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UniPhi Blog

Travelling with covid-19 on your arse.

Mark Heath, 23 Mar 2020

So, I've just returned (2 weeks early) from a round the world trip that was harassed by this blasted virus. First port of call was Hong Kong on February 5th. A ghost town where all ghosts wore masks and the few people outside walked in Zombie like fashion passing you with trepidation.

Thankfully, all my meetings went ahead and achieved what I wanted them to achieve. Unfortunately, the plan to return in April to progress these opportunities further is now a pipe dream. On the plus side, everyone seems to be open to remote learning and it will be interesting to see how deployments progress when we are no longer able to meet face to face.

From Hong Kong, next stop was London via Frankfurt. I'm sure many readers of this (ha ha) will know how loooong the walk can be from one gate to the next at Frankfurt airport. The eerie nature of this when no-one else was in the airport made this walk even creepier than Hong Kong and proves that the virus was affecting travel well before officials were banning flights. Having the spacious Lufthansa lounge to myself was seriously weird.

Two weeks in London was fantastic. While the lunchtime roadshows were an epic failure, the number of organisations accepting requests to present our product was a huge surprise. I greatly appreciate the support of our local on the ground, Brian Cairns, in setting these meetings up and in the open mindedness of the people I presented to. The UK is definitely ripe for adopting UniPhi software and we will be pushing our local branch as hard as our finances allow during these uncertain times. Watch this space for further announcements.

Two weeks with my wonderful family in Switzerland and France couldn't have been timed better and I landed in New York revved up and ready to go. Unfortunately, Italy's outbreak was in full swing and US authorities were facing the inevitable. Lonely streets and the fact that it was impossible not to implement social distancing in Times Square shows how quiet things were. Meetings were cancelled and those that went forward were conducted in the background of a virus that could destroy businesses.

Outside Rockefeller center - where's the tumbleweeds

So, flights rescheduled and I'm now in self quarantine at home, happy to see my dogs and enthused by the exciting opportunities ahead.

I love you too

Having run this business through the GFC and other local meltdowns, I'm sure we'll come through this crisis stronger than ever and I can't wait to be back in Europe deploying our software in some of the most dynamic and exciting businesses I have come across.


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Serious times call for lighthearted webinars

Mark Heath, 23 Mar 2020

With many or even most of our user base now working from home, we've decided to run daily webinars starting from 2pm Wednesday 25th March until this is no longer the case. The goal of the webinar is to present bits of our software that the presenter finds most useful that may be unknown to the broader user group.

We've been developing UniPhi for so long now that there is so much to cover and many bits users aren't aware of. With luck, there'll be some gold nuggets presented in these webinars that can solve a frustration or improve your processes, especially in light of the fact that face to face meetings are a thing of the past (for the next 6 months anyway).

An even more optimistic and doubtful goal is the comedic tone of these webinars. We're hopeful we can bring a few laughs to your day and make the drudgery of sharing a house with your better halves that much more bearable. As always we will let you be the judge.

So join us daily at 2pm when the eyelids are screaming for a nap and the kids are......well just screaming. Nothing beats noise cancelling headphones and the excuse of a work meeting to ignore the riff raff and power through another day at home.

Instructions on how to join:

When the webinars are due to start at 2pm AEDT, visit https://zoom.us/j/7602945214 to connect to the video stream. For audio, you have the choice of either dialing in using your phone, or using your computers audio and microphone.

If using your phone, first dial the relevant location number from below and when prompted enter the following meeting ID: 760 294 5214.
  • Australia: +61 2 8015 6011
  • Australia: +61 8 7150 1149
  • New Zealand: +64 9 801 1188
  • New Zealand: +64 4 886 0026
If you live in a location not listed above and wish to call in, you can find your local number here: Find your local number: https://zoom.us/u/abK9qers24.


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1 week until UniPhi 15.1!

UniPhi Software, 11 Nov 2019

Our next mini release is just around the corner!

This time next week we will be releasing UniPhi 15.1 which will come with a bunch of features updates and changes. It will also include a brand new module - which if you attended the October webinar you will have already seen a teaser of it...

Over the next two weeks we will be posting about each update which includes:

  • Feature: Contracts: Added ability to link Variations directly to Issues
  • Feature: Contracts: Added variation custom fields
  • Feature: Cost: Added a "Mixed" cost dashboard, which contains Approved Budget, Commitments, Actuals, Uncommitted Variations and Remaining Budget
  • Feature: Documents: Added ability to manually mark invoice, progress claim, variation order and purchase order documents as processed if there is no accounting integration. If there is an accounting integration, the processed (exported) status will be visible in the documents tab
  • Feature: Expenses: Added ability to bulk upload via paste from excel
  • Feature: Resources: Resource Planning may now be bulk imported from excel on the Resources dashboards page
  • Change: Expenses: Added "Claim As" option for Administrators so they can data enter on behalf of other users
  • Change: Expenses: Administrator licensed users may import and update expenses on behalf of multiple users at one time.
  • Change: Expenses: Can now be entered either inclusive or exclusive of tax
  • Change: Expenses: When importing expenses, allow resource look up based on first initial and surname.
  • Change: Documents: Issue Selector template control now allows multiple issues to be selected.
And of course a post dedicated to our brand new module: Feasibility!

Don't miss out on any of our feature release posts by following us on LinkedIn and Twitter.


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UniPhi 15 is now here!

UniPhi Software, 21 Aug 2019

Following our last major change blog entry, UniPhi 15 is now live and in the public domain with a dozen clients already upgraded. Here's a list of the new features you could be using right now!

Major Changes
Feature: Power BI: Power BI Dashboards and Reports can now be embedded inside UniPhi. This service is available as an additional add-on to your existing UniPhi service or can be configured if you have your own existing Power BI embedded subscription
Feature: Currency Rates: Added ability to import from RBA feed
Feature: Dropbox Integration: Added ability to upload documents from UniPhi to Dropbox
Feature: Added expense management functionality
Feature: API: Added API documentation to UniPhi web application
Feature: Authentication: It is now possible to configure UniPhi for Single Sign-on (SSO) using Office 365 / Azure Active Directory / Microsoft Account
Change: My Work: Removed My Work view, equivalent functionality is now available under the My Portfolio view. RIP My Work: 2005-2019.
Feature: Timesheets: Added ability to optionally define Penalty Rates, you may have multiple lists which are then either assigned per resource classification or per individual

Tweaks and enhancements
Feature: Cashflow: Added "fill down" functionality when phasing as a %, this will allow you to enter a profile at the top code or deliverable, and copy it to other codes or deliverables
Feature: Cashflow: Added ability to phase cashflow as a % as well as the existing $ methods
Feature: Contracts: When selecting a contract Principal, Supplier or Care-Of, if you already have rights to manage the project team, you may search the entire resource pool directly and do not need to first add the contact to the project team.
Feature: Resources: Added ability to Bulk Edit project roles for a specific resource after drilling into that resource and navigating to the "Project" subnav
Feature: Resources: Added ability to Bulk Edit the project team for licensed users
Feature: Resources: Added ability to paste Organisations, Sites and Contacts from an Excel file for inserts and/or updates
Feature: Risks: Added ability to move risks between projects

Change: Delegations: You may now enter delegation thresholds either including or excluding tax
Change: Contracts: Removed the "Item" deliverable type. It is no longer required since you can now hide % comp, prev claim and total comp columns in documents
Change: Contracts: When adding a contract line item, you must now select an account code, rather than having the first code in the list selected by default. This will help avoid inadvertent miscoding of deliverables and variations.
Change: Currency: Added in an "Is Base Currency" flag, the "Is Default" currency flag is now used to specify the default for new projects
Change: Currency: Made it possible to change the base currency even if rate history already exists
Change: Documents: Benchmark Elements template control: If a parent project is selected, the values shown will now be the total of the parent and its children.
Change: Documents: Cashflow template control now includes portfolio mode, allowing cashflow to be reported across a portfolio of projects rather than just the single project
Change: Documents: Display the Invoice Date as a column in the documents tab when filtering for an AP Invoice, Progress Claim or Progress Payment Recommendation template
Change: Documents: Project Costs and Accounting Costs template controls are no longer restricted to Landscape orientation only
Change: Documents: Project Costs template control now includes a Variance to Last Forecast column. Last Forecast is determined by a document selection when creating the document, defaulting to the last Signed Off document created from the template.
Change: Forecasts: The default period where actuals end and forecast starts no longer includes a check for todays date, it only looks for the latest closed financial period instead
Change: Logins: Provide feedback on how many failed attempts are remaining
Change: Metrics: Will now work across charts of accounts if you specify an 'Account Code' from another chart of accounts
Change: Microsoft Project and Primavera integration: It is now clearer that you must upload an .xml file
Change: Milestones: Implemented filtering by Milestone Categories
Change: OnSite (iOS): Added support for rich textbox steps in document templates
Change: Portfolio Filters: Added "My Role" filter
Change: Portfolio Filters: The switching between My Portfolio and Portfolio is now controlled via radio buttons instead of a "View" dropdown list
Change: Projects: Allocating a licensed user to a role on a project with an access of "None" will no longer include that project in the users my portfolio list
Change: Reports: Invoice Export Log: added a Type filter to select between AP Invoice, AR Invoice or All
Change: Reports: Issue Register will now include custom field filters
Change: Reports: Variation Register: Show Variation Submitted amount and variance to "Amount". Submitted and Variance columns will only be visible if Submitted has a value.
Change: Resource Planning: Allow data entry / view as a %
Change: Resources: Added "Locked Out" filter to Contact view for users with an Administrator license
Change: Resources: Added paging to bulk rates screen
Change: Resources: Deleting an Organisation will no longer remove the link between any Contacts and that Organisation for existing Projects and Contracts
Change: Resources: Display classification code in Employment Details card
Change: Resources: Enabled searching by ABN
Change: Resources: Streamlined process for creating new resources
Change: Resources: When adding a contact to a project, each Organisation and Site for that contact will be returned in the search results to choose from
Change: Resources: When searching for a contact, organisation or site, you may now search for custom fields
Change: Templates: Added ability to exclude including file attachments when saving a UniPhi document to pdf or sending via email
Change: Templates: Added ability to hide the "Description" column in the multi-file upload template control
Change: Templates: Added ability to specify the width of the thumbnails generated when you upload photos / images to a UniPhi document
Change: Templates: Improved interface for entering delegation thresholds
Change: Templates: Made the template preview screen actually useful

If you haven’t been attending our weekly webinars about this new release, you can watch recordings of them here http://uniphi.com.au/webinar/register.aspx


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Major Change #4: Expense Management

UniPhi Software, 20 Aug 2019

We've now added the capability to log work expenses to your timesheets which can then be submitted to approval. This change covers the end to end process for staff reimbursements, starting from capturing receipts into their phones, logging the expense claim into the system and getting approval for that to potentially claiming that expense to your client for reimbursements.

Step 1 - Capturing data to your mobile or web application
The first step in claiming an expense is to capture the data into your mobile app by directly taking photos or web application by sitting down and bulk uploading files. To do this create a Staff Reimbursement project in UniPhi.

Then go into the project and create a document.

Upload receipt images into this document and keep adding to it until you are ready to make a claim.

When happy with all your receipts, sign-off that document and if in mobile, sync it back to your deployment.

Once back in the web application, or if already working in it, you can go into the Documents tab and see that the staff receipts document has been brought into the system. From this screen you can manage your expense documents, naming them with your name to differentiate them or by creating sub-projects for each staff member depending on the scale of the business.

Step 2 - Submitting the Claim for Approval
To submit the claim for approval, you then need to go into the timesheet system.

Now in the Timesheet system and Expense option has been added to the sub-navigation bar and if you go into this section you will be able to add a claim.

Expenses Sub-navigation
To claim an expense, in this case a Skybus Ticket, you don't need to already be in a particular project, as you can simply the select the project that its going to be claimed against when creating the expense.

Then select the right cost codes, which for most deployments there will only be one, as well as the expense code.

Save this into the system with the right $ amount. At the moment this is an ex. GST amount, with plans to expand it to handle both.
Adding Expense 
Once saved, you can add more details to the item and add as many expenses as you like to as many projects as you like. A different project can be selected every time.

Adding Detail to Expense Claim

When you have entered all the claims you have, it is then time to create a Claim Approval document which can be reached through the link in the screen under Claim Approval Templates.

Expense Claim Approval Template
Depending on the organisation, there may be multiple different templates for different needs, so depending on how you structure it, select the relevant one.

Clicking the link will create the document that will have been auto-named and show who needs to approve it. This is configurable to your requirements and so your system administrator will be the one to configure who has the sign-off role for expense claims.

Make sure that the project selected is Staff Reimbursements, not the one you are claiming against, as if you do not create it in the Staff Reimbursements project you wont be able to view and embed the receipts claim document you created previously.
Select Staff Reimbursement Project
Click Create and you will see that the claim created in the timesheet system has been brought in. You will also see the receipts document which you can select and embed in the document to justify your claim. This is where naming the receipts document after your name might help differentiate which is the relevant once, especially if you have multiple people creating multiple claim documents.

Finish the document and flag it as awaiting sign-off. This will then automatically notify the person who needs to sign it off.

Once that person gets the notification, they can then view the document, see the expense claim they are putting through, the receipts and the digital signature.

Digital Signature - Add
Digital Signature - Added

If everything is in order, that person can then sign of that document and that claim will be added to that particular project for possible reimbursement.

Step 3 - Claiming that Reimbursement from Clients
Once a staff claim has been approved to a project, it can then be submitted to a client for reimbursement. In order to do this, the person who is in charge of invoicing will have to go into the Contract module. From there they select the contract that that expense claim has been allocated to. Claims could be made across multiple projects and can appear in as many projects as you like but but only the portion that was claimed against that project will appear in the following section.

Going into a revenue contract (in this example Services), you can raise an invoice as you would normally do on a monthly basis.

Contracts Tab - Services

Normally this would be to claim your services revenue under your contracts deliverables and variations but now you are able to do your expenses by clicking the Expenses button in the Contract Disbursements section.

Services Contract - Contract Disbursements
 This will look up any reimbursements that have been approved against this project, which can then either be dismissed if you are not going to claim it or can be claimed from the client.
Claim or Dismiss Expense
Claiming this reimbursement can be done by selecting a revenue code to claim against, which comes from your Chart of Accounts and will be put against that particular invoice.
Select Revenue Code
Then you can create an invoice as per normal by clicking Invoice from the templates above.

Create Invoice - Template
This will create the document, bringing in the Skybus expense claim in the tax invoice. 

Furthermore the receipts document created can also be embedded into the invoice, bringing full circle to the end-to-end cycle of capturing receipts, signing them off and claiming those reimbursements from your clients.


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