What is a Service?

Services are a simple way of grouping jobs together, or of making a job recur on a regular basis.

For example:

  • A VAT Service, which is made up of 4 quarterly VAT returns and all the work that goes with them.
  • An annual accounts service, which might include preparing accounts & submitting them.

Services have to be switched on for customers that need them.  For example, an "Annual accounts service" might only be relevant to some clients, so you switch it on for them only. To learn more about how to activate services for clients, take a look at our guide to adding Services.

For an example of setting up a specific service, please see the following guide to creating a bookkeeping service.

For a video guide to bringing your processes into Senta, please see the following guide: creating jobs and services from scratch.

Creating a new Service

Go to Settings > Services and click Add service.

You can add a service name, description, and whether you want it to be manual or automatic. To learn more about kicking off Services for clients, click here.

You can then choose which jobs you'd like to be part of your service.

Next you should select how frequently you want this job to recur. This could be anything from a one-off to 5-yearly.

When it comes to the most commonly used frequencies (Weekly, Monthly, Yearly), the following principles apply:

A service with a Weekly frequency will repeat on the same day of the week, based on the first day it is set to happen.

e.g. start date Tuesday 2/7/19 will then repeat every Tuesday (2/7/19 and then 9/7/19, 16/7/19, etc.)

A service with a Monthly frequency will repeat on the same date of the month, based on the first day it is set to happen.

e.g. start date Tuesday 2/7/19 will then repeat every 2nd of the month (2/7/19 and then 2/8/19, 2/9/19, etc)

A service with a Yearly frequency will repeat on the same date of the year, based on the first day it is set to happen.

e.g. start date Tuesday 2/7/19 will then repeat every July 2nd every year (2/7/19 and then 2/7/20, 2/7,21, etc)

If you choose a starting date which does not exist for some years, for example a yearly job recurring on 29/02/20, then for the next 3 years the job will run on 28/02, and will only run on 29/02 for leap years.

Similarly, if you set a monthly payroll job to start on 31/01, it will then recur on the latest date in each following month: 28/02 or 29/02, 31/03, 30/04, 31/05 etc. If you are setting up a monthly job for the first time and want it to always recur on the very last day of the month, we recommend finding the nearest month in the past with 31 days, and using this as the job date. If you start a monthly job on 28/02, the job will then recur on the 28th of every following month.

If you choose for the job to recur "when triggered", you can choose what to use as the trigger field, the trigger type, whether to trigger for the current value, and set the job date.

The job date is what will be used to run any jobs. To learn more about job dates click here.

Job dates can either be pulled from a form, or they can be a fixed date.

If you select "form date", you will be given a list of all date fields from any forms in Senta. For example you could set a job to kick off based on a client's date of next payroll.

If you select "fixed date", you will be given a date field to fill in.

Amending job dates

It is worth noting that if you edit a service and change the job date while any jobs are already in progress, Senta will not amend the existing jobs, but will instead create new ones.

This is to avoid the risk of task dates and key dates being updated unintentionally for jobs that are already in progress.

Triggered Jobs

Jobs can be triggered in Senta automatically by a change of a field value, which can be done manually by selecting a new field value or automatically, like changes to a date pulled through from Companies House.

To set up a triggered job:

  1.  Go to the service settings in Settings > Services
  2.  Pick the job that you would like to set up as triggered
  3.  Click on the How often drop-down
  4.  Select When triggered from the list

To learn more about how to use triggered jobs in Senta, take a look at our support guide - How do triggered jobs work? 

Adding filters

To only have this service apply to certain clients, you can add a filter.

In the example below, "Type" has been chosen as a filter.

Within "Type", you can select which types of businesses you want this service to apply to.

For more information, please see our guide to using filters.

Please note, if you do the following:

- Set the job date to pull from a form that is only available for certain types of clients e.g. just for individuals


- Add a filter to the job so that it will only run for certain types of clients e.g. only companies


The job will not run. 

This is because Senta will try to run the job for companies, using the date from a form that can only be filled in for individuals. This will flag up as an error message on the services tab for the client.

Once you have finished adding a job, you can add more Jobs by clicking on Add job at the bottom of the page.

This can be useful when you want to have some jobs recur weekly for some clients, and monthly for others. An example of this is in the payroll service, where payroll jobs run weekly, 2-weekly, monthly, quarterly etc. 

The weekly payroll job is filtered to only take place for clients where "weekly" has been selected on the Payroll details form.

Choosing how far ahead jobs will show

For repeating jobs, you can choose how far ahead Senta will show jobs. 

The default date offsets are as follows, relative to the job date:

Annual jobs : -3m

Quarterly jobs: -1m

Monthly jobs: -1m

Weekly jobs: -1w

Daily jobs: -1d

You can manually override this date offset in the field below the filters.

For example, if you set a monthly recurring job to show -2m in advance, this means that jobs will be created 2 months before the job date.

The VAT return service in the example below has been set so that VAT jobs show -2m before the job date. The job date for VAT jobs is the month end, so based on the date of 19th November 2019, jobs have been created for the periods ending 30th November and 30th December 2019.