Question on other engineers in your studio
Old 25th January 2012
  #1
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Capt Hair's Avatar
 

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Question on other engineers in your studio

This is more a question to the people who own their studio and have other engineers besides yourself working there.

How do you work out the paying of said person/employee? I'm possibly in the position to hire on someone else to help with sessions and do their own. Keep in mind that this is my studio they will be working out of and my equipment and facilities they'll be using.

And before the question is asked, I do need the help. between playing in two bands, giving music lessons, and doing my own sessions, and then running the actual business. I don't have as much time as I need and could be booking more sessions in the studio if I had someone else to work them.

The only way I can think of to make sure I'm compensated for the use of my studio is to take a percentage of any sessions that would be booked through him. (though with this he'll be receiving less than his desired hourly rate, but if he is technically "second" engineer of the studio he should be receiving less?).

Or could I just pay him less hourly as I charge per hour.

Currently charge a modest $35/hr for tracking and mixing, so paying him $20/hr would be an idea?

TL/DR
Need some examples on different ways to structure a payment system for a potential employee, in specific, another engineer.

Thanks for the patience guys, never thought I'd be in the position to potentially hire somebody just looking for some fellow studio owners advice.
Old 25th January 2012
  #2
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narcoman's Avatar
 

think of your rates.

Now split that between what you earn and what you charge for your studio.

Should be simple beyond that !!
Old 25th January 2012
  #3
Gear addict
Before you make any decision on compensation, check with your lawyer. You want to make sure any scheme you come up with is legal in your state. Employee may not be the best status if the compensation is too similar to commission or piece work. You may also need a contract.

Last edited by yosefTux; 25th January 2012 at 10:30 PM.. Reason: Clarity
Old 25th January 2012
  #4
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narcoman's Avatar
 

Oh yeah. He's defo not an employee without a contract. Keep him freelance .
Old 26th January 2012
  #5
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Capt Hair's Avatar
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by narcoman View Post
Oh yeah. He's defo not an employee without a contract. Keep him freelance .
I'll keep the freelance idea in mind, actually like the sound of that. So for example, since I charge $35/hr and generally pay myself $20/hr, I would pay him the same rate of $20/hr and the $15 would then go to the business. Is that basically what you were saying?

Do you guys have any other suggestions on ways of going about this? What do you do?
Old 26th January 2012
  #6
Gear addict
No experience in this area, but...

From checking out a lot of studio's websites, most of them quote the studio without an engineer at X amount per hour, with a separate hourly rate for the engineer (house, freelance, whatever).
Old 26th January 2012
  #7
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RCM - Ronan's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by Capt Hair View Post
The only way I can think of to make sure I'm compensated for the use of my studio is to take a percentage of any sessions that would be booked through him.
If he is bringing in his own clients just rent him your studio at a discount rate. If you bring in the clients just hire him as a contractor to handle the sessions.
Old 26th January 2012
  #8
Gear addict
Just the rest of my 2 cents worth. Regardless of what you call the other engineer, if you treat them like an employee, they are one. Listen well to the other very experienced people here, then run those ideas past your lawyer, preferably one experienced in labor law. Safeguard your studio (and your personal assets) from any possible future disagreements. Even good friends can split over amazingly small amounts of $$.

Contractor may not be the best status if you have your eye on a particularly promising engineer - full employee status is kinda like putting a ring on it. But if your business ebbs and flows, you may have to do contractor. Hell, if they're good enough and bring in enough of their own business, partner may be closer to the status you eventually want.
Old 26th January 2012
  #9
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gear is cool's Avatar
 

This is how I do it.

If the engineer brings in the session - I charge the room rate to the engineer, he bills on top of that to the client.

If I'm asking them to do a session I pay engineer hourly or daily and invoice client for the total rate.

Basically freelance

Good luck!
Old 27th January 2012
  #10
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MTStudios's Avatar
Quote:
Originally Posted by gear is cool View Post
This is how I do it.

If the engineer brings in the session - I charge the room rate to the engineer, he bills on top of that to the client.

If I'm asking them to do a session I pay engineer hourly or daily and invoice client for the total rate.

Basically freelance

Good luck!
This has been my experience as a freelancer. When I bring in the session I'm paying the studio's hire rate and charging the band whatever is appropriate - usually just +my hourly rate.

When I'm asked to come in and engineer a session the owner usually makes an offer, X many hours for Z many dollars. They're usually choosing from a pool of producers/engineers that have hired their studio in the past.
Old 27th January 2012
  #11
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Dominion28's Avatar
 

Just to reiterate what's already been said, I have other engineers booking my place out fairly regularly, they get a rate for the room(s) they use and then they bill their clients on top to get their own wage out of it. If I have someone covering a session for me, I pay them the split of the rate I'd normally set aside for myself.
Old 27th January 2012
  #12
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Capt Hair's Avatar
 

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Thanks for the helpful tips guys. I'll keep all this is mind and talk it over with my lawyer and see what would be the best fit for my situation.
Old 23rd February 2012
  #13
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Seamus TM's Avatar
 

One easy way to do it is to make sure that the client pays him-not you.
For example, if the studio is getting $15 per hour and he is getting $20 per hour: the client pays the studio the $15 per and then the client pays him the $20 per.

That way, not money is changing hands between you and the new guy.
Minor inconvenience for the client, but it makes your finances cleaner.
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