As the industry's best-selling suite of integrated construction software components UDA ConstructionSuite provides enterprise-quality Estimating, Proposals, Scheduling, Calendars, Workspaces, Reporting, and Documents for your desktop or network. But beyond its feature rich ‘construction related exterior lies a ‘best practices’ quality functionality to integrate with QuickBooks (desktop) software.
We are not going to review the features that make ConstructionSuite such a valued member of the construction community, but rather this article will look at the capabilities created by integrating ConstructionSuite with your QuickBooks software.
Located on the menu of a ConstructionSuite Estimate form we find QuickBooks Integration, that menu changes the ribbon bar to include all of the various QuickBooks related tasks such as exporting to QuickBooks, Importing to QuickBooks, and QuickBooks Initial Setup. Clicking the Initial Setup Ribbon Icon launches the QuickBooks Integration Setup Wizard to take you through the steps needed to insure that not only does your ConstructionSuite data flow to QuickBooks properly, but that your QuickBooks data flows to ConstructionSuite properly.
The very first wizard window shows a lot of ‘forward thinking’ on the part of ConstructionSuite. Construction accounting takes one of two forms, and the complexity of the non-traditional way of ‘doing business’ often scares a lot of small contractors. Setting things up in QuickBooks for Work in Progress (WIP) accounting can be cumbersome and it requires a lot of ‘extra activity’ to insure that you are keeping revenues and expenses off the ‘Income Statement’ until it is time to recognize revenue. Well Construction Suite offers dynamic options designed to give you ultimate control over Construction Accounting with a choice of Cost of Goods Sold (P&L) or Construction WIP (Balance Sheet) accounting for your construction projects. But here is the kicker, you can actually customize all of your transactions by items within ConstructionSuite to in effect allow you to use both methods where appropriate, perhaps on a Job-by-job basis.
In the next Wizard Window we get to tell ConstructionSuite how we want our data to be posted in QuickBooks at the ‘Account’ level. We can use an appropriate new (or existing) Parent Account for all transactions, or multiple accounts based upon UDA Categories or Parent and sub-accounts for Categories and Sub-Categories in ConstructionSuite. You are about to see that we have a choice to capture detail in our Chart of Accounts, or in the Item list, or in both depending on our needs. We also in this window option to use Class Tracking which maps ConstructionSuite Classifications posted on a line item basis in Estimates to QuickBooks Classes.
The next Wizard Window gives us the granularity of using QuickBooks Items in addition to accounts in the same heiarchy as was available in the previous window for accounts. We can use Parent Items, one or many, option to create a QuickBooks Item for each Construction Suite Category or use QuickBooks Sub-items for Construction suite Categories and Sub-categories of job components.
Just as with QuickBooks items, Construction Suite can designated both debit and credit sides of items during the integration. As we progress through the Wizard we come to the point that we can review all of the integration configuration settings we have selected along the way.
Of course to perform the first integration you must be logged into QuickBooks as the Administrator in Single-user Mode. Prior to the first integration, you must perform and confirm that you have made a complete back-up of your QuickBooks Company file.
Once we have completed that first integration we are now ready to rock-n-roll as far as exchanging transactional data.
From the ConstructionSuite Estimate QuickBooks Ribbon, click the Create QuickBooks Estimate. ConstructionSuite opens the QuickBooks Estimate window. We have a choice again as to the level of detail we wish to send to QucikBooks. We can export either Project Totals Only or the entire ConstructionSuite Estimate detail-line by detail-line. We can assign the estimate to a pre-existing or new QuickBooks Customer:Job and we have several options as to how we want ConstructionSuite Estimate Mark-ups to appear in the Estimate. Mark-ups can be added as line items or prorated out into the other items on the estimate. Esimate Mark-ups computed as a percentage of the value as a whole, and then supplemented to each item on is something that QuickBooks can’t do on it’’s own, and it simply illustrates the power of ConstructionSuite to give provide you with a feature set designed specifically for the needs of contractors.
It takes just a matter of moments for ConstructionSuite to create the Estimate in QuickBooks regardless of the complexity or level of details we have specified. The result is a QuickBooks Estimate customized to your specific level of accounting, itemization and classification.
It's just as easy to pull your purchase order data, and customer invoice information from QuickBooks back into your jobs in ConstructionSuite. When you do your Construction data never looked finer with estimated costs and revenues, incurred costs and revenues, and actual costs and revenues. Making for one 'pretty picture' when it comes to insuring your jobs come in on budget.
The level of integration between ConstructionSuite and QuickBooks is in one word, tremendous. Rarely do we as ProAdvisors see the options, variations, and degree of customization choices in a 3rd party product when it comes to how we want that product’s data incorporated into our QuickBooks Company file. UDA ConstructionSuite is to be commended for offering such a ‘best practices’ level of integration with QuickBooks.
If you are trying to find one of your clients a Construction Management Product, feature rich in functions and tools appropriate to residential, commercial or green construction companies, and your Client uses QuickBooks (desktop) Pro, Premier or Enterprise, be sure to give ConstructionSuite a trial run if for no other reason than to see the tremendous degree of integration between the two products.
UDA ConstructionSuite is a registered trademark of UDA Technologies, Inc., 2272 Moores Mill Road, Auburn, Alabama 36830