When you decide upon your rates at the start of your business, you need to realise that the following must also be reflected in these rates:
Electricity you will use,
Your Skills and experience
Your time etc
Your Company expenses.
See what the going rate is within the area you live, find out the rates countrywide by asking various VAs/Transcriptionists to comment and give you a rough estimate. I know a lot of Vas want comment on this, but you will find the more established VAs will. A lot of people are frightened to give out their rates as they think you are competition and you will then charge cheaper and get the work. This is not always the way things work. Do not undercut others or charge too low as it is bad for the industry as a whole, it sets a precedent and you will find it hard to charge higher rates at a later stage. Your rates themselves are an indication of the service you provide
• higher rates reflect that you take pride in yourself and your service and provide quality
• lower rates reflect that you are just going to rush through and move onto the next thing
Yearly you should be increasing your rates to keep up with inflation; after all you are running a business and prices increase continually.
Before you open up your doors to clients, you need to have a basic set up of rates for each service you are going to offer. With these basic rates, you can then look at each task as you receive them and then estimate a price based on clients location, race, size of task, deadline, and requirements of the task. Then charge accordingly. I have a basic rate but very rarely charge that rate, as I look at client circumstances first and look at the job that is required of me.
You need to be running your business making profit, if your rates are too low, you will not do this and then what is the point of doing this! Every job you get in must be worth your while to do, you are here to help you as well as the client. And charging low rates is not always the way to getting the client. Clients look for service, quality, presentation, your skills and experience and the clients like to know what they are getting for their money, they like to get their money’s worth.
Do not tell me clients want pay. That is nonsense, it is up to you to show the client what you can do and they will pay. Clients pay me and some of my rates are very high, but then clients know the services they will be getting from me. If clients can pay me then tell me, why they want pay you as I am interested in knowing. It is all about service and quality in the end.
Written by Alison Fourie © Copyright 2009 Tavasa. All rights reserved.