How to become an IT Consultant?

IT Consultant

Are you interested in becoming an IT consultant? This profession has become increasingly popular among youngsters due to its versatile and challenging nature. As an IT consultant, your job would involve diagnosing technical issues of clients, determining the right solution, and explaining the entire process to them in layman’s terms.

IT Consultant

These professionals handle an extensive variety of tasks, ranging from computer repair and maintenance to cybersecurity. Their role is indispensable for providing both hardware and software solutions, installing virus protection, building firewalls, and protecting clients networks for hacker attacks. Nowadays, there is a myriad of opportunities for individuals in Chicago to become prosperous IT consultants. The following tips will help you succeed.

Choose the right major

The inceptive step of your path towards becoming an IT consultant is earning a bachelor’s degree after selecting the right major. Prospective information technology specialists are advised to choose an IT-related major from the extensive range of bachelor programs, such as computer engineer technology, cybersecurity, computer science and technology, computer system and software, programming and internet technologies, data science, and numerous other fields.

Moreover, after earning a bachelor’s degree in some of the above-mentioned fields, you are encouraged to earn a master’s degree as well. Although these degrees are optional, some IT organizations require their employees to be armed with an MA in a specific field, such as cybersecurity. Taking the role of a cybersecurity consultant requires further in-depth knowledge and qualifications than just a BA.

Gain some work experience

After gaining the required education and knowledge in a particular information technology field, it’s high time to gain some work experience as well. Keep in mind that reputable employers look for candidates with a minimum of five years in the IT consulting business, which undoubtedly seems farfetched for recently graduated consultants.

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Nevertheless, in order to include at least a few years of experience on your resume, you are recommended to apply for internships. Apprenticeship is an excellent way of acquiring a particular amount of experience either in the course of college or after graduating. Make sure you get in touch with most of the IT companies in your local area so as to check their attitude in terms of hiring an intern.

IT Consultant

It’s paramount not to be discouraged if the companies aren’t willing to open their doors for new interns at that particular period. Instead of feeling desperate, look for some local volunteer positions in the field of information technology consulting. Volunteer positions are most commonly avoided by graduates due to financial reasons, but these would be a valuable asset to your resume. Every employer appreciates candidates who’ve spent a particular period of working in a voluntary position for the purpose of gaining experience.

Work on your interview skills

The job of an IT consultant involves a myriad of interviews with potential clients, hence requiring proficiency to handle interviews in a successful manner on the part of the specialist. Apart from learning how to describe your educational background and skills to clients, you are also supposed to provide a detailed solution to various information technology issues that potential clients might have. Be absolutely prepared to charm customers with your extensive knowledge and ability to explain complicated problems in layman’s terms.

Furthermore, bear in mind that interviewers would be curious to learn more about the way in which you’ve handled IT issues for former clients. Therefore, make sure you dig into the information technology problems of the company that is about to employ you in order to be well informed at the meeting. Interviewers love listening to stories about companies with almost identical issues as theirs to check your approach towards solving the problem. Click here to check out some helpful tips about improving your interview skills.

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In case you feel insecure in your interview skills, you are encouraged to look for professional assistance in the form of a mentor or a recruiter. These professionals are the right people to assist you in boosting your self-confidence and communication skills. Keep in mind that employers solely hire people who shine with confidence, not the ones who aren’t exactly certain in their knowledge or skills.

Focus on a particular industry

The field of information technology consulting is incredibly extensive for IT consultants to be adept in all sectors. Therefore, you are strongly advised to select a particular sector or sectors that you find challenging, but make sure you choose no more than a few. Over time, you’ll gain extensive experience in using various consulting methods and tools that would be useful to clients of a particular industry.

The more assignments you take in a specific sector the more interest you’ll spark in employers of that industry. Clients are always more interested in hiring a professional with industry-specific knowledge then someone with overall knowledge of IT consulting.

Get solid references

Similar to the other industries, clients would only collaborate with IT consultants they find trustworthy. Consequently, it’s paramount to demonstrate for employers to consider you as a reliable professional, which is particularly hard to prove at the onset of one’s career.

In addition, references are of crucial importance for persuading potential clients in your knowledge and skills. These recommendations are usually obtained by former clients who are satisfied with your services and willing to share their experience with future customers. At the beginning of your career, there’s no other alternative but to provide companies with references from your former employers. Anyhow, once you start completing consulting assignments, don’t be embarrassed to check their attitude towards listing them as references.

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Work on your communication skills

Apart from developing good interview skills, IT consultants are also required to polish their communication and collaboration skills. It’s essential for an information technology specialist to fit into the existing team of the company by using the incredible power of communication. Knowledge is not sufficient for a particular person to become a successful IT consultant. Nowadays, soft skills have become as valuable as hard skills, as these help employees to easily assimilate with the rest of the workers.

Additionally, when being a brand new member of a team, your collaborative skills are the only way to be accepted by the other members. Quick adaptation is essential in this line of work, as most projects tend to last only for a limited timeframe. In contrast, you wouldn’t need collaborative skills when working as a solo practitioner. However, you would still need impeccable communication skills for maintaining good relations with the clients.

Final word

Information technology consulting is a prospective career to pick. Be persistent in your way to success!

Anand Narayanaswamy is the editor-in-chief of Netans. He was recognized as a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional (MVP) for 9 years (2002 to 2011) and again as a Microsoft MVP in Surface under Windows and Devices in January 2024. He worked as a Chief Technical Editor with ASPAlliance and was part of ASPInsider program. Anand has published several articles and reviews related to various software and hardware products for various software and technology related websites. He is also active on social media and also participates as an Influencer for various brands. Anand can be reached at

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