A principal consultant is responsible for evaluating business' needs and opportunities, identifying potential leads to create project proposals, and maintaining strong business relationships that would generate revenues and increase the organization's profitability. Principal consultants must be up-to-date with the current market trends to ensure that the business adapts to the industry's changes. They also initiate new product development to expand its brand image, working closely with the marketing team for marketing strategies and promotions.

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Principal Consultant Responsibilities

Here are examples of responsibilities from real principal consultant resumes representing typical tasks they are likely to perform in their roles.

  • Manage project risks and issues throughout the SDLC phases, report project/program statuses to steering committee along with financial information.
  • Provide PMO office support including improving governance processes to achieve expect results.
  • Manage numerous engagements that are either custom development or package software (ERP) implementations and integration.
  • Project leadership, strategy and health information management consulting services to healthcare and manage care organizations and health information technology companies.
  • Design database and business objects using XML schema.
  • Create XMLType view to generate xml output from a SQL query.
  • Consult and interface with c-level executives on the importance of UX/UI in relationship to customer retention.
  • Supervise a mix team of consultants and customer professionals, including: business analysts, ETL analysts, and technical architects.
  • Develop program specifications for data extract/transformation/load (ETL) procedures.
  • Provide guidelines for debugging local and remote for java post process applications.
  • Design and implement a custom logging system for an embed Linux application.
  • Function as a significant contributor to tactical and strategic development of PMO.
  • Addressed people and organizational requirements relate to large-scale ERP technology implementations and strategic plans.
  • Research technology initiatives and perform RFP and vendor selection for a NASDAQ technology overhaul.
  • Launch a straight-through processing initiative to support business growth and promote a control and efficient processing infrastructure.

Principal Consultant Job Description

Between the years 2018 and 2028, principal consultant jobs are expected to undergo a growth rate described as "much faster than average" at 14%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. So if the thought "should I become a principal consultant?" Has crossed your mind, maybe you should take the growth rate into account. In addition, the number of principal consultant opportunities that are projected to become available by 2028 is 118,300.

A principal consultant annual salary averages $116,478, which breaks down to $56.0 an hour. However, principal consultants can earn anywhere from upwards of $90,000 to $150,000 a year. This means that the top-earning principal consultants make $55,000 more than the lowest-earning ones.

Once you've become a principal consultant, you may be curious about what other opportunities are out there. Careers aren't one size fits all. For that reason, we discovered some other jobs that you may find appealing. Some jobs you might find interesting include a senior consultant, information technology, consultant/project manager, consultant/team lead, and senior management consultant.

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Principal Consultant Skills and Personality Traits

We calculated that 11% of Principal Consultants are proficient in Cloud, Business Development, and C #. They’re also known for soft skills such as Problem-solving skills, Time-management skills, and Interpersonal skills.

We break down the percentage of Principal Consultants that have these skills listed on their resume here:

  • Cloud, 11%

    Founded this successful independent consulting business focused on end-user computing transformation, application integration, and cloud based virtual desktop services.

  • Business Development, 10%

    Managed business development and domestic operations for traditional engineering/environment/business management consulting and liability transfer/assumption projects.

  • C #, 7%

    Implemented the Performance Monitor utility to monitor the entire performance of the application using C # and SQL Server.

  • Customer Satisfaction, 6%

    Reviewed a hospital's laboratory outreach business and developed plans for operational improvement and enhancements for improved customer satisfaction.

  • Java, 5%

    Provided guidelines for debugging local and remote for java post processed applications.

  • Project Management, 4%

    Provide consulting services for marketing strategy & program development as well as project management & operations support for other marketing initiatives.

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"cloud," "business development," and "c #" aren't the only skills we found principal consultants list on their resumes. In fact, there's a whole list of principal consultant responsibilities that we found, including:

  • The most important skills for a principal consultant to have in this position are problem-solving skills. In this excerpt that we gathered from a principal consultant resume, you'll understand why: "management analysts must be able to think creatively to solve clients’ problems" According to resumes we found, problem-solving skills can be used by a principal consultant in order to "help stabilize real-time inventory to end users on web interfaces solution based on j2ee and mobile technologies routinely managing project development. "
  • While it may not be the most important skill, we found that many principal consultant duties rely on time-management skills. This example from a principal consultant explains why: "management analysts often work under tight deadlines and must use their time efficiently to complete projects on time." This resume example is just one of many ways principal consultants are able to utilize time-management skills: "lead new product development with emphasis on time to volume visibility & consistency. "
  • Interpersonal skills is also an important skill for principal consultants to have. This example of how principal consultants use this skill comes from a principal consultant resume, "management analysts must work with managers and other employees of the organizations where they provide consulting services" Read this excerpt from a resume to understand how vital it is to their everyday roles and responsibilities, "project lead with excellent interpersonal communication, identifying problem + solving, functional requirements technical specification and business analytical skills. "
  • A principal consultant responsibilities sometimes require "analytical skills." The responsibilities that rely on this skills are shown by this resume excerpt: "management analysts must be able to interpret a wide range of information and use their findings to make proposals." This resume example shows how this skill is used by principal consultants: "identified $1.5m reoccurring savings and developed several new performance reports and visualization tools, providing trending and predictive analysis. "
  • Yet another important skill that a principal consultant must demonstrate is "communication skills." Management analysts must be able to communicate clearly and precisely in both writing and speaking This is clearly demonstrated in this example from a principal consultant who stated: "developed webmethods services and java services for communication with the lotus notes apis. "
  • See the full list of principal consultant skills.

    Before becoming a principal consultant, 67.7% earned their bachelor's degree. When it comes down to graduating with a master's degree, 23.3% principal consultants went for the extra education. If you're wanting to pursue this career, it may be impossible to be successful with a high school degree. In fact, most principal consultants have a college degree. But about one out of every nine principal consultants didn't attend college at all.

    Those principal consultants who do attend college, typically earn either business degrees or computer science degrees. Less commonly earned degrees for principal consultants include electrical engineering degrees or accounting degrees.

    Once you've obtained the level of education you're comfortable with, you might start applying to companies to become a principal consultant. We've found that most principal consultant resumes include experience from Oracle, Black & Veatch, and ERM. Of recent, Oracle had 2,478 positions open for principal consultants. Meanwhile, there are 249 job openings at Black & Veatch and 232 at ERM.

    If you're interested in companies where principal consultants make the most money, you'll want to apply for positions at Pure Storage, F5, and Palo Alto Networks. We found that at Pure Storage, the average principal consultant salary is $147,630. Whereas at F5, principal consultants earn roughly $147,010. And at Palo Alto Networks, they make an average salary of $142,618.

    View more details on principal consultant salaries across the United States.

    We also looked into companies who hire principal consultants from the top 100 educational institutions in the U.S. The top three companies that hire the most from these institutions include Deloitte, Booz Allen Hamilton, and IBM.

    The three companies that hire the most prestigious principal consultants are:

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    What Senior Consultant, Information Technologys Do

    A senior consultant of information technology is primarily responsible for developing strategies and procedures to optimize a company's information technology systems and infrastructure. It is their duty to assess existing networks and systems to identify their strengths and weaknesses, develop solutions in problem areas, perform risk assessments, and provide advice on how to achieve the best information technology practices. Furthermore, as a senior consultant, it is essential to lead the efforts and serve as a role model for the workforce, all while implementing the company's policies and regulations.

    In this section, we take a look at the annual salaries of other professions. Take senior consultant, information technology for example. On average, the senior consultants, information technology annual salary is $6,340 lower than what principal consultants make on average every year.

    While the salaries between these two careers can be different, they do share some of the same responsibilities. Employees in both principal consultants and senior consultants, information technology positions are skilled in cloud, business development, and c #.

    As far as similarities go, this is where it ends because a principal consultant responsibility requires skills such as "customer satisfaction," "solution design," "analytics," and "infrastructure." Whereas a senior consultant, information technology is skilled in "visio," "san," "strong analytical," and "technical support." So if you're looking for what truly separates the two careers, you've found it.

    Senior consultants, information technology tend to make the most money in the finance industry by averaging a salary of $117,869. In contrast, principal consultants make the biggest average salary of $119,120 in the finance industry.

    The education levels that senior consultants, information technology earn is a bit different than that of principal consultants. In particular, senior consultants, information technology are 2.1% less likely to graduate with a Master's Degree than a principal consultant. Additionally, they're 0.9% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    What Are The Duties Of a Consultant/Project Manager?

    Consultants/project managers act as planners, leaders, and advisors in business enterprises. These professionals facilitate meetings and establish positive relationships with vendors, management, and clients. They make customer visits, maintain industry knowledge, procure third-party software and hardware, and deliver projects. It is also part of their duty to manage complex initiatives in an individual business unit or organization. Their skills include analytical, time and cost management, problem-solving, interpersonal skills, and proficiency in project management software.

    Next up, we have the consultant/project manager profession to look over. This career brings along a lower average salary when compared to a principal consultant annual salary. In fact, consultant/project managers salary difference is $15,724 lower than the salary of principal consultants per year.

    A similarity between the two careers of principal consultants and consultant/project managers are a few of the skills associated with both roles. We used resumes from both professions to find that both use skills like "business development," "customer satisfaction," and "project management. "

    While some skills are similar in these professions, other skills aren't so similar. For example, several resumes showed us that principal consultant responsibilities requires skills like "cloud," "c #," "java," and "solution design." But a consultant/project manager might use skills, such as, "project scope," "executive management," "cash flow," and "strong analytical."

    Consultant/project managers may earn a lower salary than principal consultants, but consultant/project managers earn the most pay in the technology industry with an average salary of $107,463. On the other side of things, principal consultants receive higher paychecks in the finance industry where they earn an average of $119,120.

    In general, consultant/project managers study at similar levels of education than principal consultants. They're 4.3% less likely to obtain a Master's Degree while being 0.9% less likely to earn a Doctoral Degree.

    How a Consultant/Team Lead Compares

    Consultant team leads analyze background documentation, project documents, financial reports, etc., to prepare an initial report about the projects they are working on. They gather data through interviews, research, and surveys to design proposals meant to create an inclusive environment for everyone. These leaders work with clients to improve their organization's performance by coordinating their teams and identifying their needs. They also lead a team of consultants and discuss the techniques that help their clients improve their quality of living.

    The consultant/team lead profession generally makes a lower amount of money when compared to the average salary of principal consultants. The difference in salaries is consultants/team lead making $19,427 lower than principal consultants.

    While looking through the resumes of several principal consultants and consultants/team lead we discovered that both professions have similar skills. These similarities include skills such as "c #," "project management," and "erp," but they differ when it comes to other required skills.

    As mentioned, these two careers differ between other skills that are required for performing the work exceedingly well. For example, gathering from principal consultants resumes, they are more likely to have skills like "cloud," "business development," "customer satisfaction," and "java." But a consultant/team lead might have skills like "customer service," "product knowledge," "liaising," and "css."

    Additionally, consultants/team lead earn a higher salary in the finance industry compared to other industries. In this industry, they receive an average salary of $112,433. Additionally, principal consultants earn an average salary of $119,120 in the finance industry.

    When it comes to education, consultants/team lead tend to earn similar education levels than principal consultants. In fact, they're 4.5% less likely to earn a Master's Degree, and 0.5% less likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.

    Description Of a Senior Management Consultant

    A senior management consultant is an experienced professional who is in charge of a team of management consultants to help an organization solve issues, maximize growth, and improve business performance. Senior management consultants must conduct company research so that they can better understand the organization. They prepare business proposals and presentations as well as identify issues to form hypotheses and solutions. Senior management consultants must also implement recommendations or solutions and ensure that an organization receives the necessary assistance to carry it all out.

    Senior management consultants tend to earn a higher pay than principal consultants by about $11,781 per year.

    According to resumes from both principal consultants and senior management consultants, some of the skills necessary to complete the responsibilities of each role are similar. These skills include "business development," "java," and "project management. "

    Each job requires different skills like "cloud," "c #," "customer satisfaction," and "solution design," which might show up on a principal consultant resume. Whereas senior management consultant might include skills like "portfolio," "project scope," "sr," and "subject matter expertise."

    Senior management consultants earn a higher salary in the technology industry with an average of $135,771. Whereas, principal consultants earn the highest salary in the finance industry.

    Senior management consultants reach similar levels of education when compared to principal consultants. The difference is that they're 0.3% more likely to earn a Master's Degree less, and 0.3% less likely to graduate with a Doctoral Degree.