Looking for Tech Salary and Billing Rates for simple installs.

Posted on 2007-10-06
Last Modified: 2013-12-14
We have a potential client that is looking to have us install a single server and an single wireless access point and connect it to a DSL or cable connection.   The server will be preloaded the router(pppoe) will be preconfigured .  It should be just a drop off, plug in, power up, call the NOC to make sure it is reachable/seeing the NOC.  The challenge is that the DSL line may be a stand-alone or a line share, and it may need a cable run from the dmarc to the server/router/modem location location.  There may be a PBX that needs to be bypassed and the DSL line may need to be filtered.  This alll seems like easy work and it generally is for an experienced technician that has some knowledge of running a cable, punching down a block, patching in, etc.   We do this type of work but on a much more sophisticated level - advanced networking, mission critical server support, data center services etc.   The challange for us is that this customer does not want to pay our $150/hr rate for such simple work.  That is somewhat understandable, but we don't have techs in our group that go any lower than that.  My question is for techs with the level of experience we are talking about here, what is the going rate hourly rate, and what is the salary of these types of techs?
Question by:BladesAway
    LVL 7

    Accepted Solution

    If it helps, I tend to do those same sort of jobs at $75 per hour, as they're 'grunt work'.  When I pay someone else, I generally don't pay more than $35 per hour for a single technician to be on-site (plus materials and supplies)

    Does that help at all?   The market truly is a "Whatever you're willing to charge, and whatever they're willing to pay".   I've seen Bell charge $125 an hour for it, and I've seen people go down to $35 an hour for the work.   It also depends on the area you're in.  In Utah, it's cheaper.  In California, more expensive.

    Author Comment

    How would you handle travel?   What kind of talent can you get for $35/hr?  What type of experience, age?   Where are you located?
    LVL 20

    Assisted Solution

    Prices for service are extremely location-dependent. What's cheap in San Jose would probably be outrageous in Reno. It also makes a difference if it's a solo operation, a guy working out of his house, as opposed to a company with storefront overhead and mutiple technician backups. (I know of one company in a very affluent town nearby that charges $160 per hour for ordinary home computer visits, while 40 miles away it would be hard to get $100 per hour.)

    At a minimum, I would expect a computer technician to cost (either billing rate or employee pay) somewhat more than an appliance repairman or a plumber. You might check the going rate for those in your area. Or you could call your local Best Buy and find out what their Geek Squad rate is, though I don't know that Geek Squad guys can necessarily handle cabling.
    LVL 7

    Assisted Solution

    Me? I'm based in Houston.  We tend to have a slightly lower cost of living than most of the huge cities (NY/LA/etc).  

    I _personally_ expect that a decent (not fantastic) technician should cost approximately the same per hour as a plumber or electrician.   You're paying for the same sort of educational background, with the exception that there aren't many 'schools' or programs to train technicians.    I would expect that at $35 an hour (That's you paying the technician, not what the customer would pay), you would get a technician with a solid set of experience in basic troubleshooting and installation, but not necessarily a genius in networking or any sort of real specialty.  

    Geeksquad tends to charge a minimum of $65 an hour for a technician I wouldn't pay $10 - and that doesn't include the trip fee and minimum service charge.

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