Expense tracking by project

Hi guys, 

Thank you so much for the incredible app!  It was exactly what I needed from a CRM. 

My question:

I own a home warranty company and am using Insightly as my CRM / system of record to track which contracts are in-force vs which may have either cancelled or have non-payment. That's a manual process. That's fine and probably preferred.

However, I'm struggling to find a good way to track expenses by contract by repair type category (I.e. HVAC, appliances, plumbing, etc)  it would be ideal to have this inside Insightly. I would need to see what amount has been spent in a year on certain types of repairs.

Can anyone help point me in the right direction to accomplish some type of repair tracking solution?

I'm greatful for any help. 

Thanks!

Andy

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Comments

8 comments
  • I need this too!

    It would be wonderful if I could add all expenses to a project both in order to charge the customer correctly and also to keep track of the profitability of a project.

    Please tell me this is on your drawing board. TBH, this is the only missing feature that keeps me searching for alternatives to Insightly. 

    Kindly,

    Rasmus

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  • I think what would work best for this use case (and which would seem to be the quickest feature to implement) would be if Insightly allowed custom fields for Tasks.  Currently there isn't a Currency Custom Field Type, but there is numeric, so you could add tasks to a project and assign them a category and a numeric value, then use the Advanced Reporting to total things up.  There are a few posts requesting this feature, such as: http://support.insight.ly/hc/en-us/community/posts/202970400-Custom-field-for-Task-

    However, there might be a reasonable workaround in the meantime.  Basically, you would make sure to consistently format your Task titles, so you could export and parse them out at the end of the year.  For example, you could create a Task Category called "Expense", and make each Expense Task Title have this format:

    PLUMBING | Copper Pipes | 200.00

    Obviously I have no idea what actual expenses for plumbing would be, but if you kept this format consistent across all projects and expense tasks, then you could use the Advanced Reporting to export all tasks to a CSV and then use Excel to split them up based on that Pipe separator and do totals and breakouts and whatnot.  Yes, a bit hacky, but it should work with the current Insightly feature set.

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  • Brilliant!  Thank you Chris for taking the time to help with this. 

    I think that should bet me by.  The main problem is that I have a cap by category (plumbing, AC, etc) and will have techs call for approval. I'll need to quickly tell them if they are approved for repairs or not, but at least this way I can give a quick glance to see if I'm over max or not. 

    Like you said, it's not ideal, but I think it's the best solution. Again, thanks so much!

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  • I run all my project management through Insightly and it's brilliant both for customer relationship management and project management except for one missing feature. That is tracking quoted hours against actual hours, to understand the profitability of a project and - in real time - give the project manager intelligence about whether they're on track with the no. of hours the project should be taking (i.e. was quoted to take) or taking too many hours. Expenses management would add to this for more accuracy. Gannt charts are not needed by us, just the number of hours left basically. We already have to use a second database for accounting. It's a shame to have to look into a third for the sake of putting employee time sheets in and allocated the hours across to projects for profitability analysis. I wish this was all ingrained in Insightly. I would pay more for it, as we're currently doing manual process on this in Excel. Ugh.

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  • Hi Amanda,

    Not sure there is an easy workaround. I too have to log hours (actual) and I too need to do this through an excel spreadsheet. What I did however, is had a Excel template made so that all I do is input the numbers and the calculations are automatically figured out. I can quickly see the metrics I am looking for. So yes,  extra work outside of Insightly but then I can add to the Insightly project and everything related to that project is in one spot..

    Hope that is helpful.

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  • I like to use TimeCamp. It integrates with Insightly and Quickbooks and you can enter in your estimated hours as it tracks your actual fulfillment hours. It will then email you when you are close to the estimated hour amount. 

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  • Hi Amanda, agree, it would be nice to have all this one database. We've actually built an Airtable.com app for our clients  that integrates with Insightly to do exactly what you're asking. When you create a project, you can enter quoted hours (and whatever other info you need) in custom fields in Insightly. The project then automatically comes across to the Airtable app, which also receives time reports via forms and can do and display whatever number crunching you need on estimated versus actual hours. 

    Get in touch via our website if you'd like to know more or see a demo (we're actually in Australia). Cheers.

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  • Hi - the workaround we've used in Insightly is to create Custom Fields in order to track (for example) Opportunity and Project values, which you could also do for expenses.   We have also integrated Xero with Insightly, which among other things enables you to record view real time payments/expenses from within Insightly at Contact and Organisation levels.

    Hope this helps, Simon

     

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