So you want to become a Salesforce Consultant?
If you want to make a switch into a Salesforce Consultant role from an internal client role, I have put together some points to consider as you explore. This is definitely not an exhaustive list so drop your questions.
Exposure to New Processes and Clients/Industry
Every project you take on as a Consultant will be a new opportunity to shine with a new set of challenges and learning — Understanding people, and technology, client culture, its stakeholders, IT infrastructure, business processes and of course new Salesforce orgs!
You are diving into a sea of knowledge and lots of problems to solve. If this is something that excites you, then you are in for a treat! You also get to make an imapct.
This is in contrast to a client-side role, where you pretty much know most of the processes and people already. You do not have the element of surprise mostly. There are new projects at a company but they mostly a lot of time to come by, relatively slower pace.
Exposure to different Roles and Technology
If you have wanted to play different roles without changing jobs, then consulting will allow you to do that. Depending on the consulting partner you decide to join, you will get exposure to different roles, industry and tools within Salesforce and other tech stacks as well. So your learning will grow exponentially.
It will be a great fit for you if you want to get a feel for different industries, role, etc and expand your horizon of knowledge which I enjoy.
The downside of this is it can be overwhelming at times. I have to constantly fight the feeling of imposter syndrome. You need to remind yourself that being a consultant doesn’t mean you know everything, it just means you will learn and figure it out and reach out to experts in that area for help! Nobody knows everything.
You can also choose to specialize at something like a CPQ specialist, or LWC Developer, Commerce Cloud, Marketing Consultant, etc so you are staying focused in that vertical.
Project Structure, Working with others
You will actually get to follow a process (for the most part) and work with a Project team, Architect, and other awesome and like-minded people who are ready to support you. Unless you work for a large company already, you may not have a defined process internally for gathering user stories or requirements, sprints, backlogs, and other elements of Scrum. This was a big one for me, I learned so much in this aspect! The process doesn't have to be rigid because it's not one size fit all but it does need to exist.
Training and Certifications
As a consultant at a Salesforce Partner, you will have access to training resources and certification vouchers to further accelerate your career. This is a great balancing act depending on your non-project time, you obviously have to put in the time. If you are self-motivated and have the time, then you have all the resources available to you including mentorship. If you are an internal admin or developer, your company may or may not reimburse you for certifications.
Time and Commitment
This is a very important consideration before you make the jump. As a Consultant, you'll definitely be a lot busier than permanent FTE as it is faster paced. I certainly have experienced this but I wanted the challenge and learning. Working on the client-side is slower-paced than as a consultant in my experience. I find myself constantly thinking about solving problems on a ticking time clock. It doesn't mean I didn't work hard as a full-time employee, but there was more leeway. And then adding travelling to this might leave you feeling burnt so just be prepared.
It comes down to setting your boundaries and letting everyone know ahead of time of any obligations that you may have outside of work. It also depends on the company culture and your team.
All of these are my own experience and someone else might have a completely different experience. It varies based on the company, region, teams, client, project, and so much more.
Finally, I can understand if you are feeling anxious because I have been there. I was looking for insights from other blogs, mentors, etc. so I wanted to share my thoughts hoping this helps you. I can only say, trust your instincts on this one and remember it's not permanent.