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What fee level can one person maintain?

What fee level can one person maintain?

I would be grateful for views/experience on the level of fees one person can maintain before the need to take on staff.

I really do try and sell to clients the advantages of they do their own bookkeeping. In the main this is working since I provide free software. I do not reduce me fee level as result.

On the basis I was hoping to maintain a fee level of £150k on an average fee level of £1000 per client. Where bookkeeping is required I would outsource this.

I am organising myself, through CRM, paperless and really try and use technolgy to bring time savings.

Am I being unrealistic?



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16th Aug 2010 09:28

It depends

On what hours u want to work ?

Monday to friday, 9-5, no chance.

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By happy
16th Aug 2010 09:57


In my experience no, not if you want any life outside of work and any quality of life.

It's a pretty easy calculation to do just look at how many hours you work and the approx average time spent on each client and you can do the sums. It varies for each of us as to how we operate.


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16th Aug 2010 11:34


I do £130k with a PT assistant and odd subcontractor, making about £115k profit.

8.30am to 6pm, hour for lunch plus some saturdays, and not many holidays.

I am actually looking to reduce this to around £110k as I am working too much.

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16th Aug 2010 12:16


Our staff do anything from £100 to £200k a year, BUT, they have full back up, bookkeepers, tax specialist, etc.   It really makes a huge difference if you're not ploughing through petrol receipts etc.

So much also depends on the mix of clients.  A dozen large clients is one thing, 200 sole traders is totally different.

Just bear one thing in mind - you only have ONE life (as far as we know) and you dont want to waste it working yourself into an early grave.  And don't make the mistake of thinking you'll have time to enjoy life later - a lot of people think that, then drop dead before they get that far.


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16th Aug 2010 12:38


£150k is challenging but I know sole practisoners who are reaching this level.

Helpful if:

 - Good systems in place

 - Effective use of software

 - Working with the right clients

 - At the right price

 - Turning away work

 - Good CRM




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By happy
16th Aug 2010 17:52

Bit optimistic

Jason - yes you can easily achieve £150k as a sole practitioner but bear in mind the question was what ''one person can maintain before they need to take on staff''

If you have an average fee of £1,000 to get to £150k on your own with no staff is going some. I did that with 2 part-time staff but even with the most organised practice, utilising the best systems possible, in the real world you'd be hard pressed to attain that level on your own and a) keep your sanity b) not suffer some stress related illness(es) A bit optimistic in my view and experience.



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16th Aug 2010 19:00

Depends on the client base and the type of work...

... but I would expect £75K-£100k as a stand alone sole prac. BUT, this is going to give you no time at all to develop the business or work on the systems of the business. You are going to be going flat out doing the do all day every day 5-6 days per week, pretty much 50 weeks a year.

Albert Camus

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