is commission-based or not.

With more years of experience, the IT consulting rates scale up. It may also include tips, bonuses, overtime, and profit-sharing. With 1-4 years of experience, an IT consultant’s salary is 72K on average. At 5-9 years, they make 88K. And at 10+ years, they’re paid 102K-115K. Rates vary higher or lower depending on the industry, market area, and clientele. 80% of positions also include medical benefits, 71% have dental, 65% offer vision, and 19% have no employee benefits.

IT consultant vs. software engineer: what’s the difference?

An IT consultant will look at the broad picture by finding issues, giving guidance, and helping with high-level decisions. This applies to both hardware and software-related challenges. In contrast, a software engineer will take that information and focus on software systems to resolve or improve the noted areas.

While they often work in tandem, a consultant is also involved with more sides of the process. Doing so gives them a broader view of the situation, allowing them to discern the best course of action. Software engineers may be less efficient without a consultant’s guidance toward higher-impact improvements.

What is the difference between IT services and IT consulting?

IT services can install and manage most types of solutions based on the needs of an organization. These services can vary, such as cloud, security, data monitoring, software, and remote services. IT consultants will help the business pick and choose from those services.

Teams can better plan and implement services with recommendations from an IT solution consultant. That will improve staff efficiency by focusing on projects that are higher priority. It also helps avoid resource wastage on changes with little to no benefit.

What Is an IT Consulting Company & What Do They Do?

An IT consulting company focuses on providing guidance, solutions, and training to any industry that uses technology. They’re well-versed in all aspects of IT. This includes managed services, security, cloud, digital transformation, hardware upgrades, and software development.

Due to the range of experience, IT consulting companies can serve many industries. They help develop personalized fixes aligned with individual or company-wide needs and goals. Consultants can also partner with in-house IT staff to help adapt and improve existing infrastructure.

Types of IT Consulting

There are many types of IT consulting services. Some offer broader insight and direction for a variety of functions. Others are specialized by focusing on specific areas for ease of implementing solutions. The consulting needed depends on the organization, the scale of what they want, and anticipated future growth or changes.

IT infrastructure consulting

IT infrastructure consulting providers give advice and solutions for hardware, software, and network challenges. The goal is to improve productivity, reduce costs, and strengthen security. This is done through comprehensive changes in an organization’s IT framework.

IT security consulting

IT security consultants analyze hardware, software, and networks to check for security vulnerabilities. They help develop and install solutions to protect organizations against high risks areas. Consultants also provide tactics and training for unexpected threats.

Software development IT consulting

Software development IT consultants provide recommendations and solutions for software-based issues. This can be developing a direct strategy or offering a different perspective on a client-developed plan. IT consulting solutions can range from third-party software to custom-modified programs.

Cloud IT consulting

Cloud IT consultants focus on cloud computing challenges by helping define the needs. This factors in cost management and future growth to get the best value that scales based on cloud usage. From there, they select the appropriate cloud service to match. They can also help with data migration to help ensure a smoother transition.

Enterprise IT consulting

Enterprise IT consulting targets larger organizations across many industries. It involves analyzing the greater picture and providing cost-effective but impactful changes. These align with both short-term and long-term goals. Solutions can comprise many kinds of related IT services and the framework to manage them.

Digital transformation consulting

The goal of digital transformation is to add value to organizations through shifts in technology. This type of consultant will often fundamentally change how a company operates for employees and customers alike. The process is very collaborative and more hands-on due to the effect of these changes.

IT compliance consulting

With IT compliance, consultants will evaluate what systems are currently in place. Next, they help organizations understand current regulations and how to update their framework. Meeting compliance requirements protects the business and the customers. It may also give incentive eligibility.

8 Industries That Benefit from IT Consulting Services

Most modern businesses have technology integrated into multiple ways. It includes everyday factors like processing payments, data storage, email, and voice services. Not only is maintaining these systems necessary, but proper IT compliance and security habits are vital to protecting both the organization and the customer. There are a variety of industries that benefit from IT consulting services.

Healthcare IT consulting

The healthcare industry has a unique set of demands as they manage a steady flow of medical, financial, and other private data of their staff and patients. Data security, HIPPA compliance, and disaster recovery are at the forefront. Secondary improvements may focus on productivity and trimming costs. Broader strategies can enhance data management, cloud migration, server virtualization, and network services.

Hospitality IT consulting

IT consulting for hospitality is driven by customer satisfaction and efficiency. There are many moving parts, including hardware, software, website interactivity, and payment processing. Fast and stable Wi-Fi will let guests stay connected online, while network security will help keep that traffic safe. Having up-to-date PCI and SOC-2 compliance safeguards from fraud or database breaches.

Financial services IT consulting 

With financial services, cost efficiency and return on investments are high priorities. IT goes together with profitability since it involves most facets of a modern business. That includes end-user experiences, such as software and web design, which increase opportunity conversions. It also looks at the operational side, like compliance, cybersecurity, optimization, and upkeep.

Small business IT consulting 

Small businesses often have limited budgets, resources, and time. This makes IT consulting services invaluable, as they find high-value areas of improvement. Recommendations can be scaled down, individualized, and focused on essentials. That can include accounting software, documentation, email systems, cybersecurity, and cloud storage.

Nonprofit IT consulting

Nonprofit organizations require different IT strategies than a standard company. There’s an increased emphasis on minimizing costs to best use available funds. An IT consultant can discover areas of improvement that match those needs. It includes web development, form building, fundraising tools, donation processing, and automation.

Retail IT consulting

Retail is a quick-changing environment, requiring adaptable and complex IT infrastructure. A retail IT consultant will do an in-depth examination to learn the logistical flow. They’ll develop flexible and secure systems to handle suppliers, retailers, and customers. Training is also provided for key staff members.

Automotive IT consulting

The automotive industry leans on software as there are a lot of interconnected pieces. Supply chain, acquisition, bookkeeping, manufacturing, aftermarket servicing, and more all play a part. An automotive IT consultant can centralize data, improve coordination, strengthen data security, and reduce risks.

Construction IT consulting

Due to its dynamic nature, the construction industry has some unusual challenges. There are temporary job sites, communication needs, shifting user numbers, remote duties, and material logistics. A construction IT consultant will assess those layers and how they interact. Solutions are flexible based on current and anticipated needs.

Learn How IT Consulting Can Help Your Company

Technology is crucial to productivity. Day-to-day operations require its usage from top to bottom, making system management and improvements challenging. With the continued growth of the remote workforce since 2018, many companies have been unprepared to take advantage of these changes. As industry demands have continued to shift, the value of IT consulting outsourcing has continued to increase steadily.

Having the appropriate software, network, and hardware infrastructure is essential. Data security, backup services, and training staff to have good habits are needed too. IT consultants can assess which services and training are required based on scale, need, and budget. Whether you’re a startup business or have a growing enterprise, they can provide valuable insight.

With ITonDemand’s IT consulting services, you can comfortably take on any IT challenge. We’ll help you address inefficiencies and cost bloat with improvements that save time and money. Our team will also prepare your infrastructure for staff, logistics, and productivity changes. Your technology should work with you, not against you. With ITonDemand, we can make that happen.

Contact Us for IT Consulting Services

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