Free management webinar: 5 metrics your business can’t live without

October 3rd. 2pm, Eastern Time
Register now!

In the world of professional services, time is your product. There is no inventory, no production line, and no factory. It can be hard to know how well (or how poorly) you’re really doing.

  • Money might be coming in, but are your turning a profit?
  • Is Mr. Big Client really bringing in big profits?
  • Is Miss BigShot Employee really billing enough to be worth her salary?
  • Are you sticking to your budgets on project spending and billing?
  • How much can you expect to bill at the end of the month?
  • Does a big project really bring in more profit than a small one?

The only way to know the answer to these questions is metrics. Metrics are measurements that one can establish to assess their performance and progress. For example, the percentage of billable hours per month can be a good metric to establish the level of profitability of a resource.

Learn more about business performance metrics at our free webinar!

October 3rd. 2pm, Eastern Time
Register now!

 

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Abak is a business management solution for time sheets, project management and invoicing. Contact us for more information.

AbaKast online training: Workflow

Did you know that Abak can let you know when a project is about to run over budget? Or when an employee’s timesheet is ready to approval? Did you know Abak can tell your employees that they needs to fill out last week’s timesheet?

Abak’s workflow module makes your system proactive and helps you manage your projects, your business and your employees better.

Register for this new AbaKast training session and discover the possibilities of the module!

AbaKast 206: Workflow

September 27th, 2012, 1h30 – 3h30pm, Eastern Time

Only 99$

Register here!

The smart money series: 5 reasons why you should still have fixed-fee contracts

Work with care (LOC)A few weeks ago, we talked about the traps of fixed-fee contracts. In this post, let’s talk about why we should keep fixed fee contracts.

  1. Stable revenues. Fixe fee contracts are revenue the client has committed to providing you. Contrary to time and material contracts which can dry up with no notice, with fixed fee, the length of the project and the amount to bill is already spelled out.
  2. 2.       Predictable work. Fixe fee contracts – at least when they are scoped right – provide a detailed, precise description of the work to be done. This makes planning your workforce needs easier.
  3. Clients that trust you. From the client side, signing a fixed fee contract means they already know what the project will cost. They can allocate the budgets before the work starts. It creates a trusting relationship with the client, who wants nothing less than surprise fees in the project.
  4. Relationship builder. Doing a fixed fee project with a client creates a trusting relationship at first, and eventually can turn into bigger contracts or even a retainer-based contract. The fixed fee contract is a trial, a way for the client to get to know you, and vice versa.
  5. Practices good estimation skills. Because fixed fee is so final, doing those contracts helps getting better at estimating costs and profit margins.

What about you? What’s your take on fixed fee contracts?

Workflow management, a must

Remains of a FestivalIn order to improve your business efficiency and to standardize your processes you have purchased a time and billing system which enables you to invoice and to manage your projects through various financial reports.  So now you have a solution that centralizes the different stages of your project management.

However, the system is dependent on your goodwill. It is your responsibility to manage your employees’ timesheets, to follow the evolution of your costs, project by project, to manage status changes in your projects, to manage completion dates of projects … and the list goes on.

Abak is a proactive software that manages these important elements for you and keeps you informed through alerts. Abak’s workflow module enables you to configure alerts in various situations.

How does it work?

The principle is simple; various rules relating to specific situations are set in Abak. Those rules are customizable (frequency, description, trigger parameters). The administrator creates templates for custom alerts. Alerts can be applied to one or more projects, and a number of customers or employees. The alarm activation results in sending an email to interested parties.

Some types of alerts:

  • When you reach a certain percentage of the budget,
  • When the project status is changed,
  • When you approach the planned completion date of a project,
  • When a timesheet is incomplete, etc.

 

Example of a customized alert:

Hello! A phase of a project is over budget:

Project WLAFL-01F-CONSULAR – Training and Documentation

Phase 1.1 – Meeting client. Actual amount of hour in phase: 40h – Budget Phase: 30 pm.

Attention is required.

Good day! Abak, your friendly business management system.

Do not hesitate to contact us for more information on Abak’s workflow module.