Yes this is important stuff and it needs to be transparent. Our usual T’s & C’s always apply but we also do want you to understand how we approach this.
For our part, when we take on a job:
Fixed or estimated cost:
Where it is clear what the scope of the job is we will in our letter of engagement either:
a. give you a fixed price to complete the job; or
b. give you an estimate as to how much we think it will cost you.
In either case this is based on our years of experience as to how long it will take us and what skills are required to complete the job. If it’s a fixed price, fixed means just that, that’s what we will bill you, nothing more, nothing less. If it’s an estimate:
c. we will do our very best to contain our fee within the estimate (90+% of the time we do & sometimes it’s less!), but you understand if there are complications we will bill you for the unexpected attendances at our hourly rates;
d. if it does become more complicated we will inform you just as soon as practicable;
e. if you prefer ask us and we will, if so long as it is “scopable”, give you a fixed price to complete. Bear in mind a fixed fee will be higher than the estimate because of the risk we are taking on if something does go wrong.
If it is not clear what the scope of the job is, which is often the case, we will charge for our time at the rates we have confirmed to you. When billing on time our policy is about time which means we:
a. will be transparent in our billing;
b. deal with the job efficiently and not spend more time than necessary on it;
c. will ensure the work is being done by the appropriate team member with the most effective hourly rate; and
d. not have unnecessary delegation with time duplication. Where 1 person can do the job 1 person will do it, not 3 or 4.
No hidden charges:
We do not charge “add-ons” such as photocopies, office services and such-like unless there is a particularly large requirement which will be invoiced at cost.
For your part, when giving us a job, please make it easy for us. When briefing us, be sure to tell us in advance if there are any complicating factors that we need to deal with or navigate around. The better informed we are from the outset the more efficiently, and therefore more cost-effectively, we can do the job.
Keep it simple for us so we can save you our time!