In Senta, a job is made up of one or more tasks, each of which can have their properties tweaked to suit the needs of that particular job. As well as the default jobs that come with Senta, you may want to add some of your own.
Constructing a job can be a little daunting at first, but we'll show you step-by-step how to get a new job setup.
For a video guide to making jobs and services from scratch, click here.
All the jobs are under the Settings menu. This is available to you if you're an administrator on your Senta site. You can find the settings menu by clicking the gear icon in the navigation bar.
Click on Jobs in the menu to see a list of all of the job templates in your site.
Creating a new job
Click on Add new job.
Under the General tab you can add a name for your job, an optional description, and select a colour key.
Under the Dates tab you can add an optional description of the job date (e.g. Accounting reference / year end date).
You can also add key dates for the job, set field references for these, as well as any date offsets and filters.
Note: we recommend keeping jobs to under 40 tasks. If your job seems to need more, please contact email@example.com and we can advise on whether the job can be streamlined.
Go to the tasks tab and click on Add task.
You will now see the new task entry form.
Here you can add:
- A task title
- Task details
- Task type
- Who the task is assigned to
- Any start or due date offsets
- Whether to store the completion date
- Whether to show the task on the task calendar
- Any filters for this task
There are different types of tasks. The most basic one is a manual task – an instruction to someone in your practice to do something – but there are more clever task types too, which Senta can do automatically. You can find more about this in our guide to task types.
Each task is assigned to someone. Mostly you can let Senta decide who to give the task to and it will be decided at the right moment. Or, you can make sure that the task is given to the same person every time. For example, if one person does, say, all the invoicing, you could have a "send invoice" task go to that one person every time.
You might want to add in a specialist user type, such as a bookkeeper role to complete all bookkeeping tasks.
You also have the option to make a task 'Unassigned' by default. This can be useful if you have tasks in your Job that are assigned to different people after they have been created.
If you assign a task to Senta, Senta will complete the task without any intervention. If you assign it to person, then the person is prompted to complete the task. Obviously some tasks aren't actually completable by Senta (filling in a form, for example), but others such as notifications and emails are.
Start dates and due dates
Click on the Timings tab to choose start and due date offsets.
Normally, tasks are just done as and when, but you can add timings to your job tasks if you like. This lets Senta know how soon a task can be started, and when it has to be finished.
Optional start date offsets and due date offsets are used to tell Senta when to schedule tasks. When a job is started, Senta gives it a job date to use. Every task in the job is started relative to the job date and is marked as due relative to the job date. For example, "start a task 2 days after the job date" or "make a task due 5 days before the job date".
If you don't enter a start offset for a task, the start date will automatically be set to match the start date of any previous task which does have a start date. If you don't enter a due offset they won't ever show as overdue – you can just do them as and when.
To enter the offsets, use codes like:
+1d = the task will start / be due 1 day after the job date
-2w = the task will start / be due 2 weeks before the job date
+1m+2w+4d = the task will start / be due 1 month, 2 weeks and 4 days after the job date.
We have a full guide to date offsets here.
Click on the Depends upon tab to set up relationships between tasks, so that a particular task won't start until another has finished. To learn more about dependencies, see the following guide: task dependencies.
Ordinarily, every task in the job will be started for each client who ends up using the job. However, you can add criteria to alter which clients the tasks are applicable to.
You might want to use this to fill in different forms for different types of clients, for example. "Company details form" could be applicable to, say, limited companies, and "Partnership details form" could be applicable to, say, just partnerships.
You can find out more about filters in How do filters work?
Adding and removing filters
Click the Add filter button and choose what field you want to filter by.
Next, choose the values that you want to match. Whenever this job is in progress for a client, the task will only be scheduled if the client matches the filters.
Click the X button to remove a filter.
You can find out more about filters in How do filters work?
Changing the order of tasks
Just click the up and down arrows to move a task up or down the list.
The order of tasks in the list doesn't make a difference, except while you're setting up the job: When you set a task to depend on another task being completed, you can only pick a task that is above it in the list. However, it's better to put the tasks in the order you intend to do them, because it makes it easier for everyone to understand where they are in the job.
Click the X button next to the task to remove it from the Job.
Saving or cancelling your changes
Once you have added all the tasks you require, you can click preview to see how the job will be shown when represented as a job for a client.
No changes to your job will be saved until you click the Save button, so don't forget to click Save when you're done.
Similarly, if you decide you don't want to keep your changes, click Cancel at any time. Any changes you've made (including deleting tasks) will be ignored and the job will go back to how it was.