Invoice Collections

Overview

Collection is the intermediate step between processing invoices and receiving payments. The goal is to manage the invoices after they have been finalized and delivered to a client but before the final payments have been received. For your business, the longer the money remains blocked with your debtors, the more you experience cash flow problems. This reduces the profit margin on the products and services.

Cash flow is directly controlled by two metrics:

  • Days between the services were provided and the invoice mailed

  • Days between the invoices were mailed and payment received

If you can lower each of these numbers by 15 days, you will experience significant improvements in your cash flow over the next 12 months.

The Invoice Collections screen allows you to view the outstanding invoices and make some systematic collection efforts. You can focus on those invoices that seem to be getting closer to becoming bad debts using the available statistics. This feature optimizes your collection efforts by maintaining the past collection history, allowing you to attach time-stamped notes, displaying metric such as the average number of days it takes a client to pay and so on. So the next time you contact a client, your previous collection notes are automatically displayed for reference. Click to watch this video on managing collections in Core.

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Field Descriptions

Basic Tasks

View Invoice Details

Add Collection Notes

View Reports

Advanced Tasks

Add To-Dos

Add Payments

Preview Invoices

Download Invoices

Email Invoice Details

Process Late Fee

Change Online Payments

Show/Hide Columns in Grid

Export Collections

Apply Filters

Mark Screen as Favorite

 

Field Descriptions

Field Name Field Description
Invoice Collections > Summary >
Primary Contact This is the main or primary contact set up in the client's profile. To see these contact details, you must have checked the option 'Set as primary' in the Clients > Contact screen.
Billing Contact This is the billing contact set up in the project's profile. To see these contact details, you must have checked the option 'Send invoice to contact' and selected an employee from the drop-down list on the Projects > General screen.
Invoice Collections > Details >
ePayments

Core allows your clients to make online payments using the ePayments feature. You can check this option for the invoice here and then select the Online Payment Account from the drop-down. You can also set it up at the Global Settings level for all clients and projects.

Core allows you to select multiple online payment accounts. However, you cannot choose two payment services with the same payment method. You have the ability to access the ePayments Portal directly without having to open an invoice and click the Pay Now button. You can quickly process the payment if you have the client's credit card on hand or copy the payment portal link and email it to your client without visiting the portal.

Services Service or labor amount billed on the invoice. It does not include Tax 1/2/3 of time entries nor Main Service Tax.
Fixed Fee Displays the fixed fee amount charged to the project with a Cost Plus contract type. It is added to the bill amount.
Expenses Expense amount billed on the invoice. It does not include Tax 1/2/3 of expense entries nor Main Expense Tax. It is calculated as:  

Expenses = (Units x Cost Rate ) + MU %

Revenue Total

Total of all service and expense amounts due on the invoice.

Revenue Total = Service Amount + Expense Amount

Miscellaneous Any miscellaneous charges for the invoice. It is added to the bill amount.
Discount The discount amount applied to an invoice before processing. The Net Amount is reduced by whatever amount is here. The discount reduces the final invoice amount after taxes have been added.
Retainer This is the retainer amount applied on an invoice. Like a discount, it reduces the Net Amount due from a client.
Retainage Due This value indicates what portion of the net billed amount will remain withheld by the client for a specific project whose invoice is created.
Invoice Collections > List View >
ePayment

Indicates whether the ePayments option is turned on for the invoice or not. If not, you can turn it on individually in the detail view or in a batch for multiple invoices using Batch Update. Invoices that are scheduled for online payments display a slightly different check-mark icon to let you know they are scheduled.

ePayment Status

Displays the status of the ePayments for the invoice if that option is enabled, say CC Processed for credit card processed. In case of ACH ePayments, the status displays ACH Initiated after the clients initiate ACH transfer on the ePayments Portal; it then changes to ACH Scheduled or ACH Processed.

 

View Invoice Details

To view the outstanding invoice details, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_preview.png

    1. In the list view, you can choose the relevant Period, click <dropdown-caret.png on a row of whose details you want to view and then select View Details. You cannot see details of line items of split invoices.

    2. In the detail view, go to the Details tab to view the transaction details. You can enable the ePayments Core allows your clients to make online payments using the ePayments feature. You can check this option for the invoice here and then select the Online Payment Account from the drop-down. You can also set it up at the Global Settings level, which is then inherited at the client, project and invoice level. option there, if needed.

    3. Go to the Preview tab to see a preview of that invoice.

Add Collection Notes

You can add collection notes to your invoices for easy reference.

To do so, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_notes1.png

    1. In the list view, with the Show: Open view, select an outstanding invoice on the grid and click Notes on that row.

    2. On the Notes dialog, you can view the latest notes for that invoice and also enter a new note.

    3. Click Save.

    4. Alternatively, in the list view, click dropdown-caret.png on that row to select View Details.

    5. In the detail view Summary tab, click Add under Notes.

invoice_collections_notes2.png

    1. Enter your notes in the top row of the grid:

      • Date

      • Employee

      • Memo

    1. Click Done.

View Reports

To view a report:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_reports.png

    1. In the list view, click More > View Reports.

    2. Select a report from the Report List dialog. It opens in the viewer.

    3. Preview the report and then choose to export or print it.

Add To-Dos

You can add to-do items from the Invoice Collections screen. The purpose is that if you call a customer today, you might want to set up a to-do item or reminder to notify you in, say, 15 days to follow up with that client. This translates into client to-dos that are assigned to yourself.

To add a to-do item:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

    2. In the list view, click dropdown-caret.png on an invoice row and select View Details.

    3. In the detail view, click Actions on the top-right and select To-Do.

invoice_collections_todo.png

    1. On the Add To-Do dialog, enter the required information:

      • Assigned To

      • Reminder Date

      • Description or Memo

    1. Click Add.

Add Payments

You can enter client payments for the outstanding invoices from this screen. To do so:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_payment.png

    1. In the list view, with the Show: Open view, click dropdown-caret.png on a row and select View Details (or select Payment instead to go directly to the Add Payment screen.)

    2. In the detail view Summary tab, click Add New Payment under Payment History.

    3. On the Add Payment screen, enter the payment as you normally would. Check out Payments for further details.

Preview Invoices

You can preview outstanding invoices from this screen. To do so, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_preview.png

    1. In the list view, click dropdown-caret.png on an outstanding invoice row and select Preview. (Alternatively, you can select multiple rows in the invoice list view and click Actions > Preview to batch view them.)

    2. It opens in the viewer. Preview the invoice and then choose to export or print it.

Download Invoices

You can download the details of the invoices as a PDF file directly from the list view.

To download an invoice:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_download.png

    1. In the list view, select the invoice on the grid whose details you want to download and click dropdown-caret.png to select Download PDF.

    2. It prompts you to save the PDF at the relevant location, say your Desktop. Click Save.

Email Invoice Details

To email the outstanding invoice detail:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

    2. In the list view, click dropdown-caret.png on an invoice row and select View Details. (Alternatively, you can select multiple rows in the invoice list view and click Actions > Email to batch email them.)

    3. In the detail view, click Actions on the top-right and select Email.

invoice_collections_email.png

    1. Select one of the options in the drop-down menu, say Client .

    2. On the Compose Email dialog, enter the required information:

      • To: You can send an email to multiple recipients and also copy them using the CC and BCC options. You can click on the Choose Contact icon to open the Address Book and select multiple individuals or groups to email. However, if you are using a trial version of Core, it does not allow more than 3 distinct recipients at a time. For paid subscriptions, this limit is 50 recipients at a time.

      • Subject: Subject line of the email. You can also insert smart fields into it using the Add Smart Field option on the right.

      • Message: It can be entered and edited using the formatting toolbar.

    1. Click Add Attachments at the bottom to attach any document to the email. You can also drag-and-drop any file into the Compose Email window from your desktop or email program.

    2. Click Send Message.

If the email is sent to an address that is no longer working, there is a bounce-back email sent to let you know about this.

Note: You cannot remove the default or system attachments. Only user-defined attachments can be added or removed. Core restricts the file size of the attachments to 10 MB and sends the attachments as a single zipped file.

Process Late Fee

You can charge interest on outstanding or unpaid invoices in Core and calculate late fee on them based on the interest rate and days specified in Global Settings or Projects. Core appends an LF- prefix to the late fee invoices for easy identification.

To process late fee:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_late_fee.png

    1. In the list view, select the outstanding invoices on the grid for which you want to calculate late fee. (You can show the Overdue column in the grid using More > Show/Hide Columns.)

    2. Click Actions > Process Late Fee.

    3. On the Late Fee dialog, select the date up to which Core must calculate the late fee.

    4. Click Create. Confirm this action and click Submit.

Core calculates the late fee for all the selected overdue invoices and displays those invoices separately on the grid.

Change Online Payments

BQE Software has created partnership with AffiniPay and Stripe to offer you various payment solutions, depending on your industry and type of business. Core allows your clients to pay their invoices electronically using the ePayments method from anywhere in the world, including credit cards, debit cards, bank accounts or ACH transfers. You get to choose whether to enable ePayments at the global level for all clients or selectively enable that at the client, project and invoice level. Core lets you set up multiple online accounts to control processing fees and other settings. After the payments are completed successfully and the process status arrives from AffiniPay or Stripe, Core creates the reconciled payments and deposits in the associated bank accounts automatically. ePayments can be used for regular invoices, retainer invoices as well as late fee invoices. Check out the AffiniPay ePayments or Stripe ePayments FAQs.

To change the online payment account for an invoice, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

      invoice_collections_epayments1.png

 

    1. In the list view, select the invoices on the grid whose payment option you want to change.
    2. Click Actions > Online Payments.
    3. On the Change Online Payment Account dialog, select the Account Core allows your clients to make online payments using the ePayments feature. You can check this option for the invoice here and then select the Online Payment Account from the drop-down. You can also set it up at the Global Settings level for all clients and projects.
      Core allows you to select multiple online payment accounts. However, you cannot choose two payment services with the same payment method. You have the ability to access the ePayments Portal directly without having to open an invoice and click the Pay Now button. You can quickly process the payment if you have the client's credit card on hand or copy the payment portal link and email it to your client without visiting the portal. that you want to associate with the selected invoices for the online payment. You can also remove any account by selecting None from the drop-down.
    4. Click Update.
    5. Alternatively, select an invoice on the grid for which you want to enable ePayments and click dropdown-caret.png to select View Details.
    6. On the Details tab, check the ePayments Core allows your clients to make online payments using the ePayments feature. You can check this option for the invoice here and then select the Online Payment Account from the drop-down. You can also set it up at the Global Settings level for all clients and projects.
      Core allows you to select multiple online payment accounts. However, you cannot choose two payment services with the same payment method. You have the ability to access the ePayments Portal directly without having to open an invoice and click the Pay Now button. You can quickly process the payment if you have the client's credit card on hand or copy the payment portal link and email it to your client without visiting the portal. option: Allow online payments for this invoice.

      invoice_collections_epayments2.png
    1. Next, select the Online Payment Account from the drop-down and click Update.

Note: If you remove the online payment profile in Global Settings > ePayments after invoices are available for ePayments, the Online Payment Account gets reset to 'None' in the Invoices list. Also, you cannot change the account of ACH scheduled and credit card scheduled invoices.

When enabled, the ePayments option appears as a Pay Now/Pay Invoice button on the invoice PDFs as well as in the body of the emails sent to the clients. They can click on the Pay button and be directed to the ePayments portal2._Stripe__CC_Portal__Partial_Payment_.png where they can enter their credit card, debit card or bank account details, and apply a partial, full or scheduled payment to the invoices (depending on your ePayments settings). If allowed, they can schedule payments on any date they choose. As long as the scheduled payment date falls on or before the invoice due date, your clients can choose when to pay and also be able to make any changes right from the ePayments portal for the specific invoice. However, the scheduled payment options are not available for ACH transfer payments. They can be paid fully or partially using manual entry of bank account details or automatic entry via Plaid. The payment history on the ePayments portal shows a list of previous partial payments received against the invoice.

When the payments are made by your clients and validated by AffiniPay or Stripe, it moves the payment amount to your AffiniPay or Stripe account and deposits the same in your bank account within the next 24 hours (debiting the bank account). Core automatically creates the payment and deposit transactions with proper accounting (crediting the accounts) and reflects the processing fees (debiting the expense account). It also processes relevant notifications and delivers them to the Core user who creates the invoices.

Show/Hide Columns in Grid

You can configure the fields or columns that appear on the grid in the list view. You can hide or show columns, and sort the order of columns according to your requirements.

To do so, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_columns.png

    1. In the list view, click More > Show/Hide Columns on the action bar.
    2. Select or un-select the column names in the drop-down list, say Project.
    3. Next, click the column name you want to sort the data by, say Balance.
    4. Click once for ascending order ( A-Z) and twice for descending order ( Z-A).

Note: You can resize the column widths on the grid and then reset them, if needed (More > Reset Column Widths).

Export Collections

In Core, you can export invoice collection information to the Comma Separated Values file format. Core exports data from all available columns and not just the columns visible in the grid.

To export collection information to a .CSV file, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_export.png

    1. In the list view, click More > Export as CSV.

    2. A .csv export file is created and saved on your system at the default download location, say your desktop. Click to open the spreadsheet.

Apply Filters

To view selective data on the grid, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_filters.png

    1. In the list view, click filters-01.png on the right.

    2. On the Filters panel, select a filter from the drop-down and specify individual records or range.

    3. Click Add Filters to specify more filters.

    4. When you have finished, click Apply Filter . You can see selective data now.

    5. In the list view, you can remove the individual filters by clicking remove-01.png on each. To disable applied filters temporarily or remove all filters, click filter_icon.pngnext to the Filters icon and select Disable Filters or Clear All, respectively.

Mark Screen as Favorite

You can mark or flag the most-often used and important screens in Core as your favorites up to a maximum of ten. These favorite screens then display separately on the side menu under the Favorites list. You can manage all your favorite screens in Core from User Preferences.

To mark this screen as your favorite, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Invoice Collections screen from the side menu > Billing > Invoice Collections.

invoice_collections_favorite.png

    1. In the list view, click favorites.png on the top-right.

    2. You can access this screen from the side menu under Favorites.

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