Abtrac Job/Project Templates

Abtrac Job/Project Templates allow you to create templates that contain information from Abtrac such as client, job/project and task details that can be intertwined with other information, such as your proposals or mail merge type documents.

How it works is you create the different report types that you use i.e. proposal, letter of engagement etc., and within those reports, you add different sections with the required information.

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Assigning time from multiple jobs to one invoice

It is possible to assign multiple jobs/project to an invoice where a client has multiple jobs/project belonging to them.

You use this feature to write off time or to create a single invoice with multiple jobs.

  • Create a new invoice or load an invoice for a client that has multiple jobs/project
  • One job will be selected to start with. This will be the ‘master job’ for the invoice
  • You can select a subsequent job to assign to the invoice, using the combo box (shown below)
  • With that new job selected create a new invoice line and assign any time to the new invoice line
    • The line could be totally blank i.e. no narration and no amount assigned
    • Or the line can have amounts and narrations as per a standard invoice

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Job/Project Forecast

This feature enables you to forecast fees and resources (hours) for a period estimated in the Tasks/Stages/Phases screen. When you provide the estimated Start date and End date of a Task, Job Forecast will disperse the estimated fees and hours within the given period on a monthly basis. You can then edit them and forecast the resources in a way that suits your cash flow.  You can even forecast the Subtask resources for each Task.

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Splitting Invoices

Sometimes a job/project needs to be split and invoiced to multiple parties with the invoices containing the same invoice line details.

Within Abtrac you’ll create the first invoice with the total amount and then split that invoice and amount between multiple parties.

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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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How to Archive data (make items non-current)

How does making items non-current help you

Simple, fewer pieces of information to load means you will have a faster system.

Screens such as the searches, timesheet entries, invoices, and some reports all load with the current data that is available in the system, so it’s pretty straightforward to think that making items non-current will give you a quicker response for all these pages.

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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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Job/Project Documents

The Abtrac document manager is where Abtrac can keep a reference to the documents associated with any Job/Project and where these documents are stored on your local machine/server.

N.B. This feature works with files on a Windows machine where the machine knows the type of files it’s trying to open. i.e it cannot open files that the machine doesn’t have the specific software for.

The installation of this will allow you to easily manage and access these documents from within Abtrac and the Job/Project itself.

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Using Work Items to Track Deliverables and Quality Assurance Standards

Work Items are a list of things to do on a job. They are lower than tasks, (aka stages or phases). They are small steps of work that can be ‘ticked off’ as they are completed. If you already have a QA Check List of some sort for each project, then Abtrac Work Items are quite possibly the exact same concept. Examples of a work item might be a day-long site visit, or a 4 hour piece of work in the office to write a report. Each of these and more may be all under a task (aka stage or phase) of “Feasibility Planning”.

Most offices start the week and look ahead several weeks sketching out work to be done and spreading it around the office for people to do. Using Abtrac work items the benefit is everyone knows what is being done and how long it is expected to take.

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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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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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Employee Charge Rates: Specific Rates

Employee Charge Rates in Abtrac can be as simple or as flexible as required.

It’s possible to enter unique charge rates for specific clients, jobs, projects, tasks, stages or activities. These unique rates will override the default charge rate for the specified employees (or in the case of activities the rates will apply for all employees)

Here’s how to ensure you have the right charge rates in the right location for your billing requirements.

There’s a bit of a hierarchy as to which rate is applied when, read on for details.

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