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Tuesday, February 13, 2007

What Should Your Minimum Be for Phone Support?

You should offer phone support as a part of your computer consulting business. Often phone support is a better way to deal with clients than conducting a visit onsite.

You have to charge for phone support, no matter what, but what model should you use? Get away from providing free phone support or even phone support that costs less than your other services.

How Should You Charge for Phone Support?

The best way to charge for phone support is by using the same model you’d use for onsite visits. There are costs tied to phone support that you must acknowledge, including the following costs to you: your time; the cost of a toll-free number; cell phone minutes; the cost of calling cards.

Establish a minimum charge for phone support, ideally a 15-minute minimum. If you don’t have a minimum, you will find that people will interrupt you at all hours for one or two minute requests to help with unimportant items. Spending three or four dollars on a phone support call will not mean much to clients; but spending $25 or more will get their attention and make them think more carefully about calling you for phone support.

Phone Support: How to Handle Calls That Exceed 15 Minutes

You can go about charging for phone support exceeding 15 minutes in a variety of ways. You can either charge by the minute or use pre-determined minimum increments. The ideal technique is set increments with every 15 minutes afterwards being a set amount of dollars.

Be Flexible with Calls Over 15 Minutes

Your best judgment can help you figure out what to do in situations with calls that total 16 or 17 minutes. If you are thinking about rounding up or down, think about the following factors: your prep time; your research time; the type of documentation you needed; the follow up you had to send to the client.

Blogged By: Computer Consulting 101