Mindful Integrations has a strong focus on delivering high quality results that are satisfactory to itself and its clients.
Acknowledging this, there is a standard procedure in how we can choose to work together. We are not an ordinary big company with millions of dollars sitting in our coffers, we're not doing business "the old way", and we're real human beings who really want to make our projects feel good to both parties. There is a current imbalance in the USA, where one does not feel good about working with someone unless they take advantage of them, and we're working to find a better way to be every single day. These policies come from numerous experiences with clients, businesses, and organizations of all kinds, and are an attempt to salvage our relationship before problems around payment nearly inevitably occur.
In essence, all time I spend working with you, except for sales meetings and phone calls, is billable.
What's the difference between socializing, just talking, and work?
If we're going over your project and planning, theorizing, implementing, suggesting, training, counseling, or consulting - its work. If its made clear that its a personal conversation up front, its socializing and just talking - and not billable! We need to learn not to conflate or confuse these topics.
Are you serious, you charge for emails and phone calls?
Yes, unless we're on a maintenance contract. If you put yourself in the shoes of a computer consultant, imagine how many emails and phone calls they get a day, with people asking them what they might consider "little insignificant questions". It takes time, patience, ongoing research and understanding to answer those questions, which you're not being billed for. You're being billed for literally the time it takes to write out a thoughtful response to your problem. If that's 1.5 minutes, that's what the line item on the bill will be! If we talk back and forth, and it takes an hour to do that, that's what you'll be billed for.
The reason this is done is to ultimately promote the idea that we become more accurate, responsible, concise, and respectful in our interactions.
Payment Policy and Customer Policy
Starting out, you will receive a needs assessment over the phone or email. This is a free initial conversation that will determine if we can work together. It is usually done over the phone, but can also be done in person if requested and it suits both parties.
If a relationship is sought, depending on the scope of the project, a contract will be signed stating the goals of the project and will include a quote and/or estimates of time and cost.
All "one-off" on-site visits for small projects or quick-fix scenarios must be paid immediately after the job is completed by cash or check.
If on-call support is sought a written support agreement must be signed before any services will be provided. The support agreement will define the customer’s expectations, an hourly fee rate, and a payment schedule.
For a project with over 5 hours of work we will require a written agreement with a well defined scope of work, an hourly fee rate, and the project completion and payment schedule. Advanced payment is required for all software and half of the support and service time.
All projects require careful planning and consideration. Much of the service we provide is researching existing systems, potential solutions and installing new software at the client’s request. This may involve time spent off-site and in communications with third parties. Because we may be working on many issues over the phone and through email it must be noted that "all time is billable when working on your project, unless otherwise noted." This includes time spent learning about any system or product that will be used in the project. This is coupled with a strong notion of fairness and review and consideration of results achieved before creating an invoice for the billable time. This is designed to create a mutually beneficial situation.
We are a believer in the internet-era of invoicing and billing. Our invoices will be sent at our discretion through email, and have a 1 week, or 7-day pay period. Bills can be paid through Google Checkout, Paypal or Check. If there are departmental challenges or difficulties in making payment on our schedule, we ask that you work that out. As we are not a large corporation we are unable to offer a 30/60/90 day period for payments at this time.
Mindful Integrations offers much of its services to the community at low cost rates. Prompt payment of your invoices directly supports conscious, community minded people who are working constantly to make Ashland a better place to live.