Setting Up A Base Contract

How to set up a Base Contract for a New Project


Every project should have a Base Contract. This article covers how to set this up to ensure your Payment Claims are accurate and can be quickly compiled and delivered to your Client for Certification.


Once you have set up a New Project you will need to add the Base Contract details to ensure you get paid accurately each month. PayLab is a smart cookie, so it will save items as you add them just in case you step away from your computer for a tea break.


In order to complete all the details for a successful monthly Payment Claim, you need to add all the items you will claim on in order to fulfil it.

So, here's the fun part, ensuring all the line items are in there and correct.

We recommend you use the Child function to break out your Stages or Phases of work. You should also give each phase a sequential numbering system, for example:

1  Stage 1
1.1  North Wall
1.1.1  Weatherboards
1.1.2  Framing
1.1.3  Nails
1.1.4 Screws Galvanised Screws  Tin Screws
2  Stage 2
2.1  Window Frame and Sill
2.1.1 Glass, etc, etc

If you do this, make sure you just enter the Item title first and give it a Quantity of 1, for now, ignore Unit and Rate, these will fill in automatically and add up accordingly as you build out the Child Line Items.

If not, just fill in each line item with the Description, Unit (metres squared, litres, etc), and your Rate. Here you can type in either the Rate or the Total, PayLab will calculate the other field for you.

Once you've filled this in, hit the + Add button (see the yellow circle below) to add the item to the Base Contract.

If you delete a Parent Item, all the Child Items below it will also be deleted.


To add a Child Item you need to then select the + symbol to the far right of the Line Item. In PayLab you can create Child Items four levels deep.


You can now add the Child Item as you would normally.PayLab-1400x650-KnowledgeBase-Base-Contract-Add-Child-Item-1

Once you have completed this, hit the + Add button and it should look like this. The Child Item can be found by clicking the + button indicated by the yellow arrow below.


By hitting the + button to expand it, the Child Line Item will now appear below the Parent Item as below (1.1 Roofing Iron).


You should now be able to add in additional Child Items and by clicking the + Add button, they will appear successively below the Parent Item. You'll see too, the Parent Item (New Roof) is now adding up the Total cost of the Child Items (the Roofing Iron and Nails).


Next you may wish to create another nested level or Sub-Parent Item. In the example below, this is Guttering, so we have set the Quantity to zero for now. This will increase as we add Child Items to this Line Item.PayLab-1400x780-KnowledgeBase-Base-Contract-Added-Child-Item-3

We have now added in the details for the Child Item in the image below.


Again the list is kept short by adding Child Item under the left hand + symbol which doesn't appear until there is an item beneath it.PayLab-1400x500-KnowledgeBase-Base-Contract-Added-Child-Item-3-Child-Item-1-Added-Arrow

If you expand the list by clicking on the + symbol, you should see the following. With the new Child appearing below indicated by the yellow arrow.


Here we've now added multiple items at the third and fourth levels. You'll also note the Total has been adding up everything accordingly at each level.PayLab-1400x730-KnowledgeBase-Base-Contract-Added-Child-Item-3-Child-Item-Multiple-Expanded

Once you have added in all the line items you need, you can compress each sub-Child so everything is visible on a shorter screen (see below). This is done by clicking on the minus symbol beside each Parent or Sub-Parent item - in the example above, to the left of the Downpipe and Guttering line items.


Congratulations! You've now completed setting up the Base Contract. Go have a nice biscuit, the ones in the secret cupboard that the team don't know about.

All items are now saved, you can now hit Next > if you have the information to set up Variations, otherwise you can come back to it later (here's how to do this).

You will not be able to edit a base contract once you have made your first Payment Claim. Make sure all details are correct and the Client (Payer) agrees to all items in the Base Contract prior to issuing the first Payment Claim.

In our Creating New Projects series, go to the next article - Adding Variations to a Contract

Or go to the previous Creating New Projects article - Creating New Projects