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Workplace Technology - from vision to reality
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Enterprise and Data Centre Projects

Is there any real benefit in employing a Consultant to work on an Enterprise or Data Centre network infrastructure project?

Written by Cordless Senior Consultant, Stuart Campling

Published in Inside Networks Magazine, February 2016

What unique skills, expertise and knowledge can Consultants offer, and how do these attributes ensure that an agreed strategy is delivered as efficiently and effectively as possible?

Enterprise and Data Centre projects are by their nature mission-critical. Clients know that getting a solid, future-proof IT infrastructure in place underpins BAU in the digital workplace. Often such projects will be part of (or are run alongside) larger workplace improvement or relocation programmes. 

From the Client’s point of view, the scale of such projects means that they are likely to happen only once or twice in a career. So having the right skill, knowledge and experience supporting the project team is vital. A Consultant should provide:

Experience. Consultants work on projects like this every day and so should have recent and relevant transferable knowledge across multiple sectors.

Independence. Consultants should have no allegiance to any manufacturers, installers, contractors or systems, to help the Client take the best decisions for the individual project and requirements.

Knowledge. Specific and specialist technical knowledge of technology products, standards and design; as well as market knowledge of systems, pricing, installers, integrators and other specialist service suppliers.

Best practice advice and guidance. Consultants should help from the earliest project phases - defining the initial vision and strategy through to budgeting, detailed IT and AV design, specification, procurement, project management of the installation, QA, handover to BAU and ongoing benefits realisation.

Support to the professional team. Consultants should bring a deep knowledge of how IT works in the built environment coupled with a wide view of the construction industry. A Consultant should liaise closely with the Professional Team and the Client, making sure the IT and AV programmes are dovetailed into the overall construction programme to meet the brief - on time and to budget.

The real benefits really come from a holistic project approach, so that IT infrastructure is not considered in isolation, but joined up to the physical workplace and its processes, people and behaviours.  Consultants should explore and question the status quo, but they should do this objectively, in the best interests of the Client. It’s never too early to talk to a Consultant. Leaving them out of the picture could leave you and your Enterprise or Data Centre project in the dark.

Date: Tue, 19 Jan 2016 12:44:43 +0000 GMT

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