Start Reading

Design Contract Failure - RD138: Design Contract Failure In this week's episode of Resourceful Designer, I share a case study where a poorly written design contract cost a web designer her fee for the client site she built. Be sure to listen to the podcast for the full story as I go...

Ratings:
0 page

Summary

Design Contract Failure In this week's episode of Resourceful Designer, I share a case study where a poorly written design contract cost a web designer her fee for the client site she built. Be sure to listen to the podcast for the full story as I go into much more detail in the episode than I will here. Earlier this week a long-standing client of mine called about a bind she was in. Convinced by a friend that she could save money by using Wix for her new website, she hired someone inexpensive in the Wix Arena to build it for her. Not liking the completed site and confused about the terms and jargon the Wix designer was using my client swallowed her pride decided to call me, her old web designer for help. What I discovered was a very poorly designed website and a bunch of inaccuracies in the correspondence between the "designer" and the client. Such as the "designer" offering SEO Search Engineering Optimization and a free CSS Security Certificate for the website. Or the "designer" saying the client would have to pay extra if she wanted the website to be mobile friendly. (who doesn't design websites to be mobile friendly in 2018?) The "designer" also offered to set up a Wix account for my client FREE OF CHARGE. All my client had to pay was the annual hosting fee of $299US. The strange thing is the account she was going to set up for my client is priced at $120US per year on Wix's website. After a quick perusal, I determined that the person my client hired may have been a Wix site builder, but they were definitely not a designer, and there were too many red flags in their correspondence for my liking. My client asked me if there was any way she could get out of the deal she made, so I took a look at the contract she had signed. That's when I spotted a big failure in the design contract. Here's how it was written. Investment for the website design: $800.00* *(300.00 ahead + 200.00 on publishing and 300.00 30 days after publishing).If our company does not make your website, we will refund it completely.If you do not pay for the total amount the website will be out of work. In case of cancellation after starting service, there is no refund for the ahead payment of 300.00) As per the contract, my client had given the "designer" a $300 deposit before the start of the website. But from what I was reading, that was the only amount my client had to pay if she decided not to continue with this "designer". The contract clearly states the next payment of $200 is due upon publishing of the website, which never happened. The last line of the contract's payment clause indicates that "In case of cancellation after starting service, there is no refund for the ahead payment of 300.00". Technically, regardless of what stage the website was currently at fell within the parameters of "cancellation after starting service". Meaning my client could cancel their agreement at any time and all she would lose is her initial $300 deposit. My client informed the "designer" that she would not be continuing with her services and thanked her for the work she had done. Crisis averted (minus a $300 learning lesson). So why am I telling you this story? A contract is meant to protect all signing parties. In this case, it didn't protect the "designer". All she would have needed is to include something to the effect of "...and payment will be due for any work completed up to the time of cancellation." added to the end of the paragraph. With that simple sentence, she could have demanded full payment for the website she had completed for the client. Take the time to read over your contract and make sure it's written in a way that it protects you as much as it protects your client. I feel bad for the "designer" because she did complete the work. But in this case, I was looking out for my client and took advantage of this design contract failure. I have a new website project. In case you are wondering, yes, I’m now designing the website for my client. She tells me she

Read on the Scribd mobile app

Download the free Scribd mobile app to read anytime, anywhere.