Over the past week I accidentally deleted some phases. The Phases have been restored. You may not see anything amiss. I have examined all the Project-Phase records and noticed that a small number were still missing a Phase.
After the restoration I had four Phases missing from my inactive Projects in my personal account. Here is how to fix them if you discover a problem.
To see if you are missing Phases go to the Projects page and click the ‘x’ on the ‘Active’ filter to display all your Project-Phases in the Project-Phase Budget table.
Scroll down through the Project-Phase column looking for Project-Phases that contain only the Project name and a dash, but no Phase name.
If you find a missing Phase, determine what it is, and go to the Phase table on the Admin page to recreate it.
Finally return to the Project-Phase Budget table and find the line with the missing Project-Phase. Click the edit link on that line, and select the missing Phase from the drop-down list of Phases. Click submit and your Project-Phase will be restored.
I am sorry for the inconvenience.
You can easily review the status of PTO for anyone as explained in this HELP article.
The individual can also determine their own status from their Timesheet page. The process starts by scrolling down on the Timesheet page to the 'Time Records By Date' table. Next type or copy/paste into the 'Search' box the name that your organization uses for the PTO Project-Phase, and click 'Search'.
Make sure the Filter is set for 'This Year'. At the bottom of the table is the total of PTO hours taken so far this year.
The final step is to click the Billable Ratio button at the top of the page. At the bottom of this view the PTO Allowance for the individual is shown. Simple math shows how much PTO remains.
You can now copy expenses rather than making a totally new entry.
In the main table of transactions on the Bookkeeping page, you will notice a column labeled ‘Copy’. For Expense Type transactions only, clicking the ‘double page’ icon will open the details of that expense transaction. To copy the record, click ‘submit’. A new transaction is added with today’s date.
For recurring expenses this ‘copy routine’ saves clicks and ensures consistency. Reimbursable Expenses, Mileage and Income Types of transactions are too-connected to other things for this to work successfully, so you are shown a message if you try one of these..
When adding transactions into MyCorbu Books, you have the opportunity to reduce your record keeping.
I recommend entering bills as soon as they are received. This eliminates the need to keep a separate file of bills that are payable. The bill itself can be scanned and attached to the bill entry by uploading it while making the entry. See https://www.mycorbu.com/help/transactions for a deeper look.
You can easily record the due date during the same entry. Then once or twice a month, open the Payables report to see what bills you have, total amount due, and which need paying. Note the 'Mark Paid' column on the right, just click 'mark' when paid.
Paying bills can really be simple if you use your checking account's 'bill paying' feature. Each bill just takes a date, an amount, and a click to send. No checks. No addressing envelops. No stamps.
When logging in invoices, you can attach a copy in the same way so that you can easily see exactly what was sent.
Some processes that you perform in MyCorbu require changing what you are viewing. I have found that using Dual Tabs can facilitate those processes.
Dual tabs simply means having two browser tabs, or windows, open into your MyCorbu account at the same time. Some browsers let you duplicate a tab, but you can always open another tab and log in a second time.
Here are two examples, but you can find many more.
The minimum number of Categories is more appropriate for small firms. No one has time to manage or analyze more.
Add more detail later if it would really help.
The whole purpose is, first, to tell you something useful, and, second, to help prepare taxes. The ultimate minimum list of Categories is just the Schedule C categories that apply to you.
Your time is better spent analyzing Billable Ratios.
If you are just beginning to use Custom Billing Rates and have existing time entries, there is no way to automatically add the Custom Billing Rates to those existing records.
One option is to just start using Custom Billing Rates for new records and ignore the existing records.
If you need/want certain projects to have all records in MyCorbu, then set Custom Billing Rates the usual way for the Project (see Ref Guide BR-16), but 'reset/freeze' the new Rates as described for changing Custom Billing Rates.
Eventually Rates change. The Labor Rate and the Charge Rate increase due to raises. When they do, you can lock the past entries of everyone by 'freezing' them while making the change.
Check out the TOOLS Reference Guide BT-33, which is found in the Reference Guide on either the Bookkeeping Page or the Tools Page.
If you are using the Bookkeeping features, you know about Categories. Now you can set a monthly budget for each Category in the Categories Table. Go to Bookkeeping > Tools > Categories.
Enter a budget for each Category using positive numbers for income and negative numbers for expenses.
The table automatically shows the previous month’s total for each Category for easy comparison to your budget.
Menu buttons for quick access from the Admin page and from the Expense Report page have been added for convenience.
Architekwiki, who brings you MyCorbu, now has a new app to help you build a financial model of your firm; then use that model to make your firm stronger.
You can learn more here: https://www.architekwiki.com/afm.html
As a user of MyCorbu you can get the app for 2/3 off. Look for the discount code. On your Admin page, under ’Staff’, click the “Staff Details and Billing Overhead Factor Calculations” button. Or use this link:
Whether it is your custom to send Statements or not, there inevitably arises a situation where a reminder is in order.
To quickly create a Statement, go to Bookkeeping > Receivables. Then use the Search box to isolate a client, a project or an invoice.
You can ‘print’ a PDF in most browsers so that you have an attachment with all the breakdown (even aging) for a simple email statement.
Have you built a Financial Model for your firm based on this process?
Now MyCorbu recalculates your Overhead and Billing Overhead Factors for you each month.
Check it out here. On the Admin page, under the Staff heading click the button for "Staff Details & Billing Overhead Factor Calculations”. As you scroll down the page you will find a table of past calculations that you have entered using the form. In the form at the bottom, simply transcribe the values determined for you or enter your own values, and then add the percentage profit you plan for.
Month by month you will see how this key metric is trending. "Lower is better."
If you would like to restart the series of onboarding emails, that is possible by clicking this link <https://landing.mailerlite.com/webforms/landing/p5u4p3>. Then add your email address, and click the ‘Subscribe’ button to start receiving the emails.
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The Help tab in the app has been renamed “Support” and offers three ways to get support.
1) A link to the MyCorbu HELP page.
2) The link to restart the onboarding emails.
3) Instructions for requesting support by email.
Most architectural firms must use cash accounting for tax purposes. Only what you receive or paid is counted.
The downside of cash accounting is that you don’t know how you are doing until later so it is a poor choice for management.
Accrual accounting counts income when you invoice it and expenses when you get the bill. This is what you need to manage.
MyCorbu lets you choose which you want. If you want accrual, there are Receivables and Payables tables to assist in converting Accrual to Cash.
The simple formula for financial management is: “The hours that you get paid for have to generate enough revenue to cover ALL the firm’s expenses plus a profit.”
On the Admin page is a new link to tools to help you incorporate this model into your bookkeeping.
More help is coming in the weeks ahead.
You get the Best Results by daily logging of time and money transactions. This requires just 5-15 min/day.
There are two reasons that you get the Best Results this way.
1) GIGO - Garbage In, Garbage Out. Old time entries do not reflect reality.
2) More importantly, you can have GREAT info at your fingertips all the time.
It is priceless to know you are going over budget or drifting off target as early as possible so you can correct the problem.
TIME - take a few minutes to set up your personal timesheet to make daily time entries a breeze. Then twice a day, before lunch and before ending work, make your time entries.
MONEY - as you receive payments or bills, enter them while you make time entries once a day (if any). Include a PDF or picture of the bill if you want to have it handy when you pay bills later. Leaving expenses marked ‘No’ for ‘Paid?’ puts them in the Payables table for easy access.
One of the benefits of architectural bookkeeping is getting instant feedback from your data.
The table of Project-Phase Budgets on the Projects page always shows you how many hours and dollars have been logged. If you have set a design budget, you know what percent complete the Project-Phase deliverables should be.
Similarly, by opening the Project Financial Status Reports from the Bookkeeping page, you can see in one line per project how income and expenses look. Click the Details link at the end of the line to dig deeper into the time and money attributed to the Project.
The ‘Sort By’ number that you are encouraged to add is a necessary inconvenience. Some things just do not lend themselves to sorting. Income and expense ‘Categories’ and ‘Project-Phases’ particularly.
The Sort By number overcomes this situation by giving you something that you can easily control to get the sort order that you want.
- Use numbers from 0 to 11 for income Categories.
- Use numbers over 11 for expense Categories.
- Use any numbers to sort your Project-Phases per Project.
Paying bills is tedious, but this hint can help. With MyCorbu it is so easy to log bills as they arrive, that I recommend it. And having them logged means that you can eliminate whatever process you have for managing timely payments.
Here is what I recommend. On the day that the bill arrives, make an Expense transaction entry on the MyCorbu Books page with these differences: do not check ‘Yes’ for ‘Paid?’; set a Due Date (optional); and attach a scan of the bill by clicking ‘Choose File’ (also optional).
Now you are always ready to take the last step in paying bills. When that day arrives, navigate in MyCorbu to ‘Payables’ in one tab of your browser and your banks “bill paying” app in another. Use the Payables report to guide you. As you schedule payments with your bank, mark them ‘Paid’ in MyCorbu.
This process will make paying bills less of a project. It also puts the information about bills at your fingertips anytime you want to check it.
If you would like to implement a feature in MyCorbu but are concerned about creating bad data or just want to see what it looks like, consider taking a Test Drive.
Log into the Test Drive account, which can be found under the “Other” menu on the MyCorbu website. Here is the instructions link - https://www.mycorbu.com/testdrive.html
I have been noticing “dial up” rate of responsiveness in MyCorbu. However the underlying platform does not seem to be affected.
I suspect all the streaming of video, Netflix and Zoom for instance, by working from home folks is the cause.
If you ever experience problems with the way MyCorbu is responding, I suggest that you visit https://status.knack.com/
This will tell you if the platform has an issue.
If you want to make sure the problem isn’t on your end, there are two ways to help your computer respond better.
1) Clear your browser cache. This rarely has consequences. Here is how:
2) Delete your browser cache, history and cookies. This usually leads to re-entering data, but not too bad. Here is how:
However if you see unexpected results in the app, then contact me. Rick Wolnitzek
I have been reviewing HELP articles. This one explaining the use of Rates may be useful.
HELP on RATES (link)
An alternative way of using credit cards with MyCorbu is to make an Expense transaction whenever you charge something and mark it NOT paid.
When you make a credit card payment each month, do one of two things.
If you pay off the entire balance every month, go to your Payables report and mark each item on this month’s statement as PAID.
If the credit card is not paid every month, go to your Payables report and mark only items you are paying as PAID. Always pay off at least the interest that is due. If this doesn’t meet the minimum payment (or you can afford more) also pay for one or more items, and mark them PAID. Remember to make a new Expense transaction for the interest.
This method creates a little complexity, but your records are always up to date.
The simplest way of using credit cards with MyCorbu is to make an Expense transaction whenever you charge something and mark it paid. Then pay off the credit card every month.
If the credit card is not paid every month, this method creates complexity. For your tax return you will have to determine which of the expenses that you have charged have actually been paid.
This complexity can be improved upon by always making partial payments equal to the interest plus the cost of one or more items. This is still messy, but not as much.
Every project-based firm has a ratio of billable to non-billable hours that sets the threshold for profitability. See how to establish yours here.
MyCorbu calculates what is actually happening for you. The individual can see their ratio on their Timesheet page. The overall firm’s ratio is accessed from the All Time page. And Admins can access each staff member’s ratio. Go to Admin page > Staff Details button > ‘detail’ link in table.
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