The Maintenance Plans add-on offers a way to provide your customers with support entitlements from a depleting fund. This could be, for example, maintenance for a device, telephone support or training. We call these Maintenance Plans, but they can be used for any billable service provided to a customer in the form of a time-deductible fund.

Maintenance Plans are inventory items that can be added to quotations or sales orders in the same way as any other service. They are assigned a user-defined "Maintenance Plan Types", which define the main attributes of the plan.

Time logged against cases that are considered maintenance-enabled and deductible can be drawn from a customer's maintenance plan.

If you're looking for information on how to log time against a maintenance plan, check this link. For more information on how maintenance plans work, and how to configure them, read on.


Maintenance Plan Types - Configuration

Maintenance plan types allow you to define various plan configurations, based on a number of options we provide. They are configured from the "Maintenance Plan Types" area of the Settings zone.

The fields are as follows:

Name

Plan type name

e.g. Flex IT Support


Description

Summary of plan type for your own information

e.g. Fully flexible support plan


Renewal Frequency

Renewal / period for the plan i.e. how often it refreshes

e.g. Monthly


Flexible Renewal Frequency

Can the frequency be changed by the user at quotation or sales order stage?

e.g. TRUE


Maintenance Unit Type

The unit in which the time is sold / provided, and displayed on the maintenance tab. Note that time can be logged in any unit and it will be converted.

e.g. Day


Flexible Unit Type

Can the maintenance unit type be changed by the user at quotation or sales order stage?

e.g. TRUE


Qty

Unit quantity - The number of units per renewal / period.

e.g. 3


Flexible Qty

Can the unit quantity be changed by the user at quotation or sales order stage? i.e. the amount of time provided per period.

e.g. TRUE


Min Qty

Minimum quantity of units allowed for flexible quantity plans - not required for fixed quantity plans.

e.g. 1


Max Qty

Maximum quantity of units allowed for flexible quantity plans - not required for fixed quantity plans.

e.g. 6


Minimum Deductible Unit

Minimum quantity of units (i.e. amount of time) that can be deducted in one transaction (of type specified in next column), and subsequent increments - time entered will be logged in multiples of this. Unit type is defined in the next field.

e.g. 15


Minimum Deductible Unit Type

Unit of time for minimum deductible unit.

e.g. Minute


Minimum Deductible Unit - Increments

It's possible to configure a plan so that time is deducted in increments you choose. Minimum Deductible Unit defines increments for any time logged. For example, a 15 minute minimum will allow time to be logged in 15 minute increments only. 10 minutes will be rounded up to 15 minutes, 20 minutes will be logged as 30 minutes etc.


Maintenance Plans - Configuration

Once maintenance plan types have been set up, you can start creating Maintenance Plan services in your price book.

Inventory items of Service type can be assigned a Maintenance Plan Type from the menu shown below. The service will then be considered as a maintenance plan.

In this example we have set up a price book category for Maintenance Plans, but this is not required - you can add plans to any category e.g. IT plans within an IT category.

You can use Data Manager to update any existing services in bulk, by populating the Maintenance Plan Type field with the name of an existing plan type.


Maintenance Plans in the Product Browser

When you select a maintenance plan in the product browser you'll see its details at the bottom of the window. The Frequency, Unit Type and Qty values can be changed, if that plan type allows it.

You can also see these details if you edit an item on a quotation or sales order.


Maintenance Frequency / Maintenance Plan Term

It is important to consider both frequency and term when configuring plan types and plans.

The frequency is determined by the Maintenance Plan Configuration - e.g. monthly, annually. This dictates when the allowance will refresh.

At inventory / price book level, we can assign a term to a maintenance service. This will determine the contract length.

For example, a maintenance plan with a monthly frequency and a 12 month term will refresh every month for one year.


Cases - Maintenance-Enabled Sub-categories - Configuration

Cases must belong to specific sub-categories in order to be eligible for maintenance plan time logging. The sub-category must be flagged as both "Maintenance Enabled" and "Deductible". This is done from Case Category management, which is accessed from:

Settings - Case Categories

From here, click on a sub-category, and check the boxes as shown.

  • Maintenance Enabled

  • Deductible

This can also be done with Data Manager if you are looking to update your case categories in bulk.

The following option under Settings - Company Setup - Company will cause any new case subcategories to have these boxes checked by default:

Customer Record - Maintenance Grid

The "Maintenance Plans" grid will show you details of any active maintenance plans for that customer, regardless of expiry status. You can group using column headers - e.g. plans of the same type, non-expired plans, and see totals for that group.

This view is especially useful for reviewing used and remaining time:

Case View - Indicator and Plan Details

There is an maintenance plan indicator at the top of a case record. This can be clicked for a summary view of all maintenance plans for that customer.

The indicator will show green in the event that:

  • The customer has a maintenance plan asset AND

  • The case is eligible for maintenance plan time booking AND

  • There is time left in the plan

The indicator will show red in the event that all of these are true:

  • The customer has a maintenance plan asset AND

  • The case is eligible for maintenance plan time booking AND

  • There is no time left in the plan OR the customer has no active plan

The indicator will show grey in the event that the case is not time-deductible (based on case sub-category).

Logging Case Time

Please check the article on how to log case time for maintenance plan users. This covers topics such as:

  • Logging time

  • Editing / deleting time entries

  • Actual time vs logged time

  • Case time notes

Allow Case Time Creation after Maintenance balance is exhausted

Permission to allow users to create Case Time even after the maintenance balance is depleted

Allow Retrospective Case Time Addition

Users in this group can log case time against an earlier date / time

Override Case Time Creation for Cases with Maintenance Type

Permission to log a “non-maintenance plan” case time entry when maintenance plan specified on case sub-category is enabled.

Edit Case Time Entries

The user can edit case time entries

Delete Case Time Entries

Allows the user to delete existing case time entries

Override Deductible in Case Time Entry

Allows the user to log time against a plan without deducting it.

Administrators may also wish to review the roles relating to assets, as these would allow users to amend existing plans or bypass the proper creation process:

  • Restrict customer asset deletions

  • Restrict customer asset editing

  • Restrict customer asset manual creation


Negative Balances

Users with the role Allow Case Time Creation after Maintenance balance is exhausted can log time against a plan even when it is fully depleted.

Resolving Negative Case Time

Logging time into the negative may be useful as a temporary measure if you are intending to sell the customer a new plan. In this case, once the new plan has been set up, you may wish to manually adjust the balances of the two plans accordingly. A user with the edit role can amend the old time entry so that the plan balance is 0, and create a new entry against the new plan to replace it.


Extending a Maintenance Plan

Please see this article.


Maintenance Plan Statement Export

You can export a record of any time logged against particular plan. This is done from the Maintenance tab of a customer record:

Export will include all time logged against that plan, whether it was deductible or not. This will show the logged time, not the actual time (for non-deductible time this will be the same).

Export - External will show only deductible time, making it suitable for sending to a customer.

You can choose a date range for time logged, or you can choose Select All to show all case entries for the chosen plan.

PDF and Excel formats are available for export.

An example PDF export is shown below.


Maintenance Plan Report (All Customers)

Users with the required role can access a customer-wide maintenance report from Apps.

Interested in Maintenance Plans?

If you don't currently have access to this feature, and would like to inquire, please get in touch with your contact at The Layer.

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