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Tenrox — Tenrox Timesheet 8.5

From the November 2005 Review of Time
& Billing Software

Tenrox Timesheet is a browser-based system for tracking and billing time and
expenses. The system is hosted on a business’ file server or on Tenrox’s
servers through a hosting arrangement, making it accessible using Internet Explorer
to employees on the server network. It can also be set up to provide access
from remote settings. Timesheet’s capabilities include project accounting
and costing, invoicing, workforce management and reporting. As well, Tenrox
offers optional modules for Professional Services Automation and Portfolio and
Project Management. The system is geared toward larger organizations with hundreds
of time-based employees, with an XML base that aids in regulatory compliance.
Timesheet costs $100 per user per module, with discounts available for large

Sakson & Taylor ( is
a content design and development consulting firm that provides global and scalable
content solutions focused on creating competitive advantage for its customers.
Its headquarters are in Seattle, Washington, but the firm also has offices in
Boise; Fort Collins, Colorado; and Portland, Oregon. The whole organization
consists of about 200 users.

Lisa Randall is the firm’s Project Manager/System Administrator/Project
Coordinator with the Tenrox initiative, and she says they considered the following
things before selecting the program: “We looked at the product’s
functionality overall based on our business needs, cost, and how user friendly
the tool was to use as well as manipulate from a data standpoint, as we like
to do a lot of slicing and dicing from a utilization/revenue standpoint.”
She also says they were impressed with the level of technical support and service
they would be receiving because her firm has a lot of complex situations, which
was also an important element.

Sakson & Taylor is currently in phase four of implementation with two
more phases to go, but Randall says: “There is not one area that we utilize
more than another, as we really depend on this system to keep our organization
running. This system has more structure than what we have had in place, and
we are really utilizing all modules that Tenrox has available.”

Randall’s primary recommendation to potential users who are rolling
out the timekeeping and projects piece would be to have one to two administrators
that work full-time on the implementation to ensure that the day-to-day operations
go smoothly. “If you are just focusing on the timekeeping piece,”
she says, “I would recommend one admin.” She also advises that you
have someone who is savvy in SQL because that’s what the reports are based
on. “You will most likely spend some time tweaking these reports because,
although they offer a lot of canned reports, this is one of Tenrox’s areas
they could have worked on a bit better.”

Ease of Use/Program Set Up — 4.5 Stars
Because the system is web-based on the user end, growing accustomed to the IE
interface is generally instant, although learning the vast functionality of
this program could take some time. Fortunately, the program offers several customization
features, including configuration of the Web interface, which provides each
user with access only to the functions they are authorized to use and, for efficiency’s
sake, shows them the functions they use most often and tasks that require action
by them. The program generally utilizes graphical workflow images, allowing
users to visually see the approval process and status of submitted timesheets,
expense reports and invoices. Similarly, this system allows management to easily
see the items they need to address, which timesheets need to be approved, and
reports or invoices that should be processed.

The primary work screen provides an expandable menu tree on the left, with
pull-down navigation menus across the top and the work/document area occupying
the remainder of the window. These text-based menus offer access to the primary
components of the system, including Track, Manage, Tools, Report and Setup,
as well as additional links to Help functions. A client list is accessible through
the Client Central menu, which displays a summary of client data and links to
tasks for that client. Stopwatch timers are also available for time tracking
and entry.

On time and expense data-entry screens, users select from a list of clients
and projects to which they are assigned and fill in time per project and day,
with the option to select from specific work codes or tasking for more detailed
entries. The system also enables users to attach notes, comments or documents.
Timesheet includes web-based and e-mail time entry and support for wireless
devices. The program offers customizable templates for various industry types,
with industry-specific reports for workflow, terminology, menus, pages and e-mail

Management Functions — 5 Stars
The system can support any number of clients and timekeeping staff, as well
as any number of work codes, projects and rates. Staff members can have an unlimited
number of billable rates, and the system’s AR functions support multiple
interest rates on aging accounts. In addition to time-based billing, Timesheet
allows pro-rated and flat rates, with support for negative expense entries.
Additionally, date-based hourly rate rules can be assigned to groups, users,
clients, projects and tasks. Expense markups can be easily applied by percentage
or flat rate, with the ability to split billing of time between multiple clients.
Timesheet allows multiple taxes for expenses, rate rules, invoices and payables,
and supports multiple currencies. Timesheet includes tax tables for all major
taxing jurisdictions, updateable manually, through program updates or via import
from other financial systems.

Tenrox is more than a time and expense billing system; it is geared more to
be a business’ enterprise resource planning (ERP) system for professional
services or project accounting, with a strong emphasis on maintaining strict
workflow processes. It automatically routes time and expense entries to management
for review and approval after each closing period, as defined during setup.
Managers and other administrative staff are provided with customized executive
dashboards that provide additional functions and visual data displays for overviews
of productivity, project status, analyses and other processes with drill-down
capability. The system also manages HR tasks such as leave and holiday accruals,
workforce policies and offers integration with selected payroll systems.

Billing & Reporting — 4.5 Stars
Timesheet incorporates a real-time rate engine that ensures that the cost and
revenue of any time, expense or charge is immediately calculated at the point
of entry, which enhances real-time analysis and drill-down/drill-up reporting.
The Report Central section provides most of the system’s reporting functions,
with a view of available system reports. The program also houses an XML report
builder that can create new reports or customize existing templates, including
moving field positions and adding images. Detail and summary text-based and
graphical reports can be generated for projects, staff members, clients, groups
and offices.

Integration — 5 Stars
Tenrox has extensive integration capabilities with the ability to share data
collected within the system with external programs that include ADP and Ceridian
payroll systems as well as the following financial systems: ACCPAC, Microsoft
Great Plains, Microsoft Small Business Accounting, QuickBooks, SAP BusinessOne,
Navision, etc. AR, AP and GL data is automatically routed, and the system’s
multi-currency and support for multiple tax processing works with other systems’
financials. The program also shares data with Microsoft Project, Oracle, Lawson
and SharePoint. Remote access is available via PDAs.

User Support & Help — 4 Stars
The built-in Help utility offers traditional assistance functions, and the vendor
offers an online support center with online FAQs and other information. Training
options and subscription support packages are available at an additional cost.
Randall says they have had to log issues from time to time, “but our experience
with technical support has been superb.” She says they are timely and
very knowledgeable, “and if it is a more complex problem, they often conduct
a net meeting with you to ensure you understand what was going on.”

2005 Overall Rating: 4.5 Stars