Professional Services employees make up a large demographic of our workforce. They are architects, engineers, contractors and consultants like me. We are a highly mobile workforce, often flying to work on projects or working at our client’s offices. This creates a need for us to be able to manage our work, projects, resources and time from anywhere. However, most solutions for project management, until today, have been legacy technology with very little mobility built in.
Today, Acumatica’s version 3.0 is available. Acumatica has significantly augmented their application with numerous new features that improve business intelligence, customer processing and most notably Project Accounting. Project Accounting and its associated capabilities such as time and expense entry, allocation processing, billing and project management are critical functions for someone in a professional services role. For the professional, mobility is critical.
The typical workday of a professional begins with reviewing the tasks he or she must complete. In Acumatica 3.0, this is accomplished by viewing the Activities that are assigned to the professional in CRM. Yes, I said, in CRM. Under Business Accounts we now have the capability of assigning professionals to a project and task, identifying the date and time due and its billable flag. These activities will drive the daily work of a professional and give them one-stop guidance on what must be completed today. Once the activity is marked “complete”, the billable time is automatically transferred to the professional’s timecard. This productivity advantage is sure to improve the lives of consultants and others who have previously been frustrated with having to duplicate activities into timecards for billing purposes.
Acumatica, the company, has spent a considerable amount of time and energy with this release. Upon my review of the project accounting system, it is apparent that true to their reputation, they have released a functionally complete system. The system includes projects, tasks, account groupings, resource management and billing. This is critical to the cash flow of a professional services firm. Routinely, billings are only processed once or twice a month. Therefore it is essential that professionals are able to quickly enter their time, accounting can quickly allocate and bill thus giving the project manager the best information on budget vs. actual reporting.
From Project Templates to full integration of GL, Inventory and all classes of billable and non-billable time, you will instantly recognize the value of the features added for project accounting. The advanced billing, enhanced revenue recognition and updated allocation engine will provide your business with automated billing as well as revenue recognition based on completion percentage or on completed tasks. Further visibility will give you the management of unbilled revenue and ultimate markup flexibility.
Natively, Acumatica is browser-independent. The Acumatica user interface will run equally well in Safari, Firefox, Chrome or Internet Explorer. The true power is the delivery of business intelligence to the tablet, iPad or any other device that a project manager or executive uses. The project executives can login and track the project profitability in real-time on the device they are most familiar. Combine the browser independence with the Employee Portal and now the professional has no reason to delay their timecard and expense entry. This means that the accounting department can bill quickly and improve the cash flow of the firm.
For marketing, advertising and promotional firms with a Mac platform, Acumatica is your best option for a project accounting system that will run fast, in your Safari browser and will not require any special software. This means that finally, your business can standardize on Macs, without exception, while still providing the entire project accounting functions needed.
In conclusion, Acumatica 3.0 is the real-deal in project accounting in the Cloud. My recommendation for companies considering a new project accounting system is to work with a trusted advisor who can help you determine what your requirements are and how well Acumatica will meet those requirements. For complete information and online demonstrations, visit www.acumatica.com
About The Author
About The Author
Robert Houdeshell is an ERP and CRM Expert with experience in Dynamics SL (Solomon) and Acumatica. He has provided product management leadership for Solomon Software, Made2Manage Systems, FRx Software and Njevity, Inc.
Robert’s implementation experience includes clients with complex implementations of ERP and CRM in the professional services industries. Having a unique knowledge of product development gives Robert the ability to understand product functionality as it relates to client specific needs.
Robert has taught numerous classes on ERP and CRM software while working as a Business Process Expert at AccuNet in Columbus, Ohio. He created an Ohio Accountancy Board Certified training program which provided all attendees with CPE credit for the class.
Presenting to large groups of over 1,500 attendees, Robert captivates audiences with his style, humor and informative approach.
Robert has led large development projects for the US Department of Interior as well as the rollout of numerous ERP product releases. He has provided technological insight into complex business problems for civic and political organizations in Colorado. Robert is currently Vice President of Cloud Services for Njevity, Inc., an Acumatica partner and implementer in Aurora, Colorado.