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NeutronTech
09-27-2011, 09:33 PM
Since I started this business, I have been searching for a solution to my work order/invoicing problem. I went with Quickbooks Online at the start, and have used it until now.

I installed MyITCRM to my web host, Hostgator, but was unable to run it due to the PHP version installed. So I ended up taking an older Dell I had laying around, loaded Ubuntu Server, and threw it online as a web server. The installation of MyITCRM went perfect, as well as all the server side services I would need (ie. FTP, SSH, etc.).

Now, I've linked it to DynDNS, and setup subdomain on my web host to redirect, just to make things easier to access. Now I'm able to access my customer database, scheduling, work orders, invoicing, etc from anywhere with web access. The most useful for me, that I hadn't realized when setting things up, is my phone. It's awesome being able to access my entire system thru the web browser on my phone.

So far, things seem to be working quite smoothly. There are a couple features that are lacking, but they are relatively minor for me. It would also be nice to have some plugins and customization options, but I really can't complain for the simplicity and price.

I find myself actually being more efficient with this new system. I'm constantly updating the work order with notes of my progress, things I've done, contact with customer, system information, etc. It's going to be a huge wealth of information for me in the future as my customers use my services again.

I also find it neat that it has a basic expense ledger, as I don't need a full blown accounting package in the same system. I can handle that on the back end and MyITCRM organizes the basics for me about perfect to give to the accountant later.

I just wanted to give a plug to MyITCRM, and share my experience. So many techs ask about what CRM/invoicing/work order system to use, and I hope this will help some of those folks find what they are looking for. At any rate, its definitely worth a try for those without a system in place, and there is a new version in production (written in Ruby), that will have new features.

Standard disclaimer about me not being affiliated and yadadadada. Just sharing my satisfaction.

RichmondTech
09-28-2011, 01:54 AM
Awesome. I'll have to play with the demo some more but what I'm seeing right away is the ability to easily document computer information to go with a customer.

If I have a customer with 2, 3, 10 computers whatever I'd like to document each one (model/serial, specs, passwords, OS version, etc) and easily reference those in the work orders that I create. I can keep the computer specs in the notes section, but I can do that already with Quickbooks.

What is it that made you want to go with a CRM application? Why choose a CRM over something like PC Repair Tracker or ShopManager?

NeutronTech
09-28-2011, 02:16 AM
What is it that made you want to go with a CRM application? Why choose a CRM over something like PC Repair Tracker or ShopManager?

One was cost, even though PCRT is at a great price for forum members. Overall the CRM was just a better fit for what I needed. There were things I didn't need/or want, like the ability for customers to log in. I also pretty much just order parts as needed, so no need for inventory either.

I mean no disrespect, but I feel that PCRT looks just a little too cartoonish for my taste. While myITCRM doesn't look great, it looks a bit more professional, in my opinion. The work orders and invoices need work, and I plan on editing them. PCRT is still a great product, and if I needed more of it's features, I could overlook the interface. I still keep it in mind, and if my needs expand in the future, I may yet jump over to it.

TechLoopPC
09-28-2011, 07:01 AM
I have tried every CRM but always end up going back to Quickbooks. When customer comes into shop I add them right into Quickbooks under customer. Put sticky note with customer's name and telephone on PC. Fix the computer and then I just create an invoice, add a service item called Labor: type what I did, put price - press print. Accept payment, mark as paid in Quickbooks.

It's the only method that I have found works for me -- I also rely heavily on the Record Deposits feature in quickbooks for keeping my bank statements perfectly balanced (I'm my own accountant!) and tracking who owes what. I really don't feel like I'm missing anything, I don't bother keeping real great records of computers because it's not that often that a customer brings the SAME computer back. I added a custom field called "System" to invoices so that when it prints it says "Dell GX570" so I can quickly reference. I am constantly busy so the less time I spend doing the invoicing etc. the better! Keep it simple.

I do think the CRM-style setup really does start to come handy if you have employees-- I can see there being a huge advantage here.

MobileTechie
09-28-2011, 09:54 AM
It looks pretty good.

It's very basic though. With vTiger you can customise your modules endlessly and so add work-processes to to including ticking off items to indicate AV scans, disk tests and so on.

MyITCRM is really just a basic customer database with invoicing. But as that, it seems to do a good job and for many people, that's all you need.

supporter
09-28-2011, 09:56 AM
I have tried every CRM but always end up going back to Quickbooks. When customer comes into shop I add them right into Quickbooks under customer. Put sticky note with customer's name and telephone on PC. Fix the computer and then I just create an invoice, add a service item called Labor: type what I did, put price - press print. Accept payment, mark as paid in Quickbooks.

It's the only method that I have found works for me -- I also rely heavily on the Record Deposits feature in quickbooks for keeping my bank statements perfectly balanced (I'm my own accountant!) and tracking who owes what. I really don't feel like I'm missing anything, I don't bother keeping real great records of computers because it's not that often that a customer brings the SAME computer back. I added a custom field called "System" to invoices so that when it prints it says "Dell GX570" so I can quickly reference. I am constantly busy so the less time I spend doing the invoicing etc. the better! Keep it simple.

I do think the CRM-style setup really does start to come handy if you have employees-- I can see there being a huge advantage here.

I agree with you. It's too bad that none of the CRM or other software for techs integrates really well with QB. It'd be nice to enter contacts ONCE in the CRM, handle billing, and not have to worry about syncing anything, etc.

NeutronTech
09-28-2011, 08:32 PM
Today I noticed a few things I didn't like. For example, the invoice automatically adds a note that says there is a 1.5% surcharge on credit card payments. Obviously I don't want that, so I went on an expedition within the code. It didn't take too long to find the appropriate files and lines of code so that I could modify them. I added my own terms of service to the work order template. I have a list going on changes I wish to make.

I'm no expert in PHP, in fact I have basically no experience in it. Which is the main reason why my website is written in HTML instead of using Wordpress or something. But PHP is highly documented online and very easy to find code snippets and information so that I can do some of the things I want to do.

All in all, the more I use myitcrm, and the more I customize it, the more I like it. It's great in the fact that it is such a simple CRM, the code is very manageable. Larger CRM packages have such a huge amount of code, I'd never be able to make any changes. The simplicity is great, as it allows me to make the changes I want quite easily.

Fixedathome.com
09-28-2011, 09:42 PM
I agree with you. It's too bad that none of the CRM or other software for techs integrates really well with QB. It'd be nice to enter contacts ONCE in the CRM, handle billing, and not have to worry about syncing anything, etc.

CommitCRM integrates perfectly with Quickbooks

MobileTechie
09-28-2011, 09:46 PM
But how much extra do you have to pay for that?

thirsty.professor
09-30-2011, 06:55 PM
I've been using an internally based POS we made for ourselves over the last 3 years and have been constantly updating, this is the first I've heard of this though, I'll have to try it out. Although at first glance the interface feels...cheap? I dont know. Free is free though!

NeutronTech
09-30-2011, 07:16 PM
Yeah, the interface is really basic. But I'm okay with basic. I actually like the interface for the most part, other than the homescreen. The homescreen could be laid out a bit better, more centralized, and maybe some bigger text. All things I can do in the php code, so no real biggie. Part of the issue with other CRMs, for me anyways, is that the interfaces are overly complex for what I need.

I know I can just use the features I want, but they get crowded by the interface showing all the stuff I don't want to use.

supporter
10-01-2011, 10:07 AM
CommitCRM integrates perfectly with Quickbooks

That's good to know. But isn't there a steep learning curve with commitCRM?

And what is the total cost with add on(s) necessary to connect with QBs?