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I've been freelancing for a few years and can manage 2-3 clients at any time. I do have a S-Corp and plan on building a business. I have a few people who can help me out when there's overflow of work. They are all hired as contractors and none of them are full time employees.

Whenever I have clients come back to me, they are very particular that I spend 100% time on their projects. Ideally I'd like to do a high level design and hand it over to my contractor. IMO this is the only way I can scale and start building a business. Convincing the clients though has been very difficult. Should I just stop telling them that I am working with others? Thoughts?

  • I am facing the same situation. what I did is, I have discuss the things with client and gave them transparency about developers availability within team. this way I also convey them about to stick with billing date and not be delay as I have also hired some additional resources to work on their project. – Radhe Aug 22 at 10:20
  • @Radhe Did they insist they interview the other devs in the team? Do you do fixed price or hourly? If its hourly do they ask you split the invoice and charge a different rate to other devs? If its fixed price, do you quote less since you wont be spending 100% of the time on the project? – DotnetDude Aug 22 at 14:20
  • I have pretend my self as TL in front of client and about interviewing other resources, it's up to me to hire resources who are the best within my network. I had never revel their identity even. if still client wants then I was arranged group call for their technical discussion with my team. at the same time I also make sure none of the resource can direct approach to client without my permission. it is totally trust factor within my team. – Radhe Aug 23 at 4:13
  • about my charges/development cost! its depends on many factors like scope of the project, features , front/back end technology what client wanted to use etc. so I charge them fixed cost and hourly basis (in case of maintenance/support) both. my charges are very chipper compared to other freelancers. – Radhe Aug 23 at 4:19
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I've been running a small software/web development company for more than 10 years now and I run into this issue quite frequently. Not as often as I used to, but still more than I'd like to. I found some years ago that it is important to follow the 80/20 rule. That is, 80% of your income comes from 20% of your clientele. Your clients aren't afraid to fire you, so don't be afraid to fire them. If they want to demand 100% of your time, then they aren't worth your time. That being said, generally each client regardless of their budget thinks that their project is the most important.

Your job as the leader of a small tech company is to be apprised to what your people are doing. In most cases you don't have to tell them who is working on the project. But you need to have a proper project management system in place so that when a client calls, you can also figure out what is going on. Also, if you don't have an architect working at your company, then you are the architect. :) You should most definitely define the architecture for your developers, throw that in your project management system, make your devs give detailed updates in the PMS, and consider daily SCRUMS, so when a client calls you don't sound like you don't have a clue what's going on & send him over to one of your devs. Generally speaking, devs aren't the best people to put in front of your client. Remember before you started your business and your were just a normal programmer without a business. When you went to a client... didn't a "handler" always go with you (project manager or some other sort of manager)? When devs that aren't accustomed to dealing with customers start talking tech, the customer's eyes glaze over & they usually get annoyed. So, you really have to be the point man.

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