For our current invoice workflow, we ran into an issue with how the Contacts are used for Invoicing.
Our use case when sending invoices is that there is one main contact or dept that the invoice needs to be addressed to and that appears at the top of the invoice, then there are usually a few others that want to be CC’d on the email but these must not appear on the Invoice
Unfortunately Invoice Ninja does not seem to have an automated way to do this.
Currently if you want to CC additional people you have to add them in to the CC area manually after you hit the Send button
The only way for us to send these invoices to all contacts was to select the option on each contact to “Add to Invoices”. However this will create separate personal invoices for each contact since we added the contact field to the top of the invoice e.g. $contact.first_name $contact.last_name. This name will change to each contact name selected to appear on the Invoice which is a problem for us. So for example if we have 3 contacts, effectively we are sending out 3 different invoices addressed to 3 different people, which is not desirable as you can imagine.
I think there would be other companies with a similar workflow such as this.
So my feature request is as follows:
Add a new option called “Main Contact” that only one contact can have enabled. You will also need to have a new field that we can include on the invoice such as $main_contact.first_name $main_contact.last_name, so this would only ever be the name to appear on the invoice, regardless of who we send the invoices out to.
Add option for each contact for “CC on Invoice”, so that only 1 email is sent, and all these contacts are on CC.
I think this would be a nice feature that would also work for all other clients, and not just ones with our type of work flow.
UPDATE: See my updated comments below with screen shot suggestion
Feel free to create an issue here to request the feature:
Thanks @hillel I’ll do that.
Also just wanted to add, since we just switched over to the new system of using Invoice Ninja, we are getting tons of email replies from people telling us to make sure we also send the invoice to the other contacts. That’s because of the way the invoices are sent to each contact individually, they are not all CC’d so they don’t know who the invoice was sent to.
That’s another reason to have a Main Contact and all other contacts CC’d in just one email when sending the invoices.
Understood, thanks for sharing the info!
It’s worth noting the downside to this approach is that you can’t see which of the people clicked the link. When multiple emails are sent each emails has a unique link used to determine which contact clicked it.
Ah yes I understand. We are not using the dashboard side for our clients so don’t include the link.
So then to accommodate both options for end users, maybe that needs to be added as system setting option in the Account Settings to either send individual emails to contacts (that will have unique links) or just CC them (with one generic link).
Thanks for sharing the other use case. I’m make sure to add everything into my Feature Request.
After doing some searches I see a few other people have posted the same issue or feature request.
I have added my comments to this feature request here as we have the exact same issues as the poster:
Here is my very simple suggestion to solve this issue.
For contacts, add another switch option for “CC on Invoices” underneath the switch for “Add to Invoices” and ensure that only one of the switches can be On, so if you click the “CC on Invoice” then it turns off the “Add to Invoices” and Vice Versa.
See Screenshot sample below.
Doing it this way will keep the current Invoice Ninja Process intact and nothing needs change for existing users, but it will also give the option to either select the contact to include on the invoice or have them as CC.
If they are on CC, then in the “Send Mail” section, show these contacts on the CC area.
Do you need the ability to configure this on a per contact basis? Another option could be to add a company setting to select between sending one email per client or per contact. This would enable setting ti at the company/group/client level but not per contact.
That might work too if that’s easier to implement as an overall platform account setting.
So are you suggesting that we would have an Email Switch to indicate sending one email per client which would then only send the invoice once to all of those contacts that have the “Add to Invoices” enabled, and who would appear in the “To:” address for the email?
Correct. Each client currently has one primary contact, we’d also need to expose a way to manage which contact is the the primary.
Yes exactly, that was the one of my recommendations. Have some setting to be able to identify who was the main contact. Then if you had that, you could easily put all other contacts on CC on the email, which would be perfect.
As a workaround to solve the main contact issue for us, we had to create a custom field for main contact, and I used the API to copy Invoice Ninja’s “hidden” main contact’s full name over to this custom field, as we needed to display that on the Invoice.
So @hillel when can we expect to this this new feature, on the next build?
Sorry, we aren’t able to provide ETAs for future features
I know, I was joking
Thanks for looking into it and understanding the issue. Hopefully we will see this at some stage soon.
When or if this is ever implemented, would you remember to let me know here if it is, that would be great.
We use GitHub to track the feature, you can watch the issue to be notified when it’s closed.
Thanks for all your help with this and other queries.
Unfortunately our accounts team see this issue as a huge problem for them, because they have to waste time replying back to unnecessary emails from people asking them to CC the others in their department, who were already included in the initial email, but they can’t see that.
It really pains me to do this, but I have no choice but to look at an alternative Invoicing platform.
Unless you can tell me you have plans to implement this fix very soon.
Hopefully you do as I really don’t want to switch to another platform after putting so much time and effort into Invoice Ninja, which I really like.
That’s too bad. It’s a useful change we’d like to make but our policy is not to share ETAs for future features.