Switch “On Completion” bills to installment plans

Switching your One-off fees to instalment plans can give your clients a cash flow boost, and can improve the certainty that you'll get paid.

Tom Maxwell avatar
Written by Tom Maxwell
Updated over a week ago

Times of uncertainty means that things will have to change. As a professional service provider, you may need to change the engagement you have in place with your clients. As a user of Ignition, we’d like to share with you some ideas about how you can help your clients right now (and how to make those changes quickly and easily in your Ignition account).

On Completion fees (or estimate fees, which are billed on completion of the service) have the potential to cause a cash flow issue for your client, particularly businesses that are already seasonal in nature. 

Throw an economic downturn into the mix and another sizeable bill could truly make or break a business.

You can consider switching to On Acceptance fees to a payment plan too, but you’d be doing this prior to a proposal being accepted. Any On Acceptance fees in an active proposal will have already been collected.

One way to alleviate the pain for your customers is to allow them to pay your one-time fees in installments. Of course, you’ll need to decide if your business can cope with the cash flow impact of slowly collecting the same fees over a longer period of time. But of course, a very real alternative is that your bill will go unpaid entirely. With that in mind, it’s better to collect over time than not at all…

So if you are in a position to do so, the best way to facilitate this is to perform a proposal adjustment in Ignition. Here’s how.

How to switch from 'On Completion' to recurring installments

First, find your proposal you want to adjust. 

If you want to narrow down your clients to find any that have an unbilled On Completion services, start by heading into your Clients tab and select the Due Any Time filter under the Manual Billing section.

This will filter your client list to show you what clients that have unbilled On Completion services.

Then, proceed to click into the clients and the specific active proposal that contains the unbilled On Completion service.

Once you’ve selected the proposal, you’ll see the Adjust Proposal button at the top right corner of the screen

A new draft proposal will be created, which is linked to the original. At this point you have a couple of simple steps to follow:

  1. Go to the Summary tab and adjust the start and end date.

    This will dictate the number of billing periods that you’ll be collecting your recurring fees.

    In the same tab, you’ll also select which day of the month you’d like to generate the invoice and process the fees. You’ll also likely choose to ensure that you “Stop Recurring Billing” when the end date hits, given that you are converting a single service into a payment plan.

    Let’s look at an example:

    In this example, I’ve made the proposal start on April 1st, and finish on July 31st. I’ve selected the 1st of the month for the recurring invoice day and have chosen to Stop Recurring Billing when the end date passes. As such, there are 4 billing periods in this proposal (April 1st, May 1st, June 1st, July 1st), meaning the payment plan is going to have a 4-month duration.

  2. So now that you’ve set up your proposal settings, navigate to the Services tab within the proposal, and then click on your on-completion service.

    At this point, you’ll switch the billing type to recurring, and then calculate how much you will be charging each month. Add any other services you may need to add and then save your proposal.

  3. At this point, all you need to do is send it to your client for acceptance, and Ignition will take care of the rest. It’ll mark the original proposal as complete and start collecting your fees as scheduled.

    If you are using Xero or QuickBooks, your invoices will be created as normal. 

And that’s all you have to do. As simple as that, you’ve converted your proposal to installments!

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