A consultant provides professional advice to people or businesses in a particular field. These could be in legal, marketing, business, accounting, technology, etc.
Though the job title “consultant” doesn't have any legal protection, the work experience, quality job delivery, and certifications that a consultant possesses make them highly respected.
These consultants help organizations improve their business processes by researching and analyzing the work processes and optimizing the resource pipeline (i.e., man, machine, and material) to deliver better results.
Also, they work as external advisers to help businesses create and implement processes, practices, and policies that improve their overall profitability.
When businesses hire business process consultants, they want them to create workflow templates, procedures, and processes that will guide them in the smooth running of the organization.
In addition to that, a business process consultant could work physically or remotely, depending on the project and agreement with the company.
In this post, you will learn how to become a business process consultant.
But before that...
What Does a Business Process Consultant Do?
A business process consultant works to create efficient ways of running a business. This could be from manufacturing, packaging, accounting, marketing, communication, and any other business process.
They typically improve efficiencies and eliminate redundancies by removing bottlenecks, reducing inefficient use of resources (time, money, machine, and human), and improving systems to work at their best.
Business process consultants are essential because they help companies get optimal results from all the resources they put into the business.
So, if this profession seems exciting to you, let’s get to know how to become one.
How to Become a Business Process Consultant
Like every other profession, becoming a business process consultant requires getting the proper education and certification, acquiring the needed skills, putting those skills to use, and fine-tuning them going forward.
Let’s expound on each of these.
Get the Right Education
Your journey to becoming a business process consultant starts when you decide that it’s the correct career route for you.
A regular high school student can decide early to simply take classes related to business and business management and be a part of societies that focus on business to get the experience and network. Then he or she receives a bachelor’s degree in business or business management and steps it up with an MBA.
Depending on the career point you’re at right now, re-access your educational background and redirect further education to the business department, and scale it up from there.
For instance, if your background is in core science like botany, you can take a post-graduate diploma in business management, then an MBA.
And if you’re actively in a job right now, you can begin by taking online classes on Coursera, Udemy, and Harvard massive online open courses (MOOCs).
Get a Certification
Your business education can open your eyes to the massive opportunities in the business world. But your journey is to become a business process consultant.
To achieve further learning through specialization, you can become a member of the Association of Accredited Small Business Consultants or the National Society of Certified Business Process Consultants. You can get trained and take the certification exams.
In the business process specialization training, you’ll possibly learn the framework to develop processes that increase the possibility of success in a specific business process flow.
You will also be taught the modern and best practices that expert business process consultants adopt, leverage advanced technology and existing organizational assets to innovate better. This results in excellent customer service, enhanced process visibility, superior business agility, and increased operational efficiency.
Develop the Right Skills
Now that you’ve armed yourself with all you need as a business process consultant, the journey is incomplete unless you put all the acquired knowledge into work.
Through a consulting internship or consultant training, you can get into the practice and start gaining experience with a known consulting company in your area. From there, you can then grow your career to work in any of the top Fortune 500 companies in the world.
During your experiential learning or trainee program, you’ll work on your critical thinking and problem-solving skills. This is important because as a business process consultant, you must work on process-related problems that companies have, and this needs you to find practical and creative solutions to complex problems.
Your communication skills must also be top-notch. Communication is a must-have skill when you’re a consultant. This is because you’re always selling yourself to businesses and also interacting with teams when solving problems. So, you should know how to write engaging content and speak convincingly in public.
Your leadership skills will also be put to the test in this phase because you’ll likely be working on your own and interacting with clients via calls and using email organization, online calendars, and other project management tools.
If you’re smart, you’ll develop a personal system that quickly takes care of your routine tasks.
Build Up Your Network
You’re not yet a business process consultant if you can't build up your network. Networking is so critical that it helps you get hired by a company and gives you access to mastermind groups to get help and stay relevant in your space.
The fastest way to begin is by being active on LinkedIn and connecting with consultants in your locality. You should also attend local meet and greets, conferences, and training, as these put your name out in the industry.
Each time you attend any event, make a plan to strike up conversations with people, and when you find a like-minded person, exchange contact information and make sure you follow up with them.
Business process consultants do a great deal of work, and the profession is very profitable. Becoming a successful business process consultant is tricky. But with the proper education, certification, and skills, the journey is more straightforward.
And with pride, you can, at last, introduce yourself as a business process consultant to your peers, family members, and colleagues.