Kickserv changelog Kickserv changelog kickserv.com

About those page load times

Improvement

The Bottom Line Up Top

Many of you have had frustrating experiences with Kickserv lately, and we're sorry. Eliminating the frustration is our highest priority. We've released some improvements that will help, and we have more on the way.

The Details

Parts of the application have been uncomfortably slow to load at times. We know you depend on Kickserv to run your business, and we take that responsibility seriously. We have spent crazy amounts of time looking into the performance trouble, and here's what we've found:

  • Last quarter, we moved many accounts (about 3000 users' worth) off of ServiceSidekick (the original, old version of our application) and onto the current app.
  • Those accounts brought years of old dusty data with them.
  • This resulted in about 30% increased load on the system nearly overnight, and exposed multiple performance bottlenecks in our code and server infrastructure.

Some of the things we've found and fixed

  • Certain custom reports that were brought over from ServiceSidekick did not play nicely with the new application. We worked with customers to adjust these reports, while also beefing up our database infrastructure to handle the increased load.
  • Custom reports now only load 100 records at a time, to guard against excessively large database queries.
  • All of our custom reports were subject to a bug that was causing them to run much more slowly and hit the database harder than necessary (we fixed this late last week).
  • Just this week, we made some changes in the search engine (like quadrupling the memory) so it will run faster and not contribute to slow load times.

Let's just say that our developers have gotten really good at playing whack-a-mole over the last couple of months.

Other things we're addressing

  • Making search even more efficient.
  • Moving reporting services onto a dedicated read-only database so they don't affect the performance of the rest of the system.
  • Moving our interactions with external services (for example, our billing system) into separate processes so they don't impact web application performance.
  • A complete overhaul of our client-side architecture for performance, maintenance, and consistency with our mobile apps.
  • A test environment that models our production setup more closely, so we can better test the system under real-world conditions.

And more...

We're also addressing some longstanding complaints about our QuickBooks sync. Contact address data has been tricky to sync properly because special QuickBooks rules lead to inconsistent behavior on Kickserv's side. We're working on that. You've also asked for editing of synced contacts to be turned back on. That's on the way as well.

Thanks for being a part of the Kickserv family.

Better message formatting

Improvement

If you typically send longer messages, you may have noticed that any line breaks you added to them were ignored by the editor. We are pleased to report that this is no longer the case.

Now you can hit that enter key to your heart's content and your recipient will see the message just as you intended.

Expense Report

New

Kickserv now lets you report on your job expenses.

Just like other reports, you can select a date range. Expenses will be separated by job. Attachments show up in the report as clickable thumbnails.

You can also add expense values to a custom jobs report.

Now you can finally get rid of that pile of receipts on your desk!

One small step for an app... one giant leap for data integrity

Improvement

If you've synced with QuickBooks or Xero, chances are you've run into this at some point: you went back and edited something on a contact, only to find your changes were overwritten the next time you synced.

Not cool. Not cool at all.

Today, we took the first steps towards fixing this rather glaring omission in Kickserv’s sync behavior. When you attempt to edit a contact that has been synced, this is what you'll see:

If you want to make changes to your contact's info, you'll need to do it inside the other application (QuickBooks or Xero). This is an inconvenience, but we hope you'll agree that it's less inconvenient than having the other application overwrite your changes.

Of course, the best way to address this issue would be to allow editing of contact information from either Kickserv or your financial application of choice. Nothing would make us happier. Unfortunately, that's a tall order for a variety of technical reasons, but rest assured we're working on the problem.

Customer Text Notifications

New

You may have recently noticed this addition to the Contact Information form:

You guessed it. Starting today, your customers can receive event reminders via text message in addition to (or instead of) via email. They can set their preferences, and change their number if desired, in the Customer Account Center.

Print Multiple PDFs

Improvement

You can now print multiple invoices to a single PDF for emailing or printing. Just select them all and click the "Print To PDF" button.

Happy Valentine's Day!

Expense Tracking

New

Starting this week, you can track expenses for any of your jobs.

Add images (such as receipts) to keep all the details organized.

You can even add a charge for the customer at the same time:

​ It's easy to add vendors as you go. Just start typing.

By default, only administrators will have access to expense features. To enable this for an employee, go to the Manage Users page, select the employee, check the desired permissions next to "Expenses", and click "Update permissions".

Look for more expense-related features to come, such as reporting on expenses (by technician and vendor), adding of expenses from mobile apps, and more.

Happy tracking!

Customer Notifications

New

Introducing a better way to keep in touch with your customers: on-demand notifications.

Before today, your customers could only be notified 24 hours before the scheduled start time of their job. Now, however, you can send send them a reminder when your technician is on the way, or whenever it's convenient.

The customer will receive a friendly email with the technician's photo, if they have uploaded one.

You can still send automated reminders, but now you have a lot more choices:

Address Mapping

New

Starting today, when entering or editing any address in Kickserv, you can select it from a list of addresses in Google rather than having to type in the whole thing. Your selected address appears on a map right next to the address information.

As a bonus, you can use Google Street View to get a sneak peek at the job site:

This is now available throughout the Kickserv web application. Give it a try and let us know what you think!

New Android App Released

New

We're excited to announce the latest version of our Android app!

At the office or in the field, the Kickserv app makes it easy to serve your customers and keep your field service team synchronized. Sales, job tracking, invoicing--all you need to keep your business running smoothly is in one simple (and mobile!) package.

With the Kickserv app, you and your field service workers can:

  • Easily follow job and technician status
  • Upload before and after photos of jobs
  • Enter in your time on a job for payroll and billing
  • Track your estimates and sales opportunities
  • Follow your invoices and track payments
  • Collect customer signature approval, right at the job site
  • Synchronize with Kickserv Web

Get it on the Google Play Store and try it out today!

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