How I collaborate with my Clients

Andreas Wagner

Andreas Wagner

I view my job as communicating and translating your ideas and objectives into tangible designs that will pass peer review, will make you and your products look great or simply say – buy me!!! The way I see the working relationship with my clients is that for the time of the project I become some kind of part-time team member, yet one that is going to be around for the long term. I am only a phone call or flight away and that’s what I have been doing for some of my clients for over 15 years – and I like it this way. I treat every client as the individual she/he is and because no two jobs are the same, I try and serve you best by talking through your project in detail. Please be prepared for me ask you many questions, to dig deep and wide into your proposed project and your objectives before we get started.

About costs – how long is a string, or better actually: how long should a string be?

Almost every time I am being asked for a quote, my clients initially ask for a fixed costs quote, which is based on the estimated hours required for the entire production process, based on an hourly rate. This is what you would likely ask for and likely get from most designers.

However, based on my experience with many clients, I do believe that to achieve the best possible outcome for you, I will become a team member to you, rather than an independent consultant that is engaged on a fixed contract scenario. The task at hand for your team and me will be to develop your product as best as possible within limiting parameters. Obvious parameters are timelines, budget availability, delivery requirements, creative resources, content readiness, etc. It will be in both our interests to get to a result that we are proud of, but that is at the same time financially viable and delivers within the defined timeframe.

So if you feel that that you do want to work with me but may have problems meeting costing, I am more than happy to sit down with you and work out what and how we can achieve your project within constraints. At the end of the day there are many ways to tackle tasks (cleverly allocate expenses and avoid unnecessary costs) and if you are happy with the hourly rate I charge, I am certain we can achieve a viable product within budget constraints.

During a recent large scale multifaceted project this meant that the client and I collaboratively decided, which areas to expand on, or what to limit and how to overcome certain hurdles. I have completed the project based on an hourly rate with detailed timesheets kept and communicated to the project manager. This did allow us to work flexibly rather than sticking to a rigid proposal and produced a much better final product.

Being a freelance designer, this means you will not be dealing with an agency that has every expert on the permanent payroll and the invoices and expense accounts to match. However, this does not mean I am a one-man show. Over two decades I have established and fine-tuned networks of appropriate professionals, and if I need a good and reliable programmer, photographer, printer or writer, I know whom to call.