FAQ : why hiring a consultant in bioinformatics?

What is a consultant ?

A consultant is offering is expertise to enhance your projects. He works alone or with a team of consultants in order to solve issues you may encountered or to improve the value of your project.

What can concretely bring a consultant to my project ?

First advices. Advices about technologies to use, procedures to follow, another point of view on your problems to find a solution someone too much immersed in the project won’t have seen. Second, a consultant can implement a solution (coming from the first advise phase or already decided by your organization internally). It could be, for bioinformatics, creating a new tool, doing a particular analysis and/or training your own people to do such analysis.

A consultant in bioinformatics ??

Bioinformatics is now a very wide field which required some specialization. Although many biological team do have now some bioinformaticians at hand, it is difficult for them to stay up-to-date in every possible bioinformatic topics. From that point of view, it is consistent that some bioinformaticians highly specialize themselves in some field and offer this expertise for people who need it.

Who may want hire a consultant in bioinformatics ?

Everyone that have projects including biological data to be analysed : public or private institutes, companies, NGO… As long as you lack a bioinformatics expertise for a project, you may keep in mind the “consultant” option.

Why should I hire a consultant when I can recruit someone ?

Recruitment is relevant when you need a precise expertise for a not-so-short continuous period or to complete a team, but it is a time (and money)-consuming answer. Sometimes you may need someone quickly available and operational, or maybe someone regularly but not continuously available for very precise task . This is  when you should consider to hire a consultant.

Isn’t it expensive ?

“Expensive” or “not expensive” is a subjective question. It is a matter of the what you ask, and the quantity of resources you can to allocate to that task. When the right zone of intervention has been defined, the consultant fees are not expensive, especially when you consider that you don’t have to deal with taxes (the consultant take care of that point) and the saving made by avoiding time-consuming recruitment.

How are the fees calculated ?

It may may be a per month/week/days/hours rate or a global cost by project. I think a global cost by project is more relevant for the project holder as the cost is already known (no bad surprise) and it is a more flexible way to evaluate the cost. Instead of sticking to a fixed price, it takes into account the complexity and the possible gain to find a relevant price.

Of course, your organization may already have its own procedure to hire a consultant.

Got it ! I think I need you, how to get in touch ?

Please go to the contact page. I’ll be happy to discuss with you about how we could work together to make your project successful.