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Contract work resumes 2013:
Most of my time since the start of 2009 has been devoted to in-house development of a medical product. As this project transitions to volume manufacture, my availability for contracting work is opening up.
Chargeout held steady through 2012:
I increased my hourly rate to $100/hr in 2011, simply to keep up with inflation (specifically the increase in NZ average wage from 2005 to 2011, my last increase to $80/hr was late 2004). This rate applies for longer term on-site day-job contracts, or PCB design. (Please note I no longer have different rates for casual / full-service / quoted / 'one-off' jobs, because I no longer offer these services - see below.)
As a rule, I do not quote fixed price on development jobs. Although a few people find this surprising, it is quite normal in the electronics industry, because most clients value innovation over absolute predictability. Of course I am happy to provide estimates, cost controls, regular updates, and to guarantee my work. I will actively work to reduce your bill, and my cost (I usually have too much too do, so why would I stretch it out?) I provide timesheet updates weekly (or more often if desired), and bill fortnightly. Think of me as as a "freelance worker" rather than a "contracting firm". My goal is to concentrate on either day-job type work for larger clients on larger projects, at their site, or "packageable" short-term hourly-paid jobs like PCB design and design reviews. While I do exactly the same work as an up-market "consultant", please understand that my chargeout rate reflects a simpler situation where clients view me more as a "worker" than a "supplier".
I am the main engineering resource, and you can trust that I will do all hourly-paid design work myself. If I need to outsource any functions to complete your project, you will be kept in the loop and won't be gouged on price.
I have electronics design offices and the usual equipment and software (PCs, scopes, dataloggers, tools, CAD and development software etc). For larger projects, working from your site amongst your team is often a more efficient development method.
We do prototype manufacturing (semi-manual SMT and dip solder - not lead free), and can produce in low volumes as necessary. However for production quantities I will refer you to one of the many excellent local contract manufacturers.
I have in-house mechanical prototyping facilities including 3-axis CNC router and mill, lathe, workshop etc. We can build jigs, fixtures, production automation equipment, and even do component fabrication to get the ball rolling with your project.
My most in-demand skill is as a specialist PCB designer. PCB design is convenient to contract out because it has a clearly defined start and stop, and as a result has become a significant area of my expertise.
I specialise in applications involving high current, switchmode, precision analogue, EMC problems, lack of space, and unusual mechanical requirements. The benefit of having a highly qualified and experienced electronic designer work on your board is that it is likely to; work first time, exceed performance requirements, and go straight into production or preproduction. A secondary benefit is sanity checking of circuit design, and the ability to suggest components based on function rather than generic specs. A tertiary benefit is understanding real manufacturing processes, rather than relying on outdated industry guidelines.
I can work from solid models, photographs, and components on hand. I generally don't need physical hardware, for example I have successfully laid out boards for US-based designers.
Most clients are local to Christchurch.
Beyond that, I can "telecommute" easily via the net. International clients can be treated essentially the same as national, however please be aware of the terms and conditions and differences in applicable laws.
Antony Dean, 25/08/05
Antony Dean, ADX Electronics Limited
email: email@example.com web: www.adx.co.nz
Phone +64 3 3518668, Fax +64 3 3518484, Mobile 027 4373486
I plan to expand this one day, but for now here are some "standard terms" that end up in most contracts (which are often just an emailed estimate which becomes a binding contract when accepted):
Note these terms might not necessarily apply to your contract. New Zealand law applies.