Archive for the ‘Cash Flow’ Category
Building information modeling (BIM) has been around for about 40 years now. Yes! You read that right – 40 years. Though in the 1970s when the concept was developed, BIM (as we know it today) wasn’t really implemented until the late 1980s. So I guess we can say, it has been a little slow taking hold. However, as time has zipped on and technology has improved, BIM implementation has rapidly increased.
Building information modeling started as a production of 3D design models to help catch architectural system variances and clashes. Since then, it has become an effective tool in project management and ever more prominent in job cost estimating.
Traditionally, estimators begin their process by doing manual take-offs or digitizing architectural construction drawings. Or possibly, they may be importing CAD plans into an estimating software package. The thing about these processes is that they all have higher risk of error by way of unknowingly incurring an omission or duplication. This has the potential to logarithmically propagate cost errors throughout the estimating process.
Using a BIM solution can significantly reduce (though not completely deny) human error. As the project experiences changes, as they always do, the model can be updated. If properly configured, the BIM should update the takeoffs, schedule, and costing data for the project as the changes occur.
After the BIM is established, pricing information is the next critical set of data which needs to be considered. Estimators can extract the quantities provided by the building information modeling solution and output the information via linking it to a product such as Sage 300 CRE. From here, an estimator may generate estimates based on historical data.
Some of the most critical tasks in estimating are having accurate and current takeoff information, and applying that to accurate pricing and scheduling data. BIM solutions can help to make the quantification tasks easier and more accurate. The integration of this data into an estimating solution can mean that estimators are more accurate and can spend their time and knowledge doing higher value activities.
Yes, this is our last plug for the annual Technology Day event this week - April 4th, and we are very excited to see everyone! Have you registered yet? If not…
…so you can join us at the beautiful Double Tree Resort in Scottsdale Arizona. Bring your smartphone, tablets and other devices and plug-in to the future of construction technology.
Keynote speaker Joseph Granneman, CIO of Rockford Orthopedic, will kick things off with a presentation focused on information security and compliance.
Representing Sage, our co-hosts, Todd Juhnke, Regional Sales Manager-Construction and Real-Estate Division, and Diane Haines, Sr. Director, Product Management, Construction & Real Estate will be presenting the powerful cloud based construction technology solution – Sage Construction Anywhere.
There will then be afternoon sessions with multiple tracks for learning about specific topics. Head over to the registration page to learn more about all of the Tech Day Tracks.
And make sure you bring your old cell phones too! Ledgerwood Associates will be collecting them for Cell Phones For Soldiers, a non-profit dedicated to helping our troops stay in contact with their families here at home.
Don’t miss out on all of the fun and information this year. We look forward to seeing and talking to you all!
Founded in 1984, Timberline Landscaping installs landscape and irrigation systems, and has expanded into maintenance and snow removal. Jacob Busch, Accountant, implemented MyAssistant in 2008. He reports: “MyAssistant has delivered a lot more information than we were used to having. We knew that the information we needed was in the system and now with MyAssistant we get what we need automatically. We don’t have to worry about figuring out how to get it or just missing it.”
“We’re using MyAssistant to track our billing. We used to have a major problem with work being performed in the field but never billing for that work. We created a custom report that goes out every week showing cost in excess of billings. The report looks at the job’s last cost update and if it’s been more than one week it will show up on the report, which tells us that this job has either stopped work or needs to be billed. We just started doing that this summer [of 2009] and it’s helping keep control of what work we’re doing and making sure it’s getting billed.”
“We also use MyAssistant with Accounts Receivable. We use a default Task [a pre-built rule that ships with MyAssistant] for past due accounts, which I modified slightly to notify me immediately when invoices hit 30, 45, or 60 days past due. [MyAssistant] sends out an email with that information, including the customer’s phone number and contact, so we can get a call out to them.”
“Obviously cash flow is very important. Prior to MyAssistant, our aging report was typically only looked at once a month, so if an invoice was 29 days past due it would not show up on that month’s report. Now we know immediately as soon as someone is 30 days out; we can give them a call to make sure the invoice is in their system and they’re aware we haven’t received payment.”
“We’ve activated some of the MyAssistant project management Tasks, so now we can stay on top of documents. Our estimators and project managers know which RFI’s and submittals are pending and need resolution. We’re also notified if a job hasn’t had some kind of a transaction in the last month. That helps us close jobs so transactions can’t go against the wrong job.”
“The most important thing MyAssistant brings to me is making sure our jobs are getting billed. We can go out and do work, pay for all the material used on site plus the labor, but if we never bill for it—that’s hitting the bottom line. And even if we were to bill for it, [before MyAssistant] we were sometimes talking 30 to 60 days after the work’s been completed. That put a major strain on cash flow. With the help of MyAssistant our cash flow has increased.”
“What I like about MyAssistant is the amount of information I can get in a short period of time.
It used to take me hours to collect all that information from different reports. But with MyAssistant I can setup Tasks and I don’t have to worry about it—when I come in in the morning it’s done all the work for me and I just scroll through the list to see the information I need. It really is almost like having another person helping you. It’s been a major help.”