Guest Post by Bryant Ficek, PE, PTOE – Vice-President at Spack Consulting
Like most consultants, we complete a lot of projects from start to finish. One hidden aspect we offer is being a sub-consultant. However, this is not a sub in the traditional sense of being someone’s traffic engineer on a larger project. Instead, we provide pure technical support to other traffic engineers.
Providing this type of assistance doesn’t usually start with a blind email for help. Rather, we have gotten to know a lot of people through our sales at CountingCars.com, through the use of our new COUNTcloud service, or from readers of this blog. Through our white papers, research guides, and other helpful tools, we have been able to develop a relationship with a number of other professionals across the country, and the world to be quite frank. It is through these relationships that being a technical sub started.
In some cases, an individual had an extremely high project load on his or her plate. Others were simply looking for a second opinion from an objective outsider.
Sub-Consultant Case Study
Our most recent tech-subbing has been with Chet Skwarcan of Traffic Engineering Inc. located in Indiana.
Chet provided a map of the location, existing and future traffic volumes, and other data necessary for building a traffic analysis model. With a quick turn-around, we were able to provide him the analyses of several intersections. Our work consisted of developing the model, running the analysis, and providing the results. We also talked through potential recommendations, including re-running a scenario to account for mitigation.
I think this process has been a win-win situation for all parties. For the professionals who use us, they have temporary help to get through a peak time and/or a second opinion on a particular situation. This help also comes without relying on a competitor (FYI Chet – I’m not moving to, or opening up a new office in Indiana) or having to hire someone before being ready for it. I also happen to think our rates are more than competitively priced.
For us, we get the opportunity to see some unique situations and the chance to talk traffic with colleagues across the country. What traffic engineer wouldn’t like that?
Chet’s Take: I learned a long time ago that “no one is as smart as all of us”. Collaboration with Spack Consulting has been a great way to expand my team for project-specific challenges.
Mike’s Aside: Over the last decade Spack Consulting has done similar work for Westwood Professional Services, Bolton & Menk, Bonestroo (now Stantec), Kimley Horn, and TKDA in Minnesota when they’ve been short-handed in their traffic engineering department. This has included mentoring junior traffic engineers through the process. Think of us as an extension of your team. Whether you need a complete end-to-end project, someone to do the modeling/analysis, or input on a project you are developing – we’re here to help!