Re: Fair Contracting Practices

Subject: Re: Fair Contracting Practices
From: Brannon Golden <brannon -dot- golden -at- WCOM -dot- COM>
Date: Thu, 23 Jan 1997 11:21:48 -0600

Here's another approach you folks might consider--one perhaps slightly more straightforward than several I've seen over the past few days...

1. Visit STC's official website (
2. Search for "salary survey".
3. Locate your geographical area, and determine which category you fit into.
4. Divide that annual salary by 52 (weeks in a year).
5. Divide that weekly salary by 40 (hours in a week). This yields the minimum
per hour charge that you can reasonably afford to ask.
6. Estimate your overhead costs (equipment, office space, insurance, etc.), and
perform similar calculations to pare these down to an hourly figure.
7. Add your reasonable hourly charge to your hourly expense estimate.
8. Round up a little.

You now have an hourly rate that you can use to gauge the cost of all your future projects. You still have to know yourself, and you have to have some idea how long it takes you to complete projects. On the other hand, it gives you the option of bidding projects on a per-hour basis, rather than strictly as lump-sums.

I *know* that this is overly simplistic, and that I'm leaving out a lot of considerations (no flames, please). However, this handy approach gives you a legitimate, professionally-based baseline to work from, while at the same time avoiding all the accusations, problems, and questions surrounding price-fixing, collusion, and anti-competition. This way, your calculations and decisions are private, and your results are (reasonably) fair. In addition, they are appropriate to your geographical market. If I've left out elements of your own personal equation, you can easily customize this approach to suit your needs.

BTW, copies of the Annual Salary Survey Results (in their entirety) are available to members of STC for a small fee, to cover printing and shipping. (Sorry, but I don't have that specific information presently at hand...)

C. Brannon Golden
brannon -dot- golden -at- wcom -dot- com

"Once I thought I had mono for an entire year. But it turned out I was just really bored."
Mike Myers, *Wayne's World*

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