Guides

Guides explain in practical terms how we do stuff. Any Hypha member can change these.1

We are inspired by the idea of "protocols" from the Lab Book of the Civic Laboratory for Environmental Action Research (CLEAR)

Protocols are the "attitudes" or "the manner in which one approaches each and every element in our space." They are different than pure rules or instructions; they are ways that we establish order and maintain practices across our group [...] -- They define the way we ought to proceed or behave in different situations. As such, they are normative, or premised on values, morals, and an idea of how things ought to be done. They are a manifestation of our values.

Contents

Invoices

Prior to creating an invoice, confirm with the client whether they would like to pay in CAD, USD, EUR, or GBP, and in what country their financial institution is based, then proceed with the following steps.

Creating an invoice for a client

  1. Go to Quickbooks Online, open the Invoicing > Customers tab.

  2. If the client is not in the customer list, click New customer to create a new profile for the client.

  3. Click Create invoice on the client you wish to invoice, and use the following settings:

    • Cc.: finance@hypha.coop
    • Terms: Net 15
    • Message on invoice: [Payment instructions] (e.g. Please pay USD 3,135.00)
    • Attachments: [Timesheet PDFs]
  4. At the bottom of the page, click Customize to select a style, or create a new style template as needed.

  5. If creating a new style template or the payment information needs to be changed, select the Content tab, click on the bottom section of the template preview to reveal the Add payment details and footer section, then enter the applicable payment information.

    For example:

     PAYMENT
    
     By ACH or domestic wire transfer to:
    
     ACH Transfer No. (ABA): 026073150
     Wire Transfer No. (ABA): 026073008
     Account No.: [REDACTED]
     Beneficiary Name: Hypha Worker Co-operative Inc.
     Beneficiary Address:
    
         TransferWise
         19 W 24th Street
         New York
         10010
         United States
    
     Invoice amount will be adjusted to reflect actual exchange rate after payment.
    

    This is an invoice for a client based in the United States, payable in USD to our TransferWise account. Look at a previous invoice for examples.

    Review the invoice preview, then click Done.

  6. Fill in the line items and calculate totals. See example below.

    All invoices are in CAD, even if the customer is paying in a foreign currency. This means RATE and AMOUNT columns are in CAD, and if the contract is an hourly rate based on a foreign currency, you can include the information in the DESCRIPTION column, and use an estimated CAD equivalent in the RATE column and to calculate the AMOUNT.

  7. Create a Subtotal line item. See example below.

  8. Add a line item for Canadian HST, and if it is not applicable, indicate the reason in the line item DESCRIPTION. See example below.

  9. Review the invoice preview, then click Save and send to email the invoice to the client.

DESCRIPTION QTY RATE AMOUNT
Software development for Jan 2020
(52.25 @ USD 60.00 = 3,135.00)
52.25 80.00 4,180.00
Software development for Feb 2020
(20.00 @ USD 60.00 = 1,200.00)
20.00 80.00 1,600.00
Subtotal: 5,780.00
HST @ 0%
Intellectual property exports, zero-rated
5,780.00 0 0.00

Settling an invoice payment

Once the client has paid the invoice, we must check the amount received at our receiving account at Desjardins (domestic) or TransferWise (foreign currency), and record the transaction in Quickbooks Online.

Domestic

  1. After the money arrives to Desjardins, we need to update our records in Quickbooks Online:

    1. In the Banking tab, select our Chequing account and click Update to sync our Desjardins account.

    2. Find the transaction from the client and click on it, then select Find match to select the incoming transaction to match.

    3. If there is a discrepancy in the amounts, click the Resolve button and change CATEGORY to Bank charges, then click Save.

  2. Archive the PDF of the paid and finalized invoice in our shared drive under the Invoices directory with filename xxxx-project.pdf, where xxxx is the invoice number (e.g. 1001-aether.pdf).

Foreign Currency

  1. Confirm the correct amount is received, then convert the foreign currency to CAD. We can either move the money to the CAD balance in TransferWise, or if the amount is large, we can directly deposit the exchanged amount into our Desjardins account. The following example shows how to do that in a single transaction from TransferWise:

    1. Confirm that the invoice amount of 3,757.50 USD is received to our USD balance, then click Send USD.

      transferwise-0

      transferwise-1

    2. Choose My business and enter in our Desjardins account information for the deposit.

      transferwise-2

      transferwise-3

    3. Note the invoice number in the Reference field, then click Confirm and send.

      transferwise-4

      In this example, a client in the United States sent 3,757.50 USD to the Hypha USD account at TransferWise, and we deposited 4,904.11 CAD at the Hypha CAD account at Desjardins. The transaction and exchange fee was 20.61 USD, and the exchange rate was 1.31235.

      If invoice amounts are small, we may batch many of them in TransferWise before depositing to Desjardins, but we should still convert foreign currencies to CAD as soon as possible and hold the amount as CAD in our TransferWise CAD balance.

    4. In the USD balance, click on Download a statement and download a CSV file for the date range that includes the transaction(s). Open the file and multiply the amounts with the exchange rate column, then save.

  2. After the money arrives to Desjardins, we need to update our records in Quickbooks Online:

    1. Click View/Edit on the invoice and add a line item that accommodates for the discrepancy in estimated and actual exchange rates.

      In our example where we deposited 4,904.11 CAD to Desjardins, if our invoice estimated a CAD AMOUNT of 4,950.00 CAD, we would record a Exchange rate adjustment @ 1.31235 line item with -45.89 as AMOUNT.

    2. In the Banking tab, select our Chequing account and click Update to sync our Desjardins account. Find the transaction from TransferWise and click on it, then change the Category to TransferWise and click Add.

    3. In the Banking tab, select our TransferWise account to click File upload (down arrow next to Update) to update our TransferWise account. Browse and upload the TransferWise CSV we saved earlier, click Next and enter the following:

      • Date: Column 2
      • Description: Column 5
      • Amount: Column 3

      Click Next and then Import.

    4. Find the transaction from the client and click on it, then select Find match to select the incoming transaction to match. There should be no discrepancy in the amounts.

    5. Find the transaction from our TransferWise account to Desjardins account, then select Find match. We expect a discrepancy in the amounts. Click the Resolve button and change CATEGORY to Bank charges, then click Save.

    6. If there is a discrepancy, click the Resolve button and change CATEGORY to Bank charges, then click Save.

  3. Archive the PDF of the paid and finalized invoice in our shared drive under the Invoices directory with filename xxxx-project.pdf, where xxxx is the invoice number (e.g. 1001-aether.pdf).

Meetings

Scheduling a meeting

Note: Consider whether this meeting might be a global interest to other members. Skip the steps below at your discretion for low-stakes topics.

  • Try to announce your intention to schedule a meeting on a topic and ask who's interested in participating. Allow at least 48 hours for people to respond.
  • Consider who might be most interested and what timing might work for them.
  • If 2-3 candidate timeslots feel obvious from looking at people's availabilities:
    • Reserve them all in Hypha calendar immediately, for example: HOLD: Infrastructure Meeting (Option 1)
    • Ask in chat whether anyone who wants to attend has any blocks on any of the options
  • If short-notice or speed of booking is important:
    • Claim an open HOLD :information_source: slot.
      • If time permits or topic isn't an all-hands matter, consider leaving the hold available for someone else
      • If claiming a hold, edit the calendar immediately and announce meeting in chat
  • If your must find a new timeslot:
    • Create a new poll (we currently use When2Meet)
    • Leave ample time for completion (ideally 1 week)
    • Check on non-responders in following days and send (gentle) reminders as needed

Hosting a meeting

  • Before the meeting...
    • create a stub agenda as soon as possible (can be done before scheduling)
    • add the agenda to the meetings index
    • update the organizational calendar as early as possible with candidate and finalized time slots progresses
    • mention the meeting time in chat, and link the agenda.
    • encourage migration of related actions, decisions and discussions into agenda from chat
  • During the meeting...
    • ask for agenda items (start of meeting)
    • facilitate discussion
    • keep time
    • call attention to action items, upcoming decisions and discussions
  • After the meeting...
    • add important dates/reminders to calendar
    • review and merge notes
    • update meeting index as best location changes (hackmd => review (PR) => file)
    • as needed, set up loomio threads and decisions
    • as needed, send reminders of action items
    • migrate action items into task tracker

Joining a Jitsi Call

💻 Desktop. Follow link.hypha.coop/calls to our default conference platform.

📱 Mobile

  1. Install the app. Android | iOS
  2. 🔗 Visit call URL to open app, or 📋 copy-paste redirected call URL (e.g. https://jitsi.hypha.coop/hyphacoop) into app home screen.

📞 Phone

  1. Use the private dial-in number from our technical Jitsi documentation.
  2. After prompt, enter conference code 307 314 3734 #

Projects

Sales Prospect & Internal Proposals

While the Business Planning WG is mainly in charge of sales lead generation, all members may pursue leads as they come up. Members are strongly encouraged to record leads into the co-operative's leads tracking system whether or not we want to pursue this lead. Ask Business Planning WG for help doing this.

If a member decides to pursue a lead, they can reach out to gauge potential interest in working together. If the lead expresses intention to proceed with a concrete project in mind, this becomes an opportunity. The member now heads up this sales effort and should draft an internal proposal with the Business Planning WG, then present it (e.g., at a meeting, or via virtual channels) to see whether the co-operative wants to move forward to submit a formal proposal to the prospective client. In this meeting, we should discuss any concerns by other members, and gauge team capacity given project timelines. A sample internal proposal should include:

  • Project Title
  • Background
  • Scope & Timeline
  • Outcomes & Opportunities
  • Skillsets
  • Budget
  • Communication
  • Risks
  • Resources

A template is included below. You can add more sections as appropriate, including sample code, project roadmap, next steps, etc. Examples and archived proposals can be found in our shared drive.

Client Proposal Drafting and Submission

Project proposals to be submitted to a potential client or grant committee should be drafted by members who expect to participate in the project with the help of members of the Business Planning WG. The WG has expertise in drafting client and grant project proposals, and managing the proposal process, so it is helpful to involve members of that group from the drafting stage. All that are involved in the proposal drafting make up the proposal team that will eventually sign off on the final draft to be submitted.

If a project is accepted, this team will lead the initial consultation meetings with the client (e.g. discuss terms of payment and project logistics) and gradually transfer the relationship entirely to the project team, which may not necessarily include everyone in the proposal team.

Regardless whether the proposal is successful, the project team should add a copy to the archived proposals folder in our shared drive for future reference. For failed proposals, we highly encourage reaching out to the client or grant committee for feedback and having an internal retrospective.

Internal Proposal Template

# Project Title

## Background
Background information about the client/grant and the project.

## Scope & Timeline
What are the expected deliverables and the timeline.

## Outcomes & Opportunities
How this project may be beneficial beyond the scope of the project. For example, does it lead to developing new skillsets among members or starting a relationship with a potentially long-term client?

## Skillsets
What are the important skillsets needed to ship this. If some skillsets are not available, what are the plans to source them to ensure we can deliver on this?

## Budget
Project budget and payment terms if available.

## Communication
How the logistics would look like for members working on this project. Are there weekly calls or are there physical sessions? Is the project on GitHub or is the source closed? Are there consent and confidentiality terms?

## Risks
What are the expected risks associated with this project.

## Resources
Additional resources about the project not already listed above, such as link to a website or a call for proposal.

Sensitive Data

In general, most staff prefer not to use third-party SaaS services, like Google Drive, for storing sensitive information.

We store short strings (like SINs or codes) as password entries in Passbolt. These entries should be shared with both a privileged group that needs access (e.g., Finance WG) and the individual.

If we must store sensitive docs (like PDFs) in a shared drive for convenience (e.g., Google Drive), we first encrypt them with a password. We keep this in Passbolt under the entry "Shared Drive: File Encryption". All employees can access this password. Simpler encryption schemes are preferred, for example, default PDF encryption. We recommend any secured file.pdf be renamed to file.encrypted.pdf for easy discovery.

As a last resort for sensitive docs, a member can choose to have the document printed and stored in a folder in the office.

We use a custom shortlink service at link.hypha.coop. It helps us:

  • resolve keywords to URLs from any computer,
  • make commonly used resources quickly and easily accessible,
  • simplify link-sharing in spoken conversations, and
  • align on shorthand keywords for resources.

Instructions on creating and managing shortlinks are available in our shortlinks repo.

Hint: You can use a URL hash to deep-link into an expanded shortlink. Example: http://link.hypha.coop/inventory#MailCow

Shortlinks work on their own in the address bar, but for even easier access on your own workstation, you can add a "custom search engine" keyword to your browser.

This allows you to type something like h<tab>shortlinks into the search bar, and get https://link.hypha.coop/shortlinks

Here's a screencast of how it works on Chrome:

screenshot of adding/using shortlinks as keywords with custom search
engine set in browser

Instructions: Chrome | Firefox (requires extension)

Timesheets

Members log their work hours using Clockify, and project timesheets may be generated to determine the invoice amount each period for some clients, and often for calculating member wages. This process is done using the Clockify Summary Report. Saved reports are found under Saved Reports.

Follow these steps to generate and archive your project timesheets:

  1. When a project begins, generate a team project report in Clockify and save with the name project_YYYYMM where YYYYMM indicates the first month the project is active (e.g. aether_201908)
  2. When a member joins a project, generate a personal project report in Clockify and save with the name project_YYYYMM_xx where YYYYMM indicates the first month the member is active on the project and xx is the initials of the member (e.g. aether_201908_bl and aether_201908_yj)
  3. To generate timesheets, open the team or personal project report and export as PDF for the applicable report period (to be sent to client, if applicable)
  4. Timesheet PDFs sent to clients or for internal payroll calculation should be archived in our shared drive under the Timesheets directory. In this example:

     Timesheets
     ↳ aether_201908
       ↳ personal
         ↳ bl
           # Personal timesheets for bl, used to calculate wages
           - clockify-report-2019-08-01-to-2019-08-31.pdf
           - clockify-report-2019-09-01-to-2019-09-30.pdf
           - ...
         ↳ yj
           # Personal timesheets for yj, used to calculate wages
           - clockify-report-2019-08-01-to-2019-08-31.pdf
           - clockify-report-2019-09-01-to-2019-09-30.pdf
           - ...
       ↳ team
           # Team timesheets, used to invoice client
           - clockify-report-2019-08-01-to-2019-08-31.pdf
           - clockify-report-2019-09-01-to-2019-09-30.pdf
           - ...
    

Voicemail

Accessing Voicemail

We use a VoIP phone line provider with forwarding and voicemail from FreePhoneLine.ca. It helps us:

  • Have a phone number without tying it to a physical location
  • Receive voicemail by email to members@hypha.coop

To access voicemail inbox you can either call remotely or through a configured SIP client.

  • Remotely:
    1. Call the dial-in number 14164770355
    2. Enter our account number 14378876936
    3. Enter our password:
  • SIP client: Dial *98

Managing Voicemail and Phone Forwarding

To record or update the voicemail greeting access the voicemail per above and select the following options:

  • 3 - Personal options
  • 3 - Greetings
  • 2 - Personal greeting
  • 2 - Record a personal greeting

References

1. Inspired by Enspiral Handbook: Guides

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