The Objective Blog

Keep up with what we're thinking, reading, and doing.

Hourly vs. Fixed-Fee Billing

March 26th, 2008 - by Brett Derricott - Salt Lake City, Utah

This post is going to deviate a bit from the technical realm but I just read a report in the latest HOW Design magazine that was based on a recent survey of designers’ rates. One of the questions in the survey asked whether designers disclose their hourly rates to their clients.

The question, as written, seemed odd to me until I realized what they were getting at. This is how they should have asked the question: Do you bill your clients by the hour or do you provide a fixed-fee estimate?

I was disappointed to read that the majority of survey respondents bill hourly for their work.

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Offering Your Clients the Whole Package

March 23rd, 2008 - by Brett Derricott - Salt Lake City, Utah

When I began freelancing I thought it was important to make my fledgling business appear bigger and more established than it really was. My website used phrases like “our designers” and “our programmers” in an effort to make a one-man show look like a full team of professionals. No matter what a potential client wanted I felt the need to make them believe I had all of the resources to do it.

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Interactive Agencies

March 20th, 2008 - by Brett Derricott - Salt Lake City, Utah

I just read an interesting article on the Advertising Age website. The author, Phil Johnson, talks about the trend toward agencies wanting to incorporate more interactive capabilities and provides some insights from his own efforts.

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‘Make My Logo Bigger Cream’ Snags an Addy

March 15th, 2008 - by Objective - Salt Lake City, Utah

Even though the ‘Make My Logo Bigger Cream’ campaign was launched clear back in October, we still receive constant feedback from designers all over the world about how much they relate to it. And apparently the judging panel of the Addy Awards agreed, because they just awarded us a Silver Addy in the ‘Self Promotion’ category. Not that we need an award to make us feel like it was a success; we’ve already had a couple people contact us saying they want to bear our children because they think we’re so funny. True story. Creepy, but true.

5 Reasons to Break it Down

March 10th, 2008 - by Brett Derricott - Salt Lake City, Utah

My company recently began releasing updates to our content management system on an almost-weekly basis. Previously our approach was to determine which features should be included in the next release, compute a timeline appropriate for the requirements, and then get to work. Most of our timelines were at least a month long, while some approached 2 or 3 months.

Our new approach, inspired in part by the open source community’s “release early, release often” mantra, involves setting a regular release schedule (weekly in our case) and then prioritizing the features into these weekly buckets. Our goal is to deliver “business value” each week in some way. If a desired feature can’t be built in one week, we find a way to break it into smaller portions that can each be done within one week.

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