I'm currently running a business where I monitor computers for people. I use custom made software that gets by all the anti-malware scanners and through the firewalls. I have been charging $40/hr for the first hour, and $45 for each hour after that. Since most of work may only take 1-4 hours per client I've been told that I'm charging too little. Figures have been thrown at me by friends, family and even clients that I should charge $60, $75 or even $100. What is a fair amount in this business. Yes this involves spying on people at the workplace, churches and spouses. My first question. I've searched mefi for similar stuff and came up empty.
Based on my career experiences so far, I think I'd be pretty good in a role focused on crisis management (ahh! everything's broke! fix it!) and crisis prevention (situation normal, let's keep it that way). The question, then, is how does one get into this field? [more inside]
What should I expect in a first interview with a consulting company for a summer internship? [more inside]
I'm an IT consultant with a broad set of skills and experiences, and I need help finding my niche! [more inside]
Help me pick the best business producitivity management tool(s) for my consulting practice! (Not Daylite)
Hello MeFi peoples, I am trying to find the tool or tools to run my sustainable business consulting practice, which I started in August, and I've been going a bit nuts with too many choices. I've been looking all over, and am getting near hits, but all "not quite there"s. Highrise sort of works, but has some quirks that that it doesn't hit the mark, and it's missing some of what I want to do. Daylite looks interesting, but no...well I'll explain below. Basecamp, same thing. Copper, ditto. Help me find the needle(s) in the haystack! [more inside]
Entry-level consulting positions: graduating in May, I have two standing offers from consulting companies, one in Dallas and one in Manhattan. Help me choose! [more inside]
I am currently working at a consulting firm and consider myself to be a half-decent writer. Before I apply for my MBA, I'd like to enhance my application by writing articles for business magazines. How could I do this? Do you recommend any particular publications that might be willing to take a freelancer? [more inside]
How do I spin this? And how much should I charge? [more inside]
I have an interview tomorrow (yikes) with a political consulting firm. Problem: I don't actually know what this means. What exactly do political consultants do? What kind of questions should I expect to be asked? What kind of questions should I ask them? Help! [more inside]
I have a year before I am eligible to work for a big consulting company. What should I do during this year to maximise my chances of success, or bump up starting salary? [more inside]
A very successful business has just decided to build their next mission critical application using free open source tools developed by my small little consulting company. They want to contract with us for ongoing support and improvements. How should we structure the deal? [more inside]
In follow up to my highly unsuccessful question from last week (which btw you are still very welcome to answer), what do you actually do when you work in "consulting" and how do you get there? [more inside]
Help me with Web / IT consulting and billable time. Consulting firms make their money on billable hours - what percentage of a 40 hour work week needs to be billable for different roles within the company? [more inside]
I've been struggling to find accounting software, online or PC/Mac based (either will do) that is suitable for a computer consulting practice. I need to be able to handle the typical basic things done by QuickBooks, like invoicing and estimates, simple A/R and A/P reports, etc. But that isn't enough. I need to manage multiple bill rates on a per consultant/per customer/per job or work order basis. QuickBooks doesn't do that, and I've tried hard to find out how to make that work. Any advice, hive mind?
What research topic should I do if I want to impress a future job interviewer to get into technical/business consulting or even project management sometime down the track? [more inside]
How to divide up a company amongst 3 people when 2 people will be doing most of the work for the first 6-12 months. [more inside]
[ConsultingFeeFilter] My fee schedule outlines rush-fees, I have a new client that should officially be charged the fees for some recent work. I am not going to charge the fees and want them to know that I am giving them a pass this time, what is a good way to tell them that I am waving the fees because they are a new client and want to build our budding relationship, but make it clear that this is a one time deal? More Inside.. [more inside]
Quadruple your pleasure! I'm a newly minted green business consultant, and would like your help on four things: finding a CMS or blog system to create a website for my business, finding places where you think a green laptop case would/should be sold, blogs/social networks to get the word out about it, and suggested protocol to approach said blogs/social networks. [more inside]
I'm a software development consultant and am getting frustrated at the number of potential clients slipping through my fingers. I get a good number of interested leads through my website or through referrals (thanks guys) but the ratio of potential clients to paying clients is too low. What might I be doing wrong and how can I help gain these clients? [more inside]
My business idea...brilliant, or a waste of time? Have you, or your business, ever needed a service like this? Has any company you worked for ever employed anybody to do this? [more inside]
CRM / Project Management question: Help me find a solution for handling both CRM and Project Management in a seamless fashion (either via OpenAir / SalesForce, or a totally new solution) [more inside]
How do I fast track my way into consulting? [more inside]
If you are a programmer who works on contract, how do you gracefully deal with an excess of opportunity? [more inside]
I hear that sometimes businesses and other institutions hire "ethics consultants". Does anyone know anything about getting into ethics consulting or the actual day-to-day activities in ethics consulting? If not, has anyone seen an ethics consultant in action at a company? [more inside]
Thoughts on consulting: Hell or just Heck? Despite the headline, I'm interesting on hearing both negatives and the positives. It's that time of year again where people freak out about getting their BA and then embarking on the Great Hereafter, and somewhere in this path, the mutterings of 'consulting' are heard. Weigh in, AskMe. [more inside]
Do I need to fill out a W-9 form if I live in Canada but do consulting work for an American company? [more inside]
Now that I'm consulting, how can I gracefully tell colleagues that I'm not going to give them free advice? [more inside]
How do I gracefully get rid of a client with whom I don't want to work any more? [more inside]
How should I handle this sticky job situation? I was offered a job, declined, have worked as a consultant, and now they hired an executive and charged him with tasks I would have been doing had I taken the job. [more inside]
I need to come up with an hourly rate for a contract programming job, and have no idea where to start. [more inside]
Where can I find consulting contracts/agreement templates specific to the UK? [more inside]
Where can I go to find a reliable freelancer to do some PHP programming for me? [more inside]
I'm looking at taking on a freelance consulting project for a nonprofit in the SF Bay Area that involves creating web interfaces to a SQL Server backend. This would be my first non-voluntary (i.e., >$0) freelance project. What rate should I ask for? [more inside]
What's the best way for me to structure going from being a full-time, on site employee to a half-time, offsite one? [more inside]
How can I grow my DC area computer forensic investigation business? [more inside]
Case Interview Tips. I'm applying to several business analyst/consulting jobs that require a case interview as part of the screening process. I've never done one of these and I'd like to hear your experiences with them. [more inside]
How can my housemate turn down a job offer he's verbally accepted? So my housemate (not me...I wish) was offered a job this fall at Bank of America after doing an internship in cash equities sales there last summer. He verbally accepted it but hasn't submitted the signed contract yet. While he liked what he was doing he wasn't completely smitten, so this winter he interviewed for other jobs at various firms and today landed a job as a consultant at Bain. How can he gracefully get out of the BoA job without pissing too many people off or facing potential sanctions? [more inside]
I was laid off recently and want to use my knowledge of AppleScript to do some consulting. I have a meeting this week about automating tasks for a local newspaper, but am uncertain how to bill such a project. [more inside]
How can I cut my work hours in half and have my pay scale down accordingly? [more inside]
Any actual, personal experience with famous "Marketing genius", Jay Abraham? Or do you know somebody who actually used his consulting services? [more inside]
Help! I'm so very stressed out. How do I convince my luddite of a boss that our office desperately needs a regularly scheduled IT person? I even have a perfect person in mind. [more inside]
Should I bill clients for scheduled appointments they missed? [more inside]
Ethics in billing IT hours: I'm not 'working' but I'm not 'not-working'. How can I bill for my time? This is a lot more than just being on-call. [more inside]
For a friend, "I run a small computer consulting business on the side in my spare time. I have a bit over two dozen clients and do regular work for a handful of them. My question is, does it make sense to go thru the process of creating a business? What advantages or disadvantages would this give me? How much would it cost? Any other uggestions/ideas/comments/etc.. would be great! Thanks!"
I have a question about risk and ethics in freelancing- computer programming and web design. [more inside]
My buddy just got hired, right out of university, by a big-shot consulting firm. What's a good, cheap gift I can give him? [more inside]
After 5 years working my full time corporate programming day job I'm almost ready to give up the security to spend the majority of my time on exciting non-profit open source projects. But for various reasons I want to keep the corporate job on a consulting basis. Any advice on how to negotiate going from full time to part time? [more inside]
I'm new to the consulting world AND my mind has erased anything practical it might have learned in college accounting courses. My client is really slow to pay me, and I want to start charging them interest for overdue balances. My google-foo is failing, I can't seem to find any bookkeeping tutorials that tell me how to calculate this (daily? weekly? how much?), or even how to format/word it on my invoices. Can anyone either tell me how to do this, or direct me to an appropriate web resource?
I'm trying to build a consulting agreement for a internet technology research and development project. The deliverables are basically a functional spec and an architecture proposal. Does anyone have any experience with this type of engagement? How did you measure the quality on the deliverable? Where do you draw the line between what's acceptable work, and what's not?
My consulting business has gotten busy enough (knock on wood) to warrant not using my personal cell phone number as the first line of communication. What I need is a service that creates a local phone number, has a customizable voicemail system that can fwd to my cell, office, whereever.
Is there such a thing, or should I just get a second cell phone?
Is there such a thing, or should I just get a second cell phone?