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© Allianz deutscher Designer (AGD) e.V.

The question of fees is always topical for creative professionals, at the beginning of their careers as well as when calculating offers for new clients. For many years, the Design Collective Agreement on Fees has been a valuable guideline. Negotiated for the first time in 1977 between the AGD Alliance of German Designers and the SDSt Selbstständige Designstudios e.V., the collective bargaining partners have now presented a new version of this agreement.

What are the central innovations? First and foremost, the contract now also covers strategic, conceptual and operative design activities better, such as design management and design consulting. For such activities, it provides for an increased minimum hourly rate of 120 euros – in contrast to at least 105 euros for conceptual and operative services. In addition, the matrix for calculating and remunerating rights of use was adjusted to do justice to the growing share of digital design work. Uncertainties about the level of creation of services and the consequent granting of rights of use are to be eliminated by a corresponding, newly formulated clause in the contract.

The managing director of the AGD, Victoria Ringleb, is in any case satisfied with what has been achieved: “With the current VTV Design, we have succeeded in expanding the scope of the collective agreement as well as the design zone. Design consultancy and design management services are now explicitly included in the agreement as a supplement to the creation of design works. This is an enormous step forward and considerably improves the position of independent designers.

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