Re: time to write question

Subject: Re: time to write question
From: Beth Agnew <BAgnew -at- INSYSTEMS -dot- COM>
Date: Sun, 28 Feb 1999 11:30:28 -0500

Hi Sharon,

It sounds like your client is very surprised by the addition to his bill. I
think this is less a "rule of thumb" question on how long it takes to do
work, but a "how to deal with a client" issue.

When working for any client, I always give them both a time and a dollar
estimate before we start work, and I get the client to sign off on that
approving our mutual agreement (contract). If you did this, perhaps your
client didn't understand what would happen if there was additional work
beyond the original estimate.

In the statement of work I always provide to clients, I outline my
understanding of the work to be performed, how I'm going to go about it,
what it will cost, and how long it will take. I also include contingencies,
and what will happen if the assumptions (which I declare in writing in the
SoW) upon which I base my estimates are in error. I allow for reviews,
timely return of material from the client, and for revisions. All these
things are built into the time and dollar estimates -- specifically so that
my client is NOT surprised when s/he gets the bill. The only surprise your
client should have when looking at your invoice is that it cost LESS than
originally planned. If a project is going over estimate, you need to be
talking to the client through the duration so that s/he is aware of and
approves the additional work and $$.

What kind of agreement did you have with this client up front?

--Beth
Beth Agnew
Manager, Information Development

InSystems Technologies Inc.
65 Allstate Parkway, Suite 100 Tel: (905) 513-1400 ext. 280
Markham, Ontario, Canada L3R 9X1 Fax: (905) 513-1419
mailto:bagnew -at- insystems -dot- com Visit us at: http://www.insystems.com


-----Original Message-----
Sharon Burton-Hardin wrote in part: I have a new client who may be unhappy
with my rate of writing ... Now he is shocked to discover that I am charging
him for the 5 hours I spent
making his edits. ... So what I am wondering is:
* Is this rate of work extraordinary? I am pretty sure that it is, but...
* Is 45 generally small edits for 75 pages of text reasonable for a product
I never saw before I started writing about it? Especially at this rate?
(Yes, I run spell check so there are not spelling error but there have been
a few wrong words, spelled correctly)
* Do you charge clients to make edits?


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