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Clients

David Stevenson -

The first two items in the Clients & Jobs section of the taskbar open a list of client organizations and individual contacts at these organizations respectively.  The list will appear in a new tab, labelled as appropriate, in the main work area of the Synergist interface.  The list uses many controls common to lists in Synergist, read more about common user interface controls in this article.

An organization in Synergist can be designated as a lead, a prospect or a client.  Leads are only available if you have access to the sales & marketing module in Synergist, which is controlled by a license.

Clients are any organization that you are actively working on jobs for, or who you have done work for (and invoiced for) in the past.

Prospects are organizations that you are in the process of quoting for work.  At the point at which a quote is accepted and the work becomes "live" the organization will be promoted to a client.

Leads are used to track communication with an individual at an organization that you have never dealt with before.  They carry both organization and individual information and contact details.  A soon as you wish to quote the organization for a piece of work the lead will be promoted to a prospect.

The promotion path from lead > prospect > client is not one-way.  You can revert a client to a prospect, and a prospect to a lead.  Before you can demote an organization you must ensure that there are no open jobs or quotes for the organization.

 

The list of organizations displays basic information about each one, clicking on an item in the list opens the detail input form for that organization in a new tab in the main interface.  The detail input form is made up of several pages of information:

 

Details.  Organization name, code, postal address and several reporting categories can be set on this page.  Handler is the default account handler for new jobs created for this organization.  Source, type, sector, status, rating are all optional pieces of information that can be used to categorise your clients and filter reports either via the data viewer or the standard reports interface.  If you have set up any custom fields for use on organizations they will be displayed on this page.  Other settings available on this page indicate if the organization is internal, inactive, or on hold.  An internal client is normally created for administrative jobs like holidays or meetings - timesheets posted to these jobs are counted by Synergist as non-chargeable.

Contacts.  A list of individual contacts connected to this organization.  Basic details are displayed in the list, clicking on an item in the list opens the detail input form for the contact in a new tab in the main interface.  New contacts for this organization can be created here.  Financial.  Financial data relevant to this organization.  Turnover is the total value of sales invoices raised against this client.  This value can be reset periodically via utilities, to give a year to date figure, for example.  Investment is the total investment value on closed jobs against this client.  Like turnover, this value can be reset via utilities.

Activities.  A list of activities for this organization.  The list will use the default view of activities for your user, other views can be selected from the views list and the filter button will allow you to modify the selection of activities shown as required.  There is also a dedicated note type filter control above the list on this page.  The actions button on this page allows you to expand entries in the list to double height in order to show more information from the comments field on each activity.

Financial.  Various financial information about this organization - turnover and investment are cumulative figures which can be reset or recalculated from a date via utilities.  You can set the default currency for a foreign client here by ticking the multi-currency box and specify a default purchase order markup which will override supplier default markups.  The invoicing options allow you to specify default payment terms for this organization - payment terms are created in file maintenance.  If you offer settlement discounts to clients for prompt payment this can also be set here, along with a preference for how this client would prefer to receive their invoices - electronically as a PDF or posted (or both).  The job defaults are applied to new jobs for this organization - VAT code, status and charge type.  If client prefixing of job numbers is used, you set the prefix here.  Bear in mind when specifying a client prefix that the maximum length for job numbers is ten characters, including the company prefix, so the prefix plus the numeric part of the job number should never be more than eight characters.

Targets.  You may set targets for turnover, gross margin (turnover less third party costs) and net margin (turnover less all costs) for your organizations.  These targets are set monthly and require that you have created financial periods in file maintenance for the months in question.  Clicking the new button allows you to set some or all of these targets for an entire year.  You can either leave the targets blank, to allow you to enter each one individually, or you can specify an annual target value to be spread evenly, or a monthly target to apply to each month in the year.  These can be adjusted as required once created.

Invoices / Jobs / Phases.  Lists of items for this organization.  Clicking on an item will open it in a new tab in the main interface.  The items listed will be those for your default view of that type of item (invoice / job / phase), use the filter button to change this selection as required.

Notes.  Two text fields here can be used to enter more information about this organization.  The data entered into Client specification can be used to auto-populate the comments field on new jobs for this organization, based on a company setting.

Prices.  A matrix of client-specific charge rates that will be used when adding new time estimates and new time sheets to jobs for this organization.  If the organizations set to use a foreign currency by default, you can specify these charge rates in that currency rather than your base currency.  Normally only the recommended charge rate is set on a per-client basis, but you can, if you wish, also set the cost rates for time per client, although this is unusual.  Cost rates for time are always set in the base currency for your company - you cannot set the cost rate in a foreign currency.  If you use materials you can also specify client specific charge rates for these.  Cost rates for materials cannot be set per client.

 

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