4PS Construct is the Microsoft Dynamics NAV solution for construction, installation and engineering contractors of all types. Our construction software supports all of the business processes of those involved in building or engineering projects – from finance to HR, from estimates to contracts, from projects to payments – 4PS Construct does it all.
4PS Construct is Europe’s premier solution for all types of users in the construction and project engineering sectors. Our solution is based on the tremendous range of standard function offered by Microsoft Dynamics NAV. On top of this solid base, we have developed all the additional functionality required for house builders, installers, civil engineers, infrastructure and project construction businesses.
The range of function available in 4PS includes the following:
4PS Construction Software Includes…
Sales and Marketing
This granule allows users to control the entire process of generating new business. Winning completely new customers, selling new projects to existing customers or simply adding extensions to ongoing contracts – 4PS supports your efforts.
Customer Relationship Management
CRM allows users to make a distinction between prospects, customers and vendors. In addition, you can create and maintain contacts, add activities and specify attributes that are useful in targeting your marketing campaigns and mailings.
An important feature of 4PS is Lead Management. Here you can record details of prospective projects that you want to tender for and for which you want to create a quick quote. All the activities involved in preparing, creating and following up a quote are here.
From contacts to estimates to quotes, from actions to features to activities – all are monitored through this module. In addition, the Lead Quote is prepared in conjunction with all the information held in Microsoft Outlook or in Word.
This allows you to format the quotation in the way you want it to appear as you build up the pricing in the Estimates module.
4PS Construction Software includes a fully integrated document management solution. Both outbound and incoming documents can be saved. 4PS is integrated with Microsoft SharePoint so that, with just one press of a button, you can share documents with the project team, customers, suppliers and other interested third parties.
The provisional work section allows you to generate specifications and drawing lists for vendors and subcontractors, complete with version management, additional information and notes.
If a request for a quotation is not returned on time, there is an option to chase it using a call list. For vendors or subcontractors that have not been selected, the system is able to generate a ‘thank you, but no thank you’ note.
For companies with several branches or subsidiaries, the system offers a Central Customer Relationship Management module. This functionality allows you to manage customer, vendor and other key relationships both centrally and within the individual operating units, via an on-line link.
4PS Construct was specifically designed to offer flexible and intuitive support for the creation of estimates. 4PS offers a comprehensive database of materials and labour norms. Estimating software allows the use of multiple references per item and supports industry standard pricing updates (e.g. Luckins). Estimates can be produced based on notional, actual, historic or standard costs, sales prices, special pricing or externally generated costings.
Using Bills of Quantity (BOQs), also known as Recipes in 4PS, estimates can be quickly and easily generated for projects. There is also the option to work with hourly rates or work minutes. An estimate can be easily subdivided into subestimates, organised into chapters and specification paragraphs. Estimates can be easily converted into projects for budgeting, planning and procurement.When creating the estimate, parts of it can be simply imported from a predefined template or copied from another project.
You can use quantity sheets to determine the quantities. If required, quantities can be loaded from a drawing or the sheets can be imported from other applications such as Excel or an electronic measuring table. There is the option to produce estimates using your own item files. A combination of recipes (BOQs), Luckins and your own items can be used to create an estimate quickly.
You can request quotes from third parties during the estimate process. On receipt of the quote data it is easy to import it into your estimate. Using this data you can easily create a price comparison table and export it to Excel. You can freeze the estimate and transfer it to the budget – and, if authorised, you can still make changes. Finally, because 4PS is such an open and flexible solution, you can utilise your own third party estimation tool and import the final costings into our solution to allow budgets to be created based on those estimates.
For project engineers it’s important to be able to create and then manage the project budget as transparently as possible. In 4PS Construct you can freeze the original budget then use it to refer back to at any stage.
After freezing the original budget it’s only possible to edit it using adjustment codes. This will give you a clear overview of all the changes that have been made, with every one of them tracked by date and by the person carrying out and authorising the change. The budget consists of a number of attributes.
• work components or elements
• cost types (labour, material, subcontracting,
plant, sundry costs)
• cost objects (carpentry, brickwork, plastering,
You define the degree of detail incorporated into your estimates and then your budgets.
To change the scope of the original project, users raise an extension, which creates an additional contract with any changes highlighted separately as extension entries for inclusion in the budget.
You can also set a status against any extension to flag how it is to be dealt with. For this type of contract you can set up and use standard instalment schemes.
House Building Software
For residential building, 4PS offers the ability to store house models, house types, options available and other related information.
For each option you can record a cost that automatically updates the budget and costs if the option is selected by any buyer.
If you receive complaints about a project, these can be registered and followed-up in the complaints module. Complaints can refer to current projects or to projects that have already been completed.
…Manage all your construction operations from a single interface…
At the heart of 4PS’ Construction Business Management solution there sits the Projects granule. This allows you to record all of the information about the progress of a project that you wish to capture and report on. Examples include supplying actual hours, time sheets, settlement statements, progress levels and projections.
There are a number of options for the entry of time on time sheets – normal hours, overtime hours, leave registration, external workers’ hours, direct hours and indirect hours.
These can be posted into our fully integrated payroll system or exported to your own chosen payroll package.
4PS offers digital timesheets stored in Microsoft SharePoint. This means that, wherever you are, you can always enter your timesheet using an internet connection.
Progress levels are used to record the progress of the work on any project, either in actual quantities or using percentages.
Progress percentages can be entered at various levels in a project, from the total project to individual budget lines. There are also several methods for forecasting the hours required to complete a project or element of a project.
For example, the forecasting method ‘still to do’ is where the site manager or project leader indicates how many hours they think may still be needed to complete the task, based on the current progress.
The projection entered is used in project control for calculating the forecast result. To be able to report in accordance with the international accounting standards (IFRS), 4PS provides the option to see the profit position and to include it in financial reports, based on the forecast result and progress level, to give an interim result per project.
Monitoring projects is a strong area in 4PS. Users can choose one of many information formats (figures, charts, diagrams) and retrieve an overview of the progress of a single project or of several projects. In these overviews, the budget hours and costs are compared to the actual hours and costs.
4PS offers several ways to calculate the outcome on projects – using the recorded progress levels, projections and revenues. You can filter data to see it displayed in many different ways. You can send it out to Excel or email it to staff, customers or subcontractors
All transactions are date and time stamped. This allows you to compare the budget at a particular point in time, even a point in the past, with the actual status as it is now.
Site managers or QS can get an online view of the progress of the project whenever needed, hold project meetings using one version of the truth and control projects at all levels – main project, sub-project, department, contract amount, extension, WIP position, purchases, revenues, interim result, projections and progress levels.
Purchasing is a crucial part of any project and our Construction Software offers a lot of functionality to support you in this area. To process items to be purchased for any project, budget items can be exported to a function called ‘purchase actions’. Using purchase actions you can request quotes from potential suppliers, comparing each using price comparison functionality built into this part of the software.
Attributes can be associated with each vendor to allow you to automatically select a set of vendors to use as part of the quotation process – attributes such as region code, product group or delivery timescale. The most favourable purchase quote can be automatically converted into a PO. For quotes that are not used, you can automatically print a ‘thank you’ letter.
This functionality offers you a seamless link to Microsoft Excel to help you manage the costs and quotes involved. There is also the option to record delivery notes or subcontractor completion notes against an order. These deliveries are then used to match against the purchase invoice.
There is also a document management system for purchase documents, such as delivery notes, which is integrated with Word. The purchase document is linked to the PO and can be maintained in 4PS Construct. This gives you total freedom in formatting the purchase order in Word should you need to add extensive text.
Users also have the option to rate vendors. You can assess their performance based on objective information, such as delivery dates and accuracy of the order, or subjective information, such as friendliness or level of customer service you feel they offer overall.
You can set preferred criteria and then add weightings for each criterion to allow the system to automatically calculate scores. This can be done per project or across multiple projects.
This module offers function that enables users to manage relationships with subcontractors including pre-qualification, evaluation, order management and performance monitoring.
The function offered covers all types of applications, retentions and discount management, with the ability to handle complex tax requirements. 4PS Construct also offers full CIS control and verification of subcontractors.
Everyone has issues surrounding the control of plant. Whether it’s your own equipment or hired in, it needs to be managed. Monitoring locations, availability and managing the logistics of allocating and moving plant to projects as required is all part of the function offered in this granule.
Whether it’s controlling the costs applicable to the use of your own equipment or the charges you incur on hired plant, 4PS will handle it.
Plant helps you to manage your plant or tools through registration, charging to projects, carrying out inspections and calculating the depreciation applicable. Both the logistic aspects, like rental orders, location, planning, transport and issuing, and the financial aspects, like costs and revenues, are supported.
Using our Construction Software you will always know where any plant is located, what it costs, how much it is generating in revenue and its status – if it complies with safety regulations, if it is working or in repair. The plant module is fully integrated with the other 4PS Construct modules. Machinery can be purchased using the purchase module, depreciated with the fixed asset module and charged to projects via the project module and financial administration.
4PS Construct supports various invoicing methods – cost plus, installments and advances.
Installments are automatically generated for the initial contract amount, extension contracts and extension options. For residential building you can carry out automatic calculations of interest. The result of these calculations can be converted automatically into a sales invoice.
There is also the option to invoice projects or work orders on the basis of cost plus. The work order functionality is especially handy for small jobs.
For larger customers that undertake long term, major works contracts, there is the option to record multiple addresses and complex price agreements.
Applications and Retentions
The construction industry has complex billing arrangements and specific relationships with clients and their agents that are difficult to manage effectively without the right software. 4PS handles all of this for you.
• Client billing – applications for payment, certification and invoicing
• Project retentions and discounts
• Complete client transaction history and audit trail
Cost Value Reconciliation
The 4PS Progress and Forecast function allows accurate data to be extracted into a CVR sheet directly from the NAV database. Spreadsheet templates can be created for the user to carry out their valuation containing all the up-to-date information from the costing module and any other relevant areas.
Once the process is complete the valuation is recorded against the job. From this point on you can then report on the CVR on either a job-by-job basis, on a range of jobs or on all jobs.
4PS offers a fully integrated financial suite. Whether it is about posting, processing or consolidation, the system handles it all. The integration is so tight that it is impossible to create differences between the general ledger and your project administration – data is only ever entered once.
Subtotal overviews, columns with numbers and comparisons are created online the moment you retrieve the enquiry or report. In addition, the system is very easy to use and gives tremendous control – the report and enquiry options are particularly strong.
Payroll and HR
An integrated payroll and HR system is important to ensure that salaries get paid, that time gets recorded and that tax is managed properly.
That’s why we integrated 4PS with the leading Dynamics NAV payroll software – MiraclePay.
For those of you with a different payroll system, we offer an export of the key information you will need to run payroll through your third party offering.
Enterprise Resource Planning Tailored for Construction Firms
The 4PS Approach
We know how vital your business management system is to the successful running of your business. We also know that your custom is the lifeblood of our business. That’s why we have a unique approach to providing systems that deliver all the function you need – now and in the future. Our approach to providing systems marries two key concepts.
Firstly, we want to provide all the function that our customers in the construction and engineering, infrastructure, civil engineering and plant sectors need to run their business efficiently.
We do this by constantly adding function to our solution – function that has been defined and requested by our existing customers as being essential to them.
Secondly, we ensure that every single customer can take advantage of the function we add by adopting a policy of a ‘single version’ of 4PS Construct. Any function we add at the request of our customers is added to the standard version of 4PS – no modifications and no bespoke versions whatsoever.
Economies of scale
We get the economies of scale of adding function to a single version. When our customers have a good idea, we build it into our solution once and once only. This saves time and cost, helping us deliver the latest technology with the minimal of cost and effort.
Staying up to date
You get the knowledge that your system will always remain current. New function will always be compatible with your version of 4PS because you have the standard product installed – the same as every other one of our customers. Low-cost upgrades
We both get the benefit of a smooth, low-cost upgrade process that allows everyone to move forward quickly and painlessly.
The Microsoft Solution
4PS offers you the opportunity to benefit from innovations introduced by Microsoft and integrated into 4PS. Examples include SharePoint, SQL Server and the latest Office and Windows platforms.
METAPHORIX AND 4PS – A PERFECT PARTNERSHIP
Metaphorix is a Top 10 Dynamics NAV reseller concentrating on the UK marketplace. We help small and medium-sized companies change the way they do business with their customers and with their suppliers. We focus on specific vertical markets, the most important of which is the construction industry.
The marriage of our UK construction industry expertise and the power of 4PS Construct is the perfect combination of functionality and ability to implement successfully. Metaphorix has a tremendous depth of experience in implementing systems for building companies of all types. We have also developed all the UK-specific function that users in the industry require. 4PS has established its product as a leading solution in the construction and project engineering sectors throughout mainland Europe, installing successfully for over 400 major building and engineering organisations.
UK users can now take advantage of the wide-ranging function in 4PS Construct, implemented by industry specialists with a track record of successful installations.