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The Consultant's Reasonable Rate Calculator

If you are looking for a way to calculate that daunting "all inclusive rate" for a consulting or sub-contract job opportunity, then you might want to bookmark this page.

If you do not already understand the process, then you may also want to read the original article describing why savvy consultants need to re-calculate their rates before each and every gig.

By way of a reference point, here is the IRS Per Diem Table.

Web-Applet Version

Note that the perdium rate tables reflect all CONUS data for 2012.

You will also have to be able to run Java Applets:

PHP Version

The above tool use Java. If you do not have Java, then here is the legacy:

Also, unless you have them mentally ballparked (hey, it happens!) before filling out the rate-calc form below, you may want to look-up the daily expenses estimate for the city you will be working in.

Annual Salary:$.00
Annual Utilization (probability):$
Annual Insurance, Investment, & Misc Taxes: $.00
Daily Per Diem (IRS Publication 1542):$ (*)
Misc. Hourly Add-on (flight home, etc.):$.00

If you do not know how to use the the above form, then click here for more information.

Android Version

We have a version of our rate-calculation tool for use on your phone. Known as "Rate Calc", one might have to tell Android how to download free tools. But first, try to browse to


-on your Android Device. If you can install (worked just fine on my Galaxy S), then all is well. Otherwise you can:

  1. Open your Settings Applet to select the "Applications" menu item. If the Unknown Sources checkmark is not green, make it so.
  2. Your browser downloads Rate Calc as soon as you navigate to timedroid.apk. When the green download icon stops flashing, your download is complete. (NOTE: Some browsers may display a 404 (page not found.) This is fine. -Just don't close the browser until the download is complete.)
  3. When the download is finished (this tool is small - should complete quickly), pull down the Notification Bar. Select the new entry.
  4. You may see one or more prompts from the Android Installer: Approve any so as to complete the installation.
  5. Once you've cleared any notifications, open the Browser, press the Menu key, and select Downloads from under the More List.
  6. Select and run timedroid.apk.
  7. Play it safe: De-green Unknown Sources after installing Rate Calc.

Why 'didja do this, Nagy??

I recently finished up what was perhaps the most fascinating gig I have had for a long time. Not only was I able to have a great time surviving Hurricane Ike in a Houston trailer park (did not loose power or water for more that a few minutes the entire time), but I met a great bunch of engineers. (I wish there was a reliable way to in-advance-discount a client for having a superior regional and / or company attitude!)

Unfortunately, I also got trapped in a bit of a desperate situation: Having allowed my recruiter to take advantage of my enthusiasm for the opportunity left me holding less than 1/3 of what they were charging their client for my services! Furthermore, even though I stated over and over again that I required my rate-plus-expenses, with my complete consent my Florida-based recruiter ALSO paid me the much lower Florida per diem, and the company pocketed the difference. While I was, with the help of my friends, able to rectify the situation half way thru this 6-month training opportunity, (was able able to eventually reclaim slightly over half of the rate) I wanted to create a tool to help others avoid this type of embarrassing situation.

Version 2.0

--R.A. Nagy