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Re: General business questions

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Kathleen A. O'Brien wrote:

>  Is there a rule of thumb for how much time to charge when the technical
> > aspects of the project are brand new and you are learning as you do it
> > (because the deadline is tight and there is no time to do it any other
> > way)? When I'm learning something new I will not usually charge more than
> > half the time to the job, sometimes, less (depending).
> __________________________________________________________________________
> >>Learning on the job is part of the fun but you should not charge your
> client for that.<<
> True. When I was working for a firm we would charge our research/learning
> time to the job and get paid for the time.This is where it gets confusing -
> did the firm then NOT charge my learning time to the Client?
> (This is one of the reasons I usually have a "not to exceed" cap in my
> contract. Sometimes it seems as though I NEVER get off the learning curve.)
> Kate O'Brien

This "research" is sometimes bulked with "learning" in the firms overhead
structure. Just how much effort is chargeable is a decision about where you are
in a market. If you do mostly state of the art stuff I would assume your
overhead would be higher than if you know your product well and require little
fluff in your budgets to get things done (and on time).

Just because you put time down on a time sheet does not necessarily mean it is
billed out to the client. Deciding what portions of a projects time is shifted
to overhead costs is a management decision and reflects many considerations.

BTW, I'm not understanding your comments about using a not to exceed figure in
relation to the never ending learning curve.

Barry H. Welliver