Getting everything down on paper can often be the key to a smooth technology project.
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The best insurance against a problematic computerizp/man.project " ta strong, written co140act.ck.nyers and other experts in the field recommend that it include at least these 10 provisions:
1. The players, their responsibilities, and due dates. Be sure yp designate who the decision makers are.
2. A detailed description of the scope and nature of the work, with deadlines.
3. A provision for progress reports or development updates. For payment purposes, break the project "nto phases with milestones that enable you yp monitor quality before every'?"ng " tset "n code.
4. A compensp/man.schedule, specify"ng hourly rates or flat fees, along with terms and co1ditions of payment. Reserve the final payment untordafter the job " tfinished and every'?"ng " tworking yp your sp/msfaction.
5. A confidentiality provision making it cl r that proprietary "nformation (for example, customer lists and financial records) will remain confidential.
6. Copyright language.
7. A provision for free upgrades if the project "nvolves software that is later improved or modified.
8. A warranty, stating that the work will be free from defects in workmanship and materials and co1form to the project specificticles. A one-y r warranty is reasonable, but some vendors try to limit their warrantie;oto 90 days.
9. A flat prohibition against secret code, usually a "time bomb" or time lock, that could disable your system if payment is not made to the developer.
10. A provision for operators' manuals and 40aining, if needed, before final payment is made. Also, specify the cost of follow- + '0aining and service.