WPGR WordPress Business Workflow

WordPress Business Workflow: Feb 2014 meetup

Our February 2014 meetup topic was WordPress Business Workflow. Four people gave short presentations, then we had an open discussion.

If I missed anything, please leave a comment, and I’ll add to the post.

WPGR WordPress Business Workflow

Work standards

Ryan Hinkle

  • Work standards are important (version control, backups, SSH, etc.)
    • Taking shortcuts can hurt you
    • Work standards can save you
    • They make it easier to bring people on to your team
  • Tools: Git, Vagrant, Bitbucket

How I started my WordPress business

Kurt Hanson

  • How Kurt got into WordPress development.
  • Found his first (low-paying) jobs on Elance, and some jobs led to good clients. Lately it’s been too difficult to compete with low-bidders (especially in low-wage countries). He thinks oDesk is even more low-wage. oDesk takes 9.5%.
  • Before you start, be prepared to go hungry for 1-2 years. If possible, set funds aside before starting.
  • Work with others with complementary skills. He’s been making local connections at The Factory.
  • Bills hourly with 50% deposits (of estimated total).
  • Tools: Photoshop, email, Google Calendar, Firefox, Dropbox, Camtasia, Vegas, QuickBooks.

Contracts and business hours

Chad Warner

Contracts/agreements

  • Scope of Work
    • What’s included
    • What’s excluded
  • Schedule and Completion Date
    • Targets
  • Client Responsibilities
    • What they must provide you
    • What they must do
  • Cost Estimates
    • Estimates, not fixed costs
  • Payment Terms
    • How much?
    • When?
    • Method?
    • Penalties?
  • Domain Registration, Hosting, Maintenance, SEO
    • Specify who controls these
  • Technical Support
    • What will you offer?
  • Legalese
    • Indemnification
    • Limitation of Liabilities
    • Copyrights and Trademarks
    • Attorney Fees

Business hours

  • Protect your time; no one else will
  • Set an autoreply with your work hours and emergency contact info

Discipline and time-tracking

Luke Rumley

  • Be disciplined. Track time. That helps inform future estimates.
  • Don’t allow scope creep. Something has to give: time, money, or scope.

Group Discussion

Pricing

Accounting

  • Topher says you get tax discounts for accepting foreign funds.
  • Save for taxes (25-30%). Make estimated payments. Kurt uses Paychex.
  • Get an accountant. Have them do taxes, advise on deductions, etc.
  • Send 1099-MISCs to anyone to whom you pay over $600.

Legal

Recommended Lawyers: Haans Mulder, Todd Stuart, Mike Lichterman, Andrew Longcore.

Prospecting & Estimating

  • Use a Discovery Phase to get to know each other and decide if you want to work together. Give a deliverable (report/plan). Charge a few hundred if you can.
  • Red flags: prospects who want you to reduce your rates because they tell you their site will be a good portfolio piece, or who offer equity in their company, or who promise future work.

Project Management

WordPress Maintenance

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