Consulting: What's In A Name?
by Ian Johnson

In the world of TPF, where recession and rationalization have taken their toll, there is another demon which is bringing about confusion in the minds of consultants, contractors and clients. The confusion is being caused by the imprecise and inconsistent use of the terms consultant and contractor to describe the roles undertaken and activities performed by individuals aspiring to these titles.

For example, the word "consultant" conjures up automatic responses which vary widely, in the thoughts of listeners, depending on which part of the world they come from, what roles they play, or have played, in the IT hierarchy and what experiences they have had with the use of the word.

Two definitions of a consultant in the TPF world illustrate the disparity of the meaning attached to the term:

A TPF application developer who meets the following minimum requirements-

The dictionary isn't much help with this dilemma: defining a consultant as "one who consults" and a contractor as "one who contracts".

Seriously though, the issue is causing concern and confusion, and in HYPERION's business it has become clear that a set of descriptions for each category need to be established and recognized worldwide. This will enable contractors/consultants to select roles most suited to their skill levels and experience; it will enable client organizations to specify their requirements for people accurately and it will certainly assist HYPERION as we match people and clients worldwide. Therefore, we have developed HYPERION's definitions of each category as follows:



We'd appreciate your comments on this, and any other demons which limit our ability to communicate effectively and which obstruct us from achieving goals in the most expedient manner. HYPERION considers itself to be an authoritative agency with genuine concern for the needs of consultants, contractors and clients. Please direct all correspondence to our office in your area.

AMSTERDAM - 19-21 Parlevinker, 1186 ZA, Amstelveen,
The Netherlands
Tel: (31-20) 647-6161
Fax:(31-20) 647-4256

DALLAS - 4004 Beltline Road, Suite 150, Dallas, TX 75255
United States
Tel: (214) 387-1125
Fax: (214) 980-7712

SINGAPORE - 200 Cantonment Road, Southpoint Bldg #13-06
Singapore 0208
Tel: (65) 224-9327
Fax: (65) 224-9820

Ian R. Johnson, General Manager, Hyperion, Singapore