Hourly Rates and Flat Rates for Software Development Work

I have heard many times from my customers that “My rates can fluctuate”. Its something they don’t like and would like to keep it consistent.

OK, I understand their point of view but they have to understand mine as well. I tell them a real life story but they dont seem to agree. Here is the story:

“You can go to the same mechanic for the same job, changing the oil in your car. Take 2 cars with you. Car 1 is a honda civic in good condition and not super old. Car 2 is a BMW 330 ci  in good condition. Pay up after he is done with Card 1. Take in Car 2, do the same job and pay up” Both jobs will may be take around the same amount of time. Which one do you think you will cost more ? (If you have owned a German Car, it would not take a scientist to figure this one )

My clients seem to say that a rate is a rate. For easier job I can do the job in less time and for a tougher job I need more time. My clients want to think of software development activity as a measure of time. What they seem is “The time spent on learning a technology, the time spent on gaining experience over a certain technology and the competition available in the market”.

For example, I do iOS app development for $70 / hour, I think its very specialized software development that requires learning progrmming language, getting used to the integrated development environment, knowing about various programming artifacts and basic software engineering principles, I cannot charge $70/hour for “wordpress website development”.

Being an hourly wordpress website development cannot be the same as androiod application development.  Getting my point ? What about Data Entry ? Why is that a low paid hourly job ? If I am given the same rate for data entry as I am given for Smartphone app development; heck I will enter data all day and all night !

I guess I start asking more questions than providing answers once I start to get angry internally and have negative feelings about a topic 😀

So please do not be that client and dont be quick to judge that I am trying to rip you off ! because I am not !






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