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Quickbooks and Base Camp

QuickBooks & Base Camp

I have a new client who designs high end websites.  Most of the contracts are fixed fee.  The company uses QB Enterprise, poorly.  Does not use the Professional Services module.  Does not know job profitability.  Lots of work to do.

The company also uses Base Camp for project tracking (their words).  My first look at Base Camp is limited.  The client uses it to post ToDos for the company and the client.

Can Base Camp be used to feed project data to QB?  Are there any other financial uses for Base Camp?

Answers

Ken Kaufman
Title: CFO
Company: Community Dental Partners
LinkedIn Profile
(CFO, Community Dental Partners) |

Jim,

I also have a client that uses BaseCamp. The same client imports the customer information into a SaaS program called Harvest. All of the 50+ employees track their time in Harvest, and then we download that into QuickBooks for Payroll and job-costing. It works VERY well for that.

Other than keeping project names and data consistent with downloads from BaseCamp to QB, I am not familiar with any other data integration opportunities. I would love to hear if anyone else has experience with that.

Jim McCloskey
Title: Managing Partner
Company: Catapult CFO Partners
(Managing Partner, Catapult CFO Partners) |

Ken, could we have an offline call on this subject? I can be reached at 303-883-4565. I am in Denver.
I want to understand what data you download from Base Camp to QB. My client uses BC as a to-do list, collaboration tool among their web site developers and the client.
Thanks,
Jim McCloskey

Phil Murray
Title: VP of Finance & Administration
Company: Kimbia, Inc.
(VP of Finance & Administration, Kimbia, Inc.) |

My main discovery, having used Basecamp for a time with a startup I'm involved in, is that it's an excellent, simple project management tool that helps keep all team information, communication, to-do's, etc. in a single place. But I don't see where it would be an effective tool for time tracking. Depending on how many customers they're dealing with, the ability to export customer info from Basecamp (which can't be done easily, by the way) into another app is limited in its benefit.

I would recommend you not discourage their use of Basecamp-- it helps them manage workflow in a way that QuickBooks is obviously not designed to do-- but certainly do encourage them to use a time-tracking tool such as the Prof Svcs module of QuickBooks that you mentioned or another tool such as Harvest.

Also, if you look at the Basecamp Extras & Add-on's page, if you scroll down on the page there's a whole collection of "Time Tracking" applications that are designed to work with basecamp:

http://basecamphq.com/extras

Phil Murray
Title: VP of Finance & Administration
Company: Kimbia, Inc.
(VP of Finance & Administration, Kimbia, Inc.) |

Here, to make things a bit easier, here's links to the different tools Basecamp currently has listed on their site that are for time tracking and that work Basecamp:

Project Recon - http://www.projectrecon.net/
Tick - http://www.tickspot.com/screenshots/ss_basecamp.html
Chronicle - http://getchronicle.com/
Harvest - http://getharvest.com/
Toggl - http://www.toggl.com/
Sundial - http://wearetrue.com/blog/?p=191
Basecamp Time Widget - http://bitbucket.org/seph/basecamp-time-widget/wiki/Home
Timy - http://www.timy.be/
Paymo - http://www.paymo.biz/

Assuming one goal of yours is to get the team using a time-tracking application, you may want to seriously consider one of these tools, since they are SaaS based and it the company already uses Basecamp they probably are very comfortable and accepting of an online tool. And, assuming the time-tracking tool that you adopt does support time exports to QuickBooks (for example, Ken mentioned that Harvest does), then that should help accomplish what you're going for.

Topic Expert
Mark Von Der Linn
Title: Principal
Company: www.VDLconsulting.com
(Principal, www.VDLconsulting.com) |

My client is moving away from Basecamp and looking seriously at Intervals (www.myintervals.com). Intervals provides better timekeeping functionality and much better management reports and tools (my past experience with basecamp is the reporting is non-existent). I have tested the Export to Qbooks and so far so good.

Mark
www.VDLconsulting.com

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