Hostage Crisis Averted:
Afidence Saves the Day
January 31, 2011 – Cincinnati, OH: Bryan Hogan, President of Afidence IT Consulting, stated today that companies are no longer required to be “held hostage” to their IT consulting firm. “By ensuring we transfer the knowledge we have about the solutions we implement, companies are able to run and use their IT solutions without ongoing help from us or outside consultants.”
This groundbreaking approach is very different in an industry known for consultants who implement IT solutions but do not properly prepare the client’s associates to manage the solution. In many cases,clients are forced to return to the consultant for help and support – and they are thus “held hostage” to that IT consulting firm for as long as they use that solution.
Bryan strongly believes this is one of the company qualities that sets Afidence apart from competitors: “Our philosophy is a focus on knowledge transfer,” he asserts. “We believe it’s not enough to deliver solutions on time, on budget, and to quality standards. In addition to achieving these necessary benchmarks, we ensure the client’s staff who will be doing the day-to-day work with the solution knowseverything we know about how it works and how to run it. In fact, we feel this is one of the mostcritical success factors for any project we take on.”
This approach is so strongly ingrained in the Afidence culture that they have named it: G.E.M., or Global Engagement Method. “We believe in transferring knowledge as soon as we start talking with a client, continuing through the time the project is wrapped up,” says Bryan. “It’s part of our day-to-day execution, and we have a very specific approach to ensure the process doesn’t end until the client has the same knowledge about their solution that we have.”
The process includes documenting everything their consultants do, from key configuration changes, to learning issues they experience during the process, to resolving common issues, to manuals, design guides, implementation & operation guides – everything is recorded in a standard report every day. It’s also made available as a cloud-based dashboard so the information is searchable by employees when they need answers later on.
One way Afidence ensures success of the process is by hiring IT professionals with similar characteristics. “We not only hire career-minded IT people,” Bryan says, “they are also fantastic communicators.
They are disciplined to transfer knowledge as they implement solutions. They are IT experts with the heart of a teacher, because we actually invite the client to work alongside us during a project.”
Why, some clients ask, do you do this? You’re not building in a guaranteed call-back when we need help later on. Bryan has a ready answer: “When a client feels like they have to come back to us any time they have a question or issue, that doesn’t build long-term, trusted client relationships. We don’t want you to need us – we want your next project. Doing the right things in the first project, to ensure you know your system inside and out, gains us your trust. That, first and foremost, is our priority.”