Multiple technologies, multiple headaches

Aug 13, 2018

Is your firm swamped with various platforms for invoicing, project management, payroll, field reports, and more? Maybe it’s time for a change.

Editor’s note: ProjectBoss is a sponsor of the 2018 Hot Firm + A/E Industry Awards Conference in Dallas.

According to a 2016 research report by Hubspot, the average small to medium sized business uses 13 different tools to manage their businesses. Additionally, most of the respondents say one to five of the tools they use have redundant capabilities. And if they could have their time back, sales and marketing would spend it increasing the bottom line.

How many different tools does your firm use to manage and track:

  • Timekeeping
  • Employee status
  • PTO/vacation/leave
  • Invoicing
  • Project planning
  • Project estimating
  • Project management
  • Project collaboration
  • Field reports
  • Reporting
  • Resource scheduling and forecasting
  • Document management
  • Project profitability

If you are like most firms, you have at least one different tool to manage each one of these areas. Timesheets live in one application. You are using Excel for project tracking and estimating. You use Microsoft Project or another online solution for project management. You use a shared hard drive or an online service like Dropbox to manage your files. You take on projects without knowing if you have sufficient resources because you can’t properly forecast on pencil and paper. The list goes on and on. Highly inefficient, expensive, and difficult to maintain.

That’s where ProjectBoss comes in. ProjectBoss allows you to manage and track your entire business at a fraction of the cost (and the headaches) of competing solutions. Imagine how much more efficiently your firm would run if you had one cloud-based platform to handle all aspects of your business. ProjectBoss is accessible by any device with a web browser. It also allows you to have unlimited projects, unlimited milestones, and unlimited document storage (with sharing capabilities). Developed by and for a 75-person, three-location A/E firm, ProjectBoss understands the unique challenges of the industry.

According to the Hubspot report:

“Despite reporting a fairly modest number of tools in their repertoire, our respondents indicate they lose a sizeable chunk of time dealing with their tools. Eighty-two percent of respondents indicated that they lost up to an hour a day because they had to log in to, and manage, many different systems.

“That’s a sizeable chunk of time – up to five hours a week spent just on managing technology. The time lost is probably a clearer reflection of the true cost of using tools: Energy is wasted by salespeople or marketers using multiple technologies designed to make them more efficient. This is all time spent away from completing core tasks that will directly drive the bottom line, whether it’s closing more deals or converting leads into customers.”

ProjectBoss has developed a series of integrations to help leverage the tools you already use. For example, we have developed a two-way integration with QuickBooks online. You can easily import your employees and your clients during the setup process of ProjectBoss. Once connected, you can easily create invoices in ProjectBoss (with support for hourly or fixed fee tasks) and export them immediately to QuickBooks online. As a result, your accounting team will save valuable time.

We are currently working on an exciting integration with Slack, which will automatically create communication channels for each project in ProjectBoss. Users will be able to communicate with their project team in real time, including the ability to share their screens with other project members as well as the ability to initiate video calls between everyone on the team.

The Hubspot report concludes by asking the following questions about a software solution. Remember, the goal is to reduce technological complexity by using a solution that reduces the need for multiple technologies.

  • Does it integrate?
  • Does it have an open API?
  • Is it built for speed?
  • Does it fill a gap? Or is it duplicative?
  • Does it aid collaboration? Or hinder it?
  • Is it helpful?

I believe ProjectBoss can answer every one of these questions with an emphatic “yes.” If you believe your firm could benefit by drastically reducing the number of tools it currently uses, I’d like to hear from you.

Mark Little has nearly 20 years of experience in the technology arena, primarily as a software engineer. Prior to becoming a co-founder and chief technology officer of ProjectBoss, Mark worked on key projects at companies such as JPMorganChase, Oracle, and ThermoFisher Scientific. He can be reached at

Subscribe to the electronic version of The Zweig Letter for free.

About Zweig Group

Zweig Group, three times on the Inc. 500/5000 list, is the industry leader and premiere authority in AEC firm management and marketing, the go-to source for data and research, and the leading provider of customized learning and training. Zweig Group exists to help AEC firms succeed in a complicated and challenging marketplace through services that include: Mergers & Acquisitions, Strategic Planning, Valuation, Executive Search, Board of Director Services, Ownership Transition, Marketing & Branding, and Business Development Training. The firm has offices in Dallas and Fayetteville, Arkansas.