Phylogenetic analyses that incorporate the most character information also provide the most explanatory power. Here I demonstrate the value of such an approach through a direct optimization sensitivity analysis of apid bee phylogeny. Whereas prior studies have relied solely on one class of data or the other, this analysis combines previously published molecular, morphological, and behavioural characters into a single supermatrix. The final dataset includes 191 ingroup and 30 outgroup taxa, and includes data from seven unaligned gene sequences (18S, 28S, wingless, EF1-α, polII, Nak, LW rhodopsin), 209 adult and larval morphological characters, and two behavioural characters. Nine different sets of transformation cost parameters are evaluated, along with their relative degrees of character incongruence. The preferred parameter set returns a strict consensus tree somewhat similar to, but more resolved than, a previous parsimony tree based on molecules alone. I also describe the effects of including EF1-α and LW rhodopsin intron sequences on the outcome of the direct optimization analysis. By accounting for more evidence, this study provides the most comprehensive treatment yet of apid phylogenetic relationships.