I am working from home this weekend. I am a developer and I have created a program that purges records at the click of a button. The entire process take after clicking about 12 hours to complete. I need to check in on the progress from time to time just in case there are any unexpected errors thrown. So in the beginning stages of the program there were several starts and stops fix something start over again.

But, now I don't think there will be anymore errors and this weekend I expect the program to run without issue from end to end. I am still monitoring the program and have kept it on a second monitor running for 6+ hours.

How would I bill for this time although I am not physically writing code I am technically working ?

I would feel guilty to bill for the entire 12 hours while I watch a movie on one screen and monitoring the program in the other.

Also, note that I will need to run this program 7 more times which would be a total 96 approx hours.

  • I did end up encountering errors not in the code but the database crapped out on me. So I worked more then expected while I waited for the DBA to restart the DB. I also had to reset some stats due to the job being interrupted abruptly.
    – EJD
    Nov 29, 2016 at 4:33

2 Answers 2


Test actions in developments states is also a developer job in order to release or apply for approval, I wouldn't feel guilty at all, you did the code before (I suppose) and now you're at test phase. If you still think it doesn't worth huge bill then just do some simple math:

bill = (hours_of_work * min_payrate_you_willing_to_acept) + taxes_if_any;

Hope it was helpful.

  • 1
    I got talking to a buddy of mine and he suggested come up with a time per hour that I would probably spend looking at the screen. So I said roughly about five minutes an hour works out to 4 hours a day over 3.5 days. Fair enough for me. Yes the code is 100% mine.
    – EJD
    Nov 27, 2016 at 4:27

Got cable? A phone (without a "minute" plan). You pay for availability. The phone company and cable company really don't care if you use the service or not, and they're not charging a fraction of the monthly fee if you don't utilize the service.

Likewise: if you have to be available for the process to run from start to finish, charge for the entire time span. That's business.

  • 2
    I agree.. also.... if the computer is running.... well that's electricity use regardless of how much the cursor may or may not be moving.
    – Scott
    Nov 29, 2016 at 4:21
  • Typically I work on site and not from home. Would that make a difference in your answer ? As for electricity I was also watching movies all day long. That and my rent includes electricity so the cost to me is the exact same.
    – EJD
    Nov 29, 2016 at 4:29
  • @EJD You're still paying for that electricity, even if it's not billed separately. And definitely bill if you're on site. Don't cheat yourself.
    – Xavier J
    Nov 29, 2016 at 4:46
  • @codenoir if I was on site I would bill for sure.
    – EJD
    Nov 29, 2016 at 13:23

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