May 2021 BigTime ReleaseThings are full speed ahead for our May release. With lofty expectations of what 2021 has in store for our development team, the May product release is full of items that keep us at an accelerated pace to deliver on our roadmap.

Some highlights of the enhancements released in May are:

Core Solution

  • Vendor bills (time)
  • Hover text and expand task picklist on invoice
  • Add tooltip to ask the type
  • Expose 'subtotal' in the XML on invoice templates with tax
  • Security permission to view the home dashboard (under settings)
  • Expense notes mapping on credit card upload
  • Hide cost data on the ‘staffers time’ history tab
  • Fees vs budget and input hours vs budget on the project list

BigTime Wallet

  • Allow international zip codes on Wallet payment

Reporting

  • Hide cost data on the ‘staffers time’ history tab
  • Profit projection reporting
  • Email sent (Y/N) report field
  • Posted status on time/expense report
  • Report fields for ‘my project role’
  • Staffer's vendor and employee QB link
  • Over/under on time summary report

Ecosystem Integrations 

  • Jira: include project names as part of the "Enforce JIRA names in BigTime" setting
  • Salesforce: filter ‘opportunity import’ by ‘opportunity record type’

Core Solution 

When a firm hires an outside consultant or contract worker, they are typically entered in their accounting system as a vendor. A 1099 vendor is someone who does work for your business but is not included on your company’s payroll. They are not an employee, so they do not receive hourly or salary wages for each payroll period. Instead, the vendor will send an invoice for their work which gets entered into the firm's accounting system as a bill payable to that vendor. This month we added the vendor bills (time) feature to our workflow.

Oftentimes a firm will have their vendors or contractors logging and tracking their hours directly into BigTime. Since BigTime is able to track a staffer’s cost rate, financial administrators are able to run a report to see how much they owe the vendor— calculating the input hours times the cost rate for that user. The addition of this feature will make this process much easier and efficient for the financial admins. BigTime will calculate these hours and place them in a pool for a bill to be created and posted to QuickBooks. 

While vendor bills (time) is one of the larger core features in this release, we also have several other features and enhancements that will improve your day-to-day workflow and ease of use overall with BigTime.

One of these new features is that when subtotaling an invoice by task, users will be able to see the full task name on the task picklist by hovering over the task name. The ability to hover text and expand the task picklist on the invoice is especially useful for task names that are long and the name gets cut off.

For firms that use task types, we have now added a tooltip to task type on that field so that users can easily know if it is a required field. If they don't select a type, we will auto-assign one.

May 2021 BigTime Release

Continuing with our theme of workflow and usability, invoices are another area we created more opportunity in by exposing subtotal in the XML on invoice templates with tax. For invoice templates that are showing the tax rate in the line items, there is a subtotal section that shows the invoice amount before the tax is applied. This value is labeled as the subtotal. We have exposed this field in the XML so if a user wants to change the field name they are able to do so.

If the template has already been converted to XML and you want to expose this field, you can add:

ptTotalTitle="<text> OR a user can create a new template and convert to XML. Then if you search for subtotal, it will be available to change.

May 2021 BigTime Release

On the task dashboard, users can update the task type in bulk IF they have types configured for their firm.

May 2021 BigTime Release

Usability remains a top focus for us and we have often heard that allowing non-admin users to view the dashboard was critical for some businesses. So this month we added security permission to view the home dashboard. Under settings, we have added new user permission to the list that’s called view home dashboard.

May 2021 BigTime Release

As we continued to look at ways to improve usability throughout the application, we looked at expenses to see how we could continue to improve and evolve our expense experience. So in May, we have added the ability for users uploading a credit card to have the option to map a field from their credit card statement to the notes field in BigTime. Expense notes mapping on credit card upload is simply another additional feature that allows end-users an easier and more seamless experience.

May 2021 BigTime Release

We have also added the ability to hide cost data on staffers' time history tab. This is specific to users that do not have permission to view staff rate/cost information. Note: the column will not be removed, rather show null values.

One of the most visited areas of BigTime for many users is the project list grid. With so much data available on the grid, visual indicators become a key way to spot any changes or areas that you want to address quickly. This month we’ve added visualization to illustrate two key areas: fees vs budget vs input hours vs budget on the project list. Now along with the comparison data, we have leveraged icons and color to draw your attention to the data or area that needs your attention the most. The icons for each field will be grey if they are under budget, green if they are on budget, and red if they are over budget. This includes the following fields:

  • Input hours vs. hours budgeted
  • Fees vs budget

May 2021 BigTime Release

Wallet

As BigTime Wallet continues to grow, not only for our customers but for clients globally, we rolled out a feature to allow international zip codes on Wallet payment. Submitting a credit card payment with Wallet will now support international customers as it now supports the formatting differences needed to support non-US zip codes. Opening BigTime Wallet up to the world! 

Reporting

With reporting being one of the most important elements to running your business, we continue to look at new ways to provide access and visibility to the data that matters most. This month we added seven new reporting features:

  1. Hide cost data on staffers time history tab
  2. Profit projection reporting
  3. Email sent (Y/N) report field
  4. Posted status on time/expense report
  5. Report fields for “my project role”
  6. Staffer's vendor and employee QB link
  7. Over/under on time summary report

Users running cost projections can now view their project profit margins by comparing the projected cost to the projected fees. Below is a list of report fields that have been added:

  • Field name= Profit Projection (M1-M12, total)

Field description= For the period: allocated fees - allocated costs

Report type(s) = Allocation grid view, monthly & allocation grid view, week

  • Field name = Profit Projection

Field description = The projected profit for the period in question. Allocated fees - allocated costs

Report type(s) = Allocation/monthly details

  • Field name = Profit Projection

Field description = [Input costs] + [future allocated costs] This field is the projected profit for this task, calculated as the actual costs to date plus the project costs going forward.

Report type(s) = Task

With the new email sent (Y/N) report field, users can now see if an invoice has been emailed to their client without having to click into each invoice.

May 2021 BigTime Release

Users can also quickly see the posted status on the time/expense report to easily see if T&E was or was not posted to QuickBooks. The field name = posted status (yes/no) and the field description = If your firm is connected to a QuickBooks account, then this field shows whether or not the time or expense has successfully posted to your QuickBooks account

In any report type that contains the project details, there are 3 new fields in regards to my projects. This allows users to create filters and view specific data on the project teams they are on or projects they are set as the team lead. It also allows an administrator to create and share reports with staffers so it only shows data on projects they are staffed on or the team leads.

Note: There is a filter in reports that you can select for “only show projects they are staffed on” and “only show projects they are the lead”. These filters also take into account a staffer's user rights. I.e. if a staffer is able to view “manage any project” or is a system admin, those filters will not apply to them and they will be able to see all projects.

Field name= My projects

Description= Returns YES if the user who is running the report is assigned to the project in question.

Field name= Is team lead (Yes/No)

Description= Returns YES if the user who is running the report is assigned as the team lead for the project.

Field name= My role

Description= This field returns the team role for the user that is running this report.

May 2021 BigTime Release

Users are able to report on which vendor and/or employee my staffer(s) are linked to in QuickBooks. 

In the staff details section of reporting, there are two new fields:

  • QB vendor: The vendor in which the staffer is linked in QuickBooks on the staffers' general info page.
  • QB employee: The employee in which the staffer is linked in QuickBooks on the staffers' general info page.

Users are able to see on a report if their staff are over/under their DAILY capacity. This field will calculate [Input Hours-Capacity (daily)] to see if staff are over or under their daily capacity (similar to how each user can view this data at the bottom of the timesheets). 

Note: for this field to be accurate, make sure to include the date field.

Ecosystem Integrations

Over the first quarter of 2021, we continued to expand our end-to-end ecosystem integrations. As we continue through Q2, you will see many enhancements to those ecosystem partners along with some of our long-standing partnerships. These changes ensure we create a unique ecosystem tailored to the needs of your organization and your workflow.

Now, for firms integrated with JIRA, If the setting to enforce JIRA names in BigTime is turned OFF then the project name will not update if they change it to something different in BigTime. In addition, the JIRA integration has been enhanced to allow users to determine if they want the JIRA assignee to import to the task assignment or not.

May 2021 BigTime Release

As you can see, May was full of new features and enhancements that focused on workflow and usability of BigTime— continuing to evolve our software as your workflows and needs evolve.  We’re not even halfway through the year and we are already delivering some great features and June will be no exception! The BigTime team wants to thank you for being part of each release. If you are interested in participating in a focus group or just walking through your current workflow, please reach out to us at product@bigtime.net.