For customers who have web portal access, this article explains how the estimate process works – from sending to commenting to approval. (If web portal access is not set up for the customer, you can send the estimate manually.)
This example demonstrates the back-and-forth process between the company and customer.
1. Company: Enable Commenting to Estimate
When creating the estimate, or while editing the estimate, be sure that Allow Comments is enabled. (If a customer has web portal access but cannot comment, they would have to use phone or email to communicate requests or concerns.)
2. Customer: View Invoice and Add Comments
The customer will receive an email notification that an estimate is ready for them to view, including a link to the estimate itself.
Also, when signed into their portal, the Notifications icon will have a green dot, and clicking this icon displays the message that an estimate is ready to view. This notification can be clicked to open the estimate.
After viewing the estimate, if no changes are needed, the customer would click the Approve button at the top.
But if the customer wants to make changes, they can scroll to the bottom, to the Comments field. After adding the comment, clicking the Send icon adds the comment to the estimate.
Scrolling back up to the top of the estimate, the customer would click Request Changes.
This changes the status of the estimate to “Changes Requested.”
3. Company: View Comments and Make Changes
Why does the company account not see a notification about requested changes???
In the company account, the same invoice is now listed with “Changes Requested” status. Click any field of the estimate to open it for viewing.
To view the comments, scroll to the bottom of the estimate.
To make the requested changes, go back to the top of the estimate and click the Edit icon.
After making the changes, finish editing by clicking the Back arrow at the top left.
Then scroll back down to the comments, and submit your answer to the customer.
4. Customer: View Changes and Approve
The customer will once again receive an email notification about the updated estimate. And in the customer portal, the Notifications icon will display the message, and link, for the revised estimate.
After viewing the comment response from the customer, as well as the revisions to the estimate, the customer could request further changes, or click the Approve button at the top.
In order to approve, the customer must sign the estimate, either using the Type option, or the Draw option to sign with the mouse.
This changes the estimate status to Approved.
5. Company: Estimate is Approved
The status of the estimate is listed as “Approved,” and you’re ready to proceed with the job.
Next Steps: Convert the estimate into a job.
Or, if the job was completed without being created as a job in the system, the estimate can be converted into an invoice.