Get Success to drive your software testing consultancy

If you want your software testing consultancy to succeed, first ask what sort of success you want. You probably have some ideas on this. For example, you may want to run an exclusive software consultancy with a reputation for excellence, or make a million before your 30, or as I do, you want to work for yourself , have a reputation for excellence and balance work and lifestyle. Whatever the definition, this can become great parameters for your future business decisions.

I’ll give you an example of what happened to me. Recently, I’ve had the opportunity to review my goals for my consultancy.

At the moment, the company is dependent on me, myself and I. That makes me director, test consultant, accountant, marketing manager and sales person.. not to mention cleaner etc. My income is good, and in software testing, there’s a plethora of opportunities and directions someone like me can take. For example, I could outsource additional testing to a different company, take on a couple of software contractors, perhaps concentrate on being a test consultant with a great reputation .

So, I went back to my definition of success and used this to redefined by companie’s goals within the parameters I had initially set.

It helped me throw out some options, and refocus my energy on becoming a consultant with an excellent reputation. My goal is to have customers knocking on the door with software testing problems to solve. However, it also important to me to be at home for my young kids in the afternoon. So, yes I have to accept that some of the options for me are not possible, however I’m living within my parameters and so yes I am a success.

Small Footnote: Of course, you may find out that you redefine your goals within your existing parameters and find your not happy with the result. I suppose its a good indicator to review your definition of success. Perhaps it’s changed since you started your business?

How I setup a software testing consultancy

One question that keeps popping up into my inbox is …..I want to setup a software testing consultancy…any advice?

Ohhh yes. Heaps of advice. I don’t know if it will do anyone any good, but I have heaps of advice. However before I start down that path, I thought a far better and honest approach would be to share with whoever is  interested  how I started my consultancy business.

So, a bit of history.

Setting up a Test Consultancy in Australia

By 1998 I had worked on some great testing areas such as European Compliance Testing, R&D for some companies who really  knew about testing… Nortel and IBM to name drop a few. But to be honest, the corporate path never interested me. So with a decision I took totally lightly I setup a company. Easy Peasy. It cost me $600 Australian dollars and there it was, AMH Solutions Pty Ltd.

I got loads of work, mostly through contracting and though I would have preferred to work directly with a customer, I never gave the issue much thought.

Then I had kids.

Determine your Test Consultancy Success

I still really wanted to work, but I decided that considering my new found responsibilities, part time or freelance would be preferable. I figured that running a consultancy was ideal, if I could just find the work.

The first thing I did was go back to my old companies I had worked for. I explained I wanted freelance or part-time work and what do you know, within three weeks I was employed running a test management role for three days a week.

So things ticked along. I got additional work through word of mouth. I also contacted a few agencies and they kept me on the books for short term work only. I got some great jobs through that.

The Best thing about a Test Consultancy

For most of the time, I have really enjoyed it. One thing I have never regretted is working for myself. I love it. I enjoy the challenge and the freedom that it provides me. I get to set my own goals, where I want to be and what direction I want my company to take. I define my own success.

I am happy.