To extend the confusion of terms further, IT services providers also may offer consulting. This “is really pre-sales engineering to figure out how to make what [the IT services providers] have work for your situation,” notes Alex. And while delivering a solid solution is in the provider’s mind, “the client’s best interest may not be,” Alex says. When you consider the role of the consultant as an expert strategic guide and the IT services provider the solution or services implementer, then the distinction becomes more clear-cut.
Consulting in technology quickly becomes muddled in prefixes – IT, technology, software, etc., but they each do have distinctions as specialties. Software consulting is focused on the software and applications layer. It is a broad term, though, that can cover many different types of software – and industries. Responsibilities of the software consultant are similar to those of the IT consultant. They counsel on “how the application should be implemented using current industry approaches... often provid[ing] technical advice on how to configure a large application (SAP, Oracle, etc.).”
In the end, Marathe echoes the general consensus, concluding that “there are no definite boundaries” among IT consulting, IT services, and software consulting. A quick Google search certainly confirms this. The boundaries, it seems, begin – and end – with the somewhat loose definitions offered by the IT professionals themselves. But their shortsighted “spin” on these terms can be detrimental, leaving interpretation to the less-informed customers who must read between the lines.
Managed Services Partnership
A partnership with an experienced and trustworthy IT outsourcing provider can help launch your business forward. For decades, iCorps has been providing our clients the cost-effective IT outsourcing, technology solutions, and technology management they need for day-to-day IT tasks and long-term strategic goals. For more information about IT consulting vs IT services, reach out for a free IT consultation.