Fixed-Bid or Time and Materials: What’s Best For You?

At Bixly, there are two different ways to get your project done: Fixed-Bid or Time and Materials. But what are those and how do you know what’s right for you and your project?

Fixed-Bid Projects

Fixed-Bid Projects are when we meet with you extensively to completely flesh out your project before we write a single line of code. This is a paid Discovery Period. We will develop wire frames and styling. We will write all the user stories for all the features that you want. We will divide up those user stories into milestones. You decide exactly what you want and what you don’t in your application. Then we come back with a fixed quote for the time and the cost it will take to make it for you. And we deliver.

This type of project works great if you know exactly what you want to build. This type of project works great if you don’t want to be overly involved after the Discovery Period. This type of project works great if you already have budget, funding, or grants ready to go.

Project Management

Once we start programming, we deliver code at the end of each milestone, usually two to four weeks long. You also get billed at each milestone. We have regular check-in meetings with you at the end of each milestone, so you can see the project progress and get the necessary updates. We perform QA and testing before deploying each milestone, and at final project delivery, you get to test the code and make sure your customers will be happy. If you want to add more features in new milestones, we can do that. If you want an ongoing maintenance contract to ensure that this app continues to work for years to come, we can do that too.

Now fixed-bid feels pretty inflexible… It’s that way by design. By front-loading all the decisions we can ultimately get that work done faster and more efficiently. The downside is, it’s harder to change mid-stream. Now it’s possible with a change order, which will be a topic for a later blog. Change orders require new proposals, user stories, timelines and budgets. They need to be agreed to by everyone involved, almost like a mini fixed-bid. But, if you’re looking for more flexibility then Time and Materials might be right for you.

Time and Materials Projects

On the other hand, time and materials is very flexible. We can work as much and as long as you need us to on your project. We can add and remove talent as you need it from backend development to frontend development to UI/UX design to systems administration. We plan to iteratively work on your project using the Agile methodology, deploying code regularly (usually at one or two week intervals) until you say you’re done.

With Time and Materials, you participate in weekly stand-ups to make sure we are on track, to adjust to changing goals, to update you on current and ongoing features. If you have a project idea and you want to hit the ground running, add features as you go, and make decisions on the fly, this is the project type for you. Whether you already have a team in place and want to accelerate production or you are just getting started with a brand new app, this project style can get you code and features quickly, without sacrificing on flexibility.


Connect with us today to get your project off the ground!