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My first steps as a consultant: retrospective of 12 months at GCP consulting

The meet up with GCP Consulting

In May 2020, I met some members of the GCP Consulting team at the Career Night organized by HEC Liège, the university from which I was about to graduate, a month later, with a master’s in Business Engineering. The feeling is good, the team is young and dynamic, and the job description of a consultant intrigues me. That’s all it took for me to start the recruitment process. However, before this meeting, this job that I could not really define did not make much sense to me, after all, what is a consultant? I have been working in this position for a year now, and I invite you to discover my career path in order to learn more about the job of a “junior” consultant in a consulting firm specialized in transformation and change management,and about the reasons that led me to a human-sized company.

My first steps as a consultant:

In September 2020, I took my first steps as a consultant. Some theoretical training was given to me in order to quickly acquire some knowledge on a fraction of services that GCP offers. The real training takes place on the field, which took me out of my comfort zone from the beginning, and in the end, that’s what I was looking for. The first week, along with my new colleagues, we went to Ath to a local cooperative. The missionthere was to conduct a processanalysis to frame the needs of the cooperative and tobring the expertise of GCP in the choice of a management software integrator.

The following week, I was on my way to Arlon to join another GCP team already operational on an ERP implementation project. My main duty in this project was to act as PMO (Project Management Office), i.e., to provide guidance and support to the management of projects. At the beginning, I mainly assisted my colleagues in various tasks such as organizing meetings, attending meetings to write up the minutes, doing the budget follow-up, ensuring the follow-up of the actions in progress for each of the project stakeholders, etc. After a few months, I coordinated some tasks of the change management where I planned the end-user trainings (NDLR : more than 60 trainings and 200 end-users) and calculated the key performance indicatorsin order to evaluate the quality of the trainings and the knowledge level of the end-users. At the same time, I carried out the follow-up of the acceptance tests (UAT), making sure that all the functionalities integrated in the ERP were tested and met the needs of the business. I was able to develop all those skills quickly, mainly thanks to the kindness of my colleagues.

All this happened during the second lockdown linked to the COVID-19 pandemic that stopped the face-to-face work, which is so important in this type of project. We had to adapt and continue to meet the needs of the client despite the deterioration of the exchanges due to the distance.

This project was very formativeand still occupies a part of my schedule. When you arrive on a project during the course of the project and you have not yet acquire professional experience, you are continuously learning. You have to assimilate a lot of specific words and concepts quickly. In an ERP implementation project,our role as a consultant specialized in transformation and change management is various and not directly linked to the implementation of the ERP which is the responsibility of a technical-functional consultant.

The variety of GCP Consulting missions

Six months ago, in parallel with the previous project,I started a new type of project,which was writing the specification (in order to select a provider for the implementation of a management software). In spite of the preconceptions, I had against this type of project, thinking that it was too literary, I was pleasantly surprised by the diversity of the tasks that needed to be performed. Indeed, GCP offers its services for missions such as the analysis of the functional needs of the customer via thematic workshops, the drafting of the various clauses of the specification (administrative and technical) and appendices, the analysisof the offers and the selection of the bidder while training the reading committee (people analyzing the offers of the various bidders) with an aim of bringing all the necessary knowledge to them in order to select the provider best adapted to their needs.

In the last few months, I have been working on a completely different but very interesting mission. I was in charge of the complete redesign of the website and the strategic image of GCP consulting with our digital partner, AR Digital. This mission allowed me to discover new horizons and to improve my soft skills, in particular by rethinking the way of communicating and interacting with many stakeholders. By the way, if you are reading me today, it is because the new strategic image of GCP has been unveiled and the new website is now online, I invite you to have a look at it.

To conclude this article,

I would like to emphasize that all the missions brought me valuable experience to evolve in this job. Of course, after one year, I am still at the beginning of my training, it is certain that my knowledge will continue to grow and develop throughout my career. The fact that I work in a human-sized firm has allowed me to quickly find my place and to have a certain autonomy on projects. I find that working on several projects of different natures, help me having a critical eye on my work and on the work of others. As we often say at GCP,the devil lays in details and you have to do things seriously without taking yourself too seriously. 😉.

If you would like to join our team, do not hesitate to apply for our job offers on our Recruitment page.