This Help Article will help walk you through the basics of creating a project budget. Check out the outlined steps below to get started!
Quick Summary of Step-by-Step Guide:
In-Depth Step-by-Step Guide:
- Create a budget: To begin the process of creating a budget, find your project from the project list page, click the project name to reveal several menu options, and click the budget option.
After loading the project budget page, click the 'Create Budget' button.
- Add Project Staff: After creating the budget, you can begin adding staff to the project.
NOTE: Notice how the default billing rates automatically show up as staff are added. These are pre-filled because the default billing rate was already entered in their user profiles. If you want to charge a different rate for the project, simply enter in the preferred amount in the 'New' section. Also, you can check the box under the calculator icon or individually for selected employees to calculate a different billing rate for this project. Options include a cost + fee calculation or a rate multiplier. SQUAVA will use the employees current hourly equivalent salary or hourly rate in their employee profile to calculate the new billing rate.
To add more employees to the project, select an employee from the 'Add Employee' drop down menu. This will allow them to attribute time to this project. An employee must be listed here in a project to see the project in his/her timesheet and assign time to it. Be sure to click 'Save' when finished.
If the Staff & Rates group is no longer editable like shown in the image below, this is because an invoice has been finalized that captures these individuals and time period. If you need to add additional staff to a project or change their billing rates, click the '+ Add Staff/Rates' button to create another Staff and Rate set to add new individuals or change billing rates. Be sure to save your changes. These updates will go into effect on the designated date (allowing individuals to assign time to a project) and will go into effect on an invoice the first period beginning on or after the date you designate.
- Add task and expenses: Once you've completed adding staff to the project, you're now ready to add task and expense category details to your budget. Click on the 'Budget' link with the (unlocked) lock icon next to the 'Staff & Rates' link.
NOTE: The unlocked lock icon indicates that this project has not yet been contracted. Once it has been contracted, the lock icon will show as locked.
You can choose to bill tasks as Time & Materials (T&M), the default setting, or as Lump Sum (sometimes called fixed price). If you would like to bill a task or expense as Lump Sum, simply check the box next to the applicable task(s) where it says 'Lump'. Otherwise, the hours you enter for each task and expense on the project will be billed as T&M. To learn more about combined billing types, see the Help Article: Combined Billing Types. Be sure to click 'Save' when finished.
NOTE: If you need to add direct expenses to the budget (e.g. mileage, subconsultant, etc.) you can do so in the 'Expenses' section towards the bottom of the page by simply filling in the details related to each expense item. If you're adding a subconsultant, be sure to check the box that says 'Sub' and then choose the applicable subconsultant in the drop down menu in the 'Description' column. If the subconsultant you desire is not available, you can add it by following the 'Subconsultans' link next to the 'Projects & Proposals' or by adding them as a vendor at the 'Vendor' link under 'Company'.
To learn how to log/enter expenses to your expense report for your project, check out the Help Article: Entering Your Expenses.
- Print an estimate: If you would like to provide an estimate to your customer, click on the printer icon above the 'Labor' section. A new window will pop up (see image below) and you can choose which information you'd like to have included on your estimate by checking the applicable boxes. When finished, click the 'Print' button and a new tab will open up with a PDF of the estimate that you can download and provide to your client.
The budget has now been created for this project and it is now in a 'Proposal' stage. Once you are ready to contract the project, check out our Help Article: Contracting a Budget to learn more. If the project has a retainer, that can be added by clicking 'Edit' on the button bar of your budget or you can add that information on the dialog that will be displayed when you contract the budget. Check out our Help Article: Applying Retainers.
Now, you are probably thinking, "Whoa! I still have questions about projects..." Well don't you worry, this Help Article is just to help get you started.
- Now that you've learned how to add a project in SQUAVA, there are still a few things you will need to learn for managing your projects.
- For more detailed information, check out the other Help Articles in the Projects 101 section.