If you are a civil engineer, opening a consultancy firm is one option for your career. Of course, you must first have the prerequisite academic and industry qualifications. These are some of the key factors that your future clients will be looking at before they hire your firm. If you have been in the industry for many years and do not want to retire, opening a consultancy firm is one way of ensuring your skills and experience is put into good use as you become your own boss.
What You Need
You need a lot of experience under mentors. Your engineering consultancy firm will mostly be involved in drawing designs, planning projects, and doing budget review. Actual implementation is very limited. Your field experience will play an important role in performing all these duties to ensure project implementers are guided by expert designs and project plans.
Project management skills are very crucial if you want to succeed in consultancy. You may be required to follow up or monitor the projects that you design.
What Size Business to Consider
Are you planning to be a one-man consultancy firm operating from your home office or planning to have partnerships and employees? These factors will determine the size of your company and its scale of operation. In addition, the size of your consultancy – in terms of personnel – will determine the type of clients you will get. Clients with big projects that have tight deadlines will always look for a consultancy that is well resourced in terms of workforce. In addition, operating solo has its own advantages.
How to Have a Niche
Having a specialty makes you a guru in your relevant area of your specialisation. In addition, this creates an impression that the consultancy firm has vast experience in the area of specialisation. In civil engineering, there are several areas of interest you can make your specialization based on your career experience. You may specialize in bridges, airports, buildings, highways, energy and power, rail, or any other areas of civil engineering based on your expertise.
How to Market
We live in a digital age, and embracing social media sites should be your first priority as a marketing strategy. Put your engineering consultancy firm on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and any engineering professional organization that will give you meaningful social presence. Whether you are a small firm or big one, you need a great website with plenty of content and graphics to showcase your work.
How to Look for Work
Build your reputation by applying to firms and doing your best work. You should aim at referrals; therefore, you need to provide excellent services to your new clients. You can apply to private companies with building projects, engineering firms, or even the government.