I am excited by the opportunity to collaborate with customers in designing a system that helps the research community work together more efficiently. Over the past few months, we have put in many hours of development, client design sessions, and internal testing to make sure that our newest features complement and integrate seamlessly with our existing functionality. This release, which is scheduled to deploy over the next few weeks, includes enhancements to existing features, brand new functionality, and performance upgrades. I am particularly excited by the improvements to the billing and invoicing process and invite you to read on to learn more!
Should you have any questions, please contact our support team at email@example.com.
Chief Software Architect
Core facilities capture important information from customers in custom forms. Core managers expressed the desire to have additional formatting options and features to help their customers more easily complete forms. To this end, iLab has improved our custom form builder, and now cores can do the following within custom forms:
Please note that these changes will effect current workflow for core managers building custom form templates; however, we hope managers find these features much easier to use!
Core administrators can now create draft billing events! This gives managers the flexibility of reviewing and organizing charges over the course of their billing cycle without committing charges to an invoice. This is especially helpful for higher volume cores that have longer billing cycles.
iLab has also added an additional workflow step which allows core managers to stage all of their charges in a draft billing file. This gives central administrators the ability to review charges before invoices are generated. This workflow is particularly helpful in scenarios where central administration handles customer invoicing.
iLab financial integrations have long had the ability to specify reasons for flagging charges as problematic and highlighting them throughout various steps in the ordering and billing workflow. Over the past several months, the iLab engineering team has completely rebuilt and modularized the systems that flag charges and have built interfaces that let core and institution administration as well as core customers more easily and more efficiently resolve problematic charges on invoices. Furthermore, several of these new features are also available to customers who do not have financial integration with iLab. More specifically, we have checks which can be activated on each charge that ensure the following:
More information on this feature will be provided in the coming weeks.
There may be instances where an institution/core administrator needs to remove, or detach, an entire invoice from a billing event. Reasons for this might include:
As to not hold up an entire billing event from being processed by an institution financial system, we have now added the ability to detach invoices from a billing event.
iLab has introduced a new institution-level setting that allows principal investigators or financial managers to dispute line item charges on invoices.
The key features include:
Core facility customers now have the ability to indicate a single payment source for an entire invoice, greatly reducing the time it takes to pay the invoice. This feature can be turned on by a setting at the institution-level. Naturally, it is still possible to provide different payment sources for individual charges on an invoice.
New payment options are available to customers with financial integrations. This feature allows the following payment methods for both external and internal customers:
*Included in this update is the ability to integrate with third party credit card processing systems. Please contact your iLab Project Manager for more information.
Regardless of the total number of subsidies available to a PI by contributing centers, core and center administrators can work together to require a minimum % contribution by the PI for each service rendered. iLab worked with considerable input from customers to implement this feature in a flexible way.
Here is an example scenario explained from the perspective of an institute administrator:
Research institutions consist of a complex network of laboratories, core facilities and support infrastructure. The support infrastructure varies greatly from institution to institution but can include organizations such as faculties, schools and centers. To help these organizations better manage the various aspects of core facility use, iLab has introduced a new feature that allows organizations within an institution to do the following:
Several iLab collaborators identified a need for more control over the actions that can be performed by core staff, management and administration. To address this need we have made changes to the following roles within iLab:
To update core staff roles, go to the core's administration tab and click on members.
Have a question? Please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.