A Message about Abtrac and Covid-19

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We want to share with you how we are managing Covid-19 at Abtrac, and more importantly how we are responding to help you and your business.

All Abtrac staff are already self-isolating with their families in response to the nation-wide lockdown announced by the New Zealand Government on Monday March 23rd.

However, our entire team is minimally impacted, as is our ability to respond. Abtrac is already fully cloud based. So are our phones and other requisites. Whilst clearly it’s not usual, it is still business as usual for us at Abtrac as we all adjust to this new normal. The only change is that until further notice we cannot commit to any on-site visits. This will come as no surprise as you will all be working similarly yourselves.

But we can still communicate via Teamviewer or Zoom to achieve the same results with screen sharing, video and audio.

 

Through this pandemic and afterwards there is little doubt that businesses like yours will be in high demand, and at Abtrac we look forward to supporting you between now and then, and afterwards, come what may.

So please continue to contact us for support, sales queries and administrative matters to do with Abtrac.

 

Abtrac Online licensing is based on the number of current employees who can log into Abtrac or who are managed through it. Therefore if you need to change the number of your current employees, your licensing fees will change accordingly if you follow the prompts through each addition or subtraction. The changes will then be reflected in the following month’s invoice. Do contact us if you are not sure about this or need help.

Beyond that, if you wish to discuss any special licensing arrangements please also contact us and we will be pleased to discuss how we can accommodate your needs to keep you benefiting from Abtrac through these abnormal times.

 

We will shortly be starting a series of Master Classes focusing on various aspects of Abtrac. These will be available to all clients and potential clients on demand as they are each published. Look out for these innovations in your inbox, or sign up for them here if you aren’t sure whether we have your email address or not.

The purpose behind the Master Classes is to enable you to up-skill in areas of Abtrac where you feel it warranted, so you are best prepared to take advantage of the opportunities to your business when this pandemic is over.

 

Finally if you have any queries or concerns about how we are managing this disruption or how you may prepare Abtrac to launch into better times when it is over, please contact us.

We hope you stay safe and well, both in terms of your health and that of your loved ones, and in your business.

 

Sincerely

All of us at Abtrac

 

Bulk Edit Timesheets

This screen is useful when you need to update timesheet details in bulk, it eliminates the need to open and edit individual users timesheets.

This timesheets maintenance screen is most typically used in the following situations:

  • Updating Employee rates
  • Editing Stage/Task or Activities that have been incorrectly assigned
  • Changing the job code an employee is assigning time to
  • To check if/when timesheets have been billed and
  • To check which invoice the WIP has been assigned
  • To obtain data not available in performance reports for specific employees, in particular, to view timesheet data for employees who are no longer current.

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Creating and managing tasks

A Project Task is the bit of the job you are working on – and can budget against. (Sometimes they are called Stages or Phases)

Tasks are the most efficient and effective way to measure and manage your projects.

Generally your project tasks will match those items detailed on your original fee proposal letter.

If you’re not sure whether you should be using tasks or activities then this article is a good place to start.

This article refers to the process of creating and assigning tasks in AbtracOnLine follow this link for the Abtrac 5 version

There are quite a few key details to get your tasks set up and working they way you need them.
If you’re new to tasks and budgeting in Abtrac then it’s a good idea to read through this article from start to finish, but we’ve also summarised the key components below for quick reference:

About Tasks, Sub Tasks

Where to enter project budgets, as fee estimates, percentages or building the scope with detailed estimates by employee

Template Tasks

How to set up templates and clone frequently used tasks when creating new projects

Configuring the layout of the Tasks screen

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Making Tasks Mandatory in Timesheets

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Renaming Tasks to Stages – Phases – or something else

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Task Threshold Warnings

Scope Creep Notifications. How to enable a warning on timesheets when task budgets are exceeded

Entering Progress Assesments

For project management and billing estimates

Managing Variations

And reporting on variations by using the Actual vs Budget by Project, Task and Additional Values report

Click on the links above, or read on for details

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Managing Sub-consultants

You can use sub-consultants in Abtrac if you outsource work to third parties, and need to manage them over the duration of one or more projects.

They may submit invoices for you to authorise and pass on directly to your client for payment. Alternately they may submit invoices to you which you pay and then you invoice your client as if the sub-consultant is part of your team. At that stage you may also apply a margin to the sub-consultant invoice.

The essential feature is they are submitting their claims as a series of creditor invoices as they work through their contract requirements on projects for your clients. You need to know what they have already invoiced, what is this particular invoice for, and how does it fit within the contract agreements you have with them.

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Activating your Abtrac Subscription

When you Go Live with AbtracOnLine you’ll be sent an email confirming your site is live, and letting you know your login details.

Once you’ve logged into Abtrac you’ll need to go to the subscriptions page and enter your payment details to activate your site.

Part of this activation includes a digital confirmation that you have read and accepted our terms and conditions of use.

Once we receive your credit card details your monthly subscription will then be activated and will continue for as long as appropriate and timely payments are being made. Read on for instructions on how to activate your site.

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Creating a Purchase Order

A purchase order can only be created for an entity we call a Sub-Consultant.

Sub-consultants and contractors are managed and linked to projects in Abtrac through the tasks module.

Before creating purchase orders you’ll need to have created Sub consultants within Abtrac. For more information on Sub consultants and sub consultant invoices please refer to this knowledgebase article.

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Managing changes to your subscription

From September 1st 2017 we are changing the way we manage adjustments to your Abtrac subscription.

We’re moving to a more automated licensing system, leaving you in control of your licensed employees and your monthly licence fees.

AdjustSubscriptions_2NZ

When you make a change to your employees (or add-on modules) you’ll now be asked to confirm this change – and acknowledge any resultant change to your subscription fees. Read on for more details on what’s involved in the new system, and how it may affect your current AbtracOnLine subscription.

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Using Home page widgets

From Friday Aug 25th, 2017 there will be an update to Abtrac involving a noticeable change to the home page.

Your current home page will change from this

To this

We have introduced a small number of dashboard items as “widgets” which you can control for each user group in your office. This is in response to several requests for more dashboard-like features.

Read on for a discussion of each of the new Home page widgets, and details on how to control them from Administration > Employees > User groups and Privileges.

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Auto Generate Invoice – Fee total with narration

In AbtracOnLine you can create invoices automatically from your project task and timesheet data.

The Auto Generate by Fee total with narration option creates an invoice with a pre-filled narration paragraph and then inserts the total time fee onto a single line. You can choose to itemise disbursements, or exclude them from the automatically generated invoice.

Invoice by Fee total with narration invoices look like the examples below.

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Abtrac Notifications

From time to time we send important information regarding Abtrac to all users via internal notifications.

AbtracNotificationsWhen there is a new notification you will see a red alert next to your login name, which will remain until the message has been read (or the message has expired).

This is also where you will be alerted to any unsent mail or email issues when sending invoices via email from Abtrac.

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Transfer Projects

In Abtrac you can transfer a project from one client to another using the project transfer function.

This feature is most commonly used where:

  • a project has been assigned to an incorrect or duplicate client
  • or where a project managed via a referral/intermediary client can now be managed directly.

It is not possible to merge two projects/jobs belonging to the same client.

This article is for AbtracOnLine, follow this link for the Abtrac 5 version

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Printing invoices to letterhead

The invoices that are sent to your clients directly from AbtracOnLine can all be styled to suit your corporate image. A customised invoice layout design will include your company logo and styling on any invoice sent via email or printed from AbtracOnLine.

If on occasion you still wish to print and post your invoices using pre-printed stationery then you can choose to hide your company logo from your invoice header and footer.

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