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FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Have questions about the Base Builders’ Software? Browse through the frequently asked questions below to learn more about our team, software features, integrations, security, and more.

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THE BASE BUILDERS TEAM

We've had clients tell us that gathering information they need to get their invoicing out is like herding cats - it's tough. Solving this problem is what we do so well.

We put all of the data into one tool - all your reimburse expenses, fixed fee phases, percentage complete, time - it's all congealed into a single solution built specifically to manage Architecture and Engineering projects.

BaseBuilders follows the path that you've already been going down all these years and makes it super simple for you to do your billings.

We've got reports from lots of clients saying they cut their billing time by up to 75%. Some get even more. It all depends on the culture and nature of your firm and the types of projects you do.

If you want to get rid of all that headache, we've got the right solution for you.

We are a small software company that grew out of a need. BaseBuilders began as a solution to a problem our founder, Doug Rawson, had when he was running his engineering firm.

In our first years as a firm, we were looking for a way to track our projects, and we've been doing it on spreadsheets and layers upon layers of duct tape solutions. We knew that wasn't the answer. The need to take every project management task and place each one in a centralized system gave birth to BaseBuilders.

We've been using BaseBuilders internally for eight years before we thought of bringing it out to the masses. We thought that if we had project management problems, thousands of companies out there might have them too. It might even be selfish if BaseBuilders stayed within our company.

In a nutshell, that's how we started - as a small company. We put our focus strictly on architects and engineers to provide a solution that would help them manage their projects and reap higher profits.

BaseBuilders was created out of organic growth within our engineering firm. Our founder, Doug Rawson, spent 16 years as an electrical engineer. Six of which were spent as an employee, and ten as a principal running his own practice.

With 10-12 professionals running the operations through the years, we often encountered similar problems. We needed a tool that would help make project management easier. However, we couldn't find anything in the marketplace. At least not one that was affordable for a small or medium-sized firm.

We decided to build the tool ourselves. For eight years, we only used BaseBuilders in-house. But we found that other small and medium-sized AE firms needed the tool we created, so we launched BaseBuilders to the public.

BaseBuilders came from an internal problem. It's a tool specifically designed to help small and medium-sized AE firms fulfill a lot of project management needs. This solution came from the inside out.

Test drive BaseBuilders today and see how it can make project management easier for your firm! 

We're here to help you succeed - it's that simple. Our goal is to provide you with the tools you need so you can focus on the work at hand and make money in the process.

We're only successful if our clients are successful - that's why we offer free support. We are willing and ready to do whatever we can to help you succeed, especially when it dovetails into using BaseBuilders.

We have clients that have been using BaseBuilders as early as January 2003. Even before we created BaseBuilders, our team had a deep background and vast experience in the architecture and engineering fields. Now we have an ever-growing library of information readily available whenever you need them.

In terms of providing support, almost more than anything else, we end up doing business coaching. When our clients ask us about our software, we also get asked about collections or client presentations and other questions about the ins and outs of the business. And we're ready to help you with those as well.

We are always ready to share ideas that can help you succeed - that's the main reason why you should partner with BaseBuilders.

Sign up today and experience a more convenient and productive way to do project management!

In all our years drawing blueprints for a living, we bought and used a lot of software. Most of them have one thing in common - they don't quite work the way we expect them to.

What makes BaseBuilders different is the fact that it's built by professionals who have rich experience in the AE industry. We know exactly what architecture and engineering firms need in terms of project management. We created a software system that fills the gaps and makes back-office tasks easier for people running AE firms.

When we used to run our own engineering firm, we didn't focus on our own success but our clients'. We wanted them to hire us over and over again, so we're helping them succeed. BaseBuilders helps you focus more on what's important by taking care of all the other project management tasks.

Unlike other project management software packages, we are dedicated to taking care of our customers by giving them the support they need. When something's not working the way it's supposed to, and you can't reach out and talk to somebody, the levels of frustration and stress rise.

We offer free support to our clients. If we can't build a software intuitive enough to give our clients what they need, it's on us to support it. You can reach us via email, phone calls, or Zoom meetings.

Our success comes from the customers that use our software. If they're not successful, they'll quit their subscription. BaseBuilders is designed to help you and your firm succeed.

Test drive BaseBuilders today and experience the difference!

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THE BASE BUILDERS’ SOFTWARE

Our pricing has changed over the years. You can go to our Pricing Page here to see our current rates.

What we can tell you, however, is how much will it cost you NOT to have BaseBuilders. 

A study by the Aberdeen Group projected that services companies that got an integrated solution for their firm got four additional billable hours per week!

We are not ensuring you that you will get four hours of additional billable time per week from each of your employees. But what if you have one or two more hours of additional billable time per month? You will earn a lot more money than our software costs.

BaseBuilders typically costs about 1/10 or 1% of your annual revenue. These numbers may be small, but our software can bring a high value to our clients and those that take time to get BaseBuilders implemented within their firm. We are going to save you time.

See how much more productive your firm can be. Test drive BaseBuilders today!

We will do our best to help you get your data and information imported into BaseBuilders so you can start progressing with your projects.

BaseBuilders can help you with your:

  • Companies and contracts
  • Project contracts
  • Project phases
  • Historical building amounts
  • Invoicing
  • Historical time slips

And so much more.

We're going to help you work through a series of spreadsheets, get them populated, and import the data into the system and start processing your information.

We want you to be successful from the very beginning. BaseBuilders helps you create a more efficient project management system so you and your firm can move forward and grow.

Test drive BaseBuilders today and see how easier it is to work on your projects with a management software designed specifically for your firm!

BaseBuilders was created out of organic growth within our engineering firm. Our founder, Doug Rawson, spent 16 years as an electrical engineer. Six of which were spent as an employee, and ten as a principal running his own practice.

With 10-12 professionals running the operations through the years, we often encountered similar problems. We needed a tool that would help make project management easier. However, we couldn't find anything in the marketplace. At least not one that was affordable for a small or medium-sized firm.

We decided to build the tool ourselves. For eight years, we only used BaseBuilders in-house. But we found that other small and medium-sized AE firms needed the tool we created, so we launched BaseBuilders to the public.

BaseBuilders came from an internal problem. It's a tool specifically designed to help small and medium-sized AE firms fulfill a lot of project management needs. This solution came from the inside out.

Test drive BaseBuilders today and see how it can make project management easier for your firm! 

Absolutely not. We have clients with two to three team members, and we have ones with up to 50 employees. On average, we serve firms with around 10 to 12 employees.

We like working with small companies. It's our niche client that we love to help succeed. Our software integrates with QuickBooks, which is the preferred accounting package for smaller firms.

Whether you're a small or a mid-sized firm, we have solutions specifically built for your needs. Test drive this software today and see the difference in the time and effort you'll save.

Our largest client has about 500 employees. BaseBuilders can deal with multiple users going in and out of the system. It's robust enough, and it won't bug down or get in the way of you running a large firm.

BaseBuilders is designed for the project management needs of AE firms, no matter how big or small. If you're looking for an integrated tool where you can do your accounting, HR, and project management, we may not be your answer.

However, BaseBuilders easily integrates with QuickBooks. If you can run your company in QuickBooks, we are a great fit for your firm. BaseBuilders can fill in the gaps by helping you manage billing, invoices, and other project management tasks.

You can run a small, medium, or large-sized AE firm with relative ease when you subscribe to BaseBuilders. Test drive our software today and see the difference!

No, we don't offer any long-term contracts.

You can sign up and pay monthly and cancel at any time. In fact, you can add or subtract users to your subscription at no extra charge.

We're very flexible, and we want to be a good fit for your firm at the size it is today.

We've seen clients that have gone up and those that encountered downturns. We've had clients that ramped up their hiring and ones that had to downsize. We just want to be there for them and be the right size to fit what they need.

The closest offer we have to a long-term contract is an annual payment. You can decide to pay for the year in advance, and you can cancel it at any time as well. We don't require prior notice. If you're done, you're done.

We want you to be comfortable in using BaseBuilders whenever you need its features. We don't want you to get stuck in a long-term contract and have to dread paying for it until the last day.

Test drive BaseBuilders today and see how much better project management can be.

 

One of the things that are critical to a firm is knowing what their net billings are. Some professionals don't use the term much, so here's a quick definition:

Net billings is the invoice your firm receives, minus the amount you owe from said invoice to your sub-consultants.

It's very typical for Architects to get a big fee and dole it out to various consultants, whether it's the Structural Engineer, Mechanical Engineer, Electrical Engineer, etc.

Knowing your billings is critical. Let's say you billed $80,000 last month. How much of that amount is earmarked to stay with your firm so you can keep running your business? Not a lot of software will help you understand that—ours does.

BaseBuilders will show you how much you're billed for a project and how much of that particular project is a liability to your consultants, whether or not they've actually billed you.

You don't have to worry about consultants lagging behind on their invoices. BaseBuilders helps you take those liabilities and accounts for them as you go through your billings, so you always know what's yours and what your firm gets to keep from every invoice.

Try BaseBuilders today and see how easier it is to have a project management software built specifically for your needs.

A lot of software companies keep various features reserved for higher tier levels and packages - we don't. When you subscribe to BaseBuilders, you get the complete project management software and multiple channels of support.

You can reach us through email, text, Zoom, or phone calls. We are dedicated to doing whatever it takes to help our clients succeed. Our philosophy is to create software easy enough for people to use without making a phone call. It's on us to take care of you.

We've seen all the options available out there for AE firms, and we want to bring you a project management system that doesn't require all your money, just to get it up and running. When you pay your upfront fee to use BaseBuilders, you get to use it immediately and get your data into the system. Training you and your firm to use the software is free.

Test drive BaseBuilders today. We'll schedule meetings and guide you every step of the way. There's no need for tier upgrades - you'll get full access to the software you paid for, nothing less.

Your overhead factor accurately measures your project profitability. Accounting packages can show you how much money you made, but they can't present data on which projects made the most money. You may have it in your gut, but can you tell exactly how each project is doing?

Your overhead factor tells you which projects are the most and the least profitable. It tells you how much net profit you're hitting.

The best firms are making up to 30% profit across their projects. But average firms are in the low teens. And the smaller ones are down in single-digit profits.

BaseBuilders can help you identify where you make your profit and which projects make the most money for your firm. Knowing your overhead factor will help you make the best business decisions and enable you to get to the bottom line number on your projects.

Test drive BaseBuilders today and start to get accurate reports on how your projects are actually doing.

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FEATURES & INTEGRATIONS

You don’t have to pay a penny. We have a host of online training videos and documentation. Beyond that, all of our support is FREE and unlimited—and done by a human.

We do not charge for support.

BaseBuilders is an efficient and reliable software package. Once your firm gets acclimated to the system, we believe you won't be needing much support from our end.

But if we have mistakes and find parts of the software that doesn't work intuitively, then it's on us to get you up and running in using it. BaseBuilders is designed to be user-friendly, and whenever you need our help to make it work better for you and your firm, we'll be happy to help for free.

At the core, BaseBuilders gives you clarity. You're going to know where each of your projects sits at any given time—from a labor standpoint to cost, profitability, and so much more.

Our project management software lets you know what you need to work on and where you're making money.

BaseBuilders also helps streamline your processes. One of our clients runs a small firm and was spending eight hours on billings. This client would come in on the weekends and spend all Saturday to get invoices out.

Now, he gets it all done in under two hours.

It would still take time to get your invoices done, but two hours is a big improvement from eight. Imagine what you can do with the time you'll save and how much growth you can usher in just by being more efficient and effective. BaseBuilders helps you get the job done easier.

Test drive this software today and see how much more efficient you can be at managing your firm's projects.

Currently, we integrate with QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Desktop (all versions).

Learning a new software after using project management packages like QuickBooks for years is always unfun in a lot of cases. Forcing your bookkeeper or office manager to get used to a new system for invoicing can stress them out.

Almost 80% of all AE firms across the US and Canada are running QuickBooks. Instead of reinventing the wheel, we designed BaseBuilders to integrate with QuickBooks.

There's a philosophy amongst software folks - data only gets entered once, and BaseBuilders does a much better job in billing than QuickBooks. You can take your invoices, time slips, receipts, and income pieces and push them all into QuickBooks. You can do it in batches or on a one-by-one basis, so nothing goes into QuickBooks until you're ready for it to go in.

BaseBuilders is not an accounting software - that's why we integrate with QuickBooks.

When you want to make changes to an invoice in QuickBooks, the same adjustments happen in BaseBuilders. When you edit information and hit update on BaseBuilders, the same happens on QuickBooks. This integration will not mess up your book or break your system.

Our project management system is a productivity tool that gives you key insights into your firm's projects and profitability. BaseBuilders is designed to empower your firm with the tools you need to track your projects in real-time, stay on top of outstanding invoices, and so much more.

Plus, we'll help you in every step of the integration process. We won't charge you for extra training and whenever you call for help. Test drive BaseBuilders today and learn how easier it is to have a productivity tool that makes working with QuickBooks a lot easier.

It takes a lot to run an AE firm. When you're hiring a new employee, for example, you need to know how much billings you need to create to cover the cost of a new team member.

You have to think about the burden rate—the salary you're paying the employee plus the cost of their benefits and other direct costs. You also have to be on top of your direct labor, which encompasses everything you're getting paid to do.

Then there's the overhead factor or the indirect cost you have for every dollar of direct labor delivered. Overhead is all the other things that run the office, from rent to errors and omissions insurance, internet and phone bills, and your indirect labor.

Break down your indirect labor, and you realize you have to pay for vacation time, holiday time, and sick time. On top of that, you have marketing expenses, office management expenses, and billings. When you pay someone to do all those things, they are included in your indirect labor as well.

One way to calculate your overhead factor is to take all of your expenses, including your labor, and subtract your direct labor cost. Then, you take your direct labor and divide it into what was left after you did the previous subtraction.

Most AE firms in the US pay about $1.60 of overhead for every dollar earned from direct labor. Your billing rates can even grow up to three times what you pay yourself or your employees!

Another way to calculate your overhead factor is to look at your firm for a 12-month period. Some expenses only come once a year. Some projects overlap, while others run from year to year. If you calculate the biggest expenses during the month when it hits, you might end up inflating your overhead factor.

What you want is to get your overhead factor and spread it out evenly so it goes across your projects and you allocate them equally. The simplest way to do that, according to the industry standard, is to take your direct labor then add the overhead factor.

An even simpler way to take of all the concerns about overhead factor is to use BaseBuilders.

Our software enables you to put in your overhead factor and automates the rest of the process. Whenever somebody charges a bit of time, that factor is added to that time slip. BaseBuilders gives you a day-by-day costing overview, so you know exactly how your projects are costing you. You can also look at your net profits on a project-by-project basis.

If you're running QuickBooks, like most of our clients are, and you need a profitability report, it can only factor indirect cost. It's not designed to factor in your overhead cost, so you never really know how much net profit you've earned on a particular job. You might look at your project and think you're making money, but you're actually losing profit.

With BaseBuilders, you can calculate your overhead factor easily so you can see how your projects are really doing. Test drive BaseBuilders today to see if our software works best for your firm!

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ACCESSIBILITY & SECURITY

BaseBuilders is hosted in the cloud. You can access it anywhere you have an Internet connection.

You're probably not going to find that when you're peeking out of the top of Mount Everest. But if you're in a reasonable location with Internet connectivity, you can connect to your BaseBuilders account.

Whether you're in a hotel, a meeting, or even a job site, as long as you have Internet service, you've got our software.

Test drive BaseBuilders today and experience the benefits of having a flexible project management system by your side.

Yes. We use some of the industries most stringent protocols to ensure that your data is safe and secure. Our security is backed by the rigorous systems built by Amazon Web Services, who host data for countless online applications.

BaseBuilders can do multiple types of invoices. If you break down your projects into phases, you can be billed independently on five invoicing formats.

Fixed Fee

Also known as Stipulated Sum or Lump Sum. BaseBuilders makes it easy for you to bill a percentage of completion on your projects.

Hourly Contract

You can easily set your billing rates based on the hours worked, and BaseBuilders give you the invoicing data you need.

Hourly Not-To-Exceed Contract

We don't usually recommend that you do this, but if you don't want to over-bill beyond the hourly amount, BaseBuilders can help you with that as well.

Cost Plus

You can do your billing based on the actual pay right of the employee, including mark-ups for both overhead and profit.

Cost Plus Not-To-Exceed

Like the Hourly Not-To-Exceed Contract, these types of invoicing don't usually work in your favor. But if you can manage to make it work, BaseBuilders can also help you handle it.

Additional Features

BaseBuilders also enables you to bill reimbursable expenses. If you have sub-consultants and you want to pass their bills through, you can do that as well. You can also apply discounts and adjust add-ons with ease.

We haven't found an invoicing situation that BaseBuilders can't handle. We might someday, but we're always ready to take it on when it happens.

Test drive BaseBuilders today and make invoicing a lot easier for you and the rest of your firm!

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