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Job costing – How do you strike the right balance between data entry and business intelligence?

Visual from Woodard Group to announce Scaling New Heights 2016: "The Epic Practice" | Knowify

Yum! Bacon and business intelligence—it’s a contractor’s dream.

Are you going to the Intuit/QuickBooks Scaling New Heights “Epic Practice” Conference in the Bahamas May 21-25th? If you are, let’s meet at the Knowify QB Integrated Apps breakfast Tuesday, May 25th at 7am for bacon, eggs, and a deep dive into the “Many different flavors of job costing,” or “How-to strike the right balance between boring data entry and essential business intelligence.”

The difference between profit and… preciseness matters

As a contractor or subcontractor, you know how slim the margins are between installing a door that swings shut easily and a door that sticks.

Your business—its profitability, or lack thereof requires equally precise data. How well you specify that doorjamb, how carefully you measure—whether it’s to the nearest 1/8-inch, or 1/16th-inch, or depends on the end result desired and the acceptable margin of error. Such is also true when it comes to job costing. How granular, how detailed, how deep you dive depends on the scope of each job and its margins.

Join me, Dan de Roulet, co-founder of Knowify for contractors, a QuickBooks Integrated App, for an overview of job costing over coffee where we’ll discuss:

  • The different “flavors” of job costing, from the very simple to the very complex;
  • Evaluating the upside and downside of each job costing approach;
  • How-to develop a framework for selecting the right approach to match your client;
  • How QuickBooks Online + the right job costing solution can help you manage and address complex business intelligence/accounting challenges in a way that QuickBooks Desktop cannot; and
  • Why you need to KNOW your business to GROW your business.

We’ll also cover the three levels of “job costing”

  • Basic: How much did I make (am I making) on a given job?
  • Advanced: How much did I make for each piece of work I performed on a given job?
  • Professional: How did I perform against my phase-specific budgets? Where was the slippage? Where can I do better next time?

Knowledge is power, BUT… How do you know whether it’s worth the effort?
Join us at the Knowify for Contractor’s Scaling New Heights breakfast and we’ll chew over how to evaluate each job by complexity, which in turn will inform how much data you’ll need to accumulate to be efficient and profitable. We’ll review, for example:

  • Job complexity: Complex jobs are often multi-layered, difficult to track, often opaque. Inputting and accessing numbers can help you cut through the fog so you can see and understand where you are financially on that job.
  • Job size: It’s always preferable to know where you stand on a job, what’s on track and when a job is running off the rails. When it’s a big job, there’s more at stake. So, the earlier you know when things are getting off track, the more likely you are to save lot of $$$. Timeliness matters—especially when it comes to how you’re doing!
  • Future benefit: Will what we did not in this job help you do a better job in the future? The more useful the information will be in the future—this is a function of repeatability—the greater the value in capturing it.

Smart operations matter

QuickBooks is good! But the right job-costing add-on can make QuickBooks even better. Knowledge is power. Are you bidding accurately? Allocating time and materials appropriately? Do you know where your people are and what they’re doing? You should. Accessing tools to deliver real transparency into hours, job assignments, client management, and productivity to ensure projects stay on schedule and on budget can make the difference between eking out a living and making real money. And maybe cut down the back office cleanup you do nights and weekends. Win, win, win!

So, how do you get there? Do your research. Knowify, for one, can help. We’re already helping contractors integrate their business management needs with accounting systems like QuickBooks from an easy-to-use interface accessible from any device—in the field and in the office.

If you have any questions or wish to share your feedback, you can find us at

Knowify. Built for the real world.