An independent IT consultant’s code of ethics

Posted on September 8, 2009


  1. The time for which you are paying me is yours and only yours. I will eliminate other distractions and focus on the set of problems you have entrusted to me.
  2. I will always tell you the truth even when it hurts. It’s better for you to find out sooner than later.
  3. I will try to accurately estimate time requirements when they are requested, but I will also qualify those estimates according to the level of additional research required and with knowledge of my own availability and optimism.
  4. I will keep you regularly updated on my progress. I will break down the elements of my accomplishments to whatever level of detail you require.
  5. I will only perform work for which you have given your approval. However, I will actively look beyond the narrow limits of my project for opportunities and risks that you may have overlooked and bring those to your attention when I find them.
  6. When I don’t know something, I won’t try to hide behind a facade of expertise. Instead, I’ll ask pertinent questions and (with your approval) conduct additional research.
  7. I will do my best to share my knowledge, to document my work, and to make it as understandable as possible. I will never bake in obfuscations to insure job security.
  8. If someone else is better qualified to handle an assignment, I’ll tell you. It’s more important for me to get the job done right than to hold onto a certain number of billable hours for myself. (I expect that attitude to pay its own dividends in the long run.)
  9. My recommendations will be based on what I perceive to be best suited to your needs in the present and future. I will not let myself be unduly swayed by considerations of what technology is currently in fashion or is more interesting to me personally.
  10. In short, I will treat you as I would like to be treated if I were your client.


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