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Being a consultant in the finance, technology, or human resources industries is an undeniably attractive opportunity. In addition to using their skills in a high-value way at a firm that needs their specific expertise, consultants have the benefit of working on a variety of projects and initiatives over the course of their careers. You’ll never have to worry about getting bored or bogged down in the day-to-day drudgery – you’ll be welcomed as a value-added team member, put to work maximizing your strengths, and at some point in the future, tasked with fulfilling a new role at another firm.

Consulting is perfect for those who seek autonomy and ownership in their work. Most consultants manage their own work schedules and help develop their own timelines for project completion. If this lifestyle appeals to you – hooray! We can help you get there. Here is (nearly) everything you need to know about becoming a consultant.

Stay Updated

As a professional who will be expected to make an immediate impact in a new environment, being organized and efficient is a must. To get into the consulting game, make sure your time management and communication skills are honed to a T.

When it comes to your personal resources, keeping your resume and work history updated will prove incredibly useful if any urgent opportunities should arise. Spend a few minutes per month tidying up your resume, so that if you get a promising job lead, you don’t have to stay up late creating a totally new draft. Your LinkedIn profile should be clean, professional, and current as well. Keep tabs on a few industry publications and the major market news items to continually build your knowledge base. When the time comes to prove that you are an informed and experienced professional, you won’t have to fake it.

Prepare Yourself

In the time leading up to your new career as a consultant, do the work to prepare yourself in ways that could make your candidacy more attractive. Always wanted a human resources or tech certification, but never gotten around to it? Now is the time. There are tons of online resources for little to no cost to help you upskill in your down time – take advantage of them. Learning a new coding language, for example, could be a huge feather in your cap during the interview process.

Secondly, prepare yourself in the more general sense for the kind of role you’ll be assuming. If you have been working steadily in the same capacity for years at one company, mentally prepare yourself for the change that will ensue once you become a consultant. Some firms will not view you as a “full” employee of the company, but more of a contractor hired for a period of time to utilize a certain set of skills. Embrace this change before it even happens.

Don’t Go It Alone

As a consulting candidate, the best thing you can do is start building relationships with recruiters. Even if you are not ready to make the leap just yet, beginning a passive job search with the help of a recruitment professional is a great way to set your career in the right direction. We will do much of the work for you: evaluating your skill set, suggesting improvements, sourcing leads that you wouldn’t have found on your own, and allowing you to tap into our expansive network.

It’s a lonely world as an independent consultant if you don’t have teammates. Working with an established search firm can help open doors for you didn’t even know were there.

Headfarmer: Your Homegrown Hiring Professionals

For the last decade, the recruitment professionals at Headfarmer have been helping candidates find opportunities where they can thrive. We are proud to help applicants define their searches and land their dream roles. In a dynamic hiring market, we use all resources at our disposal to provide stellar service to our candidates. We promise to best serve your career aspirations no matter your background or ambitions. Contact a recruiter at Headfarmer today to learn how we can help you achieve your goals.

For more market insights and hiring tips, visit our blog here.

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