Re: Asking The Billing Rate?

Subject: Re: Asking The Billing Rate?
From: Ed Wurster <glassnet -at- gmail -dot- com>
To: "TECHWR-L" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Sat, 8 Oct 2005 07:10:46 -0400

Jason wrote:

> What I didn't contract for (wasn't informed of), but what the customer was
> also expecting, was project management, QA, programming, and network
> design. In order for me to take a contract providing these (if they were
> within my range of skills, which several are not), I would require a lot
> more than $35/hour. This is what I meant when I talked about providing
> $35/hour performance for $35/hour. My customers always get what they pay
> for, plus usually a bit extra, but there are limits. IF i am contracted as
> an intermediate TW, I'm going to balk at providing senior TW services
> unless the contract is renegotiated (and please don't tell me you would'nt
> do the same).


You've done a wonderful job of explaining what happens many times, and
will continue to happen when expectations are not discussed (or

When you sign up for a short contract at an average rate, you are an
experienced tech writer who is well-versed in the specified tool.

You are not:

- Network administrator
- Supervisor of the clueless
- Manager
- Magician

However, if you are a senior tech writer, and paid accordingly, it is
expected that you help with other tasks. Network admin is a good
example. If I was a senior TW, then I'd make my years of networking
experience available to the customer. I'd also find clever ways to
solve production problems with programming tools.

If you give away your experience and knowledge for free, that is the
value the customer will attach to it.

Ed Wurster (Voorhees, NJ)
Tech Tips Blog


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