Managing software subscriptions with Ignition

Learn our best practices for managing your clients’ software subscriptions when using Ignition & XPM.

Khang Ngo avatar
Written by Khang Ngo
Updated this week

Managing your software subscription fees in Ignition is an easy way for you to benefit from the automated billing, payments and reconciliation processes. By having your software subscriptions engaged through Ignition, you are able to easily manage any software price changes or package changes for your clients in one place.

We typically recommend engaging your software subscriptions separately from your annual service agreements.

This helps with managing changing subscription fees and plans when the time comes, however, there are ways in which we can include the software service subscription into the annual service agreement while maintaining an efficient process for managing any future changes.

Within your Ignition account, we have provided pre-made Xero Subscription proposal templates which you can use to engage your clients.

You can make any necessary adjustments/edits as needed before saving them again as your own custom proposal templates if you wish.

Watch the 11 minute video below to learn how you can use these provided templates and how you can easily engage your clients in bulk.

In the above video we mention how to use our bulk proposal creation process, as well as how to use client tags to assist in the process. You can learn more about these processes in the following articles:

If you wish to import and create your Xero subscription proposal templates from scratch, follow along the steps below.


How to manage your Xero software subscriptions in Ignition

Please note: Our provided templates currently reflect Xero's Australian plans and pricing. To see if we have templates available in your region reach out to support@ignitionapp.com

Step 1 - Create your Software Subscription Fee Service templates in Ignition

If you would like to incorporate your client's Xero software services in your service agreement proposals then you will need to add each of the Xero Plans to your Ignition service library.


To do this, navigate to your Ignition Services tab and set up a new service for each of your Software Subscription fees following the steps in this support article.

Alternatively, you can download our provided list of Xero subscription services as a csv file, navigate to your Ignition Services tab, click the Import button and upload the services directly into your account.

Please note: while creating your services, you will need to map each of the subscription services to their own disbursement fees Xero account to ensure your costs reflect accurately in your Xero P&L under the service Apps tab.

Pro-tip: We have a number of software subscription service templates that are available on request including: Xero, Quickbooks Online, Dext & MYOB packages. Reach out to our support team or your Account Manager to have these imported directly into your account.

Step 2 - Create your Software Subscription Fee Proposal

Click Create New Proposal to start setting up your software subscription fee proposal templates, then follow the steps in this support article to guide you through Step 1 to Step 4 in the proposal editor.

It is recommended to create a proposal for each of the relevant Xero packages you offer your clients, and you can use the provided Xero service list above to add the services to your proposals.

Step 3 - Save your Software Subscription packages as Custom Proposal Templates

Once your proposal templates are customised click the drop-down arrow next to Templates and click Save as Template to save each of your Xero Package as a Custom Proposal Template. (For more details read our support article on Custom Templates).

Saving this software subscription proposal as a custom template is an incredibly efficient way to send these proposals out at any time, it minimizes human error as well as ensuring negative WIP is accurately reflected against your XPM jobs.

Step 4 - Create your Xero Custom Proposal Templates in Bulk for your Clients

Once your custom proposal templates are saved you can not only use these to quickly whip up your Xero proposals 1 by 1, but taking this once step further, you can also create client proposals in bulk using these templates.

Read the articles below to find out more information on creating proposals in bulk:


XPM WIP considerations

Please note: The following section is only applicable to users that have XPM connected and manage their WIP.

It is important to note that if you are utilising XPM with Ignition there are some key points to consider when engaging your software subscriptions to maintain accurate billing and profitability reports.

If your practice currently utilises a WIP wash up process to report on profitability then it’s important to ensure that software subscription invoices aren’t recognised as revenue on your XPM Jobs.

Ideally, these invoices should be excluded from allocating to an XPM job altogether, but if they are allocated to jobs then you should at least make sure to add the costs associated with the disbursement fee to the job.

Does your practice generally include your software subscription fees in your Annual Service Agreements?

If so, see this article for more information on how to set up and map XPM Cost Templates to Ignition Disbusement Fee services to have Costs automatically allocate to your Annual Service Agreement billing jobs in XPM.

Please note: it is recommended to manage your Software Subscriptions in a separate proposal to your Service Agreements to ensure negative WIP from disbursement fee services are excluded from your billing jobs.

Step 5 - When using XPM follow these steps to customise the Automation step of your Xero Proposal Templates

Under the Automation step, ensure Proposal is selected in the “Group related billing by” drop-down.

The Proposal billing grouping will mean that any Xero invoices generated from this proposal will have a reference number that is unique to this proposal.

This PROP reference number will differ from any invoices generated from other client proposals which means each proposal for your clients will generate separate invoices when using the proposal billing grouping.

When invoices sync overnight from Xero into XPM, any invoices with reference numbers that match the client order number on an XPM job will allocate to the financial tab of that job.

As your software subscription fee invoices will have a unique proposal reference number from other client proposals, this proposal billing grouping ensures that these invoices are not allocated to an Annual Billing Job in XPM.

If any Xero invoices can’t find a job with a matching client order number then the invoice will allocate against the client’s file in XPM as a miscellaneous invoice or create a new Adhoc job depending on your XPM settings (see this article for more information).

If the invoice allocates as a miscellaneous invoice against a client in XPM it will not impact your global practice WIP figure. However, if the invoice creates an ad hoc job (as per your settings above), it will reduce your global practice WIP figure.

After you have selected the Proposal billing grouping, there is no need select Build Worklow from the Automation step as this will avoid setting up a job in XPM for your Xero subscription fee proposals.

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