About BQE CORE Suite
BQE CORE makes it easier & more profitable to run your firm by automating repetitive tasks & delivering real-time actionable insights.
Overall the experience is good, however the accounting module should be improved in order to be more user friendly.
Early on we had a difficult time understanding the vendor bill workflow.
Filter reviews (554)
Robert c. M.
Valuable software for billing at a law firm
Comments: Bill quick is a perfect solution to create invoices and be able to bill many different attorneys on different projects.
The ability to customize many of its features is great. You can setup and keep track of time associated with various cases, clients, projects. There are so many reports that you can run to keep track of your spending. Able to export invoices to LEDES format. Able to import time from excel spreadsheet.
It takes some time to learn the software, the tech support team was great in getting me up and running. If you want additional reports they have a custom report group but their cost is a bit high to modify reports. It looks a bit complicated but actually it is easy to use.
Great for time and expense tracking, other features are less straightforward
Comments: Overall it gets the job done that we need it to do. Most things are pretty straightforward, but some things you have to dig a little to figure out how to get the information you need.
Works really well for most of what I use it for: time and expense tracking. Customer support is very responsive.
I wish it were easier to see how much money vs time is left in a project.
BillQuick - A look at one year post conversion
BillQuick is a powerful tool in tracking project time and expenses for professional services. We converted from 7 years of Quick Books data. Although the conversion and integration was not a seemless process, and the learning curve was much longer than originally anticipated, we are now tracking project profitability at a much higher level than we ever have before. BillQuick Tech Support is fantastic. They are patient and knowledgeable, and we have received a lot of added value by having the Gold Care Tech Support package added onto our services. Additionally, we have invested quite a bit of extra money on having Bill Quick Customization Department write customized reports. Although the standard reports section is extensive, we were unable to find reports that gave us exactly the data we wanted to see. It's nice that this additional service is offered, but it would be nice for them to give us a handful of customized reports as part of the conversion process and then charge extra from there on out.
The software is not as user-friendly as it could be. Some things are overly complicated and require detailed use before you understand the functionality of the software. It could not be more different that QuickBooks, and the transition for us was difficult. Personally, I highly underestimated the learning curve. In the beginning, we were only using BQ for time and expense logging and we maintained our Quick Books file for all other general accounting, which I would strongly discourage. Although the SYNC feature does work to sync data between programs, it is not a clean sync and much of it needed cleanup on either side of the sync. This was very frustrating. We just recently converted all of our general accounting in QB over to the Accounting portal in BillQuick. This has helped to have all of our financial records in one software system and our data is much more consistent. However, the "Accounting" portal is not perfect and there are a number of features that are lacking where QB has it all dialed in. Examples: 1) in looking at a vendor bill, there is no indication or PAID FLAT to see it has been PAID or not. To see if it is paid, I have to look at the previous checks. 2) In a report that lists all AP checks written for a particular time frame, there is no TOTAL at the end of the report. 3) BQ allows duplicate check numbers. (This is not a complete list, but the top 3 things that drive me insane.) These seem like basic accounting features and for them to not be included in an accounting software is frustrating. DISCLAIMER: we have not yet upgraded to BQ2015 and remain on BQ2014 for a while longer. My understanding is that BQ2015 has updated a number of accounting features, so I look forward to seeing if any of those issues are remedied.
Running a design practice, what they didn't teach you in architecture school
Comments: I check what other apps and services are out there for architects and most are even more overwhelming or offer more than needed for a small practice, or charge much more that it is worth.
Running a practice and staying financially solvent is key with a way to measure progress with tasks, time and fees. CORE does this and in a way architects can understand since it is designed by architects. However, it tries to cover all variations on running a firm and while appreciable, it can be confusing with too many choices to search and select from. The flexibility is a plus once you reach out to customer service (live24/7/365) and they kindly walk you through a solution.
It's a bit complex at the onset of setting up the account and projects. You do it often enough, it does become second nature but it takes time and includes some missteps readily corrected by the help system.
BQE, so easy to use
so easy to use, very little training required. everything is where you expect it to be
there are different reports or ways to view your time, this isnt very clear. i would like to use this feature but don't. this is of little importance to me. i am still able to do what i need to do in the software.
Comments: It's pretty darn easy to use,
I love that it automatically saves after typing things in.
I dont like that every time I type something it, it refreshes and moves to a different place on the screen
Core is the best program for engineers!
Comments: I enjoy using Core more than I enjoy my actual job!
It works so incredibly well. We never have a problem with this software. It never freezes up for any reason and is so simple and intuitive!
I wouldn't change a thing! Core is perfect the way it is.
Easy to use, clear and simple. I liked the time management software especially
The login process. I found it a bit difficult to report multiple expenses in a row
Comments: Assisted in our ability to manage people and projects.
Easy to use. Great Dashboard. Easy to navigate through the system.
The Invoices templates could be better.
Easy to use
After the learning curve, I find it very user friendly. Dashboard is customizable. Support team is also very responsive.
The dashboard contains many tools, which may not be useful for everyone.
it’s truly changed how we operate as a business
Comments: We have only been using the software since September 1st. Previously we were using Excel for project management, timesheets, and AR invoicing. In addition, we were using Word and Excel to generate manual invoices (then converting to PDF). Not only has the billing process been improved, but we have been able to implement Internal Financial Controls. We purchased the HR and Accounting modules a couple of months ago and are in the process of implementing our own HR templates. We are looking forward to automating the HR process. It’s truly changed how we operate as a business and made us ten times more efficient in so many different ways.
The call-in support is always available. The billing module & templates. It is easy to generate invoices. The batch update feature. Uploading documents in various modules. View of information projects are restricted to authorized personnel. Ability to sort and filter various screens. How CORE will remember where you left off if you leave a screen or log-out (same filters, etc.).
Core can use these improvements: 3. What improvements would you like to see in Core • An Accounts Payable Widget that shows open invoices that are due within a customized time frame. • A tracking method for professional continuing education requirements. • Enabling dependency between phases (not just within phase). • Download GANNT chart into Excel that looks like the chart (not just a list). • Being able to modify draft invoices without having to delete and start over. • Vendors – tracking COI’s w/60-day advance reminders. • AP checks to include invoice number (not the bill number). • In the project structure, a separate tool to move a phase up or down (rather than the grab and drop). • The AR invoices to automatically sort to open status only (not all invoices). • The ability to hide or delete built-in accounts in the Chart of Accounts. • Custom HR forms that can be sent to employees and electronically signed. • In billing, projects that are in complete or cancelled status, it will not show up in the drop-down menu when creating batch invoice.
Core has been an integral in helping us to understand and grow our business
Comments: Overall experience has been great as we use Core for our integrated accounting, time/expenses, and invoices, and it has been integral in helping us to understand and grow our business in the first year.
A little over one year back as we started up our new business I was researching for the best accounting, time and expense tracking and billing software. I selected BQE Core because it had an intuitive interface, easy reporting and it was on cloud. For any startup business the cost is always a big factor, the fact that BQE Core was a fraction of other similar software packages was an added bonus! We use BQE for our integrated accounting, time/expenses, and invoices, and it has been integral in helping us to understand and grow our business in the first year. At every moment, I have the info available to understand my cash flow, liabilities and A/R all in one interface, which never would have been possible if I used other accounting software.
In a separate excel doc I track our projected income and expenses for each two-week period so I can plan cash expenditure. If BQE had a feature to track overhead and projections in relation to billable work, that would really integrate all functionality in one software. Other than that, I don't have any suggestions for improvement.
We are particularly impressed with CORE’s user-friendly, “all in one” design
Comments: Our small but rapidly-growing architectural firm was looking for a project management and billing solution. We were particularly impressed with CORE’s user-friendly, “all in one” design.
It provides us with a single source to record employee time, manage project tasks, budget, invoice and track project performance. We took advantage of the various training packages and technical assistance BQE offers to help us get up-to-speed with CORE in a matter of months. BQE also worked with us to develop a custom invoice that provides our clients with current and past billing information in a clean and easy-to-read format. With the mobile app, our partners access CORE data anytime, anywhere, and can record travel expenses directly from their smartphones. BQE has demonstrated to us that they listen and responds to suggestions on how to make CORE an even better program for its users by providing regular updates and enhancements that incorporate our suggestions. We are very pleased with CORE and BQE.”
Everything is working for us and if it does not then that is what support is for. Like any other new software implementation there is a learning curve. We took advantage of the various training packages.
I am happy to say that I took a leap of faith in upgrading my office to BQE
Comments: Prior to using BQE software I used Wind-2 and SEMA4 which are costly programs. I was not a newbie to using project management software when implementing BQE. My greatest frustration in using those legacy programs was that they did not have any flexibility in them that allowed me to update or “correct” erroneous entries into the system database without having the data reprogrammed in some way by the vendor. Support for BQE can assist making changes on the fly if need be and hopefully will continue to support the services industry in the future. I have witnessed the mission of BQE to continue to improve the software and support for its users. I am happy to say that I took a leap of faith in upgrading my office to BQE and have not been disappointed.
SIMPLICITY – it is an easy transition from paper time sheets in a format that employees can easily understand. Employee time entries can add memos that are invaluable to explain charges to clients or counsel employees on their activities. FLEXIBILITY – Some projects require slightly different reporting/invoicing formats to fit the client’s needs. BQE support assists with accomplishing just that at a reasonable cost. SUPPORT – Over these years, issues in understanding inputs or reporting have been addressed in real-time, on-line, to help maintain operation schedules for billing and reporting. REPORTS – Both summary and detailed reports are available that can include memos to help clarify time and expenses. One can look at a project from different facets based on a manager’s needs.
Some of the labor reporting modules need to be reviewed that use an integer formatted numbers that round off and be updated to use an accounting formatted number with 2 decimal places. My accounting department uses two report for payroll that use incorrect time (rounding up) instead of an exact job time/cost figure. I have to review and have them update to the corrected time values each time.
This new year marks one whole year we've been using Core
Comments: Core has an amazing catalog of built-in reports. One thing we find ourselves often wishing for was a kind of “Quick List” report that would output a list of something, one item per line, single-spaced and nothing else but a clear statement of the search and filtering criteria at the top. Examples include a list of invoices overdue x days, list of current projects, list of deposits, payments, checks, every transaction ever related to a certain project, etc. These lists are handy when reviewing Core data, or bringing a quick list into a meeting, where the entries can be highlighted, color coded, and/or checked off as you go.
I have to say it has succeeded with flying colors after being bombarded with all kinds of unusual circumstances with hundreds of our architecture projects! Well done! I'm constantly amazed how well thought-out the original approach was in Core's basic design allowing it to handle all of our client's weird situations, and we're just one of the zillions of other companies using Core who do things so differently than we do. I say this with a little authority, as well, because I wrote my first program at age 15 in 1968 and I have seen (and suffered) *everything* in all the eras of computing since. Core is badass. Every system has issues, but it's important we all stop and appreciate the unimaginable amount of work that went into making Core really effective. No one paid me to say this and I'm not getting any brownie points. I'm saying this because I know intimately what the developers have gone through to make today's Core possible. Whew!
While Core has one of the best time sheet entry forms around. It would be great to have a more graphical time entry interface such as the kind iOS and Android users are familiar with when using, say, a calendar app, in which they can use a mouse or finger to draw time blocks graphically, then double-click/tap them to set the info for that block.
Comments: We've had our ups and downs. After a couple of days on the phone with customer support, things have been clarified and settled. I understand some of my problems now and how to fix them. It is really the first time I have felt comfortable with my choice in software. As I learn new things, play with it more and talk with customer support things that I thought might be deal burners, are really not. We all need to accept change, and for me as a former development programmer, I am used to it. I was not that into our existing software that we are replacing as I only had to deal with it for a year as I am kind of the new employee. Yes, I looked at several different software options. Yes, some had more features than others, some less. It is going to be pretty difficult to find a replacement software that is exactly like the one you are replacing. My original review stated there were a lot of bugs. I'm not so sure about that statement any longer. For me, it works better through Crome than Edge. I did have quite a few issues when running in Edge. This may be a problem that has since been fixed, but I'm okay in chrome.
I have had more time with the software since my last review. As I slowly convert the firms old data to this new software, things are falling into place quickly. I'm becoming attuned to the software. Learning little things I didn't know where there, both by playing around and talking with customer support. This software is easy to learn. Not a real big learning curve, assuming you are familiar with project management, accounting, project setup or you have people familiar with those areas. I do it all, and basically maintain everything for everyone else.
I don't have many, but if I had to pick... they are not really cons, as I hope they will expand to these later on. API with Office 365/Outlook would be a nice added bonus. For me, especially Outlook. Also API with Quickbooks desktop version. This isn't a big issue, as I hope to also phase out QB and only use that software for payroll. Which I will then have an API if I go with QB Online/payroll. I will always use QB for payroll, so I am use to doing journal entries into systems to reflect the payroll numbers. This is not a hardship for me.
Great Time keeping and Billing software for Architects and Engineers
Comments: We discovered BillQuick on line after struggling with a user friendly way to record, retrieve, report and correct errors in time entries for our Clients. Filling in time sheets accurately is a critical part of our business and billing process. Unintentional errors on time sheets, with time entries logged under incorrect work phases or project scopes are inevitable and our previous billing software only allowed time entries to be moved one at a time, which was done when the WIP was being reviewed. The result was a painful and time consuming process at the end of each moth for our accountant which resulted in delays in getting our invoicing out in a timely manner. With BillQuick, time sheet errors can be moved quickly and easily across data sets in batches. Changing time keeping software can be a stressful decision, often met with resistance from staff. However after carefully researching BillQuick and completing the training session, and seeing the ease and intuitive nature of the time keeping options, I was confident that I would be able to coach staff through the process with ease. The ease of time entries means that fewer staff are delinquent on keeping time sheets up to date. This has numerous benefits, the primary one being being able to bill on time. There are other time allowance features such as limiting time assigned to a team member for a project, and notifying team members in real time when the Fee for a work stage has been exceeds (time entry presents in red). I was a bit skeptical about the claims of vastly reducing invoicing time, but from experience can confirm this is true. This software has enabled us to consistently get billing out within the first 10 days of the month, with invoicing taking a fraction of the time it used to. This enables us to close out each month efficiently, properly monitor quarterly and annual targets, and focus on fixing problems quickly. Ease of monitoring Fee Expenditure also means it is easier to stay out of trouble and address problems as soon as they arise. There are many linked features such as monitoring staff and project profitability which provide solid back up data when assessing bonuses etc.
It is very easy to learn to use for both staff entering time and new accounts staff. The ease of time entries means that fewer staff are delinquent on keeping timesheets up to date. Projects can be broken down into phases - this is KEY for tracking fees within an Architectural Full scope of services. You create your own Activity Codes which you can align with your preferred Contract It REALLY does speed up invoicing tremendously It offers a WIDE range of invoice templates and reports to analyse project Fee expenditure and report to Clients It allows for various levels of security access so that Senior Staff are not beholden to the Accounts Department when they need to report to a Client or check the Fee against the Contract All staff can monitor Fee in real time (assuming time sheets are up to date) Senior Staff can easily monitor and give feedback to staff on performance and productivity, based on various time periods, for example on Billable vs non billable hours, contracted hours performance etc The technical support is excellent Integrated with Quick Books very well
I can't think of anything really....If I had to be critical I would say: - there are so many reports that you are unlikely to use them all and can get lost in the Report Centre. However there are tabs for your favourites and memorised reports. - Expenses are very very to enter but not as easy to unwind/change as Time entries
We Are All Surprised I Am Writing This Review!
Comments: I purchased my first licenses of Billquick reluctantly, as an overpriced timesheet management system for my very small business and quickly began fighting to make it meet my partners needs for invoicing our clients. It was not pretty and there were times when we had serious discussions about whether this was the right fit for me. but the BQ team didn't give up and I am glad I did not. One advantage of a rough start was the opportunity to get to know and really appreciate the exceptional quality, skill, and patience of the support team assembled for BQ clients. Over the years, we have struggled and grown and improved our skills and processes together, and that is one of the exceptional things about this software and this company. They really do listen to their users and try to incorporate our priorities and needs into the upgrade process. The program is feature rich, and most companies won't need to use every feature that is available, but there are convenient and graceful ways to make each person's interface efficient, streamlined and comfortable. When the same program is usable for an intern on his first day and our power user when she is invoicing you know it is easy to use. I used to wish Quickbooks would get a better time management and invoicing capability so I could stop buying Billquick, but now I am trying to get rid of Quickbooks! The network versions work well, I can access the program over a VPN, and I have gone months without calls to the Support Team lately. Having grown from 5 to 30 employees since becoming a customer, I have to say, Billquick has been part of our path to success.
Great ability to customize individual user views, strong client and project tracking functions. Efficient invoicing capabilities with interface with Quickbooks. Consistent updates and improvements to the program. Very strong customer support and help desk.
I do wish there was a different pricing model that allowed different segmentation of the features, I would like to see stronger payroll/benefits/hr functionality and accounting completed so we can ditch Quickbooks, and my project managers would like additional flexibility in building gantt charts.
My BQE Experience
I like that BQE is user friendly and makes it possible for the entire company to enter their own time and expenses anywhere, anytime. I like that when there are updates to the system, users are informed. I really like that everything entered through the mobile app sinks right away into BQE. The technical support customer services is great. Even when someone is not sure of the answer, they research and get back to you. The support group is dedicated, knowledgeable and professional. Lenny is the best.
I do not like that all reports are Word documents. With data, it is impossible to sort and filter when looking for information. It would also be easy if questions/answers could be given directly in BQE prior to invoicing instead of having to print each pre-bill and send to managers for approval and then enter their answer back in BQE. The system allows write up/down of billable hours but you cannot run an accurate report of the amounts that were written up/down (I think in BQE it includes non billable hours). I keep track of mine on an Excel spreadsheet and it would be nice if I did not need to have an additional spreadsheet. It would make more sense if each field that is populated in all categories could be use for reporting purposes. For example, if running a list of client, it would be good if we could choose what fields we want to see on the report for each client (like contact person, email address, industry...). Sometimes, I have to run three reports to get the information that I compile in one Excel spreadsheet. Maybe I do not have this information, but the only way to access report customization is via email. It would be nice to have a support line for easy questions regarding a new report.
BQE provides strong support for customizations
Comments: Overall experience has been nothing short of great. The strong support BQE offers for customization has resulted in effective time billing management but also leaves us with satisfied clients seeing their contracts clearly on a custom invoice based on their requirements.
Our company transitioned many years ago to BQE from a different software which was not as detail oriented as we needed for project budgets as well as client satisfaction on invoicing. Offering services to many different types of agencies - from federal to local government agencies to the private sector, each client requires a different level of detail on invoicing. In the past, we have found it very difficult to track time and transition those hours into a contract based invoice.
Would like to see more streamlined and simplified process of client credits. Right now the only way is to have it has a retainer.
CORE has given our principals and project managers more access to real time data
Comments: As we continue to get more proficient navigating CORE, it has given our principals and project managers more access to real time data reducing the potential for errors in reporting and data transfer in multiple areas to better service our valued clients.
Project management and accounting real time data metrics anytime and almost anywhere through cloud based hosted subscriptions allowing quick response time to our valued clients. CORE has eliminated need for complicated spreadsheets and various other methods of housing project data. Coming from QuickBooks desktop accounting which we have used for almost 19 years, CORE accounting subscription has given us access to company financial data anywhere. We are utilizing Core for time tracking, expense reports, billing, project management and accounting.
The display as feature needs to be expanded and made specific to invoices and time cards. Core has ePayments for credit card and we are waiting for ACH feature which is going to be there somewhere in August.
BQE Core Review
Comments: Since the minute we began to research and consider switching our project management software to BQE Core, we have felt that the team at BQE has been nothing but helpful through the process. The sales team were there to answer questions, suggest videos/webinars to get familiar with Core and to let us know about sales promotions we may be interested in. When we finally made the choice to move to Core, they were excellent at getting us set up with the software and following up on any questions we had. Since implementing Core, we have found that we have much better control over how our projects are managed, we are seeing much better performance data and are very happy with the product.
We like that there is a lot of control over how we set up our projects and the integration options available through Core. We recently made the switch to this software and find that we are able to track project time, expenses and profitability much easier than with our previous software.
Because there are so many options and settings it can take a bit of time to get used to finding what you are looking for. Things are taking us a bit longer to manage in this software - however, with more time using it and the training/support options available, we recognize this will only be a temporary issue to using Core.
Great tool for the Architect's office
Comments: Overall, this is a good office management tool for the architect. We have used it for the past 10 years and find it invaluable in all we do in managing projects and running the business.
The product is great for the management of a project from time and expense reports to document management. It also manages the office contacts and calendar of events for all the employees. It will give you in real time if you are making or losing money on a project. It tracks and creates invoicing for all project clients. If you use QuickBooks, it is integrated directly with that software for complete accounting management. It is a great tool for Architects in that it is formatted for what we do (tasks and phasing of projects). If you have internet connection, you can get access to this program while on the road,
When opening up project file, it takes 2 or 3 clicks to open up a file, such as Word, PDF and AutoCAD. Very, Very frustrating. Many of my employees do not use is function and simply use Window file manager to open and move files. We should not have to do this. It uses Java in the background for some of its operations, and I am not a fan of Java... it is always updating. Updating of the software is somewhat difficult for the person not a computer nerd.
Comments: As architects, we get set in our own way of doing things and never want to change. In ArchiOffice 2013 we found a product that pretty much adapts to how we do things. Sure we changed our methods a little, but for the most part it does what we want it to. We began looking for an office management software in 2007. We realized that the old method of using a spreadsheet was making us miss lots of opportunity for reimbursements that we could have been charging clients until too late. Just recapturing these lost revenues has paid for ArchiOffice. After 6 years, the program is so comprehensive, there are modules for everything you need in an architects office. The main points are easy; project lists, contact lists, time records, billings, and a shared calendar. But dig deeper and you get time tracking per job, project phases or tasks; time records, that at entry, keep everyone informed as to project progress; intelligent records, filling in more than you really want to know about project time expenditure; RFI logging, shop drawing logging; billings, showing cash flow and work in progress; phone call records and a shared calendar; not to mention dozens of reports, and more. For example - when a project Architect is out, and an electrical shop drawing comes in, the office manager can look up the engineer in project info/contacts, and forward the submittal on the same day. Then, they can place a task on the architects to-do list, 7 days out, noting that it should be returned; and then also they can set another task for 10 days out, reminding them again that it should have been returned. We use it for document management; scanning and storing the shop drawing when it is returned. Remote access from anywhere with an Internet connection makes it easy to reach information in the field. The superintendant, without his copy of a spec or shop drawing, can remotely access it thru Archioffice. 6 years of use, and we love it. All that glowing review, and yes, it does have a few flaws. The biggest is that Syncing with Outlook is nearly a waste of time. It can be done, but it requires that you run old Java, then run parallel Outlook files. We just don't even bother. When we do have a problem, the tech support is awesome. In 2010, after a major upgrade, I think I wore out tech support for 3 months. But currently, I think I have emailed two questions in the last 3 months. Always fast and complete responses. AO2013 is mature enough of a product that problems are few and far between. I will admit, as Architect/IT guy/Managing Partner, I use every aspect of this program - not just a few areas like most of my employees. I still look at competing programs, and haven't found one that adapts to my ways as well, or is as comprehensive.
Robust Software Program
Comments: Tech support is the best I've ever experienced. Very knowledgeable and helpful. Just wish I didn't have to call them so much.
There were a lot of interfaces to this software. It did everything we needed, but not everybody was on board with the difficult of use.
It was probably way more than a company of our size needed. We are switching to Squava after just a year and a half. We felt like a beta tester of this software. Our project managers thought it was hard to use, and didn't feel our data was always accurately depicted.