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How to use the Line-Item Sample Proposal Databases

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This video shows how to load and use the custom line-item databases used in any of the Sample Proposals. There are close to 100 Sample Proposals that use custom line-item databases for cost, schedule, funding and business plan financial pages.

Read this related article: It's All About Trust - Win Business Proposals by Winning Trust

Proposal Pack HelpWatch this related video: How to use the Line-Item Database

In this video we're going to show how to use any of the custom line item databases that have been created for the Sample Proposal collection. Now there's 200 completed Sample Proposals in every package and about half of those, almost 100, have custom line item databases created for them. These will cover anything from cost summaries, estimates, project schedules, any of the business plan chapters like for budgets, income projections and so on.

There's a couple different places you can go to see the sample databases. One, you can go to the Preferences and this will work for Novice and Expert Edition users. Go into the Data and Display then Line Item Quote Database and go into this Premade Databases tab.

You'll see Template DBs, these ones are the single chapter templates so those will be explained in another video. The Example DBs, these are just for Expert Edition users showing how different parts of the system work as examples. You'll want to go and look at this Sample DBs button.

So you see 96, almost half of the samples. So this is a good way to go where you can only see only the samples that actually have custom line item databases. And if you want to see what the layout of these will look like you can just look at a sample.

So we can start with say the Accounting and Payroll Services and let's just look at a sample PDF. Since you can use this sample database definition for your own projects this will show you an example of what it will look like if you use it for yourself. You'd be filling in your own line items and costs obviously and the design theme, colors, these logos, graphics.

These are just illustrations in the PDFs. The visual look of the documents when you create your own will be the design theme you purchased obviously. This is just a quick way to go through and kind of see what a lot of these samples look like.

You can see this Civil Engineering Construction sample. This has an actual schedule where you can put in tasks, start dates, durations, and so on and it will calculate out the actual end dates and completion dates and everything using the database. This also has a budget chapter.

Okay, so this is one place to go to look at what they will look like and then if you want to use any of these you just load the definition and then that database definition will be available in your project screen. So this is a good way to set up using any of the sample databases without importing the actual content of the whole sample. The rest of this video we're going to actually go do that where we will import samples and use their databases and example data.

All right, so we have our Networks #5 design theme. We're actually going to just illustrate the Network Cabling example proposal. We're just going to pick a network design theme and we'll start a project, Add a New Project.

We'll just call this Network Cabling and we will go into the Pick Documents screen. This is the same thing you'd ever do creating your own versions of any samples and we'll scroll down and pick the Network Cabling Sample Proposal, import content and will cancel out of the contract and it asks us do you want the quote database definition for the sample automatically loaded for each future project. No, we don't want to do that.

Okay, so this is loaded in all the chapters. It'll import the sample content for the network cabling proposal and if we go into the Line Item Quote button into the screen you can see the database definition associated with our project is the network cabling sample proposals line item database definition. This little thing here QDB16 this is just going to show us the code for that database if you ever had to get into the database files it makes easier find things if you're poking around the the database files.

Okay, so the quote has 18 line items we want to look at that data. Click the Manage Data and this database definition has three categories. It has a Services sales category and that information gets output into the Invoice and Estimate Pages.

Hardware, same thing, Invoice, Estimate pages. And it has an Installation Schedule that will go to the Installation Schedule page. It'll show how many line items in each category so we can see this samples data.

Edit line so you can go and edit this, you can clear out the sample data, enter your own data and so on. All the samples will load the actual data for for those samples so you can rebuild the sample proposals exactly. Installation Schedule so you can see this task, durations, start date, end dates are calculated based on the start date and duration.

Actually these start dates are all calculated from an initial project start date and all the start dates, end dates for all the individual line items are actually calculated by the system. It does a running days elapsed and so on. We look at the globals, it will actually calculate out the weeks, days, months to complete so we can import these data elements into the actual document.

All right, so now that we have all the data selected. Now if we do the Test and Preview we can see a preview of all the individual pages and since I think we're going to be good with this as–is we'll just build the whole proposal document. It is going to build in all the line item information into the Estimate, Invoice and Installation Schedule pages.

We'll see what this all looks like in a moment. All right, this document has been generated. Let's take a look at it and you can see the Invoice here has the Services, the Hardware.

The full document, this is the full network cabling sample. So you'll see on the Estimate page the layout for the quote. Installation Schedule now these can be customized quite a bit.

You can see in the layout we don't have end dates and all the other fields that go into the calculations. This one keeps it a little simpler. You can control what columns and data gets output.

You can see in the table here we use one table row for all line item values. This will help shorten up the space needed for quotes with more line items to keep everything on a single page. So whether you want a single table table row per line item or one table row per all line items that's under your control and how you define the database and the templates.

So again this is all customizable, the layouts, whether you use the Expert Edition for tables that are output by the Wizard or if you're using custom tables where you edit the templates that go in MyTemplates folder. Then you have full control over the layout by customizing the templates. I'll do one more sample, here we'll just show a completely different sample so you can see how wildly different database definitions can be.

All right so we switched to the catering design theme and we'll do a catering food services sample proposal. Note that only the designs that you have purchased and installed are actually available. In our case we have all 500 or so available for purposes of our demos.

But whatever design theme you've purchased will be your design theme. Now we'll go import the sample for our food services catering proposal. Now we've imported the sample, it'll have all the pages for that sample imported into our project list of chapters.

Pop into the the Line Item Quote and you can see Food Services Catering Sample Proposal database definition is now loaded into the list of available definitions we can pick for all of our projects. It has 15 line items. We can go into the Manage Data.

Now you can see this database definition has a completely different set of categories than say the network cabling that just had Hardware and Software. This has categories for Appetizers, Salads, Main Courses, Desserts, Open Bar and Event Services. When you're using the Expert Edition you can define as many categories as you need, give them your own titles, whatever line item field values you need.

So you can completely customize these databases in the Expert Edition. We'll just pop open one of these and you can see these are the line items for this category and if we did the Test and Preview we can actually preview the pages. We're just going to go straight to building the entire proposal again.

Okay, now it's generated this sample, take a look at it and you can see the Invoice. Now this one's a little longer with the line items and you can see this one also uses a single table row for all line items in each category to help shorten up the size the table will take. Our full sample and you can see the Cost Summary all laid out with all our line items, taxes, sub totals, grand total and so on.

That is how you use any of the sample proposals to load their database definitions so you can use them with or without the actual sample content for creating your own proposals. Using the Expert Edition you can also customize any of these sample database definitions to suit your own purposes a little better. Novice Edition users can use all of these samples and sample databases as is.

Take a look at the other videos that will describe the other built–in databases. This is how you use the sample proposal databases in the line item quoting system.

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