Client wants “quick and dirty version” of your services

I need advice on how to handle clients who ask for a “quick and dirty” version of the work I perform for them.

A boutique consulting firm asked me to perform machine learning on a dataset to identify key predictors of employee turnover. However, they just want a ranking of the predictors in an email to plug into a PowerPoint for their clients. They don’t seem to care about the findings or the process involved, and I’m unsure how to respond.

Obviously, machine learning is complicated and not something that can be reduced to “just email me a ranking of predictors”. The client also doesn’t know the first thing about machine learning or predictive modeling.

While I can understand the desire for efficient use of my expensive hourly rate, it seems like what they’re asking is akin to a photographer providing all the raw files to save them some money.

Do you see this type of request as reasonable or does it undermine the value of your work?

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