What is Proteus?
Proteus is an intuitively designed, easy-to-use work management software for winning, planning, and managing projects, used by teams that charge out their time, equipment, and other resources. It is a single, unified system taking projects from the early opportunity stage, through tendering and planning to project execution and completion.
Cloud-based, low-cost, and secure, Proteus is used by teams from oil and gas, renewables, infrastructure, and large capital investment sectors working on complex engineering projects.
Proteus is unique because it is specifically designed to improve the way engineering projects are run, connecting all key workflows and data sets, and providing better visibility and control. From evaluating project opportunities to closing out invoices and everything in between, Proteus provides a single interface, integrating with existing systems, and simplifying every workflow.
Simple to get, simple to set up, and simple to use., Proteus helps companies win business and increase their profits through well-managed margins.
Proteus is cloud-based, accessed via a desktop web app, allowing for remote access from anywhere.
Proteus is based on users working on records within three core workflows:
- Opportunities, where project opportunities can be evaluated,
- Proposals, where bids and tenders can be built, and
- Projects, where project work can be completed.
These records interact with databases (e.g. client contacts, contracts) either created and stored within Proteus or integrated with third-party software (e.g. CRM).
Each user has their own Proteus environment and can join one or more company environments.
When a company runs a Proteus environment, its users share access to specific project databases and project management workflows. A user can run more than one Proteus account therefore it is possible for a user to be contracted to more than one company or project.
The Admin Console
The Admin Console is the backend of Proteus, where you customise Proteus to your business by adding your company information, template information, and Team Average Cost Rates.
This allows for single data point entry and standardisation. This is controlled by permissions to ensure sensitive information is hidden from Users without Company Admin rights. This information is used across all Proteus modules: all users’ Proteus accounts will be assigned the same settings, from time zone to payment terms. The details entered here are automatically pulled into document templates such as proposals and invoices. This means you can guarantee consistency across the business.
The Office Settings section within the Admin Console is where you enter all the essential information for your company well as region settings. Creating an Office is the first task that has to be completed before any Admin Console data can be added. You can add an office for each regional location along with relevant basic information. This includes legal name, registered primary address, timezone, date and time format. Under Invoice Settings you can add local currency, tax %, bank details and company registration numbers.
Proteus provides a structure for you to build your Proteus environment in Organisation Settings. An organisation consists of departments. As an example, these departments might be Design, Engineering, Safety etc. Under each department there is a combination of disciplines and grades, creating a matrix structure.
Disciplines such as Technical Specialist, Data Analyst, etc are added to each department as relevant. Grades are not linked to an individual department but are used as a tiered structure across all departments and their disciplines. Commonly used grades are Principal, Senior, Junior, etc.
Average Cost Rates
Average cost rate tables store the costs for your discipline and grade matrix structure. When writing proposals and developing project teams, Proteus will calculate the estimated margins using the Average Cost Rates that have been inputted.
Actual Cost Rates
The actual cost rate for every user is completed before they are added to a project and requested to submit time. As this information is sensitive, the rates are stored within the user profile and are only accessed by Admin Users.
By keeping all these rates in this section, it guarantees a single-point entry meaning no mistakes when pricing.
Timesheets & Expenses Settings
The Timesheets and Expenses section within the Admin Console, is where you define parameters of how you record and track the time spent on projects.
Timesheets and Expenses are essential to be able to track and record how much time each team member spends on a project. It can also be used for client billing, payroll and project management.
By entering the necessary information you allow the team members to record their timesheets and book in any expenses incurred or bill back to the client.
The Users section within the Admin Console, is where you manage users’ access.
There are six different user roles on Proteus which control the amount of access you have on the platform; Company Admin, Company Manager, Office Manager, Manager, User, and Timesheet only. Only the Company admin has access to the Admin Console. The Company Manager, Office Manager, and Manager roles have access to either global or local records. Timesheet-only users can log their hours to a project but cannot access project records. Information on our pricing tiers can be found on the Proteus pricing page.
Each user profile can be completed by the Company Admin, including their CV. Alternatively, once the user has been created and has received their invite email, they can complete their CV.
You can add Offline Users as prospective contractors for future projects. No licenses are required for Offline Users, as they will not have access to Proteus and cannot be used for most of the workflows on Proteus. Offline Users simply allow you to build a database of profiles to include as CVs to your documents and cannot be used to manage budgets and record actual costs.
If you need to create a large number of users at the same time during installation or at a later stage when Proteus’ adoption is expanding further within your organisation, there is a bulk data import tool to make ths process quick and easy.
The Company Settings section within the Admin Console, is where you save your company logo, registered name, and no reply settings.
Company logo and registered name entered here are what pull through to proteus and will appear when generating documents and templates. Single-point entry, saves time and ensures consistency across all literature.
The References System within the Admin Console, allows you to define database and document numbering that are specific to your clients or to your company.
Referencing is crucial for any company to ensure traceability, it ensures that you will never lose track of documents or projects. Proteus allows you to create unique references which can include text, sequential numbers, and separators. For both database and document numbering, there is default numbering in place which can be configured to suit your business by adding or removing elements and dragging and dropping these in the right order.
Language & Labels Settings
The Languages & Labels section within the Admin Console, enables a company to customise the Terminology and Custom fields in Proteus:
Every company is different. The Language & Labels section really helps a company feel familiar with Proteus: this is where you can change the labeling to match the terminology and systems your company currently uses.
You can add, edit or remove Purchase Approvers in the Admin Console. Purchase Approvers are users who are authorised to review and approve outgoing purchase orders and make external commitments. Any Approver can be set up for a specific office or globally for all offices and limits can be set where relevant.
Billing & Licensing Settings
The Billing & Licensing Section, within the Admin Console, is where you manage the number of licenses required and keep track of all invoices from Proteus.
A license is required for every user. The number of users you can add is capped to the number of licenses you have. Once you have reached this cap, you will not be able to add any new users and instead will be redirected to the Billing and Licensing section to purchase more Licenses.
Likewise, inactive licenses can be removed in the billing and licensing section by reducing the number of Licenses so that you are not being charged for licenses you are not using.
Proteus generates auto-renewal invoices. The invoices page gives you download access to all your invoices from Proteus. Any changes in the number of licenses are automatically reflected here.
Billing Information should always be kept up to date and will be used at the next billing cycle by Proteus to create your Invoice. If using a company credit card for payment, please note that some banks require security approval on a banking app before payment is processed. This is especially important if the amount being billed has changed from previous months
Your profile drop-down is where you will set up your personal profile including all your work-related details including; your job title, skills, qualifications, and your CV.
This information is used across Proteus to link your profile to projects and your CV to proposals. It only needs to be added once, it can be edited at any time by yourself or the Company Admin.
The Team database is where all employees/contractors contact details are stored and accessed along with their CV’s (ie online and offline users). From here you can build out groups from individual team members.
The Team database is a centralized location for users to upload and edit their CVs in order to be added to a proposal document. It shows the user level, discipline, and grade, but the actual cost rate of each employee is only accessible by the Company Admin. When adding a member to a work package in a Project the actual cost of the team member doing the job will allow you to project your actual margin vs the estimated cost which is based on the average cost rate (as set in the Admin Console). This actual cost information is highly confidential and only Company Admin has access to the rate.
The Assets database is like an inventory management system where you input and maintain any equipment and software resources your company owns and charges out to clients. The information in this database is used in Proposals and Projects.
Inventory items or software licenses can be grouped into categories. You can create as many category branches as you like for a multi-level asset inventory. Multiple items can be added in a bulk upload.
Multiple reminders can be set for each Inventory Item or Software License to control your asset register.
Companies database is where you maintain all your client, supplier, and other external companies data in one place including addresses and contact details. This information is used throughout Proteus for example in Opportunities, Proposals, and Projects, as well as contracts and invoicing.
Each Company record can contain multiple contacts and offices and can be used for selection throughout Proteus. The information can be edited at any time. You can import up to 100 company records at once using the bulk upload functionality.
The Contracts database is where you input and maintain client contracts and internally agreed charge-out rates using rate tables including terms and conditions. This information includes Labour rates, Software rates, and Equipment rates.
Contract rates are pulled from the Cost Rates created in the Admin Console. If you require further roles you need to go back into the Admin Console and add them, in order for them to pull through to Contract Rates.
The details entered here are automatically pulled into Proposals, Projects, and invoices.
The Files section is where you can store your company files, manage folders and create new files. The Template section allows you to create templates for Letters, Notes, Proposal Documents, and Reports.
A key advantage of files is that you don’t have to search through hundreds of documents on your computer to find the right one.
Templates mean you are able to create different templates for different clients or types of jobs. So the next time you want to generate a proposal or document and you select a template it pulls through this pre-populated template and you can just edit the sections that are client/project specific.
The opportunity section allows you to capture any new business inquiries or potential tenders and seamlessly share them with your team. Also, Opportunities will appear on your dashboard to remind you of the lead, also any further action that may be needed.
It is important to store any potential client or business recommendations, Opportunities section makes them easily accessible to your full team.
A business proposal is a document you would send out to potential clients outlining the services you are offering them. Information within the Proposal includes; WBS, CTRs, Team (Organogram chart), Project plan, Files, File upload, Add folder and Create document.
It is important clients receive a detailed description of how your company will perform the service and the costs involved. Also, having clearly outlined objectives and goals will allow you to monitor the business performance
Projects are at the heart of Proteus. A project is created when a proposal has been accepted and a contract has been agreed. The new project sets out the scope of work, budget, and resources required to complete a piece of work. It also sets out the various stages and allows the project leader to see immediately the status of the project.
On Proteus, the projects field is where you can instantly access all the projects which have been created. It gives an overview of the projects with status and also allows you to create new projects.
The project dashboard allows the user to create new projects and drill deeper into existing projects to see exactly where the project is in terms of resources, time, and financial resources. This is essential in project management both from a resource and finance perspective.
Tracking is the section of Proteus where users can track timesheets, software usage, equipment, and expenses. This allows project managers to see exactly where a project stands in terms of financial and resource requirements.
This also allows project managers to sight of time and equipment usage throughout a project to allow them to budget accordingly.
Finance is where you create invoices against a project and track the status of all your company invoices.
An invoice can be easily created from the source, rather than exporting and duplicating time and data to another invoicing software. And gives the project Manager instant visibility on the status of Invoices on their projects.
How to get Proteus
One of the unique advantages of Proteus is that we offer a free onboarding consultation service to ensure the company account is set up according to your company’s needs. This makes getting your company up and running on Proteus quick and easy. Get your free Proteus demo here.
Proteus operates under a software as a service (SaaS) model with tiers starting at $40 per user per month. See Proteus pricing for more info. Billing is monthly or annually with two months free if paid annually.