I recently started working as a “Word Nerd” for ExtraNerds (http://www.extranerds.com). One of the critical things to learn is how to estimate time for a project. It seems simple enough at first. Clients want a “simple” web site based on WordPress, easy enough to do, and then there’s the selection of a theme and content.. oh my, the content.. and images and styling and the list goes on.
So, what started up as being a “simple” web page of 5 pages ends up being a project that takes up three to four hours. Seems excessive right? It’s only FIVE pages! How could it possibly take that long! Well, it seemed a bit outrageous to me as well until I started counting up all the little things. And that is when I realized it is much like wood working.
You start off with this:
Then you get to here:
And then you (hopefully) end up here:
That first bit, getting the logs (setting up the site), is the foundations for everything, can’t build the chest without the getting the logs first. You then move onto the rough lumber (creating pages) and getting it all organized and cut to length. Finally, this is the lengthy part, you cut, saw and piece together that rough lumber (content, images, etc) and even then you’re not done because that needs sanded, varnished/stained, sanded again. And even then, if it’s your first time round of building something, it might not look all that pretty.
So, remember the next time you want something done, and you aren’t willing to do it yourself or are unable to do it yourself. Chances are it’s just not that simple or, in other words there are reasons people get paid to do it.