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Meeting Client Requirement

Hi all,

 

I have got a new client for an Excel job. Basically, the client wanted some monthly tables with data analysis in graphs. He also requested one extra feature on his file and I told him that it will cost him $15 more so that I can implement it across the file. The client agreed. So I summarised our discussion and everything went well.

 

I completed the job and send the file to the client. However, that extra feature didn't work for the client because he is using Excel for Mac not Windows. I did some research and apparently, this feature is not available on the latest version of Excel for Mac. I didn't know that the client was using Mac until he shared his screen with me to fix the issue. I know the issue can be solved with VBA for Mac or a third party add-in but I don't have a Mac to test this nor do I know VBA for Mac.

 

I don't want to spend more time trying to figure this out since the extra $15 is not worth it anymore. At the same time, I don't want to get a bad rating from the client. How can I communicate now with the client? I'm willing to deduct the extra $15 from my final invoice even though the extra feature does work on Excel for Windows.

 

Thanks.

14 REPLIES 14
petra_r
Member


Taha A wrote:

 

I don't want to spend more time trying to figure this out since the extra $15 is not worth it anymore. At the same time, I don't want to get a bad rating from the client. How can I communicate now with the client? I'm willing to deduct the extra $15 from my final invoice even though the extra feature does work on Excel for Windows.


Can  you figure it out?

 

To be honest it's not really the client's fault you didn't ask which OS he is using, is it?

When something becomes more work than it is worth because I overlooked something, I do the work... (like I miscalculated my price last week and ended up accepting a dramatically lower price because I did not look at the file properly)

 

It's not like using a Mac is something rare or exotic and lots of stuff works differently on a Mac.

Hi Petra,

Thank you for your reply.

So my understanding from your reply is to try to find a solution at all costs. Is that correct?

Will the work you produced be useable without the added feature? I would explain to the client that after researching the issue you have found that the feature is not available for Mac users and refund the extra fee ($15) associated with that feature. 

Hi Tonya,

Thank you for your reply.

Yes it is usable 100%. The extra feature is basically an icon that opens a data entry window linked to different tables. Without it, the user should input the information directly into the cells.


Taha A wrote:

Hi Petra,

Thank you for your reply.

So my understanding from your reply is to try to find a solution at all costs. Is that correct?


It is up to you. You are free to choose, which is the beauty of being a *free*lancer. However, you are not free of the consequences of your choice. Those would be extra work if you decide to push on, or a disappointed client because you didn't ask a important question before agreeing to the extra function.

 

Either is a valid choice, and only you can make that choice.

 

As I said, when something was due to an oversight on my part (like last week, missing a dozen or so sheets on a spreadsheet 😮 ) I do what I contractually agreed to do and tell myself to pay more attention next time.

 

Taha, I had a similar instance where I found out at the end after writing a script for a client that they were on a mac...after much rage....I set up a virtual machine -

https://techsviewer.com/install-macos-10-14-mojave-virtualbox-windows/

 

re-wrote it, and vowed that every time I will ask upfront what OS they are using so it doesn't happen again....you live and learn

Hi Cristopher,

Thank you for your reply.

I will try the virtual machine. But I beileve I need to buy Excel for Mac also in order to learn and test on it. Not sure if the client will give me much time to do so.

Anyway, it is good for the future. Thanks for sharing this.


Taha A wrote:

 

I will try the virtual machine. But I beileve I need to buy Excel for Mac also in order to learn and test on it. Not sure if the client will give me much time to do so.

Anyway, it is good for the future. Thanks for sharing this.


I didn't have to buy Excel for Mac, I just downloaded it on my Mac and used my existing Microsoft Office licence. I have Excel (and Word) on 2 Windows machines, a Mac and the iPad.

The Microsoft Office licence that I'm using belongs to the University that I have graduated from. I installed it when I was a student and it is still working until now. Therefore, I need to check if I can use it on Mac.


Taha A wrote:

The Microsoft Office licence that I'm using belongs to the University that I have graduated from. I installed it when I was a student and it is still working until now. Therefore, I need to check if I can use it on Mac.


Offering Excel services on a licence you do not own is a very very bad idea....

I do have a license for Office but I stopped using mine after installing the University's one since it is newer. Can you please let me know why it is a bad idea? Is it against Upwrok T&C? If so, I'll use mine then.


Taha A wrote:

I do have a license for Office but I stopped using mine after installing the University's one since it is newer. Can you please let me know why it is a bad idea?


Microsoft has no sense of humor about that sort of thing (using a university's licence when no longer a student at that university so essentially using it without a licence...)

 

Also, if you specifically offer Excel services, surely you should use the latest version of Excel? How do you update your version when it is not licensed? Office 365 is very cheap.

The university blocked all my accesses after I graduated (Portal, Databases, Online Library, Moodle, etc...). The only thing they kept unblocked is Microsoft Office license under my student ID. They could have blocked Office as well if they didn't want graduates to use it but they didn't. In fact, I'm still receiving Office updates on a regular basis. It is something that Microsoft and the University should discuss.

 

If you're going to be offering services in Excel, then you do need to upgrade to Office 365 and check all documents on both a pc and a Mac, and ALWAYS ask the client which version and which platform they're using. This didn't use to be so important, but there are some very pronounced functionality and compatibility issues these days. I do most of my work on a Mac and then just use an ultra-cheap pc to double-check documents before sending them to clients.