Ironing out payment details with a graphic designer

So you have found your perfect graphic designer. You've communicated exactly the design and branding you want for your printing and mailing campaign and are now ready to begin work. However, before putting pencil to sketchpad or mouse to computer, small business owners will want to make sure they've inked out all the little details, such as payment terms.

While negotiating how an independent graphic designer is going to be paid may seem the least of a company's worries when beginning a marketing push, this small task, if left ignored, could derail the entire project down the line.

Business owners will need to decide if they will be paying designers an hourly or fixed rate, Jonathan Volk writes on his self-named blog. If an owner and a designer agree to an hourly rate, businesses will need to set a limit to the number of hours they are willing to pay.

For a fixed rate, there will be a separate set of issues to deal with, Volk explains.

"Make sure both parties know exactly how much work is expected for the fixed rate, and how payment will be handled for any additional work that may arise. Also, discuss when payment will be released (upon completion of certain milestones, upon completion of the design, etc)," Volk writes.