TimeLinx Aims to Meld Time and Expense Tracking With CRM

TimeLinx Software has announced TimeLinx CRM 5.0, which combines time, task and expense tracking for client projects with sales and marketing data captured by traditional customer relationship management (CRM) systems.

The product’s features include a Web-based and network time sheet client, Microsoft Office Project synchronization, an accounting integration platform, full SLX Ticket integration and a reporting platform, according to the company.

It also allows organizations to track billable and non-billable time and expenses directly within the CRM software, letting users manage staff and projects across an organization.

Functions include project status; time logged for each consultant; incomplete projects and tasks; specific user assignments and availability for any time period; comparisons of revenues versus forecasts; and the most and least profitable clients, consultants and projects.

TimeLinx CRM works with the Sage SalesLogix CRM engine.

Front Office vs. Back Office

“Most CRM systems are about sales and marketing and the front office. What happens after the sale is made? The delivery of the customer’s job, that’s all happening in the back office — accounting, tech support, project management and time entry. Those back-office people see it, but what about the salesperson who closed the sale? They normally don’t see it. With TimeLinx, they can see it all,” Mark Engelberg, president of Timelinx, told CRM Buyer.

TimeLinx CRM provides a “holistic view” of the customer, Engelberg continued. “Standalone CRM systems generally have no access to information about customer delivery and service — an important part of the customer relationship,” he explained.

Companies that use multiple systems — project management, time entry and accounting systems, etc. — that do not “talk” to one another will benefit from TimeLinx, Engelberg said.

“These organizations require their IT departments to support and maintain at least three, and possibly four, applications to drive the enterprise: a CRM system for managing sales and marketing; a project management system to manage projects; a time/expense entry system for gathering data to bill customers for services performed; and the accounting system that produces invoices and handles the financial aspects of the business,” he noted.

Holistic Vision

TimeLinx CRM offers a traditional CRM system — with project/time/expense functions — integrated with an accounting and billing system. Porting invoiced data back into TimeLinx CRM is also supported.

The appropriate accounting data (including invoice numbers, amounts and balances) is stored with the CRM relationship information, “again becoming part of the whole picture,” Engelberg says.

“The [product] is a significant enhancement over previous versions. This new version includes the utilization of an enhanced data grid, allowing for the export of grid data to either an Excel spreadsheet or XML formatted file, in addition to totaling at the group levels providing improved ability to analyze the data. This new version also provides a platform to enable the addition of new features and functionality in a very efficient manner,” Ray Walther, an analyst at Illuminaata, told CRM Buyer.

Evaluation copies of TimeLinx CRM 5.0 can be requested from the TimeLinx Web site.

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