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Making Change With Currency Rates

By Ken Valley on 2010-02-19

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Since writing my previous article about sending Job Status to Twitter, I've been keeping an eye out for other useful web Application Programming Interfaces (API) that can be used from within Virtual Ticket.
Making Change With Currency Rates

Recently I discovered a solution at  currencysource.com for calculating currency exchange rates, an issue that several of our customers have asked about. Currencysource.com offers a news feed (RSS) of current exchange rates of many currencies, updated every 20 minutes.  This is a free service, based on the limitation that the service can only be accessed every 15 minutes.  Using their service, we can retrieve these exchange rates, and use them to accurately convert values in job costs, Estimates-Quotes and Invoices from one currency to another.  

In the case of one of our Canadian clients, continuous currency conversion is required in their data collection because they buy their ink and backer board locally, but sell many finished products to customers in the United States. In their case, going through the bidding and then invoicing processes required a lot of back and forth calculations from Canadian to US Dollars.  

Using the instructions in this snippet, we were able to use currencysource.com's RSS feed to get the current exchange rate and save it along with the posting date and time to fields on a Virtual Ticket form. Using MetaScript we could then easily recalculate quotes for their US customers.  This tool was able to give our customer the ability to quickly and easily give quotes and recalculate invoices to ensure their prices were current with the exchange rate.  Pretty cool, huh?

So, the next time you have potential clients abroad, the exchange rate shouldn't frighten you.  Instead, it can enhance your ability to grow your bottom line even when dealing with multiple currencies.

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