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What is the best way to change a forward billed service that has already been paid for?

Example: A customer has a service period of Nov 1 - Nov 30th and it has been forward billed on Oct 11 (20 days forward bill). Assume the customer has already paid for that invoice and it is now Nov 5. The customer calls in and says he needs a higher level of service starting now.

 

Every way we try this, it's painful to make the changes. Ideally, I want to terminate the current service and have the system apply a credit for the unused portion of the service period to his account. Then create a new service starting on the original service date, but prorated for the current change date, then invoice that service and apply the credit. The customer would then either have to pay the difference right then or have the remainder of the credit remain on his account for the next invoice.

 

The current problem is that any way we have tried this takes time and is painful to work. There are issues such as the system sending out emails about termination of service, service suspensions, and/or having to detach payments to change existing invoices, etc... and the path to make the changes is tedious at best making it difficult for the service rep to do the changes while on the phone with the client. This neccesitates a warning from the service rep about ingoring the emails that he will get and also a follow-up call to collect any amount due. The change is also difficult to follow in the invoice/billing trail necessitating careful documentation in the log by the service person.

 

Does anyone have a procedure that accomplishes this painlessly?

Ubiquiti Employee
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Re: What is the best way to change a forward billed service that has already been paid for?

The thing is that the invoice for Nov has been already issued and paid. And it's up to the WISP how to handle this.
As a WISP you may want to
A) void the invoice
B) keep the existing invoice

 

Some automation could be implemented but it would require some more configuration from the administrator. Note that there are more solutions besides A and B, a WISP may want to

C) do the service change with no effect on the current invoice (i.e. higher level for the rest of Nov, but higher price starting from Dec)
D) forbid all mid-period changes (typically, this could be used for future self-service changes)

 

Anyway, in your case, I assume you want option A)

So these would be the steps:

1) void or delete the invoice for Nov (this will move the payment into the client's credit)

2) change the service: use the deferred change (with the apply date set to today) - this will "terminate the existing service and creates a new one". Make sure the invoicing period is still the same from 1st to last day of a month

 

That's it. At this moment, the clients got: old service with unpaid period 1st-4th Nov and the new service with unpaid period from 5th-30th Nov. You can run the automatic invoicing manually (or wait till tomorrow for the automatic invoicing) which will invoice these unpaid periods (the client's credit will be used depending on your the settigns "use credit automatically")

 

So in your case, only 2 steps are needed. Let me know if we are missing something.

 

Btw the issue has been also discussed here https://community.ubnt.com/t5/UCRM/Sorry-Change-of-Service-Mid-Period-Process/m-p/2423892#M10201

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Re: What is the best way to change a forward billed service that has already been paid for?

OK, that makes sense. I walked through the process and there is one very important step that is left out.

 

iI doesn't seem to matter whether you make the change immediately or retroactively. You must go into "Billing Settings" and change "Last invoiced date". Otherwise, you do not have the option of billing for the rest of the month.

 

It would seem to me that this should automatically be done if you void and/or delete an invoice. If a system change occurs that removes a billing period from the customers record, shouldn't the system account for that?

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Ubiquiti Employee
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Re: What is the best way to change a forward billed service that has already been paid for?

you are right, "Last invoiced date" must be moved manually.

it could be improved and this could be automatic:
1) Moving this attribute back when the invoice is deleted
2) Or the whole process of service change

Though, it could be pretty annoying for those who don't want this to be automatic:
1) this could cause repetitive invoice creating for the same period, which someone may want not to be invoiced
2) This would require some more options enabling the user to choose the way, how the service upgrade should be handled (see the options A-B-C-D above)

What do you think?
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Re: What is the best way to change a forward billed service that has already been paid for?

[ Edited ]

@UBNT-Petr wrote:
"Last invoiced date" must be moved manually.

it could be improved and this could be automatic:
1) Moving this attribute back when the invoice is deleted

I like this -- along with some kind of "revert last invoiced date" checkbox or dialog.

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