HireMate Version 7.4 - User Manual


1. Setting up HireMate 2. Making a reservation or booking
3. Issuing or renting a vehicle 4. Receiving a vehicle from rental
5. Cancelling a reservation or current rental 6. Cancelling the return of a rental
7. Exchanging a vehicle on rental 8. Modifying a reservation or current rental
9. The booking chart 10. Accepting an interim payment
11. Providing a quotation 12. Finding a current customer
13. Finding a past customer 14. Company accounts
15. Vehicle maintenance 16. Damage report
17. Inspection, insurance and tax dates 18. Freeing a vehicle
19. Discarding old data 20. Backing up the HireMate data files
21. Reports 22. Modifying and replacing vehicles
23. Modifying types of vehicles (categories) 24. Contract, invoice and email text
25. Print options 26. Adding a method of payment
27. Password protection 28. Locations of vehicles
29. Company details 30. High seasons
31. Additional driver 32. Calculation of rental days
33. Date format 34. Deposits and prepayments
35. Extra charges 36. Cost of local driving permit
37. Terminology for inspection and insurance                38. Taxes
39. Units (miles/kilometres and gallons/litres 40. Weekend period
41. Networking HireMate 42. Calculating fuel charges
43. Attaching images and dcouments to rentals 44. Printing logo
45. The WebLink module 46. Adding employees
47. Exporting customer email addresses 48. SMS text messaging
49. Reminders



1. Setting up HireMate

The first time you run HireMate the program will lead you through the setup process. You only need to go through this process once. If you do not have all the information to hand you can quit the setup process and the next time you run the program it will continue where you left off. If you make a mistake during the setup process you can correct it later by selecting the appropriate item from the Setup menu.

The order of setup is as follows:

1.1 Company details
Enter the information that you would like to appear on contracts receipts and invoices. The only required field is the company name.

1.2 Currency symbol
Enter your currency symbol, eg $ or Ł. If you are using a currency which is not sub-divided into 100 units, such as the Korean Won or the Japanese Yen, check the box.

1.3 Locations
Select the number of locations from which your company operates. Enter the name of each location if there is more than one.

1.4 Date format
Select dd/mm/yy or mm/dd/yy.

1.5 High seasons
Your company may have certain periods during the year when the rates are increased, known as high seasons. For each high season enter the start day and month and the end day and month.

1.6 Units
Choose miles or kilometers and gallons or litres.

1.7 Vehicle categories
The vehicle category is a type of vehicle such as jeep, compact car, sports car, etc. All vehicles within a particular category are assumed to have the same rental rates.

For each category enter the type of vehicle and the rates. You should enter the daily rate for a one day rental, a two day rental, a three day rental, etc. These rates may be the same. You should also enter a weekly rate, a monthly rate, and the rate for an additional day over and above the weekly or monthly rate. Enter the daily, weekly, and monthly cost of insurance.

If you charge mileage rates click on the button for Rate for extra miles. Enter the free miles per day for the first day and subsequent days, which may be the same. Enter the additional charge per mile.

If you have special weekend rates check the box and enter the weekend rate.

If you have an hourly rate, check the box and enter the hourly rate. You may choose whether the hourly rates can only be used for late returns or whether they can also be used for part day rentals.

Click on OK when you have finished entering the rates for this category. If you have more than one category you should repeat this process for each category.

If you have entered weekend rates you will be asked to indicate the period when the weekend rates apply.

1.8 Vehicles
Next you will be prompted to add your vehicles to the database. The only required field is a registration number but you should also remember to select the vehicle category and its location. After clicking on OK you will be prompted to add the next vehicle to the database.

1.9 Driving permit
You will be prompted to enter the cost of a local driving permit if appropriate.

1.10 Extra charges
You may set up as many as four extra charges which can have a daily rate or a flat rate, for example child seat. If you do not have four extra charges, leave the fields blank.

If your extra charges are not fixed, check the box to allow the rates to be changed for each rental contract.

1.11 Taxes
Select the number of taxes that apply to car rentals. For each tax enter the name of the tax and either the percentage rate or the daily rate.

1.12 Cost of additional driver
Enter the daily weekly and monthly cost of an additional driver. If there is no additional cost enter zero.

1.13 Deposits, etc
Specify the default conditions required to make a rental reservation.

1.14 Email configuration
You must configure your email if you wish to send emails using HireMate. You may leave this until later if you wish. The port defaults to 25, you should not need to change this.

1.15 Setup password
The Setup menu commands are password protected. Enter the password that will be used to access the setup commands and re-enter it for confirmation.

1.16 Networking
Finally you will be asked if you intend to run HireMate on more than one computer on a network. If you click on No and at a later date decide to network the program, select Networking from the Setup menu.

You are now ready to start using HireMate.

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2. Making a reservation or booking

To make a reservation click on the calendar icon on the toolbar, press the F3 key or select New reservation from the Rentals menu.

You can also start a reservation by displaying the monthly booking chart and clicking on an empty slot (shown in green).

The required fields in the reservations screen are the family name of the renter and the start date and time and the end date and time. You should also select the required type of vehicle unless you have started the reservation as above. The times for the start and end of the rental period default to 9 am. You can change the default times by selecting Default times from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

If the rental is being paid for by a company account you should select the account from the drop list. If it is a new account, enter the name of the account and the account holder's discount if appropriate and click on the Add button.

If the rental includes extras such as a child seat, click on the Extras button and check the appropriate box(es).

If the rental is long term and you intend to renew the return date, you can flag it as such by entering “long term” (case insensitive) at the start of the comments field. You can enter additional comments after this. After the vehicle is issued it will be shown in orange on the booking chart instead of red.

Click on OK to save the reservation. The program will calculate the cost of the rental but you may override this value if you wish. You may also choose whether to apply tax(es) to the rental charge. If you wish to offer a discount on the rental, enter the percentage discount and click on the Offer discount button. If the rental has been referred by an agent select the agent from the drop list. If it is a new agent, enter the name of the referrer and the percentage commission, then click on the Add button. (To remove a referrer, select remove referrer from the Setup menu.)

If the rental is paid for by an account holder with a discount, the discount will be calculated automatically. If you change the percentage rate of discount the new discount will be used for the account holder's future rentals.

Click on Continue to move to the next step.

If you have specified a credit card prepayment, confirm the amount. If you have specified that the rental must be prepaid wholly or in part, confirm the amount, select the method of payment and enter any details of the payment.

After clicking on OK the booking chart will appear, unless you have started the reservation by clicking on the booking chart. Click on the appropriate row on the chart to select the vehicle for the rental. Available vehicles will be shown in green and those that are not available in red. If a variable is available, but is due for return on the day that the rental starts, it will be shown in brown.

You will be prompted to print the rental contract and/or send a confirmation email.

The rental reservation will be shown in green on the booking chart.

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3. Issuing or renting a vehicle

To issue a vehicle, click on the vehicle rear end icon on the toolbar, press the F4 key of select Issue vehicle from the Rentals menu. To identify the booking enter the transaction number or the first few characters of the hirer’s last name and select the booking from the list.

You can edit the details of the booking if necessary. Click on the issue button to rent the vehicle. You will be prompted to confirm the cost of the rental. If the renter is paying at the start of the rental, confirm the amount. If a security deposit is to be paid, check the box and enter the amount. In order for the mileage charge to be calculated you should confirm the outgoing mileage of the vehicle. You can also enter the amount of fuel in the tank (if you want to show this on the contract manually, leave this on Empty). The booking will change from green to red, unless you have entered “long term” at the start of the comments field, in which case it will be shown in orange. You will be asked if you wish to print the contract.

If you wish to rent a vehicle to a walk-in customer who has not made a reservation, click on the Issue without a booking button and enter the details of the rental as you would for a new reservation. After confirming the cost of the rental and the amount paid, select the vehicle from the booking chart.

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4. Receiving a vehicle from rental

To receive a vehicle, click on the vehicle front end icon on the toolbar, press the F4 key of select Receive vehicle from the Rentals menu.

To identify the rental enter the transaction number or the first few characters of the hirer’s last name and select the rental from the list.

You may edit the details of the rental. If you change their return date or time the cost of the rental will be recalculated.

After clicking on Receive the details of the rental charge will appear. You may edit the rental charge, enter a charge for a driver (if you have provided a driver), enter a damage or repair charge, or enter a fuel charge. To calculate the mileage charge, enter the incoming mileage.

The amount of fuel in the tank at the start of the rental will be shown. You can enter the amount of fuel when the vehicle is received. If you want to show this in the contract manually, leave it on Empty.

If a payment is due you should come from the amount paid, select the method of payment, and enter any details.

The rental will be shown in grey on the booking chart.

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5. Cancelling a reservation or current rental

To cancel a reservation or current rental, click on the garbage can on the toolbar, press the F9 key or select Cancel rservation or current rental from the rentals menu. Enter the transaction number or the first few characters of the hirer’s last name to identify the rental and select the rental from the list.

After the booking has been cancelled the customer details will remain on file so that they can be used for a new booking by searching for a past customer (section 13). If you wish to delete permanently the details of the customer, select Remove customer from the Setup menu.

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6. Cancelling the return of a rental

To cancel the return of a vehicle, select Cancel return of vehicle from the Rentals menu. Enter the transaction number or the first few characters of the hirer’s last name to identify the rental and select the rental from the list. Click on the Cancel return button to cancel the return.

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7. Exchanging a vehicle on rental

To exchange a vehicle, for example if the vehicle has developed mechanical problems, click on the X on the toolbar of select Exchange vehicle from the rentals menu. Enter the transaction number or the first few characters of the hirer’s last name to identify the rental and select the rental from the list. The current rental details will be shown, with the return date the same as the current date and return time the same as the issue time. If you make the return time later than the issue time, an extra day’s rental may be charged. Click on the Receive button to return the vehicle. You will be prompted to enter any additional charges for the part rental. Finally select the registration number of the replacement vehicle.

The rental of the replacement vehicle will start at the return date and time of the original vehicle and will end at the end date and time of the original contract.

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8. Modifying a reservation or current rental

To modify a booking or a current rental, click on the two black arrows icon on the toolbar, press the F7 key or select Modify reservation or current rental from the Rentals menu. Enter the transaction number or the first few characters of the hirer’s last name to identify the rental and select the rental from the list.

To change the payment details for the rental, click on the Details button next to the Amount paid field. Select a payment and click on Edit. Click on Save to save any changes.

After editing the details of the booking, click on the Modify button to save the changes.

If the rental has been issued, you may edit the fuel and mileage at the start of the rental by clicking on the Fuel/Miles (or Fuel/Kms) button.

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9. The booking chart

To display the monthly booking chart click on the red and green chart icon on the toolbar, press the F2 key or select View month from the rentals menu. Enter the month and year (mm/yy) that you wish to view.

The booking chart shows the vehicles and the rentals that they have for the specified month. To move to the previous month, click on the left facing red arrow or select View previous month from the Rentals menu. To move to the next month, click on the right arrow or select View next month from the Rentals menu.

Reservations are shown in green, current rentals in red (except for long term rentals, which are orange) and old rentals in grey. Maintenance periods are shown in white.

You may choose whether to identify rentals by the hirer’s initials, the hirer’s family name, or the transaction number, by selecting Initials/name/transaction number from the Booking chart submenu of the Setup menu.

You may choose to sort vehicles by type, by location or alphanumerically by registration number by selecting Sort vehicles from the Booking chart submenu of the Setup menu.

To display the details of a rental, click on the rental. To print the contract, click on the Print contract button. In the case of past rentals, you can click on the New booking button to make a new reservation for the hirer.

To display the details of payments made for the rental, click on the Details button alongside Amount paid. If the rental has been returned you can also display the rental charge details by clicking on the Details button alongside the Total cost. You can also generate an email itemizing the charges.

To start a new reservation, click on an empty period on the chart (shown in green).

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10. Accepting an interim payment

To accept payment for a current rental while the rental is ongoing, select Accept payment (or offer refund) from the Rentals menu.

Enter the transaction number or the first few characters of the hirer’s last name to identify the rental and select the rental from the list.

Enter the amount to be paid, the payment method, and any payment details.

You can also use this function to give a refund if a completed rental has been overpaid by entering a negative payment.

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11. Providing a quotation

Click on the quotation icon on the toolbar, press the F10 key or select Provide quotation from the Rentals menu.

Enter the start date and time and the end date and time for the rental, and select the type of vehicle. Click on the Calculate button to determine the rental cost.

You may email the quotation to the customer by clicking on the Email button. To set up the text that will be shown at the bottom of the email, select Quotation text from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

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12. Finding a current customer

To find a current customer, click on the red binoculars icon on the toolbar, press the F11 key, or select Search for current customer from the Customers menu. Enter the first few characters of the customer’s family name, and a list of all current rentals matching that criterion will be displayed. Highlight a rental from the list and click on the Show details button to display the details of the rental.

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13. Finding a past customer

To find a past customer, click on the black binoculars icon on the toolbar, press the F8 key, or select Search for past customer from the Customers menu. Enter the first few characters of the customer’s family name, and a list of all current rentals matching that criterion will be displayed. Highlight a rental from the list, and click on the Show details/Make new booking button to display the details of the rental and/or to make a new booking for the customer, or click on the List all customers rentals button to display a list of all past rentals by the customer.

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14. Company accounts

14.1 Adding an account holder
Select Add account holder from the Account holders submenu of the Setup menu. The only required field is the name of the account. You can also add an account holder on the fly when you are making a reservation.

14.2 Modifying account details
Select Modify account details from the Account holders submenu and select the account from the droplist.

14.3 Removing an account holder
To remove an account holder, select Remove account holder from the Account holders submenu. Select the account from the list and click on the Remove button. You will be asked to confirm that you wish to remove the account. If there is an account balance remaining, you will be informed.

14.4 Printing an invoice for an account holder
To print an invoice for an account holder, select Print invoice from the Accounts menu. Select the account from the list and click on OK.

Select the rental from the list and click on the Print button.

14.5 Accepting payment from an account holder
Select Accept payment from the Accounts menu. Select the account from the list and click on OK.

Select the rental from the list (Details). If the amount is not being paid in full, enter the amount paid. Select the payment method. If the payment was not made on the current date, enter the appropriate date.

14.6 Cancelling an account payment
To cancel a payment select Cancel payment from the Accounts menu. Select the account then select the payment from the list.

14.7 Printing an account statement
To print a statement select Print statement from the Accounts menu. Select the account and enter the month for the statement.

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15. Vehicle maintenance

15.1 Booking a maintenance period
To book maintenance for a vehicle, select Book maintenance from Maintenance submenu of the Vehicles menu.

Select the registration number of the vehicle, the date that the maintenance is due to begin, and the date that it is due to end.

The maintenance period will be shown in white on the booking chart.

15.2 Cancelling a maintenance period
Select Cancel maintenance from the Maintenance submenu of the Vehicles menu.

Enter the date that the maintenance is scheduled to begin, and select the vehicle registration number. Click on OK to cancel the maintenance.

15.3 Entering a maintenance report
To enter the details of maintenance carried out on a vehicle, click on the wrench icon on the toolbar or select Maintenance report from the Maintenance submenu of the Vehicles menu.

Select the registration number of the vehicle, confirm the mileage, enter the cost of the maintenance, change the date if the maintenance was not completed on the current date and specify the number of days the vehicle was off the road. Select the type of maintenance. To add a type of maintenance enter the new type and click on the Add button.

15.4 Cancelling a maintenance report
Select Cancel maintenance report from the Maintenance submenu of the Vehicles menu.

Enter the date of the maintenance, and select the vehicle registration number. Click on OK to cancel the maintenance report.

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16. Damage report

To enter the details of damaged sustained by a vehicle, click on the hammer icon on the toolbar or select Damage report from the Vehicles menu.

Select the registration number of the vehicle. Check the appropriate boxes to define the damage.

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17. Inspection, insurance and tax dates

To change the due dates for inspection, insurance or tax for a vehicle, select the appropriate item from the Vehicles menu.

Select the registration number of the vehicle and click on OK. Enter the new date.

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18. Freeing a vehicle

Perhaps you have made a mistake with a rental, and a vehicle which is actually available is shown as unavailable on the booking chart. You can delete the rental by selecting Free vehicle from the Vehicles menu and selecting the registration number of the vehicle.

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19. Discarding old data

After you have used HireMate for several years, you might find that the program is slower because of the size of the data files. You can remove data prior to a specified year by selecting Discard old data from the Setup menu.

Enter the year prior to which you wish to remove the data. You will not be allowed to remove the current year’s data.

This function is protected by the Setup password.

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20. Backing up the HireMate data files

HireMate saves data continuously each time you perform an action (as opposed to some programs which only save data when the program is closed).

However you may wish to back up the data files periodically in case of hard disk or other failure.

To back up the data, click on the floppy disk icon on the toolbar or select File backup from the Setup menu. Select the folder to which you wish to copy the files and click on the Save button. You will not be allowed to back up the data to the HireMate folder.

We recommend backing up to USB flash memory.

DO NOT back up your data files if you think there may be a problem with them, you might overwrite the good files.

To restore your backup files, copy all the files from the backup folder and paste them into the HireMate folder. Alternatively you can run the program Restore.exe which you will find in your HireMate folder.

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21. Reports

You may set up HireMate to export reports in comma separated variables (csv) format. To do so, select Export reports from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu. Each time a report is displayed it will be saved in your My Documents folder with the name report.csv. You may open this file using Microsoft Excel.

21.1 Accounts due

Individual: Reports on accounts due for rentals by an individual account. Select the account from the list. The report shows the name of the renter, the amount owed, and the date since which it has been owed, for each rental.

Summary: Shows the amount owed by all account holders.

21.2 Agents

Monthly summary: shows the commissions earned and the number of referred rentals for each agent or referrer for a specified month. You can choose whether to include commissions on insurance in the report.

Individual: shows the details of each rental referred by a specified agent since a specified date. Select the agent from the list and enter the start date for the report. You can choose whether to include commissions on insurance in the report.

21.3 Birthdays

Reports on customers with birthdays during a specified period. Enter the start date and the end date for the period (which defaults to the current date).

12.4 Current status

Displays the current status of all vehicles. If a vehicle is out on rental, the local phone number is shown. If the vehicle is not on rental but has bookings, the next booking will be displayed and the home phone number shown.

Rentals which are due for return and bookings which are due for issue are shown in red.

21.5 Customer details

Displays the contact details (home phone number and address) of all customers since a specified date. Enter the start date for the report.

21.5 Daily reports

Management report (csv): creates a comma separated variables file which can be opened in Excel, showing the details of vehicles which are due in or due out on a specified day. The filename is daily.csv and it will be saved in your My Documents folder.

Vehicles due out: lists bookings which are due for issue on a specified date.

Vehicles due in: lists rentals which are due for return on a specified date. The report shows only vehicles which have already been issued.

21.6 Overdue rentals

Shows all rentals which are overdue for return.

21.7 Receipts details

Displays the details of payments received over a specified period.

21.8 Receipts summary

Provides a summary of receipts over a specified period. Enter the start date and the end date for the period of the report.

21.9 Rentals by account

Shows a history of rentals by an account holder since a specified date. Select the account from the list and enter the start date for the report.

21.10 Rental history

Displays a summary of all rentals which started during a specified period. Enter the start date and the end date for the period of the report. The first column in the report shows the sources of the revenue, including any taxes. The second column shows the receipts according to the method of payment. Revenue which has been posted to accounts is shown at the bottom of this column, as it is revenue that has not actually been received.

21.11 Revenue & tax

Reports on revenue and taxes by rental for a specified period. Enter the start date and the end date for the period of the report.

21.12 Vehicles

Listing: Lists vehicles, showing current mileage insurance dates, tax dates, etc. You can restrict this report to vehicles of a specified type (category) or location.

Monthly revenue: Shows the revenue accrued by each vehicle for a specified month. This report is not displayed on the screen but is saved as a csv (comma separated variables) file in your My Documents folder, which can be opened in, for example, Microsoft Excel. The name of the file is revenue.csv.

Maintenance history: Displays the maintenance history of a specified vehicle since a specified date. Select the registration number of the vehicle and the start date for the report.

Tax, insurance, etc due: Reports on vehicles requiring tax, insurance, inspection and maintenance during a specified period.

Utilization: Shows the percentage utilization of all vehicles for a specified period. Enter the start date and end date for the period, and select the category.

The report also shows the maintenance cost and days lost due to maintenance for the period.

The revenue/day is the revenue for the vehicle divided by the number of days in the period of the report (or the number of days since the vehicle was acquired if that is less).

The revenue/rental day is the revenue for the vehicle divided by the number of days it was rented.

For the Costs, the Days lost and the Revenue, the bottom line is the totals. For the other fields, the bottom line is the average.

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22. Adding, deleting, modifying and replacing vehicles

22.1 Adding vehicles
To add a vehicle to the database, select Add vehicle from the Vehicle submenu of the Setup menu.

The only required field is the registration number. You should also select the vehicle category and location.

22.1 Deleting vehicles
Select Delete vehicle from the Vehicles submenu of the Setup menu. Select the registration number of the vehicle. You will be asked to confirm that you wish to delete the vehicle.

You will not be allowed to delete a vehicle that has bookings or is out on rental.

22.1 Modifying/replacing a vehicle
Select Modify/replace vehicle from the Vehicles submenu of the Setup menu. Select the registration number of the vehicle to be modified or replaced. Here you can edit the details of the vehicle, including the registration number to replace the vehicle.

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23. Adding, deleting and modifying categories (types) of vehicles

23.1 Adding a category
Select Add category from the Categories submenu of the Setup menu. Enter the category of vehicle (eg Sports utility) and the rates.

23.2 Deleting a category
Select Delete category from the Categories submenu of the Setup menu. Select the category to be deleted and confirm that you wish to delete it.

You will not be allowed to delete a category if vehicles exist in that category.

23.3 Modifying a category
Select Modify category from the Categories submenu of the Setup menu. You may edit the name of the category and the rates.

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24. Contract, invoice and email text

24.1 Contract text
You may edit the text that appears on rental contracts by selecting Contract text from the Setup menu.

If there is insufficient space for the required text, you can replace the damage report on the contract by additional contract text. To do so, select Additional contract text from the Setup menu, and enter the text. Remember to check the box to replace the damage report.

You may also choose to replace the damage report with the contract notes.

If your contract text is particularly long, we suggest that you produce pre-printed sheets with the contract on one side. Print the HireMate contract on the reverse and change the text to something along the lines of “We have read and accept the terms and conditions overleaf”.

24.2 Invoice text
You may set up or edit the text which appears at the bottom of invoices by selecting Invoice text from the Setup menu.

24.3 Email text
You may set up or edit the text to appear at the bottom of confirmation emails by selecting Email confirmation text from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

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25. Print options

To edit the options for printing contracts, invoices and receipts, select Print options from the Setup menu.

Here you can specify the number of copies of contracts to be printed, the number of copies of receipts to be printed, whether contracts should always be printed and whether receipts should always be printed.

You may also opt to hide all but the last 4 digits of the credit card number on rental contracts.

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26. Adding a method of payment

HireMate has the following payment methods installed by default: cash, cheque, credit card and traveler’s cheque. To install an additional payment method, select Add payment method from the Setup menu. Existing payment methods cannot be removed.

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27. Password protection

The HireMate Setup commands are automatically protected by the Setup password. A user must log on with the Setup password to access them. You can also lock or unlock the Setup commands by clicking on the key icon on the toolbar and entering the password.

To password protect various reports, select Password protection from the Password submenu of the Setup menu.

To change the Setup password, select Change password from the Password submenu of the Setup menu.

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28. Locations of vehicles

To add a rental location select Add a location from the Locations submenu of the Setup menu.

To remove a location select Remove a location from the Locations submenu of the Setup menu. Select the location and confirm that you wish to remove it.

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29. Company details

To edit the company details, which will be shown on contracts, receipts and invoices, select Company details from the Setup menu. The field for Additional details could be used, for example, for your company tax number.

After you have registered HireMate you will not be allowed to change the name of the company.

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30. High seasons

To change the high seasons when rental rates are higher, select Seasons from the Setup menu. Select the number of high seasons and enter the dates for each.

If you did not previously have a high season and you have introduced one, you will need to edit the vehicle categories to enter the new rates (see section 23).

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31. Additional driver

To edit the charge for an additional driver, select Additional driver from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu. Enter the daily, weekly and monthly rate.

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32. Calculations of rental days

By default, HireMate calculates the number of rental days based on 24 hour periods. For example, if a vehicle is issued at 2 pm on Wednesday and returned at 10 am on Friday, that would count as 2 days.

You have the option to base the rental days on calendar days, in which case the above rental would be 3 days.

Select Calculation of days from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

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33. Date Format

To change the date format (dd/mm/yy or mm/dd/yy) select Date format from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

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34. Deposits and prepayments

To change the payment requirements for making a reservation, select Deposit required from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

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35. Extra charges

To edit the optional extra daily charges (eg for a child seat), select Extras from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

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36. Cost of local driving permit

To edit the cost of a local driving permit, select Local licence fee from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

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37. Terminology for inspection and insurance

To change the name of “inspection”, select Name of annual inspection from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu. For example, in the UK the annual inspection is known as “MOT test”.

To change the name of “insurance” select Name of rental insurance from the Miscellaneous submenu. For example, in some countries insurance is known as “Collision damage waiver” (CDW). You may also specify whether rental tax is applied to the cost of insurance, and whether rental discounts are applied to insurance, by checking the appropriate boxes.

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38. Taxes

To edit the taxes paid on rentals, select rate of tax from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu. Select the number of taxes, and enter the name of the tax and the rate (percentage or daily rate) for each.

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39. Units (miles/kilometers and gallons/litres)

To change the units which are used in your country, select Units from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

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40. Weekend period

If you have weekend rental rates, you can change the period when these apply by selecting Weekend period from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

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41. Networking HireMate

HireMate is network ready. If you wish to run HireMate on a network, follow the following steps:

  1. Run the HireMate installation program on your server. Make the HireMate folder a shared folder and be sure to check the box to allow other users to change files.
  2. Run the HireMate installation program on each of your workstations (this will register some files with the Windows registry).
  3. Modify the HireMate shortcut on each of your workstation desktops, so that the target is the HireMate.exe file on your server and the “Start in” folder is the shared HireMate folder on your server. An alternative to this is to delete the desktop shortcut. Then open the shared folder on the server from the workstation, right drag (holding the right mouse button down) the HireMate.exe file onto the desktop on the workstation and select Create Shortcut Here.
  4. Make sure that you have specified that the program will be run on a network by selecting Networking from the Setup menu.
Please note that if you change the HireMate setup on any of your computers you must restart HireMate on the other computers for the changes to take effect.

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42. Calculating fuel charges

In order for HireMate to calculate fuel charges when a vehicle is returned, you should:

  1. Set up the cost of fuel per gallon (or per litre) by clicking on Cost of fuel from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.
  2. Ensure that you have entered the tank capacity for each vehicle (Setup menu, vehicles, Add vehicle or Setup menu, Vehicles, Modify vehicle).
  3. Select the fuel level (in eighths of a tank) when the vehicle is issued and returned.

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43. Attaching images and documents to rentals

To attach an image to a rental, click on one of the two Image buttons on the rental screen.

Click on the Load image button and select the image that you wish to attach. Click on the Attach image button to attach it to the rental.

Images may be of BMP, GIF, JPG, JPE, PNG, PCX, PSD, or TIF format.

To attach documents to the rental click on the Document button.

Please note that HireMate does not save the image or document to a different folder, it simply links the relevant file to the rental, so you should not move or delete the image or document file after attaching it.

Images could be, for example, photographs of the drivers, or scans of the driving licences.

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44. Printing logo

HireMate allows you to print your company logo on contracts. The logo must be a 24 bit Windows BMP file. You should name the file logo.bmp and save it in your HireMate folder. You may have to resize the file to obtain a good fit but in general it should be no more than 200 pixels in height.

To set up this option, select Print logo from the Miscellaneous submenu of the Setup menu.

If you have difficulty creating the file, please contact GrenSoft.

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45. The WebLink module

The WebLink module allows customers to check the availability of vehicles online and make a reservation or request a quotation.

Your Web site should show the types of vehicle which you offer for rental, together with the rental rates. You should link the existing pages to the reservations page which is uploaded by HireMate using the WebLink. The name of the file which starts the reservations process is step_1.php.

To set up the WebLink, select WebLink from the Setup menu. The required fields are:

If you check the box to automatically upload files, HireMate will connect to your Web site every time there is a significant change to your data. This is not recommended if you are running the program on a network or you do not have a fast connection. Instead you can connect manually by selecting Upload WebLink files from the File menu, clicking on the two computers icon on the toolbar or pressing Ctrl + U.

You may also change the appearance of the php generated Web pages by clicking on the Web page options button. Here you can change the font, the text colour, the page background colour and the table background colour. If these options are not flexible enough and you are familiar with HTML and PHP you can edit the php files which are uploaded by HireMate. These are step_1.php, step_2.php, step_3.php, step_4.php, step_5.php and step_6.php.

You may attach images to the categories of vehicles which are selected in the WebLink. Simply upload an image to the WebLink folder corresponding to the type of vehicle it represents. For example if the category is ‘ Four wheel drive’ the image should be ‘four wheel drive.jpg’ or ‘four wheel drive.gif’ (all lower case).

To enable the ftp transfer check the Enable connection box.

After reservations have been made online you will be notified when they are downloaded by the WebLink. Then you can accept the reservations by selecting Reservation from WebLink from the Rentals menu. The details from the online reservation will be pasted into the reservations dialog. This menu item will be disabled if the are no downloaded reservations.

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46. Adding employees

HireMate allows you to set up as many as 50 employees who are authorized to use the program. The employees can have different levels of access.

To add an employee select Add employee from the Employees submenu of the Setup menu. Enter the name of the employee. Choose a password for the employee and check the boxes for the functions which are denied access to the employee.

To edit an employee's details select Modify employee from the Employees submenu of the Setup menu.

To remove an employee select Remove employee from the Employees submenu of the Setup menu and confirm that you wish to remove the employee.

Employees may log off so that a new one may log on by selecting Log off from the File menu, by clicking on the key icon on the toolbar or by pressings the F12 key. Until you add an employee this function can only be used for locking or unlocking the Setup commands.

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47. Exporting customer email addresses

You can export customer email addresses (eg for marketing) by selecting Export email addresses from the Customers menu. You can select the range of customers. The email addresses will be copied to the Windows clipboard so that you can paste them into the CC field or the BCC field of your email program.

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48. SMS text messaging

HireMate allows you to send SMS text messages to clients. To use this feature you must set up an account with CDyne (www.cdyne.com) and they will provide you with a licence key.

Select SMS text messaging from the Setup menu and enter the licence key. Enter your country code if required. For example if you were in the UK you would enter the country code 44 and check the box to remove the leading zero from phone numbers.

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49. Reminders

You can set up a reminder by selecting Add reminder from the Reminders menu or by clicking on the light bulb icon on the toolbar. Select the date and time when you wish to be reminded and enter the action required.

When the date and time has been reached the reminder will be displayed. You may choose to repeat the reminder after a specified number of hours, days or weeks. Otherwise the reminder will be removed from the system.

You may edit or delete a reminder by selecting Edit reminder from the Reminders menu.

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Email: info@grensoft.com