Blog

Growing is the goal of most businesses. What is difficult is formulating a plan to make the growth a reality. Where do you start? The answer is in the financials, both past and current. Best in class companies know that using financial information and measurable key performance indicators (KPIs) is the key to unlocking growth strategies. 

The GAUGE report was introduced in our recent blog on benchmarking for government contractors. We recognize the power of benchmarking and wanted to provide a point of reference for the government contracting industry. The GAUGE is a tool for government contractors to compare themselves to others in their industry. The information in the report is organized by company size, so it is easy for you to make a comparison to your direct competitors. We will blog about each section of the report over the coming weeks.

The GAUGE report was introduced in our recent blog on benchmarking for government contractors. We recognize the power of benchmarking and wanted to provide a point of reference for the government contracting industry. The GAUGE is a tool for government contractors to compare themselves to others in their industry. The information in the report is organized by company size, so it is easy for you to make a comparison to your direct competitors. We will blog about each section of the report over the coming weeks.

The GAUGE report was introduced in our recent blog on benchmarking for government contractors. We recognize the power of benchmarking and wanted to provide a point of reference for the government contracting industry. The GAUGE is a tool for government contractors to compare themselves to others in their industry. The information in the report is organized by company size, so it is easy for you to make a comparison to your direct competitors. We will blog about each section of the report over the coming weeks.

The GAUGE report was introduced in our recent blog on benchmarking for government contractors. We recognize the power of benchmarking and wanted to provide a point of reference for the government contracting industry. The GAUGE is a tool for government contractors to compare themselves to others in their industry. The information in the report is organized by company size, so it is easy for you to make a comparison to your direct competitors. We will blog about each section of the report over the coming weeks.

The GAUGE report was introduced in our recent blog on benchmarking for government contractors. We recognize the power of benchmarking and wanted to provide a point of reference for the government contracting industry. The GAUGE is a tool for government contractors to compare themselves to others in their industry. The information in the report is organized by company size, so it is easy for you to make a comparison to your direct competitors. We will blog about each section of the report over the coming weeks, starting with G – Government Contract Compliance.

How are you performing against your competitors? Benchmarking is simply looking at others' performance, expenditures, policies, strategies, and comparing them to your organization. It is a great methodology to look internally and externally to see what others are doing to be successful.

During a recent webcast, 8 Steps to an Accurate Forecast, we had a very interesting discussion about Top Down and Bottom Up forecasting. There were many opinions about closing out a year and beginning planning for budgeting/forecasting cycles for the next year. This blog will discuss some of those options for forecasting.

The deadline for government contractors to be compliant with NIST SP 800-171 is December 31, 2017, but it’s tough to evaluate your situation if you don’t know how the standard applies to your company.

An opportunity pipeline is the incubator for your business growth and it should reflect your company’s overall business strategy.

Customer Relationship Management (CRM) is simply a discipline that manages a company's interaction with current and potential customers. The reason companies are making CRM a priority is to improve overall relationships with customers, specifically to focus on customer retention (stickiness) and to drive sales growth. Tracking and documenting customer touches is a critical part of the overall discipline because fact-based data and the resultant analytics play a major role in understanding customers’ needs.

The Accounting System Survey is considered “pre-award audit” and it is necessary for the award of any Cost Type contract. Read this blog to learn more about how this works and what you need to do to prepare!

Have you really thought about how much money poor quality data is costing your company? IBM estimates that the yearly cost of poor quality data, in the US alone, in 2016 was $3.1 trillion. 

It’s a simple question. It ought to have a simple answer. It doesn’t. As a Project Manager told me just the other day, “It’s hard to tell someone else how you are doing when you don’t know yourself.”

“People are our most important asset!”

Did you know that DCAA is required each year to submit a letter to Congress outlining their overall performance, accomplishments, efficiency recommendations, and industry outreach?  These reports go back as far as 2011 so you can really start to track trends in savings to the US taxpayer and understand audit priorities.  These letters and other audit information can be found at DCAA.mil.

This blog discusses the post award accounting a system audit for nonmajor contractors. It is performed after contract award. The objective of this audit is to determine if the contractor’s accounting system complies with the DFARS 252.242-7006, Accounting System Administration, requirements.

As a GCS Premier or Deltek First GovCon Essentials customer, you’ve recently found yourself in a predicament as your software is soon to be sunsetted.

You now need to make a decision sooner rather than later, but the good news is that you have options!

Here are a few things to think about before you make the switch to a new Professional Services Automation (PSA) tool.

Some project driven businesses make changes to their Professional Services Automation systems because they have outgrown their current software, or maybe they had a home-grown system that was no longer efficient, and some find themselves in the position where a change is prompted by external forces.

We were able to help one such customer, BCT Partners, who found themselves in just this predicament.

Many project driven businesses eventually find themselves at a crossroads with the management of their people, projects and financials. Some have created a stand-alone, home-built system that involves multiple platforms, spreadsheets, and outdated processes. Making the big leap to a purpose built professional services automation platform may seem scary or unnecessary. Other businesses find themselves at the crossroads when their existing system just isn’t scalable anymore.

Regardless of how you got there - the challenge is the same. What to do next?

Every day, Unanet customers are outperforming their competitors that run Deltek (both Costpoint and GCS). Many of these successful customers have chosen Unanet over Deltek for four key reasons.

We recently sat down with the Financial Controller at Magnolia River, Chantelle Miner, to discuss the path that led them to select Unanet Project Portfolio Financials Plus for their project ERP system. Magnolia River was struggling to keep up with their accounting needs as the company continued to grow at a rapid pace due to the duplication of efforts that they faced with disparate systems.

Every professional services firm has their own lingo or methodology, but for the most part, they all go through similar steps in their business; Plan, Execute, Manage, and Optimize.

Each step is unique and brings its own set of challenges and opportunities.

Two words. Caveat Emptor (Buyer Beware).

You’re in the market for a system that will support your entire business lifecycle. You need a robust system that can handle your financials, accounting, budgeting & planning, timesheets, expenses, project management, resource management, real-time reporting and more— all in one place. So, it’s time to research the market and find the best business software at the best value. Simple, right? Well, yes and no. Proceed with caution, ask the right questions, and you can figure out which system is the best fit for your business.

Adapting basic project management software for a professional services environment requires two significant changes: accommodating a host of new metrics, and ensuring those new metrics are synchronized with the traditional, accessible to all, and transparent.

Joining other female entrepreneurs and business owners, Fran Craig attended the 15th Anniversary Luncheon for the Women Presidents’ Educational Organization, and shared some wisdom regarding how to effectively delegate to build an organizations culture.

As a female business owner and entrepreneur, Fran Craig has learned many key lessons during her years working in the professional services and software industries.

A discussion of common time tracking requirements - a critical first step in understanding and improving the performance of project-based services organizations.

A discussion of the challenges in project resource management, and a recent Aberdeen Group Report on workforce management.

Discussion of an interesting article in CIO Magazine 11 ways to Improve Your IT Team’s Productivity. Maybe because I was crunching on an apple, the idea in the first sentence caught my eye - provide your team with free food for greater productivity. Everyone wants high-performing teams, and, if all it took was a candy bar, I was ready to go for it!

Discussion of an interesting article in Forbes magazine that likened spring cleaning and having a garage sale to the process of prioritizing internal projects. To me, this translates to figuring out three things about my crowded 'garage':

1. What projects are in hiding, in process and/or in demand?

2. Which projects will actually be used more than once?

3. What value will these projects produce?

When choosing an ERP system, or Professional Services Automation software, it’s important to consider the deployment spectrum – from customized to turnkey.

What are the information needs for project managers to effectively manage projects? Project managers with real-time insight on project revenue and invoiced data have the information they need to manage project profitability. A 'financially savvy' project manager changes the customer relationship for the better. This is true whatever the contract type: time & materials, fixed price or cost plus. This blog post briefly discusses key project financial metrics for project managers.

Implementing any system presents challenges in successful adoption, and creating a new culture. This blog posts discusses some success strategies related to improving timekeeping when deploying a timesheet system.

Reports on project success rates over the years from various independent research studies show improvements. Examples are quoted, and some of the reasons behind the improvements are briefly discussed.

DCAA Timekeeping Requirements - the features and functions that directly support the requirements stated in the Automated Timekeeping Systems section of the Defense Contract Audit Agency (DCAA) regulations and Federal Acquisition Regulations (FAR).

This article highlights three benefits from streamlining budgeting, forecasting, and reporting: reduction in indirect rates; implementation of strategic goals; and push accountability to all levels. Organizations that put effort into streamlining their budgeting, forecasting and reporting processes will be the winners in a difficult economy!

The first webinar in this two part series looked at Calculating and Monitoring Indirect Rates. This webinar will focus on best practices in budgeting and forecasting to determine the direct costs which are a key component of determining future rates and variances.

Calculating and monitoring indirect rates is essential to maximize profitability, and optimize your competitiveness in winning Federal contracts.

Insights from Brad Antle, CEO of Salient Federal Solutions, at the 4th Annual Unanet Customer Meeting in Reston, VA on May 6 2011.

Many services organizations need to see the true project costs, taking into account allocation of costs from overhead activities and other costs not specifically identifiable with a single project.

Organizations can make significant gains in efficiency, and higher data accuracy, by integrating Per Diem reference data in their expense reporting process.

What does the "Cloud" mean and what can it offer your organization? The "Cloud" or "Cloud Computing" is simply the ability to access shared computing resources over the Internet.