Every day we get emails and phone calls from potential clients asking questions that often are not so easily explained. Questions like how much does it cost? What’s so great about you guys? How long will it take? Some of these queries are easier to explain than others. Below are answers to our most frequently asked questions, but if you have a new one, send us a quick note, and we’ll put our crack team of answer wizards on it right away!
What does the average Bit-Wizards software project cost?
We get this a lot, and the answer is – it depends. Software development projects can range from $30,000 to over $250,000. Public-facing websites can run anywhere from $7,500 to over $50,000 depending on many variables. We’ve had inexpensive projects and engagements that exceeded millions, but every project is unique, therefore we provide consulting services for providing accurate cost estimating.
What do I need to get started with Bit-Wizards?
The ideal Bit-Wizards client has a need, a realistic budget, and schedule for completion. We begin with a meeting either face-to-face or a conference call to get an idea of what your needs are and to determine if Bit-Wizards is a good fit for your project. Clients should be prepared to discuss all background information on the project. If everyone agrees that Bit-Wizards is a good fit for the project, our clients sign a services agreement that outlines our terms of service, and we proceed in putting together a team and timeline to develop the project.
What sets Bit-Wizards apart from other custom software companies?
Our track record of successful software projects truly sets us apart from our competition. In addition, we maintain an extensive portfolio of development tools and components that reduce costs on many software projects. Finally, our highly trained and certified team of engineers and designers all work on site at our Fort Walton Beach, Florida office to expedite collaboration efforts and provide on-going support. Bit-Wizards combines excellent technical expertise with exceptional service to ensure successful projects.
What does a typical Bit-Wizards project team consist of?
Each client is assigned a senior software engineer who works as a project manager and client interface. This allows for a single point of contact and accountability to a client. That engineer will then draw from our staff of software engineers, designers, SharePoint engineers, technical writers, and testers, as is required for the success of the project.
How long does the average Bit-Wizards software project last?
While every project is unique, we find that most projects are completed in a three to four month time frame. With longer engagements, we break up the overall project into shorter phases or cycles to provide measurable milestones.
Does Bit-Wizards do fixed-price projects or do they charge by the hour?
The nature of our business makes fixed-price contracts nearly impossible. Often times, the scope of a project changes many times before it is complete. With a fixed-price model, this will benefit one party over the other and often creates a contentious relationship. Bit-Wizards wants to be a trusted partner and a complete IT department for our clients. Fixed-price contracts often times can place a wedge between clients and their development needs.
Some people might think "Aren’t I just writing a blank check to Bit-Wizards using time and materials? " Time and materials is not a blank check. Not knowing what a project will cost due to all the variables does not mean that a range cannot be set. Software is built collaboratively, and anything that drives the cost or timeline up will be discussed and brought forward as it is discovered, not at the end of the project like some software vendors. Time and cost can be more readily determined as the life of a project continues.
Does Bit-Wizards respond to RFPs?
Rarely. The way in which we serve the interests of our client’s best is through relationship-based partnerships. Estimates based on price alone do not fit within our time and materials billing model. We find we miss vital information that may have a substantial impact on budget and schedule when following RFP outlines alone. Our experience has shown that money and time are saved when we are engaged to provide consultation services prior to the start of a project.
Additionally, we don’t provide speculative design work as part of an RFP process in order for us to try and “win” a project. “Spec work” invariably leads to frustration for you and encourages a sub-par standard of work from the companies submitting designs. From a business point of view, it makes no sense for the client. A good design is an informed design. This only comes through research and collaboration with the client. A visually creative ‘best guess’ created upfront as part of a sales tactic is never the "right" design and ends up at best, a pretty picture.
Does Bit-Wizards invest in client ideas in lieu of payment?
Bit-Wizards does not enter into software ownership sharing with clients. Bit-Wizards has several component and product endeavors that it can act upon, and if we decided to get into a product venture we would go with one of our applications. For this reason we do not enter into this kind of partnership. However, it is possible that Bit-Wizards would discount the rate for a residual future income if the right opportunity was presented.
Does Bit-Wizards place software engineers with clients?
Bit-Wizards is not a staffing firm. We do project-based software engineering at our Fort Walton Beach, Florida facility which has been specifically designed for software development. The collaboration between software engineers, even those not on the specific project, is of enormous value to our clients and often this collaboration comes free to our clients. However, our engineers and designers occasionally go off site to a client’s locations during the course of a project. We have in the past placed an engineer on site at a client location when the needs of the project required it, but we rarely need to place a software engineer at a client’s location full time.
Does Bit-Wizards use contract programmers foreign or domestic?
No. We only use full time, in-house, direct employees. Our business is based on developing small teams that work closely together to solve business problems. This is nearly impossible when using contract programmers, even worse with foreign programmers where language and culture can be barriers. All of our software engineers are degreed and hold Microsoft certifications in software development.