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Learning the intricacies of managing your consulting business is the way to make it profitable and successful. In simplest terms, establishing scope is achieving agreement with your client on what you are expected to provide in exchange for an agreed upon fee. To determine pricing, estimate the amount of time and other resources you will have to invest in order to complete the deliverable. Too many consultants spend countless hours reworking a project because they failed to reach agreement on results. During the project, ensure that your client is comfortable with the hours you are actually billing. For both deliverable and time and material projects it is important to establish a billing schedule to get cash into your business. While initially you may only work with one client, the growth of your practice will bring additional clients.
The porpoise effect is when you are heads down underwater hard at work for so long, that when you surface, there is no work on the horizon. Slideshare uses cookies to improve functionality and performance, and to provide you with relevant advertising. Our white paper is now free to download due to popular demand, please click on the image below.
ERAsoft is extremely knowledgeable of complex thermal operations, systems and processes enabling fast and efficient programming solutions.
At ERAsoft we specialize in rationalizing, organizing and designing database structures to help our clients better understand their data and use it to their advantage.
Origins: The money manager emerged from the combination of my budget planner, monthly budget, and checkbook register templates.
As a preliminary caution, you should be comfortable using a spreadsheet and understand that spreadsheets are fairly error-prone. Download the Vertex42® Money Manager - a free Money Management Template for Excel that lets you track expenses and manage your budget! I will be the first to admit that the most complicated part of using the Vertex42® Money Manager is customizing the budget categories. What you need to watch out for: If you assign a transaction to a category that is not included in the Budget or Report worksheets, the expense won't show up in your reports and you'll think you have more money than you really do. I've tried very hard to include a comprehensive set of income and expense categories, so if customizing the categories is too scary, just try to use the default list. The second most difficult part of using the money management template is learning to enter transactions into the Transaction worksheet correctly and efficiently. After a while, you may find that entering transactions with the spreadsheet is faster than using Quicken because of how easy it is to copy and paste, using older transactions as "templates" for new transactions.
A very important part of good money management is keeping track of how your current spending compares to your budget.


Use the Report worksheet to compare your budget to your actual spending throughout the month. Disclaimer: This spreadsheet and the information on this page is for illustrative and educational purposes only. In addition to the challenges faced by all business owners, you will need to manage client expectations and deliver high quality services.
Ensuring services meet customer expectations, however, is more difficult than verifying a vendor delivered a certain quantity of an item. In time and materials projects, you are paid your hourly rate for time invested plus any out of pocket expenses you incur on behalf of your client. If you are working on an hourly basis perhaps the generation and acceptance of a periodic status report can trigger an invoice to the client. So while you are hard at work putting in the hours and constructing your deliverables, you still need to budget time for finding the next project.
Multiple systems can be made into one cohesive package.  We will manage the data migration into new systems, test, validate and fill any gaps.
It has long been my goal to create a simple, macro-free, money management spreadsheet that provides the same functionality as basic budgeting and money management software. By that I mean that even if the spreadsheet is completely free of errors at FIRST, there is no guarantee that you won't accidentally introduce errors yourself. Include your Credit Card account(s), Checking account(s), Savings account(s), and even an account to represent your Cash, Purse, or Wallet. Use the reconcile (R) column in the table to enter cleared "c" and reconciled "R" transactions. I've added conditional formatting to help prevent these types of mistakes, but the spreadsheet is definitely not error-proof. For now, you can learn about creating a budget in almost any personal finance book, reading online blog articles on budgeting, etc.
If you have a good understanding of how to copy, insert, and delete rows, it should be piece of cake. You might check your budget status on a weekly or even daily basis, but you should at least manage your money on a monthly basis. You can change the month by simply entering the month number (1 for January, 2 for February, etc).
This is why it is important to establish, in as much detail as possible before the start of the project, what the client is expecting and what level of effort it will take you to provide this. Based on this estimate and your rate for services, you can compute what to charge your client. Often times, certain steps in your project plan cannot be accomplished because they are dependent on someone from the clients’ organization. The key to success in these types of projects is to reach an agreement in advance as to the number of hours you will spend on a particular task.


Rather than waiting till tasks are complete and submitting a bill, provide regular periodic reports indicating what you are doing and how many hours you have spent doing it. For deliverable-based projects that extend out over more than a two to four week time period you need to establish interim billing milestones.
This might be in the form of additional work from an existing client or from an entirely new project. A simple spreadsheet will never do everything that dedicated software can do, but the new Vertex42® Money Management Template comes amazingly close.
Essentially, you just need to make sure that the categories are exactly the same in all worksheets.
It is very important that you always copy entire rows (instead of inserting blank rows) so that you preserve the formatting, data validation, and formulas that are both visible and contained in hidden columns. If you know how to define "Lists" or "Tables", go for it, but make sure you know what you are doing. While there are several ways that consultants bill for services, the most common are deliverable-based or time and materials.
Even if you agree on a fair cost for this, you still need to specify what the components and contents of the deliverable that will be included. Inform the client of the level of support or involvement you will need from his or her organization.
One way to do this is to break down the large deliverable into “manageable chunks” that are integral to the progress and successful completion of the overall project. Use the built-in Excel autofiltering to display transactions for a single account or all accounts. If you know how to use Autofiltering, you may find it convenient to use the filtering to display transactions for a single Account at a time when you are reconciling. I also have no plans in the future to add the ability to automatically import transactions from your bank or other financial institution.
They can be events that you have planned or complete conversions of operations or technology. Learning to exceed your client expectations at the same time you are making money will provide you with great rewards.
If you want that kind of functionality, you may want to use some other dedicated budget software.



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