We are an Accounting Consulting Practice who became a reseller of Sage Intacct in May of 2017. When you become a VAR (Value Added Reseller) they give you access to the cloud based accounting program at no charge so that you can use it to run your business, become familiar with it as a user, and I would imagine, PRACTICE WHAT YOU PREACH. If it’s so great, and we want others to use it, why wouldn’t we use it to manage the accounting function of our own business?
As such, I sat down on January 5th to learn how to start tracking our expenses for the year within Sage Intacct, moving this function to the cloud and making it much more organized for us. (Disclaimer: I am not a bookkeeper, nor have I ever been. I am a salesperson who has just recently learned the finer points of marketing. I am fairly good at understanding new software, but I do not understand bookkeeping, and up until now I was tracking our expenses in a simple Excel spreadsheet my CPA husband set up for me.)
So, we sat down on January 5th and he started to teach me how to use Sage Intacct. First, everything is easier when your husband and the owner of the business is a Sage Intacct Implementation Specialist and someone who has been working with the software for the last 3-4 years. I can’t attest to my learning curve if I had to learn from a manual or a webinar. But luckily, I know that all of our customers have and will continue to learn from in person training sessions with my husband and our other associates within our business, therefore they will get the same hands-on training I received.
Here are my obervations:
1. I’m not sure how other accounting software works, but I loved that it was easy to tell which areas I needed to fill out for each transaction. There were way more “boxes” than I needed to fill out, but there is a red bar beside the ones I needed to be concerned about. Very simple! BINGO!
2. If it is configured correctly most of the “choices” you need to make in classifying the information you are putting in, lies in a dropdown menu. You don’t need to reinvent the wheel or figure this out on the fly. You just choose the correct classification for each expense, and you know you are choosing from the preferred options.
3. Once again, I don’t know about other accounting software, but it is super easy to attach the corresponding receipts for each expense you are logging. Whether it’s an electronic receipt (which you can attach from a saved file on your computer or drag and drop) or a paper receipt, which you can scan and upload, I was happily surprised at the ease of this function.
4. If you have to step away from your desk to handle other tasks, it is very easy to save your work as a draft and come back to it later without losing any information. You can also log all your transactions, save your work, and go scan your receipts and attach them later.
5. Some of our expenses were associated with a marketing project I’ve been working on. We were able to create a field for “Project” and track all the individual expenses for the project, no matter when they occur. That way when the project is over, we’ll have a consolidated view of all of the associated expenses. Very handy for a marketing person like me who has to justify expenses vs. results.
Since January I’ve also learned how to post payments, generate a mileage reimbursement, and track receivables. I think I’m becoming almost dangerous!
In conclusion, if I can use this software and learn it quickly, anyone can. One of the most common questions we get is “is it user friendly”? We had a client who had an 86 year old bookkeeper, who was previously using QuickBooks, and had to learn Sage Intacct last year. Not only did she grasp it very quickly, she raved about how easy it was and how excited she was for the change. I know change is difficult, but in the end, if moving to a more robust, cloud based software is the right choice for your business, you can rest assured the people who will be working in it daily will be able to easily grasp it and will likely thank you for making the change.
Andrea Parker Michaud is the Vice President of Sales and Marketing for Michaud Accounting Solutions in Scarborough, Maine. Although she works with very capable and experienced CPA’s, she doesn’t claim to be an expert in accounting or bookkeeping.