Information technology is another term for computing, which is the use of computers and other devices for exchanging, retrieving, storing, and networking of electronic data. Information technology consultants advise companies of all sizes, from startups to large international corporations, on the fastest, most efficient, and cost-effective information technology systems for their business. The specialty areas that information technology consultants may focus on include hardware, software, networks, communications, and Web design, among others. The IT consulting industry consists of large companies that offer IT consulting services as well as other business services to other companies. IT consultants may also work independently.
The general consulting industry has origins in the early 1900s, when manufacturers sought advice on how to increase worker productivity and maximize profits. Consulting businesses were established in the United States to help companies solve these and other problems. Information technology consulting businesses first emerged in the 1980s, after the personal computer was introduced to the mass marketplace. Since the 1990s, the evolution of the Internet and social media have contributed to the growth of the information technology consulting industry.
In May 2018, there were more than 4 million people employed full time in computer and mathematical occupations, including information technology jobs, in the United States, as reported by the Department of Labor. The industries with the highest concentration of employment in computer and math jobs are computers systems design and related services; software publishers; data processing, hosting, and related services; computer and peripheral equipment manufacturing; and other information services.
According to the market research group IBISWorld, the U.S. information technology consulting industry is a $484 billion business. There are more than 476,000 information technology co...