The key to the software is to properly set up QuickBooks to meet your needs. You lay out a chart of accounting accounts, buckets to dump data into, then identify your classes of work, create the nine phases of costs (QuickBooks uses item numbers) and finally identify the projects.
Use Phase Accounting in Construction – Part I
Phase accounting with construction is used to break out costs into functional groups similar to the process of constructing the particular project. Phase accounting includes cost drivers for admin, labor burden and other indirect costs.
As a construction company owner, you need a profit and loss statement that conveys information in a format that will identify how much you are truly making as a profit. The best format is a construction profit and loss statement identifying contract revenues, direct costs, indirect costs and the overhead expenses. This format most closely matches the estimating style of most small construction companies.
At the end of the day, it is about the profit you make with your company. This format will point out where the problem is located and where the best performance occurs. When I look at a P&L, I want to quickly identify issues and concerns and get them addressed. If you use this format along with the project accounting reports I illustrate in other articles, not only will you quickly discover any problems, but you can actually pin point the underlying issues and get them resolved. This will add thousands of dollars to your bottom line. So as you read this article, remember you are trying to improve that bottom line, this format is absolutely the best tool to achieve that goal.