We’re halfway there… but unlike Bon Jovi, we’re not living on a prayer — we’re thriving based on your feedback! This is our sixth release of 2022, each of which has been created in partnership with you, and this release is one of our biggest yet.
June 2022 Release Highlights
- Option to require custom fields
- Invoice number on universal search
- Default invoice PDF on project
- Manager notes on rejected hours
- Retainer invoicing
- Allow user to set Client_ID on LEDES invoice export
- Browser option for date format configuration
- Add assignments to the allocation editor
- Sort columns on the Gantt chart
- Timesheet custom fields on timers
- Non-billable flag invoice PDF configuration
- Project custom fields on invoicing WIP
- Effective multiplier reporting
- Deposit detail report
- Include debit/refunds inside of payment history
- Addition of attachment to invoice tab
Optimizing each team member's workflow is crucial and we know that. In our efforts to continually improve that process, we have included over 15 enhancements to the core application, all centered around ease of use. From sorting columns on your Gantt charts or leveraging universal search to find invoices, all the way to adding custom fields to timers, we have looked at all areas of the application to ensure everyone in your organization continues to see workflow improvements.
Option to require custom fields
Admins can now choose to have a custom field required to force users to enter a value before they can save. This enhancement allows system admins to ensure their staff is inputting the proper values into fields that are important on projects, tasks, and/or staff records.
When editing the custom fields, there is now a setting to mark that the field is ‘required’. When a user tries to save without entering a value in a required field, BigTime will highlight the field in red, letting the user know it is required to enter a value.
Invoice number on universal search
Users can now leverage the universal search function to search for a specific invoice number. This will pull a list of any invoices that match the value searched for. Then it will include a link to that invoice, making it easy to directly access that invoice. Each invoice number in the list of results will also display the project it is attached to.
Default invoice PDF on project
Projects now have a new field to set a default invoice PDF/template. This will ensure the correct invoice PDF is applied for that project each time an invoice is created. Users will have the ability to change the template and are not required to use the template set as the default. This addition will ensure accuracy and consistency for firms leveraging various invoice templates for different projects.
Manager notes on rejected hours
Rejection notes for a time or expense entry will now appear in the revision notes section. Prior to this, they were being included in the entry notes section, which was causing confusion.
Retainers are an advanced payment that you can request from your client at the start of a project. The retainer can then be used for future billings or the final invoice once the project has been completed.
In BigTime, we have now exposed the retainer term on all invoice types. This will allow a user to apply a line item to the retainer to be used on future invoices. When they are ready to invoice the client and use the retainer (the amount the client has already paid), they can click the ‘add line’ button which will contain a section option to ‘apply retainer’.
When they choose to apply the retainer, a negative line item will be applied to that invoice for either a) the amount of the invoice if it is less than the total retainer or b) the amount of the retainer if it is equal to or great than the invoice amount.
Allow user to set Client_ID on LEDES invoice export
LEDES billing is a common billing format used by law firms. The client ID is a value exported as part of the LEDES invoice. To give the user more control over this value, we have now introduced the option to create a custom field on the client that will utilize the value set within this field.
If you create a custom field labeled ‘LEDES Client ID’ and input a value, the LEDES invoice for that project will utilize that value in the CLIENT_ID column. This is not required. If you don't create a custom field or if the custom field is left blank, BigTime will use the Client SID instead (existing behavior).
Browser option for date format configuration
In a recent release, we added a date configuration setting in the company settings so system administrators can set their date format to either MM/DD/YYYY or DD/MM/YYYY.
A third option has now been added to leverage the user’s browser language setting. This way, we aren’t limiting a firm to using one or the other and each user can rely on their own browser language to drive the date format in their own BigTime instance.
Add assignments to the allocation editor
Task assignments will now be automatically added to the allocation editor. Often, the staffers that are assigned to the task will be determined before they start allocating hours towards that task.
Adding the assignments to the allocation editor will make the allocation process easier so the user doesn’t have to worry about remembering who they assigned to the task or need to open multiple screens/browsers to see who they assigned to each task.
A blank row will automatically be added to the allocation editor for the assigned staffer on the corresponding task.
Sort columns on the Gantt chart
On the schedule/Gantt chart, a user can now sort the columns in the order they want, providing added flexibility and configuration to this screen.
Timesheet custom fields on timers
If a firm has configured their timesheet with a custom field, those will now be available on the timers as well.
Non-billable flag invoice PDF configuration
Invoice templates now include a non-billable flag in the time and expense details. If a user decides to share the non-billable entries with the client, they can also include the non-billable column, flagging which entries are considered non-billable. Then, they can sort by this flag as well.
Project custom fields on invoicing WIP
The work-in-progress screen can be configured to include any project custom fields, allowing the user to sort and filter by those values.
While workflows are critical, we know data is as well. This release also includes updates to reporting, including the ability to go deeper on Wallet (our online payment processing) reporting and for all our architecture & engineering firms to add the effective multiplier calculation. For us, it's all about listening to your feedback and ensuring we build what you need to be able to focus on getting your work done instead of having to download data and manipulate it yourself.
Effective multiplier reporting
The effective multiplier value is a common metric used in architecture and engineering firms. This value is the ROI for the money spent on direct labor. It is an indicator of the firm’s profitability. In other words, the effective multiplier value measures the firm’s efficiency at converting direct labor spent completing projects into revenue dollars.
We have now added this field to the project list reports. It calculates [total invoiced (fees only) / total cost (input hours * cost rate)].
Deposit detail report
The deposit detail report has been modified to allow users to view each individual deposit and the payments that comprise that particular batch. This will allow the user to match the deposits they receive in their bank account to the exact payments in BigTime.
Include debit/refunds inside of payment history
Currently, the deposits in the detail screen only include credit payments, not any debits/refunds. However, if a refund is part of the payment batch, it will now be listed in the batch via the deposit details screen.
Addition of attachment to invoice tab
Attachments are now available in both the dashboard and the invoice tab of the client portal.
We’re really excited about the enhancements and features we have planned for the second half of the year, and we want your feedback on all of them! From early focus groups to pilot programs, we welcome your participation as we continue to evolve the BigTime solution. If you’re interested in having your voice influence our design, please reach out to us at email@example.com.
About the Author
Senior Vice President, ProductSee more by Jami Klotz