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Getting my web content from my clients ON TIME.

Motivation clients, getting all the required information on time

     
4:12 am on Jul 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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How can I moivate my clients to get there content to me on time. I have a few guidlines in my contract, but they don't seem to work. My clients continue to drag their feet and keep the project on hold. During consultation I give the client 7 days before the project date to get everything together. Here's an excerpt from my contract (is seems a little harsh and I may have to change it):

"Communication & Availability: Communication between the client and us is very important. The client should be reachable either through email or over the phone (most of the time). The client is to understand that this is a group project with both sides working towards the finished goal. We demand direct communication within a timely manner. We always require the guidance of the client."

"Unavailable Client & Incomplete Information: We strive to complete all our projects on time; but it depends (mostly) on the productivity and participation of the client. In the event, at the start of and / or during an open project, a client becomes become unavailable for 3 days or more, with or without initial notice, and /or the client delivers incomplete or late information, the client’s account may become closed. There will be no refund and the client will have to reopen the project at another time with a 10% restart fee. Rescheduling an unfinished project could take weeks or months."

I'm thinking of giving the client a discount on their project for getting all there content to me on time.

What do you think? What suggestions do you guys have? Have you dealt this before, even after explaining and giving the client enough time to get their content to you?

2:42 pm on July 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Maybe you should tell them in advance what the revised completion date will be, if they're late with the content? That might provide some incentive.

a.

2:49 pm on July 12, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Neal: I have had the same problem in the past.

In my contracts I have something similar to yours, except that I give the client 5 business days to get back to me with necessary information, approvals, etc. I also include the development timeline in the contract so the client has no excuse that I've "thrown this on them suddenly," or some such thing.

I stipulate a 50% deposit due up front and if the client fails to get necessary items to me within the 5 business day grace period that it is at my discretion to cancel the project and keep the deposit for damages and time already spent on the project.

I haven't had to resort to that yet, but it is frustrating. I've had a site completely finished and waiting to go LIVE for almost two months now. All waiting on some FTP information from the client. Final payment is in hand, so its not like I'm waiting on the money. Just want to see the site finally up.

Discounts for on-time submission would be interesting. But should you have to discount something that should be done anyway?

11:12 am on July 13, 2005 (gmt 0)

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WebmasterWorld Senior Member vincevincevince is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member

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Maybe ensure that such delays don't delay payment.

i.e. deadline set for 30 days from start of project.

Client delays project by 10 days = final payment still due after 30 days from start, even though the project won't be finished for another 10 days.

That way you will still get your payment on time, you'll just have your workload delayed.

3:43 am on July 14, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Maybe ensure that such delays don't delay payment.

i.e. deadline set for 30 days from start of project.

Client delays project by 10 days = final payment still due after 30 days from start, even though the project won't be finished for another 10 days.

That way you will still get your payment on time, you'll just have your workload delayed.

This is the solution I opt for. I don't attach payments to production milestones for the very reason you started this thread.

Also, you need to manage expectations up front. Chances are, the client underestimated how difficult gathering content would be. I like to let clients know that everyone struggles with getting content put together. It also helps to get the client to commit to a specific day you can count on content arriving, such as "Next Tuesday," rather than, "Sometime next week," or "whenever you have it ready."

 

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