Activity Items

 

Overview

Activity Items, also known as service items, are a list of common activities and tasks you perform when working on a project. The properties of an activity are defined in the Activity screen, which are then inherited by the time entries, budgets, fee schedules, task allocations, etc. Although an unlimited number of activities can be created, we recommend that you keep the list as short as possible to ease the time entry task. Click to watch this video on creating activity items in Core.

Various activity items can be combined into groups for the purpose of budgeting, reporting, scheduling, and so on. In many industries, the activity items are listed and published by their associations to maintain consistency. For example, in the legal industry, activity items are referred to as A-Codes and are published by American Bar Association. Law firms are often required by the insurance companies to use only the published A-Codes in their billing. Core can populate the activity items list with the industry-standard ones if you prefer to do so.

The list of activity items can be printed and exported so that it can be given to employees for reference.

Field Descriptions

Basic Tasks

Create New Activity Items

Batch Update Activity Items

View Reports

Advanced Tasks

Assign Groups to Activity Items

Group Activities

Add Custom Fields

Add Documents

Send Activity Items

Merge Activities

Show/Hide Columns in Grid

Export Activity Items

Apply Filters

Mark Screen as Favorite

 

Field Descriptions

Field Name Field Description
Activity Items > General >
Code Sub-Code Activity = Code:Sub- Code Between the code and sub-code fields, Core automatically inserts a colon (:) as a separator. The resulting Activity must be unique. Example: Enter GEN: MKT to refer to general marketing activity. If you are an architectural firm, you might create activity items such as BIMvis:3D or BIManal:Light where BIM Visualization and BIM Analysis are the main codes and 3D Design and Lighting are the sub-codes. Similarly, if you are a computer consultant, you can install both NT and Novell servers. You can create activity items for each: SERV: NT and SERV:NV, where SERV is the main code and NT and NV are the sub-codes.
OT Bill Rate Overtime bill rate for the activity is used when a time entry is marked as overtime and the 'Rates from Activity Table' rule is selected in the Projects screen.
Class Transaction entity that allows you to track activities and view their reports. You need to assign a class to activity items before creating invoices and prior to syncing data with your accounting software. Else, your class fields will remain blank there and will not display in reports.
Income Account Used for accounting, this account is used to track income or revenue associated with selling services (activities). You can also track income for vendor services using this account. Assigning income account to an activity helps keep track of the account information and is required for data integration with your accounting software. You can overwrite these accounts at the time entry level.
Expense Account Used for accounting, this account is used to track expenses associated with buying services (activities). Assigning expense account to an activity helps keep track of the account information and is required for data integration with your accounting software. You can overwrite these accounts at the time entry level.
Min Hours Minimum number of hours to work on an activity. This value is automatically passed on as the billable hours in the time entry screen. This is useful if you bill day rates. Example: If you bill $600 per day for a certain activity and the bill rate is $100, you will want the activity's minimum hours to be 6.
Tax 1/2/3 Up to three taxes can be assigned per activity item. They are summed and used to calculate the bill amount for the time entry. Example: If activity GEN:TECH has a Tax 1 value of 5% and Tax 2 is 10%, when a time entry is made for GEN:TECH, 15% is added to the service amount billed.
Purchase Tax

If you have vendors (say contract employees) that enter time in Core, you can enter a purchase tax/HST rate as a percentage here for those activity/service items to accommodate the tax you pay them. This tax rate passes on to the time entries and vendor bills though it does not affect the Amount calculation in any way and is for tax reporting purposes.

 

Create New Activity Items

You can create standalone activities in Core or bundle similar activities into a main activity code by creating sub-codes. For example, an activity called Meeting and then having the sub-codes as In-house and On-site. You do not require entering a bill and cost rate. As your staff works on projects, their time bills out at the rate set for them on the project and their cost rate is based on their actual cost to your firm, which is set up in the Employees screen. These rates can vary from project to project and employee to employee. The information created here is inherited by time entries, budgets, fee schedules, and task allocations in Core.

To create an activity item , watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    1. Click Add and enter the required information in the top row of the grid. Check Field Descriptions above for details.

      • Code: Code is the first part of the activity ID. Between the code and sub-code, Core automatically inserts a colon (:) as a separator. 

      • Description

      • Billable (status)

      • Bill Rate: If you leave it blank, it defaults to 0.

      • Cost Rate: If you leave it blank, it defaults to 0.

    2. Click Done.

Batch Update Activity Items

As long as you have not referenced or used an activity in Core, you can delete it. Otherwise, you can make it inactive or use the batch change feature to update it.

To batch update activities:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    1. Select the activity records on the grid and click Actions > Delete to delete them.

    2. Otherwise, click Actions > Batch Update to make batch changes to the selected items. Using the  menu, you can select the total number of records without scrolling all the way to the end of the list, total number of records in view or none of the records.

    3. On the Batch Update dialog, select the relevant fields and enter new values for them.

    4. Check the disclaimer at the bottom and click Update.

    5. To edit a single activity item, click Detail on that activity row.

    6. In the detail view, enter more details or make your changes.

    7. Click Save.

View Reports

To view a report:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

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

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

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

Assign Groups to Activity Items

If you have many activities, the group feature can greatly simplify reporting, creation of budgets and fee schedules. This option allows you to quickly assign an activity to an activity group or view whether the selected activity is a member of any existing groups.

To assign an activity to a group:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    1. In the list view, select the activity that you want to group and click Detail on that row.

    2. In the detail view, go to the General tab, click Assign Groups.

    1. On the Assign Groups dialog, select the desired group for the activity. By default, the All group is assigned and set as the default group for all activities.

    2. Click Update.

Group Activities

If you have many activities, the group feature can greatly simplify reporting, creation of budgets and fee schedules.

To group various activities:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    2. In the list view, select the activity that you want to group and click Detail on that row.

    3. In the detail view, go to the General tab and click Assign Groups.

    1. On the Assign Groups dialog, click Manage Groups.
    2. On the Groups screen, click Create New > Activity Group. (You can also go directly to this screen via side menu > Productivity Tools > Groups.)

    1. On the Create Activity Group screen, enter the required information:

      • Name

      • Description

    2. Select the relevant options:

      • Add new activity items automatically: Automatically adds all new activity items to the new group as they are created.
      • Include all activity items in new group: Includes all existing activity items in the new group.

    1. Click Save.
    2. On the Edit Activity Group screen, you can then click Actions > Assign Activity Item to assign activities to the newly created group.
    3. Click Save.

Add Custom Fields

Using custom fields, you can track extra characteristics and attributes of your activities. You can add unlimited number of custom fields to an activity item. You can even customize these fields in the Custom Labels screen.

To add a custom field, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    1. In the list view, select the activity that you want and click Detail on that row.

    2. In the detail view, go to the Custom Fields tab.

    3. Click Add Custom Field.

    4. Select the type of field you want depending on the purpose, say Text Box.

    5. On the Add Text Box dialog, enter the required information:

      • Name

      • Type

      • # of Characters

    6. Check Show in List View if you want this field to appear under the Show/Hide Columns list and show up on the grid. Click Save.

Note: You can display a maximum of three custom fields on the list view per screen.

Add Documents

When you attach documents to an activity item, they are inherited by the related time entries.

To add a document:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

  1.  

    1. In the list view, select the activity you want and click Detail on that row.

    2. In the detail view, go to the Documents tab and click Add.

    3. On the Add Documents dialog, select the relevant tab, depending on the type of attachments.

      • Computer: To attach files stored on your computer, enter its Description and drag your file or click to browse to that location.

      • Hyperlink: To attach an external link, enter its Description and then insert the hyperlink.

      • Dropbox: To link files stored in your Dropbox account, enter its Description and then browse for it.

      • Google Drive: To link files stored in your Google Drive account, enter its Description and then browse for it.

      • OneDrive: To link files stored in your Microsoft OneDrive account, enter its Description and then browse for it.

      • Box: To link files stored in your Box account, enter its Description and then browse for it.

      • Resource Library: To link company resources, select the resource from the library. This option is available only with Core CRM.

    4. Click Add.

    Core pre-fills some of the information about the attached documents in the grid. You can send the documents to your clients, employees or other contacts for getting their digital or electronic signatures (eSignature via DocuSign) using the eSign option from the  row-action menu. Core automatically adds the signed documents to the Documents folder of the entity (record) as separate attachments. It displays the status of the document, whether it has been delivered via DocuSign, viewed by the recipients, declined or completed by the recipients, etc. This column does not show up if you are not connected via the DocuSign integration.

Send Activity Items

In Core, you can send activities to your accounting program, such as QuickBooks Online, Xero and MYOB AccountRight.

To send an activity item to your accounting program, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    1. In the list view, select the activity that you want to send and click Detail on that row.

    2. In the detail view, click Actions > Send To on the top-right.

    3. Select the relevant option from the drop-down, say QuickBooks. Your data is sent.

Merge Activities

In certain situations, you might want to combine multiple activity items into a single activity. Core allows you to do that by moving all the time, budget and expense line items, and any other transactions linked with the activity items to the selected destination activity. Attachments or any other objects linked with the source activities are moved to the destination activity.

To merge activity items, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    1. Select an activity record on the grid that you want to combine and click  on that row to select Merge.

    2. On the Merge Activity Items dialog, choose the activity item from the drop-down into which you want to merge the selected activities.

    3. Click Merge Activity.

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 Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    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 Cost Rate.
    3. Next, click the column name you want to sort the data by, say Description or Status.
    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 Activity Items

In Core, you can export activities 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 the activity items to a .CSV file, watch this video or follow these steps:

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    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

Besides filtering data using the standard fields on a screen, you can also use the custom fields for that, if you have set them up.

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

    1. Open the Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

    1. In the list view, click  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  on each. To disable applied filters temporarily or remove all filters, click next 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 Activity Items screen from the side menu > Lists > Activity Items.

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

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

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