Latest IRIS Practice Engine release: what’s the fuss about?

IRIS Practice Engine
By Mari Sharpe | 08/04/2020 | 3 min read

Improve your firm efficiency and reduce the time it takes to get your bills out of the door!

The 9.7 release of IRIS Practice Engine came out in May, and you may be wondering what is so special about it.

Why should we upgrade?

9.7 is the first major release since the rewrite of timesheets, which was 2 years ago. We have had new builds of 9.6 in this time that have had minor modifications and a fair number of classic pages being restyled to V9 but there has not been any major changes in functionality.

Why the large gap?

Well, 9.7 has rewritten billing. This is no small feat and we wanted to ensure that we did not rush the development of this fundamental part of the system.

Why rewrite billing?

The billing that we have had in IRIS Practice Engine has fundamentally been the same for a very long time, with minor changes and small bits of functionality added. The way that firms now bill has changed.

We needed to ensure that billing in IRIS Practice Engine could cater for the new practices that are being employed, to allow firms to become more efficient and spend less time on manual processes.

How have we achieved this?

More firms are using jobs to better control their practices, and 9.7 has taken advantage of this. Billing is far more closely linked to jobs to allow greater analysis at both the WIP and DRS level. We have introduced new ways of billing that allow degrees of automation.

Based on Job Completion allows the bill to be automatically drafted when the job is marked as complete; great for those smaller jobs that you have already agreed a fee for and want to get out of the door.

Based on Schedule allows a schedule of bills to be created that triggers the bills at specific points in the jobs lifecycle – perhaps by date or when certain tasks are completed; great for the larger more complex jobs that take some time to complete.

What else has been included?

We have also included the ability to Combine or Merge bills, allowing different bill owners to draft and submit their own bills, but the client to receive a single bill – this provides a way of individual bill owners being able to take credit without the client receiving multiple bills.

All of this is progress, but for some firms you may not want to change the way you work because it works for you. Don’t worry – we have not lost the ability to manually draft bills as required, to get into the WIP and decide what you want to bill, but we have updated and enhanced the bill wizard to allow for rich text formatting within the narrative and the ability to add multiple documents that can be sent to the client when the bill is printed or emailed.

We have also created a new Billing Administration page to provide a central place to manage the admin functions of billing such as Bulk Bill Printing or Recurring Bill Generation.

What else has changed?

We are continuing to rewrite the old ‘Classic’ pages to bring them into the modern interface – the majority of the Staff, Contact and Portfolio pages have had this treatment. These pages also have the benefit of loading more quickly – making the user experience much better.

Fancy seeing it for yourself?

Get in touch with your account manager to book a demo or to request an upgrade.