I’ve been freelancing solidly for the past couple of years, and am wanting to get some tips on productivity from more experienced people.
My last project took me to hell and back, and I am now just recuperating. The main problem is doing the work to the clients satisfaction. Ultimately you can quote a certain amount of hours, based on what you think they want. But what if they want more than you expect?
My last project, I worked from draft images of the pages – followed them perfectly. However, after the client viewed them, they wanted to make changes regarding spacing. Because they didnt understand how to use a measurement of pixels to communicate the exact spacing they desired, it ended up meaning a few hours extra for each of the pages I worked on. I didn’t charge for this extra time, and am wondering if other designers do, and/or what is the process they take in dealing with this?
Also, if anyone has any other tips/tools good for efficiency, and productivity for freelancers.
I always discuss with the client all details and a deadline prior to work. As they say in Russia “before getting into the boat”
+1 – I usually write up a document that explains the work that I will be doing in great detail, including mock ups and what not. I then have them sign a paper (or agree in email) to proceed with the project and I make it clear that if there are changes along the way, the cost will change accordingly. It will make the client think twice about making changes like that because they know it will cost more money.
Just my two cents. Good luck to you!
Hi @MultiLeadia…. in my professional experience these ‘extra changes/requests’ initiated by the client are called ‘Authors’ as in “The Authors own corrections” or words to that effect .. (ie: client revisions/alterations). These are, and generally should be charged at an even higher rate above and beyond that of your standard hourly rate…or the initial agreed final project cost… and charged at an hourly rate for the duration of that extension. Next time, stipulate in your cost estimate that any additional work requested beyond the scope of the initial delivery of the final project or brief will incur these fees. This is not uncommon practice in the industry.
@IOSHVA That is exactly the information I was looking for. Thank you. Thanks to the two others also for their input, much appreciated
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There is a simple system to stop “creative” clients from wasting your time. Charge them more for each revision.
I discuss about every detail, but i was also in situations where i had to do ‘free’ work in order to make client happy.
Create a requirements document and scope it out. If they ask for something not in the requirements doc, tell them you are happy to do it, but it will cost them.
Often times a client will try to ask, whats the worst thing you can say? no. But a lot of times freelancers will say yes, taking a burden.
Now, if they ask for the fancy ajax calendar, you can tell them it is scope creep and will push you over budget. hence needing another contract supplement of business.
Hope this helps. Tim