So as my little business is growing, I am starting to use contractors to code so I can focus on growth. However, as I make the shift into business owner/project manager, I am finding it increasingly difficult to keep projects on track and completed by due dates. However, it is not because we drop the ball, but more so because the design gets approved and we start coding while the client is finishing gathering assets (web copy, pictures, etc.) and then we hit a crossroads where we are just waiting for the client. One project is still open and sitting after 1.5 months. Contractors get aggravated because they want final payment, I can't always pay early when a project isnt yet closed and I am waiting for the balance, and it becomes a cash flow nightmare!
Are there any suggestions for averting this kind of situation? Should I not begin a project or take a deposit until they have everything we need and maybe catch them while their hot to start?
What you suggested sounds like the best idea. If you get into a situation where you have lots of clients and can be picky, making sure your client has everything before starting is a good idea.
FYI, a good project management tool is Basecamp. Perhaps that might be able to help you be more organised.
Sorry to disagree with you. I've nothing against Basecamp. But it's obvious that what Satori wants is not a project management tool, but better communication with the client.
Essentially, you need to make it clear to the client that you will invoice for the work when the coding is completed, regardless of whether the copy and images are available. You need to put that in your contract, and also go out of your way to communicate it to the client. Alternatively, make it clear that you won't start work until all the copy, etc. is available. You'll have to decide for yourself which of those approaches to take. But, either way, it's a communication issue, not one that will be solved by deploying this or that software tool.
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