Copy to: Sales Order to New Sales Quote

Hello, We would find it useful to have the following functionality under Sales Orders.

Copy to: Sales Order to New Sales Quote

Basically the use case is as follows for us.
Devices come in for service so Reception generate a Sales Order for everything coming over the counter or by phone for tracking purposes.
Invoices are generated from the Sales Orders by the Engineers and Technicians. However in some cases the end user requests a Quote before the go ahead with service is given.

It will be an advantage for the team to generate a Quote directly the pre-populated Sales Orders.

Any thoughts from the Manager community?

My reaction to your workflow is to wonder why you create a sales order for a customer who has already instructed you, either over the counter or by phone, that they want a sales quote before service will be authorized. (And it seems they must have always given you such instructions, because otherwise, having already written up a sales order, you would be proceeding with service, and the next step would be invoicing. In other words, if they had not told you in advance a sales quote was needed, you would not be generating one.)

So my recommendation is that when such a customer calls or comes in, the receptionist should write a sales quote, not a sales order. The quote might be crude. The receptionist might even need to refer it to someone technical for editing before it can be given to the customer. But whatever information would have gone onto a sales order can go instead onto a sales quote. Basically, instead of telling a customer a sales order was being written up, the receptionist would tell them a quote was being initiated and that the customer will be contacted when a detailed quote is finished. This is a very common situation in business.

Then, if the sales quote is accepted, copy it to a sales order. From there, the process is identical to what you are doing already. If the quote is rejected, you do not have an unfulfilled sales order residing in your system forever. This will become more important when the promised sales order status tracking feature is added.

The Sales Orders are our internal Incident documents which hold all Customer recorded activity.

The beauty with the Copy to: function is that it is fast and would allow us to efficiently produce a quote from what the reception team have captured and constructed. See attached “The Issue” Work%20Flow

Your chart does not agree with the process you described. Your chart shows the decision to create a quote occurring after a sales order is created, being an alternative to an agile cash job or some other type of authorized work. But according to what you described, the customer begins by already knowing whether a quote will be necessary.

So start the process with a quote for customers who say they need one. Skip the quote for customers who say they don’t. You will copy the same number of transactions, but instead of copying orders to quotes, you’ll copy quotes to orders. And you’ll eliminate orders that never receive action because the quote was not accepted.

Whichever form you start with, you would enter all the same information. Overall, there will be less work, not more. And no other part of your operations will be affected, because every job you actually do will continue to have a sales order, as it does now.

Correct - For reasons described

Incorrect - Very seldom do our customers request quotes, our findings generally invoke the Quote Process through the Service Decision see comment below

To start with creating a Quote is not within the Reception staff’s scope where a qualified specialist is required. The specialist would pick up on the sales order and generate the quote if needed, Service Decision. We know about the process you describe, quote first and work backwards and copy to Sales Order.
The trouble with that method is the quality and sensitive nature of the data captured must not end up in a quote. To place the captured data in a Quote document which is for external use is too risky in our field. While what I propose carries a risk as well it will in our view work more efficiently.

This thought is meant to be constructive and this idea has come from the team working at the coal face so to speak, not me.

This seems to contradict what you have already described. Your three-option service decision cannot be what initiates a quote unless you already know the customer will require one. If you did not know that, you would simply proceed with either the Engineering or Consultation paths. Since you already know a customer is one of the 4% who require quotes, I’m just suggesting you start there as place for Reception to record information. That first version of the quote will not be adequate for good pricing or approval, but you can give it to the Specialist for the next step.

Your specialist currently begins with incomplete information on a sales order and adds detail as a quote is created. With my suggested revision, the specialist will begin with incomplete information on a quote and edit it to add detail. Same task, but on a form with a different title. Then, if accepted, that form can be copied to a sales order.

This is only backwards from your current process. But you started this thread looking for a change because your current process is not efficient. Most businesses quote, then take a sales order (if used), then invoice.

This statement does not make sense to me. You already said a specialist was needed to make a quote. If high-quality, sensitive data cannot end up in the quote, why do you need a specialist? How can you create a quote without the necessary information?

What is the risk, then? If you are worried about a potential customer taking your quote to a competitor, who would then have necessary information to perform the service without the expense of diagnosing a problem, do not give the customer the most detailed version of the quote. Do this instead:

  1. Begin with a rough quote from reception, with the same information as on a sales order.
  2. Have the Specialist edit the quote with necessary detail and pricing.
  3. Clone the quote (remember, quotes have no financial impact).
  4. Edit the clone to remove risky data you don’t want the customer to see.
  5. If the customer accepts the quote (from the clone), copy the original quote to the sales order.
  6. Delete the clone, if you don’t need it for anything.

Does anyone else share the view that it does not make sense to consider the option of copy to:
Sales Orders to Quotes

Just feel the feedback has been limited to one person.

Sorry, I’m with Tut on this.

The logical order would be inquiry from a potential customer, a sales quote to offer goods/services at a price, a sales order to confirm the order from the customer, delivery of the goods/services (with delivery note if required) and finally sales invoice for the goods followed by a receipt of the payment.

So copying a Sales Order to a Sales Quote doesn’t seem logical

In manager a sales order is used to record a customer order typically often after receiving a PO from a customer. Possibly the customer issued the PO because they accepted an earlier quote you gave them.

In your scenario you are not quite using the sales order as intended. I follow your need - log a ticket/call/repair request etc. Decide whether the request can be a straight billing, needs quote sent etc. Fair enough, but that’s not what manager intended the Sales order to be. There really isn’t a function for that but your making working around it by using the SO for your purpose. Fair enough.

Now, as to copy SO to quote, ignoring your (mis:-)use case, I could see a customer calling asking about something they previously bought a long time ago and asking for a current quote. ie sales rep looking up a past order and using that as a template to copy fromto start a new quote from. So, I can see a valid case to copy an old (closed) SO to a new quote that fits more with managers intended use of transactions.

Not sure if that helps.

In that case, I would copy the actual sales invoice to the new quote, which can be done.

@compuit, please understand, it isn’t that I’m opposed to the capability to copy a sales order to a quote. I just think you workflow adds unnecessary tasks. By simplifying your flow, you also avoid the need for a program change.

Guys this is a simple request for comment or thought. I stress, this is not an application change. I am fascinated as to how it is assumed clients or service desk people know when a quote is needed at the outset of a sales order. It really depends on your market, the magnitude and the type of project the organisation will engage. It will no doubt benefit our business process hugely plus another three other companies I know of using manager. Clearly not all Bussinesses operate in the same manner or as retail where service and quoting can be well defined at initial contact. So business activity will vary just thinking a little about this idea passed on to me … it will in no form remodel the Manager application from its current arrangement or change anyones current business process / flow.
It will however offer flexibility which maybe in line with some other thinking I have read on this forum.

I am amazed that a simple copy to option has been met with fear signaling that it could potentially complicate the businesses flow and process.

Still a great piece of accounting software, over to the powers that be.

I wish to establish how manger users quickly determine in a multi user environment the status of a customer’s job please.
Scenario
A call comes in for a status up date.
Currently, following the thinking recommended means we need to check sales orders, sales quotes and sales invoices to find the right answer for the customer.

Is there a better lookup method because currently there is no link between customer and quotes on the customer tab which is one place to look while there is a link for invoices.

I believe having a copy function from sales orders to sales quotes could ensure that the team log all jobs in sales orders rather than some in sales quotes leaving job status lookup in sales orders not as accurate as it could be.

As mentioned we have opted to use sales orders for all incidents and call logging which may not be the way others are working? Hence my question is there a better lookup method?

The fact that sales orders and quotes have been introduced would signal that Manager is more than just accounting software now and some thought needs to be put into this area of business.

You seem to have things backwards, @compuit. A sales quote proposes work, going from you to the customer. A sales order records an incoming purchase order (whether formal or not) from the customer, the same way a purchase invoice records the supplier’s incoming sales invoice. Using sales orders to log calls that do not result in orders is a complete misuse of the tab. Manager is not a customer relationship management tool.

Manager does not currently have an enforceable workflow capability. But the design is clearly Sales Quote > Sales Order > Sales Invoice. Neither quotes nor orders have any financial impact, and both are optional. But if a customer wants to know the status of a job, the place to look should be the Sales Orders tab (if you use it), where you can search for the customer’s name, the reference number (which should match the customer’s purchase order), key words in the description, the date, price, etc. At that point, you can tell the customer you do or don’t have their order. Determining invoice and delivery status can be done from the Customers tab.

Copying from one form to another in the designed flow carries forward relevant reference numbers. Copying backwards from sales order to sales quote would not make sense.

@Tut, Hello! In this context, just a question to be sure if we are doing the correct way. We get direct orders from the customers together with advance payment. So, we follow the work flow a below:
Sales Order ==> Delivery Note ==> Sales Invoice.

But, it crossed my mind, may be we better work this way is more logical
Sales Order ==> Sales Invoice ==> Delivery Note

Can you comment which work flow is logically more appropriate.

Tks & Rgds

Inventory functions will work when delivery notes are issues prior to sales invoices. But the more conventional approach is to issue the sales invoice when something is shipped, then issue the delivery note. And remember, delivery notes are optional, but once you start using them, you have to use them for every sales invoice, or the inventory count remains as “to be delivered.”

Yes, and the incoming purchase order is a “Service Request”, read below for clarification.

Its not coping backwards and it does make sense if one clearly understands the workflow as initially explained by @compuit. So I am going to rewrite the Topic’s opening to perhaps clarify the workflow.

The Reception receives Customer requests (verbal Purchase Order) at either the counter or over the phone. The Reception generates a Sales Order from the verbal Purchase Order (probably better called a Service Request) for all of these Purchase Orders entering the organisations for tracking purposes.

A Service Technician reviews the Sales Order (Purchase Order / Service Request) and confers with the Customer which is the “Service Decision” diamond in the above flow diagram. This conferring results in the 95.99% Customers authorising the service and 4% requesting a quote.

Therefore the Reception on recording the Service Request has absolutely no knowledge if a quote will be required or not and its not until the subsequent review by a Service Technician does the 4% conversion of Service Requests into Sales Quote requirement arises - hence the Topic’s Copy to : Sales Order to new Sales Quote - as it would be an advantage for the Service Technician to generate a Sales Quote directly from the pre-populated Sales Orders (Service Request).

“If” you aren’t opposed to this capability then why do you contend that "Copying backwards from sales order to sales quote would not make sense and why have you spent three or more posts incessantly arguing that @compuit is wrong for requesting this process…

As there appears to be “no” opposition I will add this request to Ideas via a separate Topic, as the capability is very applicable to “service request without quotes” based businesses.

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@Tut

Yes, we know and we use Delivery Note for all instance of Sales.

So, I get your endorsement that more logical flow should be as Sales Invoice => Delivery Note

Sorry, I didn’t get you. Inventory function still works when Sales Invoices are issued prior to Delivery note as aforesaid that the more logical work flow should be Sales Invoice==>Delivery Note

Rgds

I think maybe you misread my post, @sonicgroup. I said that inventory functions work when delivery notes are issued prior to sales invoices, meaning that they will work that way in addition to the more conventional way of having sales invoices precede delivery notes. You can end up with strange negative numbers, but they make mathematical sense if you puzzle them out. Things are just easier to understand if you follow the conventional route.

Any one using Manager for a number of years is conversant with the flow you are reiterating. The point I am trying to make is that in a multi user environment it is not the best. This has been brought to my attention by users fielding calls and in this position on a day to day basis. Needless to say from what I can see it can be an advantage in terms of lookup speed because of the one central place to lookup all incident activity, “Sales Orders”.
For example one complex customer incident / request / project in our “Sales Orders” environment can be split three ways at any point in time to give multiple “Sales Quotes”, multiple “Sales Invoices” which can be a combination of Engineering and “Cash” Consultation. So from one “Sales Order” we have the potential to generate anything from 1 to 5 “Sales Invoices” or more. Now please note this is from one customer on a particular day. Should the same customer log multiple incidents on the same day we would follow the same process for each incident by logging / generating a new “Sales Order”.

Now Tut before you tell me to look for some other incident management software I can confirm that what we are currently doing is working but this one thing could go some distance to help.

It is very easy for a single user to manage business in the way you lay out because the person / user is the central point of management and bears all knowledge of what they have generated in terms of Sales Orders, “Sales Quotes” and “Sales Invoices”. In addition this process is not going “backwards” in flow because what can be construed as going backwards is the “Sales Invoices” copy to “Sales Orders”. I can see value in that too for reasons we already know.

I think Brucanna gets it but I am having doubts as to whether I am articulating the issue clearly. It may be unique to us?

@compuit, I completely understand what you are doing. I have from the first. I just believe your flow can be streamlined. If anyone is having trouble communicating their point of view, it isn’t you, it is me. But you might also be understanding me correctly and simply disagree with my point of view. So be it. Whether to adopt your idea is not up to me.

Also, please understand that there are two main conversations running through this topic. Please don’t associate the responses I’ve made to @sonicgroup with those I’ve made to you.