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Time & Budgets
Update your templates for Time & Budgets
Update your templates for Time & Budgets

Set up budgets and adjust dollar amounts via estimates in your work template to apply to all work items created off of the template.

Erin Jamison avatar
Written by Erin Jamison
Updated over a week ago

After you've turned on Time & Budget's in your settings, the next step is to update your templates in order to take advantage of all the features of Time & Budgets. In this article you'll learn how to set the budget in a template, and how to adjust the dollar amount and fee type.


Specify fee settings for work templates (or work)

For each work template or work item, you are able to specify how you collect fees from the client when completing the work on the 'Time & Budget' tab or editing a work template in the 'Budget' tab.

Note: the 'Budget' tab within work templates and 'Time & Budget' tab within work and contacts will only display if the Time & Budgets feature is turned on in Settings.

There are three choices to choose from:

  • Time & materials:
    Choose this to build up your billable amount for a job as you track time for the job. Your budget will reflect what you estimate and your Fees - Time & Materials will grow as the actuals grow.

  • Fixed fee:
    When selected, the Fees - Fixed Fees total shown will show the full amount of the fixed fee vs. increasing over time like with Time & Materials. The Budget amount will look different to your fixed fee amount as is based on your estimated time and relative dollar amounts to calculate. In almost all cases, your budget should be less than your fixed fee total unless it is a loss leader service item (e.g. 1st month of advisory vs. ongoing advisory).

  • Non-billable:
    When non-billable is selected, the Fees section on the Budget Overview will disappear since no fees will be collected for this work item.

To set up your 'Billing Settings' in a work template, go into your 'Main Menu', choose Settings, then click on 'Work Templates', open the template you'd like to edit, and go into the 'Budget' tab to select 'Billing Settings'.

There you will be prompted to choose your 'Work Fee Type'.

Note: If you would like to instead set up your 'Fee Settings' on a work by work basis, you can go into your work item and open up the 'Time & Budget' tab and edit your 'Work Fee Type' there.

When using Fees, you will also see a total on the Work Kanban view calculating the total for all collected fixed fees plus all budgeted time & materials engagements. Use the filter on the Work Kanban view to select the type of Fees you want to drill down to see. This pertains to your estimated fees on the work. Whether actual time spent is calculated as billable or not is controlled by your Task Types.

Setting the Budget in a Work Template

Open a specific Work Template from Main Menu > Settings > Work Templates. From that Template, select the 'Budget' tab. There, you will be able to add in your Budget and Time estimates by using the 'Add Budget Estimate' button.

Note: The 'Budget' tab will only display if Budgets is turned on in Settings > Time & Budgets. In addition, Fees won't be displayed unless you choose 'Time & Dollars' for the 'Budget' option in the Time & Budgets settings.

When setting up a budget within a template, you will first need to determine your Billing Settings. You can choose between three Fee Types (time & materials, fixed fee, and non-billable) for the work template.

When adding an estimate to a template, add the appropriate Role, Task Type, hourly billing rate (click Use Default), and the estimated time to complete in hours and minutes. The Team Member field isn't typically added in a work template, but would be on a work item where the resources are already assigned. Once complete, the 'Estimate Total' will calculate and you can click 'Save'.

Repeat this process for all associated Task Types per Role and for all Roles that participate to complete the work. This will create an accurate budget that can be reviewed in total in the Budget Overview and by Role / Task Type / Team Member in the budget details table.

Once your template is all set up, you can then begin creating your work off of your template as usual and add in your actual time, expenses and more as you complete the work. If you would like any prior work created off of this template to inherit the budgets you will need to reset your work to the template.

Tip: Regardless if a fixed fee or time & materials engagement, after completing the budget estimate for all roles and task types, review the budget from the Budget Overview to see if the total hours and dollars reflect your expectations for the given service work. If too high or too low, review the time estimates provided or review your billing rates per role and task type.

Adjust dollar amounts (by Roles and by Task Type)

In Time & Budgets, billing rates are associated to Roles (which colleagues inherent) and further customized by task types by role. As such, you can specify that an Accountant on your team may charge $X per hour for any work performed, or customize by the work completed (e.g. $Y per hour for Bookkeeping activities and $Z per hour for Admin activities).

The Dollar Amount is the default rate that is used when you create an estimate for that Role and Task Type. They can be edited on templates and on work items.

To configure this, you will need to setup the following:

If you're tracking budgets for both Time and Dollars, you will additionally be able calculate your dollars with the use of dollar amounts within Roles found at: Settings > Colleagues > Roles tab.

You can update the dollar amount of a Role to have a standard rate. This rate will apply to ALL of your Task Types that are marked as billable.

Alternatively, you can set a custom dollar amount for each and every Task Type. This allows you to choose which Task Types get which dollar amounts. Any task type marked non-billable will not permit you to add a billing rate.

Once set, you will be able to add budgets by specifying who does the work (e.g. Colleague and/or Role), for how much (by task type and its associated billing rate) and for how long. Budgets can easily be added in work templates on the 'Budget' tab or in work items on the 'Time & Budgets' tab by clicking 'Add Budget Estimate'.

Updating Billable Rates

When you make updates to Billable Rates within the job role, all work items in Planned, Ready to Start, In progress and Waiting that currently have that default rate will be updated as well to reflect the new Billable Rate.

If you have created a customized rate, they will not change.

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