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ITGround >> Freelance Work, Advice


5/21/10 12:03 PM
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The Kangaroo
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Member Since: 1/1/01
Posts: 11641
 
 Ok, so my GF gets me a gig with her boss. The guy pays this freelance tech $85 an hour to support their small business and his home setup. Their PC's are always infected with viruses and running slow and the guy actually bills out from the time he gets into the car, essentially billing out an hour of drive time everytime he has to deal with them. So my GF is like WTF are they paying this dude for when I can do it.

So, the first gig I get is fixing one of his personal laptops. Its riddled with malware and is about as insecure a setup as I;ve ever seen. I spend a day working on it, (taking away from my study time, im testing out of the Net + next week). I make a 5 page document giving an overview of his system when I got it, how I got rid of everything, how I've set it up the pc to be secure and some basic usage tips to avoid this happening again. I bill him out for 3 hours at $50 an hour, figuring anything more than a buck fifty is overkill regardless of time invested. Dude is blown away as much by the results as the thoroughness of the documents I gave him etc. So immeadiately he gives me his kids laptop which is in even worse shape. He's lined out two more projects, one for his home desktop and then to install two new systems at his office as well as some new software they need to get up. So, I've basically got about $2k worth of side gigs with this guy now and he wants to pay me a monthly fee to support his two offices. 

He goes a step further though and is pressing me to start a business. He wants me to get some business cards, brochures to put out at his pharmacies. He starts scheming ways to get my name out there. (He is a go getter, marketing guru and schemer extraordinaire) He wants to set up a seminars for his church and get me me in with his church friends. He is convinced that there tons of people out there who need help that dont want to pay the Geek Squad etc and need someone to tutor them as much as just fix their computers.

So...

How much business can the average freelance tech get?

What is the basic rates for freelance work? I'm charging him $50 an hour and setting a $150 ceiling for basic stuff like cleaning up, restoring a system etc.

What is the upside, downside of going freelance?

What do you have to be careful to avoid?

How many people do you know that have done this successfully?

What are good ways to get your name out there? Obvisously word of mouth will be huge, are any other marketing ideas worth the money?


Im just trying to figure out how far I should bother going with this and if I should just do this work with her boss and not bother making cards, borchures etc. I'm in school right now for the Net+ and will be going after the CCNA after that. I figured I'd get those certs and then find an entry level tech job, which I guess I could do with some side work anyway. I'm just curious how many people have tried to go this route.
5/23/10 2:31 AM
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Juijitsuboxer
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Member Since: 1/1/01
Posts: 7899
Dude, sounds like a great opportunity, you should go for this...

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