Why a Consultant Engineer Should Always Augment a Project's Core Team
Construction projects today are becoming more and more complex as the demands of investors and end-users increase exponentially. Developers are constantly looking to push the envelope in order to come up with an end product that is attractive, can sell well and will attract top dollar. With these complex projects comes an increase in demand for very skilled engineering input and this has led to an increase in the number of consulting engineers ready to offer assistance when needed. In what circumstances would the services of such a consultant be needed?
It's not unusual for organisations to look outside of their core team for particular skills when developing a complex project. A permanent staff may be much smaller than it used to be and much more reliance may be placed on outside partners or consultants. This is why there are more specialists in the marketplace who can focus on manufacturing, design or analysis, as needed.
For example, an organisation may need specific assistance if they are involved in making a prototype of a structure or product. This can be a very time-consuming phase of the operation and a number of different consultants may need to be brought in, each with a different skill set. If companies tried to take this on themselves, then they may suffer delays in getting their solution to market and would be much better off using the outside consultant to expedite everything.
Benefits of an Outsider
The consultant brings a lot to the table. For example, they may have more direct knowledge of the marketplace, so would know who to approach to source raw materials or other products without any time-consuming research. They may know who to turn to, in order to help with testing of the solution and subsequent assembly, or may easily point to separate companies that are best suited to manufacturing individual components.
Making the Calculation
In order to determine whether your organisation needs to source a consultant engineer, consider a number of different factors.
Firstly, how tight is the timeframe? You may need to leverage some external resources to augment the work of your in-house team, even if one individual may already have many of the skills involved.
Next, determine all the different types of expertise necessary and be prepared to get different individuals involved with highly specific skill sets.
Finally, determine whether it is cost-effective for you to hire somebody to join your in-house team. There are obviously a number of additional costs associated with full-time employees and you will need to determine whether you're likely to fully utilise their value after the current project is finished.
Once you've identified your needs, reach out to the best consultant engineers you can find in their field.