Topic: Clients that dont want to pay? - What do you do (Page 1 of 1) Pages that link to <a href="http://ozoneasylum.com/backlink?for=26860" title="Pages that link to Topic: Clients that dont want to pay? - What do you do (Page 1 of 1)" rel="nofollow" >Topic: Clients that dont want to pay? - What do you do <span class="small">(Page 1 of 1)</span>\

 
H][RO
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Australia
Insane since: Oct 2002

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 08:53 Edit Quote

Hi All, just a small problem at the moment. I have a client for quite a small job, its just a newsletter template, so nothing major.

We agreed on an hourly rate to begin with, in the end the job took 6 hours. There were quite a few revisions, i met with them roughly 4 times and had to go make changes. 2 Hours of that time the client even spent next to my computer while I was designing.

Now they are simply saying its too much. In my thinking the end product is just a newsletter design right - so if you look at it that way its probably not worth that ammount of money, but really that is irrelevant because it was arranged to be done at an hourly rate.



Just wondering what you all think, overall its not a big bill so im not going to stress out over it. I find the small jobs hard these days because the actual design seems to take X ammount of time no matter how big a job is. Even if its just a business card you could spend a number of hours designing it.


So i dunno, how do people handle this? And while im on the topic how long does it generally take people to design brochures/business cards etc?

Cheers.

Blaise
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: London
Insane since: Jun 2003

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 10:38 Edit Quote

Hi H][ro,

I'm going through exactly the same kind of thing, the client is clearly trying to avoid me and making every effort to make me give up, but I won't.

I think teh be all and end all of it is to have a contract, if you don't have a contract then you don't have a leg to stand on, and you'll simply have appeal to their character in the right way, bring in the heavies or make them realise that they're acting irresponsibly and should pay their dues.

If you've got a contract you can use the law.

Good luck, let us know how it goes!

WebShaman
Lunatic (VI) Mad Scientist

From: Happy Hunting Grounds...
Insane since: Mar 2001

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 10:55 Edit Quote

All jobs, irregardless of big or small, need to be documented, and the system of payment declared in advance - at least, that is how I did it.

If you are going by an hourly wage system, the customer needs to be informed of this. If you are going by a fixed cost system, both sides need to understand this and accept it.

If you have a mixed system, again, both sides need to understand and accept it.

In your example, if the employer understood and accepted that the job was going to be based on an hourly wage, and you have documented the hours that you worked, and presented them, then the problem lies squarely in the hands of the employer.

The real question is, is it worth persuing? Will the difference in payment make up for the possible loss of a future customer, and possible "bad press"?

Also, you might want to treat it as a learning experience - keep ALL types of jobs, whether big or small, on a professional level, to avoid such in the future.

(Edited by WebShaman on 10-18-2005 11:31)

kimson
Paranoid (IV) Inmate

From: age
Insane since: Jan 2005

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 11:08 Edit Quote

Just a few ideas...
Now as far as time is concerned, a serious client shouldn't be expecting you to work for less hours that you have, otherwise he could probably do it himself; don't forget he actually asked someone with experience to do the job (you). Then it is quite obvious you will have to do a few amendments to meet your clients' final expectations (I don't think anybody would be expecting you to get it perfectly right straight away), so they are just not being realistic.
I suggest that you should asked them for a fixed fee next time, but only for small jobs such as newsletters or business cards; to fix the amount, you should consider the time you think you are going to spend on the task, including amendments and final proofs. I would ask about £50 or $70. Of course you just bare the fact that they might be asking you to change evrything three times.
Now if you are to work on bigger jobs, what I would do myself would be to fix a "conception fee", which means all the preparation work beforehand up to the mock up, and I reckon this should be about a third of the final price. This should be payable once both sides agreed on an idea, then the realisation should be on a hourly rate.
Make sure you write down everything you do, that is how much time you spent on what, and make sure you keep your clients informed; at least they cannot pretend they're surprised about the time you spent afterwards.

Good luck.

*I have recently done business cards for the company I work for, which is slightly different, but I reckon I spent about a day on them altogether (including the time I took to ask for feedback and sort out the printing)

H][RO
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Australia
Insane since: Oct 2002

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 12:03 Edit Quote

Thanks all, in this situation its not really about the money so i dont think i will persue it - it isnt a large ammount. Taking that into account from his point of view if he wasnt happy with the price he should pay me and not use me again.

In most cases i try to provide a solid quote up front, some jobs its harder to do obviously.

Most clients are fine, some jobs have gone quite long because of the clients changes and they have paid and still come back. I guess no matter what you do there will always be the odd one!

quote:
*I have recently done business cards for the company I work for, which is slightly different, but I reckon I spent about a day on them altogether (including the time I took to ask for feedback and sort out the printing)



Yeh i know what you mean, for such small items its hard to charge the hours you spend! Even a simple business card can take time.

Skaarjj
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: :morF
Insane since: May 2000

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 12:37 Edit Quote

Just make sure that you don't hand over the product of your labours until you can veriy that the money is in your hand or your bank account.


Justice 4 Pat Richard

H][RO
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Australia
Insane since: Oct 2002

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 14:06 Edit Quote

Yeh, so far he has only got proofs of the work - so since i wont be taking his work anymore i guess he will have to pay someone else to have it redone.

WarMage
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: Rochester, New York, USA
Insane since: May 2000

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 14:10 Edit Quote

You can always ask the client what he thinks is fair compensation.

Ask the client what he would have to pay one of his own people for 6 hours of work. You are worth more but the point is the same.

It is reasonable to accept a lesser value if it helps to save face in the situation. You do not want this person to bad mouth you or the job you have done. Bad press (word of mouth) can be a killer.

Inform the client that you are sorry that you were not able to meet his expectations, and in the future you would set up work as a fix price contract ahead of time so that there is no confusion.

You will always run into dicks, but you don't want to give them any reason to bad mouth you.

It is always in your best intrest to work through the issue, and leave the client with no bad feelings.

Dan @ Code Town

WebShaman
Lunatic (VI) Mad Scientist

From: Happy Hunting Grounds...
Insane since: Mar 2001

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 14:23 Edit Quote

^ THAT is very good advice.

H][RO
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Australia
Insane since: Oct 2002

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 15:05 Edit Quote

Yeh, i did and he was just arrogant about it. He said "i will just pay what i think is fair", so i said, "well what do you think is fair" and all he said was "well we will see how much i pay you".

He just wouldnt accept that i spent 6 hours on it, he literally sat here with me for 2 of those so i would have thought he could have put into perspective how many hours it took. He wouldnt even admit to those 2 hours.

Im not worried about bad word of mouth from him, he came to me because 2 of my other clients highly recommended me.

I understand your advice is right in leaving it on a good foot, i probably should have handled it a bit better. Unfortunately i was caught off guard and he came in very arrogant and didnt even give me a chance to negotiate.


Basically all of my work these days is from word of mouth, i even have clients selling my own work for me. I just didnt have the patience to deal with the one person today, i have so much work on these days that i can do without the clients that just want to stuff me around. Thinking back i still shoudl have left it on a better note.. live and learn. Its the first client ever that has argued my price so its new to me i guess!

WarMage
Maniac (V) Mad Scientist

From: Rochester, New York, USA
Insane since: May 2000

IP logged posted posted 10-18-2005 17:40 Edit Quote

The live and learn part is good advice for yourself.

I didn't come to these realizations the first or even the second time. I have been burned a couple of different times, it is pretty stressful. For one of my clients I had to involve the police. Some people are just dicks.

It is good that you are learning this lesson when you only put 6 hours into the job.

As additional advice. A verbal contract is a contract. It is not as solid as a written contract, but it is admissable in court (US).

What the client did to you is called Theft of Service and you can take the person to court over this. For values of less than $2500 you can go to small claims court and have the judge make a decision on this.

You need to make the determination of what this is worth to you, and weather a claim is worth persuing.

Make sure to write down and document all the work you do. Jot down simple notes.

10:00am-12:00pm designed logo mockups for client
1:00pm - 3:00pm Client meeting for revisions
3:30pm - 4:30pm Created final logo and emailed it to client
4:30pm - 5:00pm Call with client, recieved verbal signoff.

Notes as simple as that can work wonders to explain what you have done and what you need to be compensated for.

Dan @ Code Town

H][RO
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Australia
Insane since: Oct 2002

IP logged posted posted 10-19-2005 03:12 Edit Quote

Yeh i always keep a text log of the time i spend. This one is such a little ammount of money i wont persue it. The thing that gets to me is how little value people put on your time. I mean i was flat out with work at that stage and he asked and asked if i could sneak this job in because i wasnt planning on taking on more work - simply didnt have time!

So overall its just plain rude =/

Radical Rob
Bipolar (III) Inmate

From: Lost Angeles Kalifornia, via Hawaii....
Insane since: Jun 2001

IP logged posted posted 06-27-2006 16:08 Edit Quote

I feel for you. I've had a few experiences with clients of that sort. One person wanted a logo, custom all the way, I illustrated it, spent about 6+ hours on it and when she got my bill she almost s#!t herself. She ended up giving me what she thought was fair. ($100) and had someone else do it for $50.

So many times I've gotten burned because I'm trying to build a relationship with what I hope will be a "future long term endeavor", and more then often I've gotten stuck because of that. Sometimes because of that I go against my better judgement in regards to contracts or invoicing, but I've gotten screwed more times then I'd like to admit. (i have over $6000 owed from clients for work i did on a tv show trying to get my foot in the door)

So I feel your pain. If you got the work, then don't sweat it. Sounds like this person was a real jerk anyway. Someone should create one of those posters you get at Franklin Covey so we can post it in the office. (indirect hint to WHY they hired us in the first place.)



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