Has anyone had good experience with a particular consultant? I need to sign a contract by end-of-year to research and plan a Splunk implementation in 2014. I have a budget of $10,000.
I assume you work for a hospital company, seeing as your name has hospitals in it. If you do, PM me. I currently manage the Splunk deployment for the largest Healthcare Company in the US. Depending on the scope of work, I may be able to point you in the right direction.
We took a shot at hiring a consultant a couple of years ago, but the experience was disappointing and resulted in no payment. Having been through a poorly coordinated consultant experience, I would recommend the following steps if you are looking into this:
1) Have very clear goals for what you are hoping to accomplish and for what you need assistance from a consultant (server configuration, deployment scenarios, dashboard ideas). If you know what you want to do, it goes a long way toward helping both Splunk and the consultant reach your goals. Don't be afraid to draw pictures of what you want your dashboards or tables to look like.
2) If coordinating through Splunk professional services, make absolutely sure both Splunk AND the consultant are all on the same page as to what your environment and project involve, so the consultant should be able to hit the ground with at least a superficial idea of what you are trying to accomplish. We had no contact with our consultant beforehand and he arrived having absolutely no idea what we needed (having apparently received none of the information we provided to Splunk), and then spent half the week working for his full-time customer, and we got nothing out of it. We ended up not paying.
If you can make a semi-coherent case for both of the above, you should be able to get more out of the experience than we did. Also, I'd say go through and watch a lot of the customer videos under the Resources section of the main Splunk.com website. Seeing how other organizations are using Splunk can help give you lots of ideas of what you might accomplish.
We actually want to try hiring a consultant again once our management signs off, and chalk up the previous experience to just an unfortunate confluence of events.
wow, that sounds not to good ... however ... i am sure there is plenty of good consultants and Splunk PS people happy to help you 😉
Otherwise good points made by DaClyde that will help both you and the a possible consultant .