Working with Consultants

Working with Consultants

Gaining External Expertise and Services

There are almost as many reasons to hire a consultant as there are consultants. Organizations look to outside providers to access needed knowledge, analyze and make recommendations on significant issues, conduct pre-defined tasks, facilitate group decision-making, and much more.

Aligning the right consultant with an organization’s need, budget, and work style can generate significant benefits for all involved. But no single consultant can do everything, and client organisations often have a lot at stake when they engage an outside service provider.

Based on lessons we’ve learned as well as the experiences of grantees we support, the S. D. Bechtel, Jr. Foundation is generating resources for working with consultants.

Steps for Success: Engaging a ConsultantSteps for Success: Engaging a Consultant

This guide can help nonprofits and grantmakers take the necessary steps to find, hire, and manage a consultant who delivers what you need through a process that makes good use of your resources. It features nine steps that can help frame your approach, as well as links to helpful tools and information sources.

 

 
 

Frequently Asked QuestionsFrequently Asked Questions

Nonprofits and grantmakers engage consultants for a variety of needs. These responses to commonly asked questions can help you, and your consultant, get the most from each interaction.

 

 

 

Hiring a Strategic Planning ConsultantHiring a Strategic Planning Consultant

Looking across your organization and its work to find and describe the most effective path forward can be exhilarating. This guide can help you identify the strategy approach most suited to your needs, and the qualities to look for when engaging a strategy consultant.

 
 

 

Hiring a Communications ConsultantHiring a Communications Consultant

Communication involves the purposeful delivery of information to create awareness, understanding, or action. It’s a big topic, with application to virtually everything an organization does, inside and out. This brief tutorial can help people working in foundations and nonprofits effectively prepare for and conduct engagements with communication consultants.

 

 

Hiring an External EvaluatorHiring an External Evaluator (coming soon)

Nonprofits and grantmakers who measure progress toward defined outcomes gain insight into their approaches as well as information to enhance their decisions. This guide can help you gain useful new understanding from a consultant whose skills match your needs.

 
 

 

Understanding Fundraising FundamentalsUnderstanding Fundraising Fundamentals

Fundraising encompasses the range of activities involved in building relationships with donors who can provide money or other resources to enable a nonprofit to pursue its mission. It’s a core function in many nonprofit organizations, and an area of ongoing focus for most. This brief can help you understand the fundamentals involved with fundraising, and inform your use of fundraising consultants.

 

 

Guide to Writing RFQsWriting a Request for Qualifications (RFQ)

Realizing the full value of consulting services requires a careful approach to selecting, contracting, and managing consultants. This guide to writing a strong RFQ can help you find the right fit – an individual or firm that is not only capable of completing the work effectively, but also has a disposition and work style that will mesh well with your team.