In this blog series, W-Systems engineers share experiences and stories related to projects, assignments and anything else they enjoyed working on. We love what we do and thought we’d share it with you. In this post, Jim Rybarski talks about the custom self-service portal built for a W-Systems client and the benefits of invoicing without ever leaving Sugar.
Recently a client of W-Systems, who uses FreshBooks for their invoicing and SugarCRM for their client management, requested a custom self-service portal where their clients could record activity and generate invoices themselves.
The FreshBooks API is easy to use, so getting data into and out of it is straightforward. The biggest challenge was migrating hundreds of client records into FreshBooks from Sugar. Instead of doing this manually through the website, we wrote a script that went through every client record in Sugar, grabbed all the information we needed for the invoices, and then had FreshBooks create the client record in its own system. Whenever you create a client via the API, you get back a client ID number, which we had the script stored in a custom field in Sugar.
Now when a user logs into the portal, we have access to both their Sugar record and all of their invoices in FreshBooks. This allows each client to instantly know what their outstanding balance is, create or pay invoices, or look up any historical payment data.
Having the portal interface was a client requirement, but it would be just as easy to make a custom module in Sugar, or to integrate invoice data into the accounts module. This way you could do all of your invoicing without ever leaving Sugar, and your clients would still get to benefit from FreshBooks’ slick user interface.
For more information about the FreshBooks integration, contact us today.