What is a statement of work document
A statement of work (SOW) means all provisions of a contract that describe the services or work to be performed or products to be delivered by a contractor, subcontractor, or agency, as specified in the document. A statement of work’s products may include any related technical specifications, deadlines, or deliverables.
Why do you need a statement of work for your Software Agency
I hope you’re a lucky one and came here to read this article before you were screwed by a client with extra work. It happens with some clients to discuss something, you both decide to build a simple website for example, with 2 pages. Meantime the client asks you to create one more page, you say “ok, is only one page, I don’t have a problem to do that”. Everything is fine and you continue to finish the initial pages. The client comes again and asks you something new, and again you say “just few small changes, let’s do them”. You almost finish the project and the client comes again asking for just a small request, but that small request takes you another few hours. Enthusiast about finishing the project you decide again to do some extra work to make the client happy. And let’s recap, you double worked for the client and he may be or not happy in the end. This situation is commonly happen to a lot of new freelancers or startups in early stages, because they want to satisfy the client. It happen to us few times and every time, we were upset, angry and sad, because we spend to much time for a project. Is not right to not be payed for you work so better save your ass.
The statement of work is exactly that document which defines the purpose of the projects, milestones and deliverables. This is not a replacement for a traditional contract, actually completes that one.
What contains a statement of work document
As I mentioned before the statement of work document is a file which contains all the phases and how they are accomplished between both parties: client and software agency. A statement of work typically addresses these subjects:
- Purpose: Why are we doing this project?
- Scope of work: This describes the work to be done and specifies the hardware and software involved. The definition of scope becomes the scope statement.
- Location of work: This describes where the work is to be performed, including the location of hardware and software and where people will meet to do the work.
- Period of performance: This specifies the allowable time for projects, such as start and finish time, number of hours that can be billed per week or month, where work is to be performed and anything else that relates to scheduling.
- Deliverables schedule: This part lists and describes what is due and when.
- Applicable standards: This describes any industry specific standards that need to be adhered to in fulfilling the contract.
- Acceptance criteria: This specifies how the buyer or receiver of goods will determine if the product or service is acceptable, usually with objective criteria. See Acceptance testing.
- Special requirements: This specifies any special hardware or software, specialized workforce requirements, such as degrees or certifications for personnel, travel requirements, and anything else not covered in the contract specifics.
- Type of contract/payment schedule: The project acceptance will depend on if the budget available will be enough to cover the work required. Therefore, a breakdown of payments by whether they are up-front or phased will usually be negotiated in an early stage.
- Miscellaneous: Many items that are not part of the main negotiations may be listed because they are important to the project, and overlooking or forgetting them could pose problems for the project.
You can decide which subject apply to you and which can stay away. Not all of them must be introduced in your statement of work.
Draft for Statement of Work
Statement of Work
|Job Name||[CLIENT NAME]’s Website|
|Requested by||[CLIENT SPONSOR’S NAME]|
|From||[WEB DESIGNER’S COMPANY]|
This project involves the design and development of a web site for use by [CLIENT NAME]. This project will follow the timeline outlined below and does not include ongoing maintenance of the site outside of what may be stated in the scope.
This SOW covers the following activities and deliverables.
- Theme Design and Development: The theme presented with the proposal will be the basis for the design of the website. There will be a period of revisions and development will start once you have signed off on the design. Once development has started, only minor changes can be made without affecting the scope of the project.
- Host and Domain Setup: If hosting is required, I will source and set up hosting for the requested domain. Maintenance of the account will fall to [CLIENT NAME] at the conclusion of the project.
- WordPress Installation and Setup: I will install and set up the CMS on the domain mentioned above so that [CLIENT SPONSOR’S NAME] is able to maintain the site.
- Content Entry: I will enter the initial content you provide to me. This will include text and pictures for each page to be created with the initial setup.
- The pages for the site will include: [LIST OF PAGES]
- The features of the site will include: [LIST OF FEATURES]
- Browser Testing: I will test the site to make sure it works with modern desktop web browsers. I will also test to make sure that the site does not break when viewed on mobile devices.
- Account and login information.
- Website deployed on requested domain.
- A backup copy of the files associated with the site.
- A reference document outlining how to make updates to the site along with a link to online resources.
|Sign Contract||[SCHEDULE DATE 1]|
|Finalize Design||[SCHEDULE DATE 2]|
|Client Provides Content||[SCHEDULE DATE 3]|
|Finalize Testing||[SCHEDULE DATE 4]|
|Deploy to Staging Site for Client Sign Off||[SCHEDULE DATE 5]|
|Deploy to Client Domain||[SCHEDULE DATE 6]|
|Client Sign Off and Receipt of Deliverables||[SCHEDULE DATE 7]|
The total price of this project as agreed upon during the proposal is [PRICE]. For further change requests that may appears after the contract is signed, [WEB DESIGNER’S COMPANY] reestimate the time and costs of changes at [PRICE_PER_HOUR].
This agreement is based on the following assumptions.
- You have provided [DESIGNER NAME] with a complete list of your requirements for the website.
The client named below verifies that the terms of this Statement of Work is acceptable. The parties here to are each acting with proper authority by their respective companies.
|[CLIENT NAME]||[WEB DESIGNER’S COMPANY]|
|Company name||Company name|
|[CLIENT SPONSOR’S NAME]||[DESIGNER NAME]|
|Full name||Full name|
|[SPONSOR’S TITLE]||[DESIGNER’S TITLE]|
|[CLIENT SIGN DATE]||[SIGN DATE2]|
I hope you like this article and if so, please share this it using the share buttons below. Hope you’ll start using this document from now on in your company. Are you eager to learn more about Statement of Work, because here you can find a Writing Guide and two examples: SOW Sample 1 and SOW Sample 2.
We are using the draft presented above with our clients, so if you wanna be one for software development, showcase websites, mobile development or e-commerce websites, just send us an e-mail.
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