We occasionally get asked what the differences are between a Task and Service in the world of fp. Great question! Tasks and Services are two unique concepts in your fp. system. Please refer to this article for clarification as to where and when Tasks and Services come into play in the system, and in your workflow.
Think of Service Groups and Services as the framework around which your Estimates and Jobs are built. When staff track time, and when expenses are included in work, they are all associated to your Services.
When building Schedules, Estimates, and Tasks, you will see the option to select one or more Service group or Service.
Services include Internal Services (buckets to which you track time); Internal Expenses (expenses that you purchase as inventory and sell back to your client at a fixed price per item): and External Expenses (expense or service that has been outsourced to a third-party vendor or supplier, that you charge back to your client at a percentage mark-up).
Your fp. base system includes Service Groups, Internal Services, Internal Expenses and External Expenses, that you can leave as is, or change as needed. Depending on the kind of work you provide, or the way in which you structure that work, you may need to make few or many adjustments to the base system set up.
Please note: If you are a fp.Accountant client it is important that you involve your accounting team when determining how to set up your Service Groups and Services. Please refer to the fp. Accountant documentation for more information on how services are mapped back to QuickBooks.
We recommend that the titles of the Service Groups & Services be descriptive but allow for flexibility. In most cases, it is better to err on the side of simplicity, and being a bit more general, rather than overloading your system with tons of really specific group and service naming.
To learn about configuring services in your system, please refer to these articles:
Think of tasks as specific calls to action that you assign out to:
- An individual staff member
- A Role
- A selection of staff members (Shared Task)
Tasks are like the smallest piece of the job puzzle. Tasks, like jobs, can have time tracked to them. To track time to a task, it needs to be associated to a service bucket.
Tasks move through a bit of a lifecycle - moving from Draft or Assigned, to In Progress, Completed and Confirmed. Tasks can stand alone, or be organized within a Schedule. Tasks can also be passed between team members as needed, and "picked up" by particular team members when assigned out to the Role level.
Tasks back-fill from the due date, and will appear on the Resource Allocation page, so long as all the needed data is filled in (ie. an Assignee, Start Date, and Estimated Hours to complete).
Tasks that are part of a Schedule can have dependencies. From a detailed/ full page view of any Task, you will see an Add Predecessor and Add Dependency button. Through the resulting fields you can connect the Task you're viewing to others on the same Schedule.
To learn even more about Tasks, please refer to these articles:
We welcome your questions or concerns about Services and Tasks in your fp. system: firstname.lastname@example.org