NetSuite Blog

Advancing from Reactive to Proactive Project Reporting in Professional Services

Posted by Keith Gallen, PSA Specialist, North America at NetSuite

Playing catch-up on project status reporting is a dangerous game in professional services. And it’s an unpleasant one, especially if you find yourself crunching numbers in Excel from various reports and applications on a Sunday evening in preparation for a big Monday morning project status meeting.

But the project status catch-up game is not uncommon. IT systems integrators, embedded PS teams, ad agencies and others regularly waste time and money manually consolidating data from standalone accounting, project management, sales automation and related applications.

To make matters worse, numbers across multiple systems can contradict one another. That makes it tricky to calculate budget vs. actuals for a project, or pinpoint percent of project completion, resource utilization and profitability. The lack of a single view of key metrics invariably leads to guesswork and delay and can hurt client satisfaction.

An enhanced feature in the NetSuite OpenAir professional services automation (PSA) solution equips PS organizations to move from reactive to proactive project status reporting. Available in the October 2016 release, Automatic Project Status Summary (PSS) gives you a snapshot of real-time project data in a single click, with drill-down to detail. What took a project manager 30 minutes to several hours every week has been boiled down to a 30 second effort.

Real-time Transparency for Teams and Clients

OpenAir PSS is entirely customizable, so it can reflect the metrics most important to an individual, be it a project manager, program manager, CFO, CEO, accountant, consulting resource and others. Typical data and metrics can include project details, budget vs. actuals, actual and projected profitability, resource allocations, task progression and more.


And with the flick of a switch, PSS can generate a customer-facing version, configured to include just the right level of detail, delivered over the web, helping to improve client satisfaction by meeting demands for transparency and immediacy. Other characteristics of PSS include:

  • Alerting to issues or anomalies.
  • Role-based access to govern who can see and modify what data.
  • Ability to add textual information (e.g., notes, commentary).
  • Viewable online, downloadable and printable.
  • Easy access from multiple areas of OpenAir.

With rich data in a simple point-and-click model, PSS gives PS organizations a valuable tool to enhance visibility, react swiftly and make informed tactical and strategic decisions without waiting for data to be pieced together. With PS firms facing demanding clients and tough competitive, that adds up to business advantage.

PSS is among a host of OpenAir enhancements as we work to extend leadership as the world’s #1 cloud-based PSA solution. Stay tuned for news on enhancements to the OpenAir mobile app for iOS and Android, and contact us for an OpenAir demo and services value assessment.