April 2011 New Features

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April 2011 New Features


We are pleased to provide you with a summary of our April, 2011 release.

New Features

This release includes the following new features and enhancements.


Separate Invoices for Subscriptions

Z-Billing has always had the ability to consolidate subscriptions onto a single invoice. This is a powerful feature to enable you to send one invoice even if subscriptions are added over time when your customer signs up for new offerings.

Z-Billing has also had the ability to separate a single charge and bill that charge independently to give you the flexibility to invoice charges independently, allowing you to improve your cash flow by immediately invoicing a charge.

In this release, we have increased that flexibility by allowing you to create independent invoices per subscription. You can group subscriptions into a single invoice, or invoice one or more of the subscriptions independently. For example, if you have five subscriptions, you can group three of them into one invoice and invoice the remaining two independently.

You can now specify on a per-subscription basis whether the subscription should be invoiced separately. Previously, all subscriptions within a customer account were invoiced together, and the total charges were aggregated into a single invoice. If you set a subscription to be invoiced separately, all charges generated from that subscription will be collected into a dedicated invoice.

See Invoicing Subscriptions Separately for more information about using this feature.

The field in the Subscription API is IsInvoiceSeparate. See Subscription for more information.

Amendment Previews

You can preview amendments, similar to how you can preview subscriptions. The amendment preview presents a projected charge summary for the subscription assuming the amendment was successful. The amendment preview feature is available for the following amendment types:

  • New product
  • Update product
  • Remove product
  • Terms & Conditions
  • Renewal

See Previewing an Amendment for more information.

Callout Message Preview for Customer Notifications

Click Preview in the Notification Configuration page to view a preview version of callout notifications. This allows you to preview the callout request information, the request header fields, and the request entity body, including optional parameters that you add to the callout.

See Configuring Callout Notifications for information about configuring and previewing callouts.


New Notifications for Payment Runs

Zuora can send notifications when a payment run has completed successfully or completed with an error. You can also customize the email templates used for notifications and configure callout notifications for the Payment Run Completion event.

See Setup Profiles, Notifications and Email Templates for more information.

UPDATE: Advanced Bill Run Selection Criteria

Z-Billing has added additional selection options for you to use when creating ad hoc and scheduled bill runs. These options allow you to include all batches in a bill run, or select a single batch of customers to include. You can also include customer accounts based on their bill cycle day. You can select customer accounts based on:

  • All bill cycle days
  • The bill cycle day that matches the bill run day
  • A specific billing cycle day

See Creating Bill Runs for more information.

New Data Sources for Z-Billing and Z-Payments

We continue to release more data sources that allow you to customize the fields you would like to extract. You can also use data sources to combine key objects into a single dataset that can be accessed via the Zuora interface or via APIs. To use the new data sources, navigate to Z-Billing > Reports, then select the Data Sources tab.

See Export ZOQL for more information about exporting data sources.

The following data sources are available with this release:

InvoicePayment (Z-Payments)

A Payment can be applied to an invoice and/or the credit balance in the event there is an overpayment. Use the InvoicePayment data source to find the payments that have been applied to Invoices.

  • Invoice Payment
  • Payment
  • Payment Method
  • Invoice
  • Account
  • Bill To Contact
  • Sold To Contact
Refund (Z-Payments)

The Refund data source includes both Credit Balance Refunds and Payment Refunds. The Refund data source includes the following objects:

  • Refund
  • Account
  • Bill To Contact
  • Sold To Contact
RefundInvoicePayment (Z-Payments)

A refund can be applied to a payment or the credit balance. When the refund is applied to a payment, the payment can be applied to multiple invoices. When refunding the payment, Zuora uses the RefundInvoicePayment object to track how that refund is allocated back to the Payment and the invoice. The RefundInvoicePayment data source includes the following objects:

  • Refund Invoice Payment
  • Refund
  • Invoice Payment
  • Payment
  • Payment Method
  • Invoice
  • Account
  • Bill To Contact
  • Sold To Contact
Taxation Item (Z-Billing)

Use the Taxation Item data source to extract critical tax information for reporting, integrations or analysis. The Taxation Item data source includes the following objects:

  • Taxation Item
  • Account
  • Amendment
  • Bill To Contact
  • Invoice Item
  • Invoice
  • Product
  • Product Rate Plan
  • Product Rate Plan Charge
  • Rate Plan
  • Rate Plan Charge
  • Sold To Contact
  • Subscription

Resolved Issues

The following issues were resolved in this release.


Ability to Update the Customer Account Number

Previously, you could not update a customer account number (for example, to change a number that had been entered incorrectly or had to be changed to fit a new format). You can now update the customer account number directly from the Z-Billing interface.

However, you cannot change the account number if invoices have been generated for the account. Invoices reference the customer account number, and changing the account number after invoices have been generated will cause a data mismatch.

Ability to Update Custom Fields for Subscriptions

Previously, you could only edit custom fields on subscriptions before the subscription was activated.

In this release, you can now update custom fields on subscriptions both before and after the subscription is activated.

Clarification of Subscription Statuses

Previously, the "Expired" status was used to refer to subscriptions that were still active, but that had reached the end of their terms. However, this status was not tracked by Z-Billing for subscriptions.

To clarify the status of subscriptions, we have removed the Expired status and now define two groups for active subscriptions: Subscriptions within the term and subscriptions out of the term. The "out of term" subscription group corresponds to what used to be called "expired" subscriptions.

Z-Billing and Z-Payments

Remember the List View Status

Previously, the list mode used to view Subscriptions, Amendments, and Refunds was not retained on subsequent views. Zuora now displays the list in the state that it was last viewed.

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