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4 ways to pay your Consultants, which one would you choose?

One of the most intimidating pieces of hiring a proposal consultant is compensation. How much do you pay, what kind of structure do you pay on, do you add benefits, and if so, which ones and how many? Is your pay competitive with other firms? Are you getting your money’s worth, or are people checking out on the job?


4 ways to pay your consulants

The nice thing about hiring a consultant to work with your team is that the pay structure is fairly straightforward. You pay for what you get, and you don’t have all the extras to consider, like vacation, sick pay, overtime, health insurance, etc.


Most consultants work on one of four pay structures. You can pay them a lump sum, an hourly rate, a monthly retainer, or any of these structures with a performance bonus added in.


  1. Lump sum is useful when there’s a definitive end time and scope or maybe for one project that you and the consultant have worked on together before.

  2. Hourly rates are beneficial when you have a consultant helping with one piece of the work and perhaps not leading the whole project.

  3. Monthly retainers are great when you have ongoing work or multiple projects. Retainers are also a great pay structure to help you budget. There are no surprises with a retainer like there could be with hourly rates.

  4. And a success fee is an excellent tactic to motivate you and your consultant. The more you win, the more everybody wins.


If you’re thinking of bringing someone on to help your team with proposal management, what other questions do you have about pay structures or what paying a consultant looks like?

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