Fixed Price Spec
I agreed to do a bit of fixed price work for my client and after agreeing the fixed price spec I set about it.
However, it wasn‘t too long before they wanted changes to it.
I agreed the changes and the extra cost.
This happened two more times and I‘m sure it will happen again.
However, the client is saying that they still want the work done by the original date.
What should I do Dr. McLaughlin?
Dr. McLaughlin‘s IT Surgery
Where‘s the problem?
It‘s their problem not yours.
You‘ve got all the arguments on your side.
They agreed the scope and the timescale and then increased the scope but don‘t want to increase the timescale.
One would hope that you‘ve got the original spec and the changes of scope documented and agreed and signed off.
You should make sure you have a rigorous Change Control system in place.
Even if you haven‘t though, you have all the evidence that the scope has changed and the work increased.
They are the ones who are worrying.
They obviously had to have those changes made.
However, they have also made promises it would seem, to those higher up or to end customers that they will deliver by a certain date.
Over a Barrel
You have them over a barrel.
You can help them out here.
As they have agreed to the increase in money to you but not the increase in time, it seems that they have money to play with but not time.
So, what you do is go back to them and say that the changes in scope that they have insisted on will take you an extra X amount of time and therefore the project will be X amount late.
This will horrify them.
However, I‘m sure that you could get it done by that time by hook or by crook if you put in some extra time.
You are already being paid the extra money for the scope increases.
Now is your opportunity to do them a favour and make them look good in front of their bosses and end clients (or save them a sever kicking from them).
You should negotiate a bonus for yourself depending on how many days you finish ahead of the new schedule of the original schedule plus X.
Let‘s say that the original schedule was 4 months and their changes have added one month to the project.
You should negotiate a bonus for each day that you finish ahead of the new schedule of 5 months.
You should also negotiate a massive bonus if you manage to get all the work done by the original schedule of 4 months.
Rising Amount of Money
Either that or you could have a rising amount of money for each day you finish early starting with a small amount for finishing a day early and each day you finish early adds a growing amount to the pot.
This is not a problem for you at all.
It‘s their problem and where they have a problem you have an opportunity.
It‘s a potential goldmine for you.
Grab some big cash – and they will be very grateful to you if you manage to get them out of a hole
– and you may get work from them again.
Be careful, though, when you agree a fixed price spec.