What's in this Article
What is This?
You may be asking yourself, "What is this contraption?!". Well, this is a game-changer. But, don't worry, it's gonna be okay. Take deep breaths, we've got you!
Engagements make it simple to create detailed work plans, including descriptions, services, and billing. You can easily share these plans with clients, who can then accept the terms. Automation for tasks (coming soon) will handle the specifics outlined in the engagement. In essence, it's a fast and smooth process for acquiring clients, completing work, and receiving payment.
The Engagement Builder is the first piece of the experience. The builder is split into four pieces:
- Engagement Details
- Engagement Items
- Billing and Payment
Five elements stay with you through the Engagement Builder experience. Take a look below.
Keep track of where you are in the process of building the engagement. You can always click to jump around to other steps in the engagement.
2. Accept proposal
Accepting a proposal on behalf of the client sets the engagement to active and cancels the eSign request.
Click this icon if you need to archive the engagement.
4. Save as draft
Saved drafts are found under the Proposals tab of the Engagements List.
5. Save and send
Saved and sent engagements are in the Active tab of the Engagements List.
For further explanation on each of the sections, read on!
The details section is where you can add clients, assignees, and signers to the engagement.
a. Engagement name
Type a name for your engagement. We recommend establishing a naming convention with your team so that nobody gets confused. As an example, I've done [Service][YYYY] - [Client First and Last Name] for the title, so I would expect all other team members at my firm to use this format when naming engagements.
b. Start date / End date
Select a start and end date for the engagement. Keep in mind that they are fixed dates and relative dates are not used in this feature.
From the dropdown, select an existing client. You can also create a new client or prospect from here if you choose.
Assign as many roles and users as you'd like to the engagement.
In the dropdown, select any signers from the list. If someone is not listed, go ahead and select the Add new signer option.
We suggest creating Engagement Item templates prior to filling out the Engagement Builder. Visit this article to learn more about creating the templates!
After creating the templates, take a look at the different parts of this section below.
a. Engagement item
Type an engagement item or select the Template option just to the right. Use your premade engagement item templates so you're not wasting precious time!
Take note that engagement items show as service items when the client views the engagement on their end.
b. Service item
Select a service item from the dropdown.
1. Rate - Enter a rate in USD for the service.
2. Rate type - Select a rate type by hour or item.
3. Billing frequency - Choose the frequency at which the client will receive invoices. Options include:
- Upon completion
4. Tax due with invoice - Enter a tax amount in %.
Enter a description of the engagement item. You can also format the description in the text box.
d. Add engagement item
To add more services to the engagement, select the blue + Add engagement item option.
Click the trash icon to remove an engagement item.
Billing and Payment
Now we get to the fun part... billing options! There are three main parts of the billing info section of an engagement. Read more about each section below.
a. Itemized rates toggle
If this switch is toggled on, only a list of itemized services and their totals will appear to the client on the engagement. Itemized rates will not appear on the engagement.
b. Monthly engagement items
From this area, you can set specifics of billing frequencies and invoice end dates. For the engagement I'm building above, I set the invoice to repeat every month on the 2nd Tuesday starting on 12/12/2023, and ending on 5/14/2024.
c. Monthly invoice settings
When you toggle this switch on, recurring invoices for non-hourly rate types will automatically be sent. This section also lets you toggle on or off the Single line invoice and Client note options. You can add descriptions for each when the associated toggle is on.
d. Billing summary
In this section, you can see monthly totals, subtotals, taxes, engagement totals, and totals due upon acceptance.
e. Payment settings
Check the boxes if you want to require a payment method for future payments or collect the deposit at acceptance of the engagement. You can also enter a Deposit payment and choose the signer who is responsible for making the payment.
a. General Terms
Enter terms in the provided text box or, better yet, select a terms template to speed up the process. You can find your terms templates in Canopy under Templates > Letter.
b. Service Terms
The service terms are listed based on which engagement items you add to the engagement. So if I add engagement items of Audit and Bookkeeping, both Audit and Bookkeeping terms are listed in this part.
Now that you've got this puppy all built out, click Save and send, go grab a coffee, and breathe easily for at least a few minutes. 🤪