Topic Thread

Mobile Time Entry Suggestion & Phase Code Assistance

  • 1.  Mobile Time Entry Suggestion & Phase Code Assistance

    Posted 10-09-2018 15:35
    Hi all,

    A quick suggestion and also a plea for help.

    Suggestion: If you are looking for a mobile time entry option, I highly recommend Tsheets. We initially trialed Workmax, which is one of AboutTime's platforms. It looked impressive and the help desk was great, but we experienced issue, after issue. In comparison, Tsheets is flexible, but also very user-friendly.

    Plea for help: we are a medium size contractor that build highways and roads, primarily for the Department of Transportation. We are paid by their bid item (normally around 100 bid items per job) and we set up our own phase codes for each bid item (a typical job has 400 phase codes), which are also broken down into up to 8 cost types (Labor, equipment etc.). Is this amount of detail normal? Has anyone been in this situation and simplified their approach or can recommend a simpler approach?

    Any thoughts/advice will be greatly appreciated.


    Joel Daniher
    General Manager/CFO
    Schellinger Construction Co., Inc.
    Columbia Falls MT
    (406) 892-2188

  • 2.  RE: Mobile Time Entry Suggestion & Phase Code Assistance

    Posted 10-10-2018 09:27

    Joel, we are also a general contractor working for DOT's in Mass, RI, and CT. We mimic the DOT's bid items with our phase codes, plus a handful of others for non-pay costs we incur like our superintendent's costs. We use Vista by Viewpoint, and the structure of the phase codes is as similar to the DOT items as we can get it, but often will include trailing zeroes in order to have them sort in the proper order. 100.1 for the DOT will be 100.100 in Vista. We use 7 cost types instead of your 8, but otherwise, we are similar to your level of detail, except if you're using four times the number of items for phase codes, you must have a lot more detail than we do. Not sure if anyone is digging into the detail and getting something out of it, but it seems like that's the real question. In our case, we only dig into the detail we have if we have a problem with an item, but if we had your amount of detail, I don't think that would particularly help. We can always get all the way down to transactional detail if we need to, so our level of detail is sufficient for us.

    Hope that helps.






    Paul L. DeRoche, Controller

    MIG Corporation, Inc.

    One Acton Place, Suite 200

    Acton, MA 01720


    Cell: 978-317-3182

    Office: 978-264-4800

    Fax: 978-264-0123


  • 3.  RE: Mobile Time Entry Suggestion & Phase Code Assistance

    Posted 10-10-2018 12:33
    ​We also do match the PE from our DOT and have 7 cost types that are commonly used on most jobs.  It is extremely time consuming and complicated.  We are using Viewpoint/Vista and it works well for this level of complexity.
    I did work in the past for a paving road contractor that did not do this.
    Their philosophy was that the DOT never saw their PE, it was all internal.  The job bill was lumped into 2 or 3 phases, and 3 cost types.
    It was grade, sub-grade and pave.  The cost types were for labor, materials and supplies.
    The DOT PE was grouped into these phases - it was pretty simple and worked well for them.
    Sometimes - there were more aspects to the job they would add a phase, but that was basically it.
    I recall that you did a job with them while I was working there.
    If you wish to contact me - I will let you know who they are, but don't feel comfortable sharing in this forum.

    Bonnie Simpson
    Accounting Manager
    Hamilton Construction
    Springfield OR
    (541) 746-2426