Techno Functional: Meaning?

Here’s what techno functional means in IT:

Techno functional is a mix of technical and functional skills.

A techno functional consultant, for example, is someone who sees the big picture and combines their understanding of tech systems with a broader knowledge of finance and company workflow.

If you want to learn all about what techno functional means exactly in IT, then this article is for you.

Let’s get right into it!

Techno Functional: Meaning? (Everything to Know)

What Does Techno Functional Mean in IT?

If you have a hard time telling the difference between technical, functional, and techno-functional roles, you’re not alone! 

One way that techno functional consultants are helpful is in bridging the gap between dense programming language and customers who may not understand all the tech talk. 

Let’s face it: not everyone can pursue a computer science degree to understand their tech systems better, but every business wants their technology to be on point.

In this day and age, optimized programs that function the way you need them can make or break the company at large. 

This is where a techno functional expert can be a crucial asset to the team.

To understand what techno functional means and how it’s helpful, you can break it down by reading this article. 

Learn what technical consultants and functional consultants do for an IT service and how those roles combine into the techno functional manager.

What Is a Technical Consultant?

Busy corporate office with team helping their coworker on a problem.

In IT, a tech consultant is an expert on all things programming, coding, and implementation.

They may have a degree in computer science and past job titles that include systems administrator or programmer. 

If you’ve ever had trouble signing into a public library computer, a tech consultant most likely came in to fix the problem.

The library probably hired a tech consultant to get their system running in the first place.

They may have referred to a tech consultant’s advice to find the best program to keep track of all the library books across all the branches.

No matter what type of business you’re looking at, you’d be correct to imagine that many of them depend on technical consultants to function. 

If you’re a tech consultant, your role is to optimize a business’s hardware and software to match the job’s daily processes.

Depending on the project, you may be developing a totally new product that requires writing your own code.

You may be working on customizations, modifications, or localizations to an existing system that the business uses.

A technical example may include fixing bugs and crashes as they come up.

You could provide personalized tech support to customers who need your help troubleshooting issues.

For all your technical expertise, you may not know a lot about the business side of things. Not to worry, because that’s where a functional consultant comes in. 

Roles & Responsibilities of a Tech Consultant

A tech consultant needs a wide range of skills and the ability to adapt new and old technology to each business’s unique needs. 

The primary responsibilities of a technical expert include:

  • Designing and implementing computer systems
  • Working with both hardware and software
  • Training new employees on the system
  • Creating instruction manuals for new products
  • Delivering reports during product development
  • Customizing existing ESP software
  • Installing and configuring ESP software to business needs

What Is a Functional Consultant?

Mature executive helping new employee on a task.

On the other side of the IT coin, you have functional experts.

These people often act as translators between a business’s upper management and the technical experts designing and optimizing the product for them.

The functional consultant has enough technical education to understand how computer systems should be working.

They may have studied computer science themselves or pursued a dual degree in tech and business. 

Not every functional expert can write code, but they have a general overview of how systems work and how to communicate with tech experts.

They serve as a liaison between the tech and business sides of the project, making sure expectations and ideas line up on both ends.

The functional expert also has a clear idea of the client’s expectations and looks at the product from a business perspective.

They spend time on the program’s front end and gauge the user experience for employees and customers. 

A great functional consultant has a combined background in finance, business process, and technical knowledge.

They are confident speakers who can present information in a friendly way that appeals to the company’s goals.

Roles & Responsibilities of a Functional Consultant

Functional consulting is a naturally flexible role because it depends on the client’s needs.

Excellent communication goes a long way and depending on the project, you could find yourself juggling a wide range of tasks. 

In this role, your purpose is to smooth the development process and guarantee that the business is getting a working product that fits their criteria.

You’ll set benchmarks for the product’s development and ensure it’s configured to support daily tasks. 

Responsibilities for this job may include:

  • Identifying gaps in the business’s current process and workflow
  • Working with technical experts to develop solutions for gaps
  • Analyzing data and information to optimize performance better
  • Brainstorming new ideas for the client’s existing system
  • Researching the latest technology and best practices
  • Presenting cost-benefit analysis reports to upper management

What Is the Difference Between Functional & Technical Experts?

There can be quite a bit of overlap between technical and functional experts’ roles, so let’s look at the main differences you can spot to tell them apart. 

A functional consultant often shows up early in the life of a project or business.

This is the person who will come in to talk to the company about their needs.

The functional expert helps identify gaps in the client’s current systems, laying out where they are now and where they’d like to be.

The functional expert works out a plan and timeline for addressing these issues within the company’s scope and budget.

A functional example would be making a cost-benefit analysis, researching what other companies are using to solve similar problems, or looking into the latest technological advances for new insight. 

Once the functional consultant has created a roadmap of what the business wants to accomplish, they can translate everything to the technical consultant. 

From here on out, it’s the tech expert’s job to design and modify systems that meet the client’s expectations as laid out by the functional expert. 

Once the product runs as desired, you’ll see less of the functional consultant and more of the tech expert.

Now that you have systems in place that meet your needs, the tech consultant may stick around to support you with bug fixes and troubleshooting.

How Functional & Technical Consultants Work Together

Team of workers and programmers starting a new project.

Functional and technical experts are often two people who consult on a project together.

They may even be two teams of several people, depending on the size of the business.

The point is that each role, while very different, depends on the other for success.

Just like the technical expert depends on the functional consultant to lay out the client’s exact expectations, they’ll also benefit from the functional consultant throughout creating or tweaking a tech system.

As the project comes to life, a functional expert comes up with tests to fulfill the basic tasks that the company needs.

Testing reveals bugs and kinks in the software, which the tech expert wants to fix during development, rather than waiting for the issues to surface later. 

Functional experts can see the bigger picture, so it’s helpful for tech experts to have someone else keep them on track and survey the project from the top down.

Functional consultants help them stick to a timeline, deliver reports, and update the client on challenges throughout the process.

Rather than spending hours in meetings explaining complicated programmer jargon to business experts, the tech consultant can put their energy into developing software while the functional consultant handles the talking.

This collaboration speeds up the process and lets everybody focus on the areas where they’re most skilled.

What Is Techno Functional?

Advisor discussing with a woman inside the office.

While the roles are often similar, just like there is a difference between technical vs. techno functional, there is a difference between functional vs. techno functional in IT.

Experts in techno functionality don’t just have a basic grasp of the tech side of the job.

They’re professionals with a background in coding, web development, or engineering.

They’ve done the job themselves and have a deep understanding of how it works.

Similarly, the difference between a technological vs. techno functional expert is that the latter has excellent business skills.

A techno functional example is a consultant who sees the big picture and combines their understanding of tech systems with a broader knowledge of finance and company workflow.

If you’re working as a techno functional consultant, you probably have strong communication skills that allow you to handle the business side of things.

You can listen to the client’s unique needs while using your in-depth knowledge to explain how your product will work in a practical, informative way.

Techno Functional Definition

As you might guess, the definition of “techno-functional” is a combination of the two fields.

Experts in techno functionality draw from both technical and functional experience and knowledge.

They’re able to fulfill each role’s basic requirements, including both hard and soft skills that get the job done.

A techno-functional expert can perform all the coding, software development, testing, and troubleshooting necessary on the back end to deliver a high-quality product. 

In addition to these tasks, the techno functional consultant works on the project’s front end to deal with the client and their expectations.

They’re able to view the system from the perspective of an ordinary user and design things that make sense to business experts and customers.

Techno Functional Skills

Because a techno functional expert lives at the point where tech and function overlap, they need highly specialized skills in both areas.

You may ask, “what are techno functional skills?”

You could think of a technical functional consultant as needing both “hard” and “soft” skills to excel in this position.

Hard skills include in-depth technical knowledge such as programming and writing code.

In contrast, soft skills like public speaking and clear communication are essential to delivering a bespoke product that gets the job done. 

The techno-functional expert has a thorough understanding of how the business’s programs work, from both the customer-facing and programming perspective.

A techno functional consultant uses these types of skills:

  • Front and back-end understanding of ERP (Enterprise Resource Planning) technology 
  • Writing standard, reusable code
  • Optimizing products up to coding and developmental standards
  • Product design and functionality
  • Public speaking and project presentation
  • Project management and delivery
  • Translating client expectations into technical systems

Techno Functional Roles & Responsibilities

System administrator in a big data center standing among servers.

So, what is a techno functional role exactly? 

Under the umbrella of techno functional experts, you’ll find a few different possibilities for how you can actually do this work.

One of the handy things about this skill set is its ability to flex to other job titles. 

As a techno functional expert, it’s common to find yourself consulting for businesses.

You may end up in a more specialized role, especially if you’re working for a large corporation to maintain broad systems for many users.

You may find yourself working as a techno-functional analyst, manager, or tester.

These have slightly different responsibilities, but you’ll need the same thorough knowledge of tech and function to do well in these positions.

What Is a Techno Functional Consultant?

If you’re going into consulting, this means you’re drawing on your background and knowledge to provide businesses with advice and guidance.

As someone who has been through the process before, your techno-functional expertise helps management know what to expect and how to improve their systems.

Maybe you’ve worked as a systems administrator or software developer in the past, or you’ve gone to business school to round out your knowledge.

Either way, you feel confident that you understand the business and tech ends of the job, and it’s easy for you to spot gaps in a company’s workflow.

Consulting is a broad role that can cover many different tasks depending on the project you’re focusing on. 

Techno Functional Consultant Roles and Responsibilities

  • Meeting with clients to discuss issues with computer systems
  • Identifying areas where systems can be improved
  • Advising businesses on investing in new technologies
  • Meeting with IT teams to translate upper management’s expectations
  • Providing a big picture and timeline for a project

What Is a Techno Functional Analyst?

As an analyst with techno-functional knowledge, you may be tasked with combing through a business’s records and data.

You’ll use the information you find to recommend the client’s next step to cut costs and improve workflow.

For example, you may create a cost-benefit analysis for an online retail business.

You can look for patterns in their sales records, note how much time the employees spend on specific tasks, and estimate how much labor could be saved by implementing a new technology to speed that activity along. 

Suppose online retail business workers spend lots of time typing up customer addresses for shipping labels.

In that case, it may save the company money to design a module that automatically creates a tag.

Because of your experience as a programmer, you know it wouldn’t take long to design and implement something like this. 

You can present your findings to the company and give a very accurate estimate of how much they’ll save by making the change. 

An analyst can also look outside of the business, finding new research and advances in technology that the client can adopt.

They may study the most significant competitors on the market or watch trends for where most companies are going next. 

Techno functional Analyst Roles and Responsibilities:

  • Studying data from a business’s existing systems
  • Conducting product research 
  • Presenting cost-benefit analysis to the client
  • Studying the systems of competitors 
  • Writing and presenting reports

What Is a Techno Functional Manager?

It’s common for experts in techno functionality to take on a managerial role in a company.

If you’re bringing this skill set to a company, you may be the best liaison between business experts and the IT teams working for them. 

For example, an insurance company’s upper management is interested in switching to a new program to store client information.

They want an interface that is simple to navigate and easy to search for clients by name.

You know what a user-friendly client database should look like, but you also know it’s harder to program than it sounds.

You’re able to create a timeline for the project that makes the management happy and sets realistic working hours for the coders. 

Because you’re excellent at translating concepts between tech jargon and business talk, you stay on the project as a techno functional lead.

You review benchmarks in its progress and prevent any mistakes caused by lapses in communication. 

Techno Functional Manager Roles and Responsibilities:

  • Creating and sticking to a project timeline
  • Brainstorming tech solutions to gaps in systems
  • Setting up benchmarks to evaluate progress
  • Compiling and presenting reports
  • Communicating company expectations to programmers

What Is a Techno Functional Tester?

Finally, you may even find a role within a business as a techno functional tester.

This is a critical job, especially for the final stages of a new program, when you need to ensure that everything runs as planned.

Thorough testing during the development process is the best way to prevent future issues from popping up.

For example, a techno-functional tester will develop various scenarios that an employee or customer might encounter when using the product.

Perhaps they’ll troubleshoot what happens when a library cardholder reports their card as missing online. 

If the tech expert created a module that voids the card from the system, the techno functional tester needs to ensure that the module works from the customer’s perspective. 

The tester understands how to create a user-friendly experience with the program, and they also have the back-end knowledge to come up with solutions to whatever bugs they encounter.

Techno Functional Tester Roles and Responsibilities: 

  • Analyzing new programs for bugs
  • Monitoring how existing software adapts to new computer systems
  • Brainstorming scenarios users will encounter
  • Spotting gaps in code before products are released

Why Hire a Techno Functional Consultant?

Young businesswoman talking on the phone while writing down on her notebook.

To put it simply, the main reason for hiring an expert in techno-functionality is that you don’t have the expertise yourself.

Looking around, you can see the rise of e-commerce as more companies adapt to working and doing business online. 

By handing your tech issues off to a professional who knows exactly how to deal with them, you can devote more of your own time and skills to the work that really matters to you.

That means you get more done, rather than pulling your hair out trying to solve every computer bug and crash that comes your way.

What Kinds of Companies Hire Techno Functional Experts?

You don’t have to run a tech company to hire a consultant for your business.

In fact, the less you understand these systems yourself, the more helpful it will be to pass on this job to a qualified expert. 

Some of the biggest clients of techno-functional managers come from companies like:

  • Hospitals and insurers
  • Retail and sales
  • Communications
  • Universities and schools
  • Environmental agencies
  • Museums and nonprofits

When so many workforce sectors depend on tech, the businesses that use their systems and software efficiently will naturally stand out from the pack.

Working with hardware and programs that support your business’s day-to-day routine can save you a surprising amount of time and money.

Is Techno Functional Consulting a Good Career?

Demand for jobs in the IT field has grown quickly over the years, with an 11% increase in employment from 2009 to 2019.

Now, more than ever, you can expect to have plenty of opportunities when you come from an information technology background.

Suppose you’re thinking about pursuing a career as a techno functional consultant, a techno functional manager, or techno functional analyst.

In that case, you might be pleasantly surprised that there is no education requirement for any of those career paths. 

Of course, it’s helpful to get a degree in tech or business, but many techno functional consultants gain the knowledge and experience they need just by working.

Lived experience makes you a valuable asset to a company because you’ve handled the same kinds of projects you’re proposing and you understand precisely how the process works. 

As a techno functional consultant, you can present yourself as a full package that combines two job descriptions in one.

Businesses can cut costs by hiring one person with enough expertise to cover all the bases.

This makes you an attractive candidate for many IT positions.


  • Theresa McDonough

    Tech entrepreneur and founder of Tech Medic, who has become a prominent advocate for the Right to Repair movement. She has testified before the US Federal Trade Commission and been featured on CBS Sunday Morning, helping influence change within the tech industry.