PIE Abacus - balancing cost factors

The proposed charges for the PIE Abacus are based on a balance of four different factors.

The price for the software licences needs to be:

  • Affordable
  • Proportionate
  • Sufficient
  • Sustainable 

Affordable

The software needs to be as low cost as possible, partly in order to be broadly affordable (or it won’t sell at all) and also in order not to exclude any very cash-strapped services.

Proportionate

The cost should therefore be on a sliding scale, to reflect the size of the agency; and in fairness, as the value in the greater overview is greater for larger agencies.

 Sufficient

The price must cover the basic costs of the development and day-to-day administration. Unfortunately that is deemed to be ‘commercially confidential information’; but the point is well understood.

Sustainable

As well as covering the unavoidable basic costs, there ought to be at least some profit margin, even if the profit is then to be-reinvested in the broader project of developing PIEs.

In particular, to keep the PIE iAbacus up-to-date and relevant, there needs to be some funds available for on-going development; continuing to maintain and perhaps expand the PIElink as the principal source of information, inspiration and discussion.

Striking a balance

The question then is: how much to keep costs as low as possible, versus having some surplus to re-invest in keeping PIEs and the PIE Abacus dynamic?

The proposed costings – the overall costs, with the balance of standard licence costs with ‘user numbers’ costs – aim to reconcile these factors as best we can.

NB: Given perhaps two years of actual ‘marketing’ of the ‘product’, we may be better placed to get ‘customer feedback’ on the costs and value; and we may want to revise these initial costings in the light of that.

The simplest, most effective way to evaluate and improve your PIE from Daniel O'Brien on Vimeo.

All FAQs

What exactly is an Abacus?  HERE

What is the basic ambition behind the PIE Abacus? HERE

Why is it called the PIE Abacus? HERE

How do we get a licence?  HERE

What are typical costs for a licence?  HERE

What other terms of use are there?  HERE

How are PIE Abacus costs calculated? HERE

How will the income be re-invested? HERE

What is meant by a 'Lead agency"?  HERE

What is meant by a 'contributor'?  HERE

Why have individuals as 'contributors' at all?   HERE

What do all these other terms mean?   HERE

Can we use the PIE Abacus with PIEs 1? HERE