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The Art of Estimating

Posted on August 20, 2009

One of the hardest and most frustrating things that we do as designers are estimates. Ugh?the dreaded task of trying to pin down the value and time limit for the work that we create. Yes, it?s a necessary evil, but that doesn?t mean we have to like it!

It is nearly impossible to know beforehand how long a project will take, and that is something that customers often have a difficult time understanding. It varies depending upon the subject matter, the type of work being done and how creative or off-the-wall it needs to be. Oh, but that?s just the beginning. There are so many, may other factors to take into consideration, and a lot of it depends on the customer themselves. How many people, both creatives and customers (the dreaded designed-by-committee) will be involved? How many rounds of changes do they expect to go through? How many discussions, meetings or phone conferences are required during the creative process?  Will all content be available at the start of the project or will it trickle in as time goes on? Does the web site need to be programmed in a specific language or way to meet the IT departments requirements? Are they expecting the logo to be redesigned as part of the brochure project? Customers sometimes have expectations that we aren?t aware of during the estimating process, which is why an estimate is really, just a (somewhat) educated guess.

So bear with us as we spend a day or two (or five) as we review the project scope, try to get inside your head and figure out what your expectations are. And after all that, put a number on it. I know, it?s a daunting task.

If you are looking for a team that has the art of estimating refined, we are the team for you! Visit our web site to find what we do, and how WE CAN HELP YOU.

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