While entering invoices a couple of things have not felt right:
First: using the term “Products” in service based businesses feels strange. We should probably have “Products” actually be named “Items” (to coincide with the term Item that is used in the line items) or allow it to be changed to “Services” or some kind of generic term… Although I do mainly run a service oriented business, I do sometimes sell parts at cost and so those are needed too, but the term “Product” for some reason just doesn’t feel like any system I’ve used before and throws me off. I think Items would be more natural in this situation since “Item” is the main name of each item in the invoice.
Second, and perhaps more important for workflow: I have a default value that serves as a reminder for the “Description” field and that field. When an item type is selected for an Item on each invoice line, the “Description” field should be automatically selected so we can start typing over our default values for more rapid entry. When entering many 10s of lines for an invoice the current entry method feels very clunky. Thus upon selection of the Item type, having the system auto-highlight the description field would really help to speed it up. This would then help in the tab movement to the next fields since having no field in each Item selected by default requires the person doing entry to click on into the Description.
Third, can the order of items be changed (and fields added) for the invoice Item presentation? For example, in my case I’d like to have Quantity, Item, Description, Unit Price, Discount, Tax and Line Total - in that order… Eg, this feels more natural: