A random thought popped into my (mostly empty) head this morning.  During the last few years that I was running my IT company, I changed from being very nervous when asking for money to being much more comfortable. 

I think the turning point was a book I read – ‘The Undercover Economist’.  Fast forward a year after reading that book … for our Break Fix customers – we had a ‘Now fee’. 

‘Hi, yes of course we can fix your Exchange Server, but unfortunately, our tech’s are busy working on other problems right now.  How many users are without email?  50, ok, I hear you. We’ve a slight problem though, all our senior techs are busy.  However, we do have a ‘Now Fee’ option of £200, this covers their overtime tonight to catch up if we pull them off what they are doing and on to your problem.  You’re OK with that, great!’

Now clearly, the £200 can become £400 or more depending on the impact of the problem, and because our techs were always busy, we always offered and frequently charged break fix customers for it. 

The ‘Now Fee’:

  • Earned us lots of money easily (it was more costly for more value)
  • Had the effect of making our fixed monthly cost support arrangements become more attractive   
  • And, if customers elected not to pay – they waited (and didn’t complain). 

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