From the July 2009 Review of Construction/Contractor Accounting Systems
Builder Information System (BIS) offers construction-focused businesses a solid and completely integrated suite of accounting and business management applications. The Standard Edition core program modules include General Ledger, Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable, Payroll, Job Costing and Job Billing. Union, Bank Reconciliation, Subcontract Control and Password modules are also available. In the Professional & Enterprise Editions, in addition to all the modules above, other modules available include Document Link & Imaging, Document Manager, Equipment Control, Inventory, Purchase Orders, Report Writer, Job Scheduling and Report Server. Also available are methods for customizing drilldown functions to link to other supporting documents in the program.
The Report Server module allows prescheduled printing and/or emailing of single or groups of reports to one or many. The Document Link & Imaging module allows users to attach any image or document file to a job or many other records within the program. BIS is offered in three versions: Standard, Professional and Enterprise, with pricing for the Standard system starting around $4,000, and it will support up to three concurrent users. The other versions offer more advanced capabilities and module options, along with support for up to hundreds of concurrent users.
Learning Curve/Ease of Use:
The BIS program includes 6 months of unlimited Support. Help functions also assist in initial setup tasks. The program opens within an interface that offers multiple navigation options, including a left-side vertical menu for accessing several program functions and user-customizable features, such as the My Desktop, My Favorites, My Workspaces and My Dashboard screens. All of these interfaces provide friendly navigation, making it easy for users to find the program functions they use most often. The My Desktop view provides users with a three-paneled screen that includes the system menu with links to various program features, along with a customizable area in the middle for accessing key tasks, and a reports field on the right.
The My Dashboard screen also provides good management features, providing an overview of jobs and key business stats, with quick access to underlying factors, such as job status, equipment usage, labor, scheduling, billing, reports and client histories. In addition to the customizable “My” screens, the system offers many other user-controllable options, including the ability to create several custom data fields in all Master Records.
Data-entry screens appear in subwindows that provide tabbed forms for grouping categorical information, with entry fields providing lookup options and selection lists. With BIS’s Document Link function, any file or document can be attached to many records within the system, including images, invoices, spreadsheets and other items. The system maintains a full-time audit trail and has a feature that, if a user makes changes to an existing transaction, automatically creates and posts an appropriate adjusting entry.