Guide to Becoming a Freelance IT Consultant: Steps and Tips

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Guide to Becoming a Freelance IT Consultant: Steps and Tips

How to Become a Freelance IT Consultant?

Besides having a solid technical background and a knack for sales, becoming a freelance IT consultant requires choosing the right legal status: self-employed, EURL, SASU, or even wage portage. Here are some tips to succeed in your project.

What Training is Needed to Become a Freelance IT Consultant?

Generally, you need a five-year degree to become an IT consultant with a degree in computer engineering, a bachelor’s, or a master's degree in technology from a specialized school. Once your studies are completed (preferably with a few internships), it can be beneficial to opt for an employed status for a few months or years. This way, you can develop your skills and gain experience from seasoned IT consulting professionals. Moreover, the field is constantly evolving (artificial intelligence, increasing attacks, etc.), and there are many skills to master in both hardware and software technology, as well as sometimes in management and project management. You will thus be ready to face your clients alone, offering them the best solution for their IT infrastructure based on their needs.

What are the Tasks of a Freelance IT Consultant?

The role of an independent IT consultant is quite diverse. You can work on setting up network digital infrastructures for businesses or ensuring their maintenance. You can even train internal staff on the operation of the IT system you just installed.

You might also have a portfolio of several clients for whom you perform various consulting and IT tasks. In this case, you work both from home (or an office chosen for your freelance activity) and at the client's site. Alternatively, you could work on assignment within a company — such as an ESN or a consulting firm — where you stay for several weeks or months.

However, keep in mind that if your revenue comes solely from services ordered by one client, you risk having your contract reclassified as a fixed-term or permanent contract. This is especially true if you work on the company’s premises, using their tools, during the same hours as employees, and the position is permanent and could be filled by someone with a regular contract. Be mindful of this aspect.

Becoming a Freelance IT Consultant: What are the Benefits?

The first freedom of a freelance IT consultant? You choose your clients and projects based on your preferences. If you don’t like maintenance but are passionate about designing and setting up complex and secure information systems, you can accept only these types of contracts. You will also face a broader range of situations than in a salaried position, enriching your experience in different work environments. This requires great adaptability and management skills as well as comprehensive knowledge in your consulting tasks.

You also control your organization and schedule. If you only want to work four days a week, just specify this rule in the initial contract. The same goes for vacations. As for the workplace, it is more flexible even though, in IT consulting, presence on site is often necessary to oversee implementation, ensure its proper functioning, and handle training, maintenance, and potential after-sales service. While this job is generally done solo, teamwork is not excluded, especially for high-quality digital infrastructure that requires advanced skills.

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