Using, Selecting, and taking advantage of an academic consultant

The purpose of this document would be to provide guidance and advice in selecting an advisor in the area of education. You might be the headteacher or principal of the school or college, a police officer inside a local education authority (LEA) or school district, or even the director of the private company wanting to undertake operate in the academic sector. This short article focuses mainly on information and communication technology (ICT), however the underlying concepts also apply more generally.

Utilizing a consultant

Consultants, a minimum of within the United kingdom, possess a poor status like a species, but they’re in greater demand than ever before. Why? Why would any organisation elect to utilize a consultant instead of hiring someone? There are many causes of this.

Short-term work

Some jobs are, because of its nature, short-term. If, for instance, you’re getting a brand new computer suite installed, you may want top tips from your exterior individual who doesn’t have axe to grind – and that you can blame when half employees complain concerning the design, the gear and so forth!


Inside a specialist area, for example ICT, most likely the school does not possess the knowledge of-house to complete what it must do inside a particular time scale.


Although consultants could be costly, it’s (or ought to be) a comparatively short-term expense. Also keep in mind you don’t have the on-costs, like pension contributions. These may equal to 20% from the salary costs. Also, when the consultant continues holiday or falls ill, you do not incur any other expense.

Selecting an advisor

When selecting an advisor or advisor to help your school in ICT, whether for Hands-On Support, training, proper development or other facet of ICT, you need to obtain the right company or person to do the job.

That will help you achieve this, this is a listing of questions you may decide to ask prior to hiring someone. You’re unlikely to locate any company or person who are able to answer “yes” to many of these questions, so you will have to take the own professional judgement to deal with in your decision.

1. May be the consultancy individually accredited with a quality assurance plan, for example by NaaceMark or similar plan? Otherwise, could it be seeking accreditation? Observe that a solution of “No” either in situation isn’t always a poor factor. Within my own experience, the job is so time-consuming it’s very difficult to undergo the hoops needed to demonstrate that can be done what you are doing! This is exactly why the following couple of questions are essential too.

2. May be the consultant part of another organisation, for example (within the United kingdom) Naace or even the Society for Education Consultants? These kinds of organisation give a certain amount of quality assurance meaning they will not accept just anybody as people, even though they can give no guarantees about the caliber of work carried out by their people. Also, they frequently provide helpful details about the sphere where the consultant works, which theoretically a minimum of keeps the consultant up-to-date on current developments within the field.

3. Request information on similar work carried out through the consultancy, as well as for information on satisfied clients – but keep in mind that the desire not to supply such details are closely related to factors of confidentiality.