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Progress Claim by Amount Invoices – Auto Generating Invoice Lines

In Abtrac you can create a detailed progress claim invoice automatically from your job task and timesheet data.

This article relates to Progress Claim by Amount invoices. The process is similar for Percentage Progress Claim invoices.

There are quite a few details to get your progress claim invoices set up and working they way you need them. Each of the columns in an invoice can be edited, styled and hidden from Invoice Line Control Settings, or by editing the invoice line.

By choosing the right combination of settings Progress Claim invoices in Abtrac can be generated by amounts to look like the examples below.

Setting up your projects for Progress Claims

To create a progress claim invoice, you will first need a job with task budgets entered.

Go to Clients, Contacts & Jobs >> Search Clients and Jobs >> click on the relevant ‘Job Code’ to go into ‘Job Details’ page >> click on Tasks to go into ‘Job Tasks’ page where you can enter/edit details for the ‘Job Tasks’ for the selected ‘Job’. This is where to enter fee estimates and claim details for your project.

People will then need to enter their time and disbursements against each respective task (you will want to ensure that tasks are required for the job).

If you are not using tasks yet, we would recommend reading through this article to learn the best way to set up and use of  tasks in your office. (aka. stages, phases, or matters)

You may also wish to generate progress claim numbers automatically for each invoice. This can be enabled from Job Billing Details.

How to create Progress Claim Invoices – Invoice Generation

From Invoices >> Generate Invoices >> choose your client and job and click on ‘Generate Invoice’ button.

Then from the Invoice Lines, Narratives and Amounts section >> choose the ‘Generate Lines Automatically’ button.

Then, from the ‘Auto Generate Options’ pop up that appears, choose the Progress Claim option and decide which style of progress claim invoice you would like to use.

(Alternately clicking on the ‘Generate Invoice Automatically’ button in the ‘Generate Invoices’ screen will take you straightaway to the ‘Auto Generate Options’ pop up.)

Generating and Editing Invoice Lines

Creating Invoice Lines

Invoice lines for an automatically generated progress claim are created for each current job task – regardless of whether any time exists in the system for that task.

Any unbilled time and cost for each current job task is automatically assigned to the corresponding task line.

Line Amounts

The invoice line amounts for each task are left blank (zero) when the invoice is automatically generated – line amounts need to be entered manually. 

You can determine what to bill by viewing the assigned time (at this point you can also un-assign items and hold some back for the next claim if required).

Alternatively, you can bill any other chosen amount, including an amount greater than the original fee estimate. However, to clearly view and analyse any variations to the original scope, you may prefer to track the variations as separate tasks.

Using Percentages for Line Amounts

You can also bill a percentage of the total fee estimate. By entering a percentage amount from the edit invoice line details, the line amount will calculate automatically.

For this, click on the pencil edit button on each invoice line. Edit the Invoice line in the below pop up that appears and save the changes.

Line Narrations

The invoice line narrations for each line are copied from the task name as a default, but these descriptions can be amended on the invoice line narrative.

Adding additional lines to automatically  generated claim invoices

Once lines have been created, you can independently create text only lines containing a description of the work carried out.

You can also create other types of invoice lines (text/value etc) –  but these won’t be taken into account the next time a claim is automatically generated.

You will need to use subtotals to ensure the claim details still display as expected with extra invoice lines inserted. Make sure you set the ‘Show Header’ and ‘Show Footer’ columns for the additional lines to ‘No’ in the ‘Manage Subtotals’ pop up.

You can learn more about managing subtotals in the article Invoice Subtotals.

Understanding Progress Claim Invoice Columns

The Progress Claim columns show the Task Fee Value, Percentage Complete (Task %), Fee to Date (Value Completed), Previously Invoiced and a Line Amount for the current invoice.

All the columns can be renamed, re-ordered and hidden from the invoice, this is explained in the next section – Styling Progress Claim Invoices

Progress Claim Invoice Glossary

Task Fee Value is auto-filled from the Task Fee Estimate

% Completed or Done (Task %) is automatically calculated from the total Fee to Date (including the current Line Amount) ÷ Task Fee Value. You can also enter a percentage from edit invoice lines (e.g. 50%) and the Line Amount will be worked out for you.

Fee to Date (Value Completed) is automatically calculated from all other invoices and invoice lines in the system which also contain the same job number and task – including the current invoice.

Fee to Date (Value Completed) If you are using Progress Assessments, then the Value Completed will be taken instead from a calculation of the % ge Done field (and will not necessarily be equal to the billed value to date.)

Previous Invoices is automatically calculated from other invoices and invoice lines in the system (excluding the current invoice) which also contains the same job number and task.

Line Amount of the current invoice can be calculated from entering the % ge complete value, either in the invoice line, or in the task screen (as a progress assessment). Or you can enter the line amount manually for all progress claim lines.

Each of the fee column options above are visible from Edit Invoice Lines – some fields are editable, some are not.

Styling Progress Claim Invoices

Styling Columns: Titles, Units, Decimals, Symbols

To style the default layout and the titles of the columns within the invoice, you will need to specify your requirements from Administration >>  Settings >> Invoice Line Control Settings >> select ‘Progress Claim’ from the dropdown menu.

Whether each column is included in the invoice, the sizing, display order, column names(labels), and other styling is determined from here.

You can also style the progress claim column headers, totals and descriptions. Each claim can display one or more groupings of totals, the display of totals, and what you call your total lines can also be specified here.

Creating extra section headers and section subtotals using task groups and itemised disbursements

If you wish to automatically create titles for the task and disbursement claim sections within the invoice, you can use task groups.

You can create/edit task groups from the Job Tasks page by clicking on the ‘Task Groups’ button.

Tips for using Progress Claims

How to add other invoice amounts to the previously invoiced total

If you have previously created an invoice for the job that was not a progress claim, you can adjust the previously invoiced amount in future claims, and optionally update the task fee estimate at the same time.

In the example below an additional $1820.00 was billed prior to the automatically generated progress claim invoices, but was omitted from the task estimate for the job.

Enter the new value in the ‘Previously Invoiced’ field, which automatically recalculates the ‘Line Amount’.

Now enter the desired ‘Line Amount’ manually and click on the ‘Update Agreed Fee’ button.

The previously invoiced amount, and the task value are both increased by $1820.00 once you click ‘Yes’ in the pop up that appears asking you to confirm the change.

Abtrac KB# 2085

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