Harvest Time III
February 4, 2015
The reporting module provides as high level, or as low level, as a user needs. Within a single Harvest account, hours and billable amounts can be organized by Client, by Project, by Task, or by Staff (Team Members), filtered to specific dates or wide date ranges.
We can even dig down to the task and person level, to identify which tasks are taking longer than expected, or which team members may be struggling to keep up with the workload.
It’s worth pointing out that, across the board, the interface is extremely intuitive and responsive. Fields are only shown when they are relevant while single and multi-value dropdown fields make it clear how to add and remove entries. Kudos to their designers and developers.
To generate an invoice, you should first configure the necessary settings and information within the Configure tab.
- Company Information: Define what company information appears on all invoices;
- Default Values: Set up payment and tax related information
- Appearance: Upload your logo, and choose whether or not to include snail-mail details
- Messages: System generated emails use templates defined here, and a handful of replacement values are available for personalization
- Translations: Allows users to override default label headers on invoices
- Categories: Define multiple types of invoices that can be generated
- Online Payment: Link PayPal and Stripe to your account to allow clients to settle invoices online. According to Harvest, providing clients with an option to settle invoices online results in payment being received significantly sooner than traditional invoicing.
Once all configuration values are set, you can generate an invoice with a few clicks.
- Select a client…
- Select the billable and expense time ranges…
- Finalize the invoice-specific values and review the billed information…
Done! A draft invoice is now ready to go. You can apply payments, email the invoice, or print it and send in the mail.
The system provides a full history of actions taken on the invoice, so there’s no confusion about changes, or when the bill was paid.
Harvest also supports recurring invoices, allowing for non-task specific items to be billed on a schedule. The process is the same, except the billable amount must be manually specified rather than being associated with a specific set of tasks/people recorded by the system.
Finally, once invoices are in the system, the Report sub tab can be used to quickly see the status of all invoices, so it’s clear which ones have been settled and which are outstanding.
Bushel of Extras
It’s worth mentioning that not only does Harvest provide a comprehensive API, a large suite of 3rd party add-ons exist as well, allowing Harvest to integrate, or be integrated, with multiple services, including Asana, a great task tracking utility I’ve reviewed in the past.
The free plan allows for up to two projects, four clients and one user – just enough to try out all the features. The premium packages all provide unlimited clients and projects, but the more users added, the higher the price. The lowest tier is only $12/month, which would be perfect for most freelance opportunities.
How ya like them apples?
While Harvest may not be suitable for all situations, or have the kind of brand name clout that a solution like the Atlassian Marketplace add-on Tempo brings, it’s still a great product packed with useful features. Take a look and let us know how it works for you. Tweet us @GeekHive.
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