Where information means insight



Time Tracking Software

by Kim Koster Professional Services

Jul 18, 2019

Time tracking software is a critical first step to adopt in improving the performance of project-based services organizations, as it enables managers to understand: What is everyone working on? How much does each initiative, or project, cost? What work is billable (and non-billable)? How much margin/benefit is being produced for every hour charged? How much time are we actually spending on the key business priorities versus what we anticipated? What portion of labor cost is eligible for R&D tax credits? Beyond these questions, you will also want to consider how time tracking software can support these common requirements: Making it easy for staff to record time daily through a secure, user-friendly application accessible via a web browser, anywhere and anytime. Ensuring that people only charge to projects they are authorized to work on, for appropriate time periods, and using the correct labor categories for the work being performed. Tracking work by location for audit, or other, purposes. Recording ‘estimate to complete’ data from end users as input to project management and forecasting. Ensuring compliance with DCAA TimeKeeping Requirements, if you are government contractor. Supporting enforcement of other business rules, such as overtime rules, capturing comments on billable work performed, or change reasons. Offering timely approvals without undue overhead, taking into account your organization structure which may include project manager approvals, matrix management, alternate approvers, or customer involvement in the timesheet approval cycle. Facilitating online leave requesting and management capabilities for employees and line managers, ensuring visibility of staff ‘coverage’ in upcoming weeks and months. Providing detailed, itemized supporting information for customer invoices. Enforcing PTO accruals and leave balances Having consultants and subcontractors charge their labor hours in your time tracking system, delivering earlier knowledge on non-employee project costs, and optionally to avoid the need to receive and process a vendor invoice for those hours Delivering robust standard reporting, and simple ad-hoc report writing tools, for the project management team so that they can understand status in real-time, and address issues related to delays or overruns before they impact performance. Integrating with financial and contract management systems to leverage existing investments and current ways of working To understand how Unanet supports these time tracking software requirements and many more, visit the Unanet timesheet software overview.


The Benefits of Digital Transformation for Government Contractors

by Kim Koster GovCon

Jul 02, 2019

Digital transformation appears to some as a just a buzzword. However, it’s fast becoming an essential business priority for the C-suite in all sizes of government contractors in the drive for sustainable competitive advantage. What is the significance of digital transformation for government contractors, and what outcomes are being reported? C-suite executives are finding enormous value in automating time-consuming and inefficient tasks by integrating project management, accounting, and finance. This eliminates time wasted in reconciling transactions between systems and thereby freeing up time and resources to focus on strategic priorities. This is the foundation for digital transformation. Small and mid-sized GovCons have reported the following startling improvements: We have been able to grow topline revenue by almost 40% without having to add $1 of G&A support” “We reduced our invoicing process from 20 to 7 days, we can complete all month close procedures in 5 –7 days and improved our DSOs from 60 to 50. Additionally, we grew top line revenue by 25% in one year with no additional accounting staff. “Since implementing Unanet, invoicing takes between five to ten days, a reduction of more than 20 days from before. While major clients are demanding credit terms to 60 days, DSOs are reduced in 2014 from 160 to 70 days.” “We reduced invoice processing time by 65%. All invoices are now delivered with 48 hours of period end.” “We eliminated all off-system accounting, shortening the time to ‘close the books’ by 60%” “Our profit margin improved by 4% since Unanet went live.” “We increased the revenue dollars processed per $1 of accounting department salary by more than 300%” Unanet Customers Share Their Experience with Digital Transformation for Government Contractors At the 2019 Unanet Champions Conference in San Diego, four GovCon Financial Executives shared their perspectives on how their businesses have been transformed with Unanet, driven by both quantitative and qualitative improvements: Mark Rothman, CFO, NETE Shilpa Amato, Executive VP, Nalas Engineering Services Thomas Batty, Corporate Staff Operations, Frontier Technology Lisa Martin, Contracts/Accounting, Trevet “What was life like before Unanet?” Mark: Information was not timely, it was hard to get the data out, and we needed technical experts to write custom reports. Shilpa: We had disparate systems; our accounting system couldn’t provide Project Managers with information on project cost and project health. Billing was a nightmare. We couldn’t do Cost Plus billing directly from the system and had to resort to complex workarounds in Excel. Thomas: Before Unanet, data was always behind the times. We needed multiple spreadsheets to track everything. To make it worse, we received very poor response/support from our legacy vendor (Deltek) who was always focused on upselling. It was a bad time and lasted 10 years! Lisa: We were using a legacy product (Deltek GCS) which was being sunset and we were not happy with the idea of Deltek and Costpoint as a future solution due to the poor service we experienced, and the complexity of Costpoint. With Deltek GCS we leaned heavily on Excel to fill the gaps in the reporting we needed. We also relied on custom reporting which required Impromptu expertise. The relevant project information in the financial system was not accessible to Project Managers. Unanet’s one system solved all our problems. And in Deltek GCS the ability to only have two periods open was a major limitation. “What was the most significant benefit of moving to Unanet?” Lisa: Simply a more up-to-date integrated system where we did not need to import and export data; a huge improvement was the accessibility of data to Project Managers and executives. Thomas: The real-time availability daily of labor information was a game-changer. Project Managers know their status and backlog now rather than in 45 days. With all the information in one place wasting time reconciling data is eliminated. Shilpa: I can get any answer to any question at any time in minutes. Accounting is happy, Project Managers are happy, leadership is happy. I love depth of standard reports. Billing is shortened from a week to a day. Mark: The real-time visibility for Project Managers without resorting to home-grown spreadsheets (which very likely had errors) is now critical to how we manage our business. We slice and dice data in different ways and in whatever periods are required; daily, weekly, semimonthly, quarterly etc. Immediate visibility of timesheet status helps with accuracy and efficiency too.   Learn How Unanet Can Provide Digital Transformation for Government Contractors Unanet is now the clear market leader for small and medium-sized GovCons. Not just an alternative to Deltek, but as a clearly superior choice for organizations who want to transform their business. To schedule your personal consultation, contact us.


5 Steps to Resource Management Maturity

by Kim Koster GovCon, Resource Planning

Sep 09, 2019

Where do you stand with your resource management maturity? About 55% of respondents in our 2019 GAUGE Report said they have reached resource management maturity for their organization. Does your business fit into this category?   Resource Management Maturity People really are the most important asset a company has, yet so many companies struggle to truly manage this resource. How much more profitable would you be if you increased utilization of your resources? How much more on-time would your projects be if you had the right people at the right time for the right tasks? In this blog, we’ll walk you through 5 steps to resource management maturity so you can see not only at what level your organization currently sits, but where you’d like to go in the future.   Resource Management Maturity Level One – Ad-Hoc or Initial At this level, achieving resourcing goals depends on individual effort and heroics. Work gets done but it is not sustainable for the long term, and key staff may be lost to burnout. How to move from Level One to Level Two: Agree as an organization that you are ready to mature your resource management practice! Create and document policies and procedures Policies should establish best practices for your organization Assure they will help the teams be successful Make sure there is a repository for easy access Feedback loop to make sure policies are being followed Create a self-audit plan Concentrate on the basics – resource names, availability, skills, and utilization Define Key Performance Indices (KPIs) for your project Provide role-based training on policies and procedures Evaluate tools and evaluate future needs   Resource Management Maturity Level Two – Project by Project or Basic In level two, resource management processes are in place and the necessary process discipline exists to repeat earlier successes on projects with similar applications. How to move from Level Two to Level Three: Measure adherence of enterprise policies and procedures Information is shared across projects with modern tools Enterprise wide labor categories and skills inventory/classifications Defined skill levels used for resource selection People, processes & tools provide an enterprise wide resource forecast Resources are budgeted and forecasted at the task level Supply and future supply of resources is visible Resource demand is visible to all project stakeholders Projects are being planned with resource constraints in mind Decide on a common set of enterprise wide and project level KPIs Automation of the process with the right tool   Resource Management Maturity Level Three – Organization-Wide Processes are documented and standardized at level three, with approved tailored approaches being adopted as needed. How to move from Level Three to Level Four: Use data (historical and current) to drive hiring and placement decisions Common tool for enterprise level resource and skills budgeting and forecasting that all stakeholders have access to Formal resource requesting process Standard resource management metrics/KPIs with visibility of performance goals/thresholds Self-reporting on utilization Align resource forecasts and plans to corporate goals and objectives Realtime resourcing information – reports and dashboards Utilize KPIs to directly influence achievement of business goals and to make great business decisions Pipeline is also resourced for full look at the total needs of the business Tools now support the process with minimal manual touches Continue role-based training for all stakeholders Tools training is a recurring activity   Resource Management Maturity Level Four – Quantitative/Data Driven At level four, detailed measures on process of resourcing practices are quantitatively measured, understood and managed. How to move from Level Four to Level Five: Invest in your people with training and a career path Establish a continuous feedback loop from all stakeholders Incentivize employees to be creative and listen to the suggestions Continue to evolve your processes looking for areas to improve Collect and utilize lessons learned and drive them into your process You will feel the organization firing on all cylinders   Resource Management Maturity Level Five – Continuous Improvement At the final level of the resource management maturity level, continuous process improvement is enabled by quantitative feedback from the process and from piloting innovative ideas and technologies. “Sounds great, but do we have to be a Level Five?” As an organization, it is important to decide what level is needed to achieve your business objectives. You might not need to walk through all 5 steps to resource management maturity. Some may say that level 3.5 is adequate and it will meet their needs. Others might need a complete managed process that is striving for optimization, so a 4.3. Making that decision is key to establishing a roadmap and overall timeline.   Benefits of Adopting a Resource Management Maturity Model: Improved visibility and control into enterprise resource needs and utilization Improved predictability and understanding of overall performance Common organizational standards ensuring consistent reporting, reduction of rework, and reduced dependence on heroes. Optimization of the project management staff, allowing them to focus on their customer, not on turning the crank. More efficient communication within project teams and to senior leadership. Delivery of real-time insight on project financials and enable resolution of identified risks. More on-time and on-budget projects, which equals a delighted customer.   Mature Your Resource Management Process with Unanet Understanding that resource management is a true discipline that should be practiced and matured can be the difference between successful or failed projects. We all know what happens with failed projects and none of us want that. A resource management system can greatly aid your mission to improve your resource management maturity. An integrated comparison of actuals with budgets, plans, plans and variances gives project managers unparalleled insight into their projects. Dive deeper into how to improve your resource management maturity by watching our on-demand webinar.


DCAA Compliant Software

by Kim Koster ERP Software Best Practices, GovCon, Government Compliance

Jun 13, 2019

Just to be clear, there is no such thing as DCAA Compliant Software! It is your organization and procedures that will be assessed for compliance. That said, software such as Unanet, that is purpose-built for government contractors can significantly help you with achieving compliance. DCAA compliance requires that your accounting and related business processes which collectively including policies, manual procedures and tools be compliant. Software alone is not audited for DCAA compliance or certified, nor approved as DCAA compliant. However, Unanet software has been reviewed by DCAA auditors at more than one thousand customer sites and, along with the customer policies and procedures, approved as supporting DCAA requirements. Unanet software makes implementation of the DCAA regulations easy and efficient. Here is a small sampling of the DCAA regulations that a compliant accounting system must include and that are directly supported by Unanet accounting software: Proper segregation of direct and indirect costs Identification and accumulation of direct costs by contract Method for allocation of indirect costs A Timekeeping System that enforces specific requirements related to charging hours Labor distribution – how costs are allocated to charged time Segregation of unallowable costs Accumulation of costs under General Ledger Control To learn more, download A GovCon’s Essential Guide to DCAA Compliance.  


​​​​​​​Unanet Receives Growth Investment from JMI Equity

by Kim Koster Press Releases, Unanet News

Jun 11, 2019

​​​​​​​Unanet Receives Growth Investment from JMI Equity Funding will be used to accelerate growth, further enhance Unanet’s product, and expand the organization Dulles, VA – June 11, 2019 – Unanet, the leading project-based Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) provider, announced today that it has received a significant growth equity investment from JMI Equity (“JMI”), a growth equity firm focused on investing in leading software companies. The funding will allow Unanet to consolidate its leadership position in project management and ERP software. Through the optimization and enhancement of the Unanet one database solution, Unanet will better serve clients across all industries, including government contractors, architecture and engineering firms, and consulting organizations. “JMI will be an exceptional partner for Unanet’s next phase of growth,” said Fran Craig, Founder and CEO of Unanet. “Its shared customer-centric culture, network, and expertise in scaling market-leading SaaS companies will provide greater opportunities to Unanet’s employees, customers, and partners. All will benefit from an even stronger product, service offering, and overall customer experience.” Unanet’s natively developed Cloud platform offers project management and enterprise resource planning capabilities in an integrated application. By integrating the key business functions in one system, customers report 50% lower G&A headcount relative to competitive systems, higher project-level profitability, real-time visibility to support decision making, and a significant reduction in administrative process. “Unanet has established itself as the leading project-based ERP provider on the strength of its streamlined approach to optimizing the workplace,” said David Greenberg, General Partner at JMI Equity. “We are pleased to make this investment and apply our expertise and resources to help the company continue to grow.” “Fran and her leadership team have built a company that is well positioned for sustained growth,” added Krishna Potarazu, Partner at JMI Equity. “We look forward to partnering with the Unanet team to continue enhancing the product offering, expanding into new industries, and pursuing operational initiatives that will propel Unanet forward.” About Unanet Over 1,200 professional services organizations trust Unanet’s ERP platform to scale their businesses while drastically reducing G&A in a “Single Source of Truth”. Unanet optimizes skills management, resource scheduling, budgeting & planning, time & expense reporting, billing & revenue recognition, real-time project management analytics and dashboards, and GL, AP, AR, cost pool calculations, and indirect allocations. Our customers report 50% lower G&A headcount than those running competitive systems and can reduce effort on administrative processes by 90%. Unanet was founded in 1998 and is based in Dulles, Virginia. For more information visit www.Unanet.com. About JMI Equity JMI Equity is a growth equity firm focused on investing in leading software companies. Founded in 1992, JMI has invested in over 145 businesses in its target markets, successfully completed over 95 exits and raised more than $4 billion of committed capital. JMI partners with exceptional management teams to help build their companies into industry leaders. For more information visit www.jmi.com. Media Contacts: For Unanet Jess Primanzon – Unanet 703-429-1821 jprimanzon@exportunanet.wpengine.com For JMI Equity Chuck Dohrenwend / William Braun – Abernathy MacGregor 212-371-5999 cod@abmac.com / whb@abmac.com


What to Look for in a Billing and Invoicing Tool

by Kim Koster Budgeting & Forecasting, GovCon

Jun 06, 2019

As a professional services company, it is critical to be able to automate and shorten the bid-to-bill lifecycle. Professional services organizations need revenue recognition and billing to be completely in lock step. The concept of billing and invoicing does not need much explanation as we deal with bills continually in our daily lives. Billings/Invoices typically are a form that contain information like name, address, payment terms, a unique id, elements of cost, direct costs, and indirect costs applied. Choosing a billing and invoicing software can help you maintain accuracy and efficiency. But how do you find billing and invoicing software that will give your company all the features it needs for success? When looking for a tool, it is important to have… A time application that is a part of the project based ERP system so that billing can be done quickly Traceability of all transactions Ability to create multiple, standard invoice formats to be used across projects, showing summary or detailed level information Hide or show Cost Element detail on Cost Plus Invoices Include Fixed Price, Time & Materials, Pre-Bill Labor, and Additional Items on the same invoice Defer items from the current invoice for future invoicing Add one-time items such as additional fees or discounts   The Benefits of Billing and Invoicing Software Once your organization finds the right system, you will enjoy the following benefits: Billable expense markup ensures company or project-specific markups can be applied. Manage different contract types including Time & Materials, Fixed Price, Pre-Bill Labor and Cost Plus. Estimate and record what is billable, billed and earned. Enable review of draft invoices by project management roles. Manage bid-to-bill lifecycle in Unanet, or feed data to other systems Feed other systems with accounts receivable, or journal transactions at summary or detail level. Flexible invoice formats per project to reflect client needs and level of detail.   Streamline Your Billing and Invoicing Process with Unanet When searching for the perfect billing and invoicing software for your organization, Unanet is the clear choice. Our software can automate the “bid-to-bill” lifecycle, allowing your organization to forecast and track revenue across different contract types, and provide authorized managers with real-time insight. Our software promotes faster invoicing which in turn results in a faster closing of the books and reduced DSOs. By providing a single integrated system to manage the entire services bid-to-bill cycle, Unanet gives businesses the opportunity to replace their disparate standalone systems, resulting in greater productivity, fewer errors, lower costs, and less stress for your team.