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Consultee vs. Consultant: What's the Difference?

By Aimie Carlson || Updated on May 23, 2024
A consultee is someone seeking advice or expertise, while a consultant provides professional advice or services. Both roles interact, but from opposite perspectives in the advisory process.

Key Differences

A consultee is an individual or organization that seeks advice or expertise from a professional. This person or entity typically has a problem or decision to make and looks for external input to aid in the process. Consultants, on the other hand, are professionals who offer expert advice, solutions, or services to those in need. They leverage their specialized knowledge and experience to provide recommendations or strategies.
Consultants often have extensive expertise in a particular field, whereas consultees may not possess the same level of knowledge in the area of concern. A consultee might approach a consultant to gain insights they lack, relying on the consultant's proficiency to guide them. Conversely, consultants market their expertise and make themselves available to those seeking guidance.
The relationship between a consultee and a consultant is usually formal and transactional. The consultee engages the consultant under specific terms, often involving a fee for the consultant's services. This contrasts with other advisory relationships where advice might be offered informally or without compensation.
Communication between a consultee and consultant is key. A consultee must clearly articulate their needs and concerns, while a consultant must listen, analyze, and provide actionable advice. Both parties must maintain clear and effective communication to ensure that the consultant's advice addresses the consultee's issues.
Consultees may vary widely in their background and expertise. They can range from individuals needing personal advice to large corporations seeking strategic guidance. Consultants, however, typically possess a high level of specialization in their field, which makes their advice particularly valuable.
The outcome of the consultee-consultant relationship can significantly impact the consultee's decisions and actions. While consultees depend on consultants for informed advice, the consultant's role ends at providing recommendations; it is up to the consultee to implement the advice.

Comparison Chart


Seeks advice or expertise
Provides professional advice or services

Knowledge Level

Often lacks specialized knowledge
Possesses specialized knowledge and expertise

Relationship Nature

Seeks guidance and assistance
Offers guidance and assistance


Formally engages for specific advice
Formally provides advice for a fee


Articulates needs and concerns
Analyzes needs and provides actionable advice

Consultee and Consultant Definitions


An entity looking for expert opinion.
The company, as a consultee, hired a consultant for market analysis.


An expert who gives strategic recommendations.
The consultant was hired to improve company operations.


An individual in need of guidance.
The consultee needed advice on career planning.


A person offering their expertise for a fee.
The business consultant charged an hourly rate for his services.


Someone requesting assistance.
The consultee scheduled a meeting with a financial advisor.


An advisor with specialized knowledge.
The consultant's advice helped the company increase its revenue.


A person seeking professional advice.
The consultee approached a lawyer for legal advice.


A specialist providing solutions.
The IT consultant fixed the network issues promptly.


A person seeking specialized input.
As a consultee, he required expert advice on health matters.


A professional offering expert advice.
The consultant provided valuable insights into the project.


A person who is consulted


One who gives expert or professional advice.


One who consults another.


A person or party that is consulted.


A person whose occupation is to be consulted for their expertise, advice, service or help in an area or specialty; a party whose business is to be similarly consulted.


A senior hospital-based physician or surgeon who has completed all specialist training and has been placed on the specialist register in their chosen speciality, roughly equivalent to an attending physician in North America.


An expert who gives advice.


An expert who gives advice;
An adviser helped students select their courses
The United States sent military advisors to Guatemala


What does a consultant do?

Offers strategic advice, solutions, and recommendations based on their expertise.

What is a consultant?

A consultant is a professional who provides expert advice or services to others.

Why would someone be a consultee?

To gain insights or solutions from a specialist in a field where they lack knowledge.

Is a consultant always paid?

Typically, consultants are compensated for their services.

Can a consultant work for multiple consultees simultaneously?

Yes, consultants often work with multiple clients simultaneously, managing their time and resources accordingly.

Do consultees need to provide information to consultants?

Yes, consultees must provide relevant information and context for consultants to give accurate advice.

What is a consultee?

A consultee is a person or organization seeking advice or expertise from a professional.

Who needs a consultant?

Individuals or organizations lacking specific expertise and seeking professional guidance.

Can a consultee also be a consultant?

Yes, a person can seek advice in one area while offering expertise in another.

How does one become a consultant?

Becoming a consultant usually requires extensive experience and expertise in a specific field, along with strong analytical and communication skills.

What skills are essential for a consultant?

Key skills include problem-solving, communication, analytical thinking, and subject matter expertise.

Is the advice from a consultant legally binding?

No, the advice is not legally binding; it is up to the consultee to implement it.

What fields do consultants work in?

Consultants can work in various fields, including business, IT, healthcare, and more.

What are common types of consultants?

Common types include management consultants, IT consultants, financial consultants, and marketing consultants.

How do consultants charge for their services?

Consultants may charge hourly rates, project fees, retainers, or performance-based fees.

How do consultants ensure confidentiality?

Consultants typically sign confidentiality agreements and follow ethical guidelines to protect client information.

What should a consultee look for when choosing a consultant?

They should look for relevant experience, proven track record, expertise in the field, and strong references.

What is the difference between a consultant and a coach?

A consultant provides specific advice and solutions, while a coach focuses on personal or professional development and mentoring.

Can a consultant guarantee results?

Consultants provide recommendations based on their expertise, but they cannot guarantee specific outcomes.

How can a consultee measure the success of a consultant's work?

Success can be measured by the achievement of defined goals, improved performance, or specific metrics agreed upon at the start of the engagement.
About Author
Written by
Aimie Carlson
Aimie Carlson, holding a master's degree in English literature, is a fervent English language enthusiast. She lends her writing talents to Difference Wiki, a prominent website that specializes in comparisons, offering readers insightful analyses that both captivate and inform.

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