Concept Dive: Services

If you’ve seen our Key Concepts slidedeck, you’ll know a little about services already. We take service tracking pretty seriously in PractiFI, because we find most wealth businesses don’t do it very well. Here we take a quick dive to explain what services are all about in PractiFI and why we think they’ll be great for your practice.

What’s a service?

A service is simply a piece of work that your business provides for a customer and earns revenue for. The revenue may be a fixed amount invoiced to the client, or a fixed fee received through an investment you implement for the client, or a series of periodic instalments, or commission-based.

What benefits do services give me?

Heaps! Here are just a few:

  • Services allow you to track revenue across your business divisions, split by customer, service group, service type (more on those below), team member and period.
  • Services allow you to track profitability by rolling up estimated and actual time worked and cost incurred from tasks and processes that relate to services.
  • Services help drive commercial thinking amongst your whole team. They ensure that all work done through tasks and processes is directed at a clear commercial outcome, both for your customer and your business.
  • And over time, we’ll make services even more awesome.
Do I have to use services in PractiFI?

As much as we highly recommend using services in PractiFI, they’re not mandatory. If you want to keep things super simple, you can manage customers, then simply manage processes and/or tasks directly against customer records. You can always introduce services later when you’re ready to take the plunge.

What are service groups and service types?

At the time of setting up PractiFI for your business, you’ll have configured your service offering into service groups and types. Service groups are the broad divisions in your business, and service types are the detailed service offerings within each division.

For example, a multi-discipline advice practice might set service groups and types like this:

 

[av_table purpose=’tabular’]
[av_row row_style=’avia-heading-row’][av_cell col_style=”]Service Group[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Service Type[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Advice[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Comprehensive Advice[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Advice[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Limited Advice[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Advice[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Single Matter[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Accounting[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Tax Return[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Accounting[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Quarterly Business Activity Statement[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Accounting[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Company Accounts[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Risk[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Life Insurance Limited Advice[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Risk[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Policy Implementation[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Risk[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Group Life Scheme[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Risk[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Group Life Membership[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Mortgages[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Mortgages Limited Advice[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Mortgages[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Mortgage Implementation[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Superannuation[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Super Limited Advice[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Superannuation[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Super Implementation[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Superannuation[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Corp Super Employer Plan[/av_cell][/av_row]
[av_row row_style=”][av_cell col_style=”]Superannuation[/av_cell][av_cell col_style=”]Corp Super Membership[/av_cell][/av_row]
[/av_table]

 

What’s the service stage?

If you’ve read our deep dive on clients and people, you’ll know a little about client stages. Service stages are very similar.

At the time of setting up PractiFI for your business, you’ll have agreed your service stages amongst all of the other configurable categories in the system (learn more on categories). You’ll update the service stage as the service progresses through its lifecycle. For example, a life insurance policy service might progress through stages such as Needs Analysis, Quotations, Application, Medicals, Underwriting and Completion. If you’re running standardised processes against the service, the service stage commonly refers to the current process that’s being undertaken.

Can we have one-off and repeat services?

Absolutely. Be sure to set your start and end dates accordingly. One off or transactional services will typically have a short duration of a matter of weeks. Repeat or retainer-style services will typically have a longer duration, often annual. If the service has no end date, you can leave it blank, although many practices choose to set an arbitrary annual period for the sake of clearer reporting.