What We’ll Cover In This Piece
- Why you need both LinkedIn and BenchWatch to land consulting projects.
- Why LinkedIn is the best general networking tool available.
- How BenchWatch is different and better than LinkedIn for consulting
Estimated Time to Read: 3-5 minutes
A common question we hear from consultants curious about BenchWatch is “Well, why should I use BenchWatch, can’t I just keep using LinkedIn?” Our response is always the same. We ask them “What’s the one thing you use LinkedIn for?”
That’s a difficult question, because you don’t do just one thing on LinkedIn. You message your peers on LinkedIn, you keep tabs on their work life, you share articles, and your thoughts.
But even though you do 10 different things on LinkedIn, it’s all geared towards one very specific result:
LinkedIn is Facebook for business
LinkedIn is the modern day rolodex and initial resume. It helps you track relationships — and that’s great. Keep using LinkedIn for that, it can do that well. You’ll always know where your contacts are working and you can keep track of their professional life.
BenchWatch isn’t built to do what LinkedIn does—it has its own extremely specific goal:
BenchWatch gets consultants hired for jobs.
So the question “Should I use BenchWatch or LinkedIn?” is actually a false dichotomy. The truth is, as a modern professional, you need to be using both.
LinkedIn Is Ideal For Connecting—But Terrible For Finding Consulting Projects
If you wanted to grow your network and meet 20 professionals from your field living in your area, where would you go? LinkedIn is the obvious choice. You can search for people in your industry and in your city, and you can easily reach out to begin a relationship.
Even better, you can write articles in your field (and if you’re a consultant, you should be writing articles) and publish them to LinkedIn to build up your authority in the eyes of your network. If your writing is interesting enough, people will come to you to connect.
But imagine you ran a consulting firm, and a client wanted you to hire 5 consultants. If you post a job, you’ll get a ton of irrelevant resumes you must filter through (similar to Monster.com). So you do the following:
- Search through all of your connections for anyone who has “consultant” in their job title.
- Manually search through all of those results to find consultants experienced in your field.
- Try to discern which of those consultants have the skills you need for this specific role.
- Figure out who you might know in common who could endorse each consultant.
- Reach out to each remaining prospect to figure out their availability and bill rate.
That’s a ridiculously manual and time consuming process. You don’t have access to clear information about each consultant’s actual skills, just a generalized resume. You don’t know if they’re available for work, if they can travel to you, or if their bill rate even fits your budget.
In general, it’s an old and inefficient way to hire. There has to be a better way, right?
That’s where BenchWatch comes in.
BenchWatch Makes Hiring Consultants and Contractors Easy
BenchWatch is built by consultants for consultants. It focuses specifically on the data required to hire a consultant. When a consultant or contractor creates their BenchWatch profile, they supply the following information:
- Key skills.
- Industry expertise.
- Previous clients and projects.
- Bill rate (high and low range).
- Willingness to travel.
If a consulting firm is looking to hire 8 consultants for a project, they search for the specific skills, experience, price, and availability they need. They don’t post a job ad and get flooded with 1,000 applications from people who don’t qualify. They use BenchWatch, and they find the perfect candidates instantly.
Even better, BenchWatch uses patented trust technology to score how well a hirer can trust you depending on work you’ve done in the past, other consultants connected to you,and the clients you’ve done work for.
That means that work literally comes to you—and it will be the sort of work you’re best at.
That is how we designed BenchWatch: to make the the hiring process, from discovery to decision, fast and easy for both consultants and recruiters.
Why You Need BenchWatch and LinkedIn
BenchWatch and LinkedIn aren’t competitors. They’re both non-negotiable, essential tools for a modern consultant. You must have both.
Managing your full set of business contacts will always be a critical part of business—and LinkedIn does this well. If you want to find a mentor, if you want to connect with your peers, or if you want to become an authority in your field, LinkedIn is without question the best tool to get the job done.
But if you want to find consulting work quickly and easily, BenchWatch is the only tool for the job.
Put together, LinkedIn and BenchWatch form the basis of your professional toolkit.