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Qualification - Certificate in Consulting Services

Course CodeVBS012
Fee CodeCT
Duration (approx)600 hours
QualificationCertificate

LEARN CONSULTING PRACTICES

Do You have Expertise or Experience that can help others?

Turn what you already know into a whole new career, by becoming a consultant.
  
Consultants are needed in every industry imaginable. Being a successful consultant however, involves more than just having knowledge to sell. You also need to know how to sell it; what to charge, how to find clients and how to sustain a consulting business.
 
This course can help you add the skills yo do not have, to those that you have already spent years developing.
 
Consultants need to also be good communicators with strong skills in analysis, problem solving and organisation. Consultants also need to understand productivity issues and have a range of business skills; more often than not because they are operating as a small business.

Modules

Core ModulesThese modules provide foundation knowledge for the Qualification - Certificate in Consulting Services.
 Project Management BBS201
 Life Coaching BPS305
 Professional Practice For Consultants BBS301
 Technical Writing (Advanced) BWR301
 
Elective ModulesIn addition to the core modules, students study any 2 of the following 9 modules.
 Bookkeeping Foundations BBS103
 Editing I BWR106
 Educational Psychology BPS105
 Introduction To Psychology BPS101
 Research Project I BGN102
 Starting A Small Business VBS101
 Careers Counselling BPS202
 Research Project II BGN201
 Business Planning BBS302
 

Note that each module in the Qualification - Certificate in Consulting Services is a short course in its own right, and may be studied separately.


You Do Need More than Just Expertise

Some succeed and others fail as consultants; and often it isn't just about how much of an expert you are in your industry. Getting the work and delivering the service, as well as managing the income; are all important tasks for a consultant -and all quite separate to being an expert at something.
 
Some consultants may work continuously as consultants by joining employment agencies specialising in the provision of consultants, through setting up their own consultancy practice, or joining an already established consultancy practice. For example, a business consultant may offer their services to a range of businesses when required.  Others may mix consultancy work with other forms of employment or self-employment. Regardless, a consultant will need to ensure that they have appropriate resources.
 
Before starting consulting work, a consultant should ensure that they have sufficient resources to be able to carry out this work. Of course this will include financial resources, but finances are not the only resources required by the consultant.
 
 
 
Financial
 
If a consultant is employed by a larger organisation, then their pay and employment is relatively safe. But for self-employed consultants, their work and income may not be so secure. A consultant who does not have continuous work must therefore guard against the ebb and flow of contracts and financial income.  They may need to establish own retirement fund, holiday pay, sick pay, indemnity insurance etc.  They may also need to ensure that they charge sufficient fees to remain in business, but also to cover themselves during periods when they may not have other work. No business scan survive if it operates at a loss for too long so it may be necessary to have sufficient resources in place to allow for lean times - particularly when first setting up.
 
 
 
Health
 
A consultant who is self employed also needs to ensure that they have good physical and mental health.  If firms employ a consultant on a set term and the consultant is then ill and unable to do the work, this will have implications for the consultant:
  • They may lose their good reputation – word of mouth can mean that other people find out that they did not keep to the contract regarding their work.
  • They will lose money as they will not be paid for work not completed. 
  • They may lose future work if they lose their good reputation.
It is therefore important that a consultant ensures that they maintain their good physical and mental health to work effectively as a consultant.
 
 
 
Physical Presence
 
A consultant must also have a physical presence. Although many consultants take on contracts with different organisations or institutions, some consultants will have their own offices and staff, whilst other consultants may operate from their own home. As more and more people work from their own homes now, this is increasingly acceptable and obviously reduces costs as they do not have to rent or buy offices, and do not have the associated running costs.
 
If you are considering using your home as your consultancy premises then you may have to section off part of your home for this purpose, and use signage to direct clients to a particular doorway. Perhaps you could use a lower floor. You might also have to apply for council approval to do this and take out business indemnity insurance to cover accidents or injury on the premises. 
 
However they operate, the consultant must ensure they have access to sufficient equipment – the obvious things such as computers, desks, stationery, landlines, mobile phones, and any specialist equipment they need for their consulting job.
 
They must also be accessible. If they are a one man/woman operation then they need to ensure that they are accessible to clients via phone or email at flexible times. There is nothing worse than potential clients and actual clients not being able to reach a consultant. This can also lose them business.
 
 
 
Proximity
 
Most consultants will find a greater amount of work in inner cities and so being located in or near one may be advantageous. Some consultants may find that they have to travel throughout the country or even the world. It will depend on what they are consultants in, how exclusive their work is, and how successful they are. Some consultants may be experts in such a niche field that they are in high demand and can therefore charge large fees and be wanted throughout the world.
 
So before starting work as a consultant, it is important to ensure that you have the appropriate resources to be able to fulfill the role, as well as the appropriate knowledge and expertise to be able to obtain work within that field.
 
 

WHO NEEDS A CONSULTANT?

Consultants are employed in all industries, by public authorities, businesses and by individuals

Whenever knowledge and a professional opinion is of value; there is an opportunity for a consultant to be employed; and in a world that is increasingly complicated, those opportunities are more and more common.

 

 
 


Meet some of our academics

John Mason John Mason is one of Australia's most prolific writers. He saw his first work published when at secondary school, where he worked on the school magazine. In 1973 he was writing a weekly column for his local newspaper and by 1975 he was a regular contributor to Australia's national magazine "Your Garden". John was engaged by Victoria's Dept of Youth, Sport and Recreation to write a book on Fun and Fitness Trails in 1978. In 1981 he saw two more books published (one in America, another in Australia), and commenced writing regularly for the Self Sufficiency Magazine, Grass Roots. John is a long term member of the Australian Society of Authors, the Garden Media Guild (UK) and the Horticultural Media Association (Australia). He has written or contributed to over 100 books, many published by international publishers and published more than 2,000 articles across a range of genres (Gardening, Education, Business, Farming, Fitness). In addition, John has contributed to and overseen the development of more than 600 distance education courses which encompass around 20 million words. He has been an avid photographer for 40 years, building a collection of over 100,000 images, which are used to illustrate his work. His marine animal photos are even used by Legoland in England, on their Atlantis ride! Writer, Manager, Teacher and Businessman with over 40 years interenational experience covering Education, Publishing, Leisure Management, Education, and Horticulture. He has extensive experience both as a public servant, and as a small business owner. John is a well respected member of many professional associations, and author of over seventy books and of over two thousand magazine articles.
Denise Hodges Promotions Manager for ABC retail, Fitness Programmer/Instructor, Small Business Owner, Marketing Coordinator (Laserpoint). Over 20 years varied experienced in business and marketing. More recently Denise studied naturopathy to share her passion for health and wellness. Denise has an Adv.Dip.Bus., Dip. Clothing Design, Adv.Dip.Naturopathy (completing).
Tracey JonesWidely published author, Psychologist, Manager and Lecturer. Over 10 years working with ACS and 25 years of industry experience. Qualifications include: B.Sc. (Hons) (Psychology), M.Soc.Sc (social work), Dip. SW (social work), PGCE (Education), PGD (Learning Disability Studies).
Bob JamesHorticulturalist, Agriculturalist, Environmental consultant, Businessman and Professional Writer. Over 40 years in industry, Bob has held a wide variety of senior positions in both government and private enterprise. Bob has a Dip. Animal Husb, B.App.Sc., Grad.Dip.Mgt, PDC


Check out our eBooks

Working With PeopleA job and careers guide for people who like working with people -covering everything from counselling and personnel management to marketing, health and education
Business OperationsExplore how to improve the management and profitability of an existing business. Businesses do not run themselves - goals need to be set and decisions need to be made in order to achieve business goals. This book talks you through all of the different aspects involved in running a business from finance and forecasting to staffing changes and legal issues. Six chapters cover the daily challenges of running a business, people, the law, finance, product management, and risk management. 73 pages
Professional Practice for ConsultantsExplore becoming a consultant. This ebook contains chapters on how to be a consultant, packaging your services, delivering the services, building your resources, finding the work and getting the job, planning and ethics.
Project ManagementLearn to manage any type of project, in any industry. Six chapters cover the nature and scope of project management, risk and uncertainty, maintaining control, interpersonal relationships, the end game, and golden rules. This is a very concise text - easy to follow, with much of the information presented in bulleted lists. 72 pages