BigTime's New Mobile App for iPhone is 'very iPhone' and I like it !
BigTime is cloud-based time and billing software that integrates with QuickBooks. This product is so feature rich that Intuit chose to embed BigTime into their own Practice Management Software.
While BigTime has been available via browser from any computer, or device, they have not had a true ‘mobile App’ until now. The company has just released their BigTime Mobile application for the iPhone to put time and expense tracking “between your thumbs”.
While reviewing this new application there were a couple of things I liked the best:
1) BigTime Mobile feels more like your ‘iPhone’ than most other time/expense Apps.
While it contains the ‘big button’ look that corresponds to their desktop version for selection of your task, both the time and expense entry screens, as well as the engagement (customers:jobs) and staff lists, have the standard look and feel of your iPhone. Even though I have only been using an iPhone for about 18 months, I find this very appealing. In contrast to the approach BigTime has taken, “QuickBooks Mobile” tries to make their application look more like QuickBooks than an iPhone App; to many ‘love my iPhone’ users that is a “no, no”; but those same Apple users should find this new App from BigTime as appealing as I do.
- Because this App is so ‘iPhone’ specific, while it will run on an iPad it is not optimized for that device the way it is for the iPhone. A future release will be available for the iPad and will offer additional features associated with BigTime’s premium level feature set.
2) BigTime Mobile is an extremely easy App to use, and in many ways is even more simplistic than the web version of BigTime.
- Simply click time entry, then the day of the week, and pick the customer:job from the list which again looks just like your iPhone contact list; another click to select your work code (which corresponds to your QickBooks item) and enter any note you want included, save and you are done. You can either enter time or use one of the ‘timers’ available to track the time record as it is occurring.
- Expense entry is just as simple. Add the engagement, type of expense, amount and notes. You can even snap a photo of the receipt which will be attached for future reference.
- With one click you can submit your time and expense entries.
- Accessing your client and staff lists are just as easy, and because of the full iPhone integration you can call, text or email from these lists directly.
- Even off-line you can use this App which will then sync with your BigTime Account and QuickBooks when you are back on-line.
As I mentioned, BigTime is not stopping with just this App for the iPhone (or their upcomming iPad App), they will also introduce an App for Android devices within a few months. This App will be just as ‘Android’ as the iPhone App is ‘iPhone’. Brian Saunders, CEO of BigTime told me that their goal is to make each App as specific to the standard feel and work flow of the device as users expect, “we want to conform our App to our users, not make our users conform to our App.”
I also had the opportunity to briefly visit with Mr. Saunders about BigTime’s Partner Consultant Network. He mentioned that this program had been warmly received by QuickBooks ProAdvisors who recently attended the Scaling New Heights conference held in this past June at Walt Disney World. Brian also noted that “by creating a new kind of consultation network designed by and for accountants, we’ve given these professionals the potential for an enhanced client relationship as well as new business opportunities.”
It appears to me that Brian, and his team at BigTime have just given their Partner network a renewed injection of marketability with “BigTime Mobile”, and so doing given us 'iPhone lovers' the best of time and expense entry with QuickBooks integration.