We need to load test an application built with Web Services 2.0 and our current tool (.Net Exployer) doesn't support it yet. I'm supposing this is new technology and I haven't found a tool that works with it without integrating the tool with Visual Studio.
1. Does anyone know of a tool that load tester could use to load test this?
2. Using Visual Studio with Silk Performer integration, does anyone know a developer that could write a framework using this configuration to perform the load tests. I need to get a handle of what the costs would be.
Have you considered the .Net virtual user from Mercury for LoadRunner? This virtual user type integrates with Visual Studio.
Anytime you look at a template solution with a Visual Studio integration you are looking at the top 5-10% of the skilled consultant population for this type of work. These same consultants usually not only compete with the vendor for this work, but I have also known the vendor to win the work and then bring in the indepedent hired gun to deliver the work.
The top end on a day/hourly rate is a known quantity. You can turn to the vendor (Segue and Mercury) and they can quote you their standard rack rate. In most cases for something like this it's going to run $300++ an hour at their standard non-discounted rate, plus travel related expenses. What you can get below that pretty much comes down to your negotiating skills and your relationship with a given vendor. Your drawback on the negotiating side? Most of the people you will be negotiating with for this service known there is only a small number of places that you can turn and odds are they will also know who those organizations are and what they will charge for work like this.
Your best bet? Hold out a carrot (a legitimate one) of a longer term gig with a less exotic skillset requirement. If you can bundle the two types of engagements together on a common purchase order, then your blended rate may be more manageable over the term of both engagements.