Dear Clients,

We’re all about making your accounting and financial management systems more efficient and less labor intensive—saving time and money while making them more scalable—but have always approached this from “inside the application” by modifying/writing code of the accounting system. However, we’ve recently become enamored with AdoBOTs which, by running “outside the application,” make it possible to automate tasks that otherwise would be cost-prohibitive to automate.

AdoBOTs is a separate software program that automates User Interface manual processes—keyboard, mouse and screen controls—to perform tasks just like (really fast) humans. These functions can thus include integrations to other systems and also accounting functions.

For integrations, that means AdoBOTs can read data from one system, transform that data, apply custom logic, and finally write the data to any desired system—not limited by availability of APIs (or lack thereof), database design and encrypted fields, or even vendor-allowed access to the underlying data. Because AdoBOTs can read and write data from systems directly using the User Interface, the data integrity of the destination system is preserved and thus in many cases integration AdoBOTs are a superior alternative to off-the-shelf integrations.

Here’s a concrete example: If you have web or EDI orders that are too numerous to reliably hand-key, but not numerous enough to warrant the investment in an integration, then set up an AdoBOT to monitor an incoming email box and then push the orders directly into your system.

The list of accounting functionality we can automate is tremendous! Check out these ideas:

  • Reconciliation – Bank account and credit card statements or daily cash receipts to lockbox/wires/ACH, flagging incorrect/missing/discrepancies.
  • Accounts Receivable – Apply cash by reading check images and online payment info, determining the customer account on the fly.
  • Accounts Payable – Scan and upload/enter AP Invoices, extracting detail (dates, amounts, line items, terms, etc.) using OCR then apply business rules to assign GL codes.
  • Month End Closing – Validate the Balance Sheet and automatically create adjusting journal entries, amortization, deferred revenue, payroll accruals, etc.
  • Financial Reporting – More than just printing reports as part of the process, an AdoBOT can insert data into the spreadsheets from other systems and reports—so no more manual spreadsheet work, even with data from subsidiary modules like Accounts Receivable, Inventory Control and Sales Orders.

AdoBOTs work with any system (reminder: no API required) and are typically implemented quickly in two to four weeks. Oh yeah, and since AdoBOTs live entirely outside your accounting system then upgrades to your applications are seamless—only slight tweaks if the user interface has changed—so the “carrying cost” is less than modifications to the core application as well.

In short, it’s a new and interesting way to, yet again, improve your business by removing rote processes from employees and automating them—and scaling your operation with less manual accounting labor!

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In other news…

We’ve had numerous clients contact us to implement “surcharges” on customer invoices—calculated as a percentage of the price of the invoice and automatically added as a line item to the customer invoice when the sales order ships. While I’m sure your situation will be unique—in percentage and in customers/items to include as chargeable—we’ve got the process pretty well down.

Regards,

Kevin E. Stroud
kestrou@nexlan.com
NexLAN, LLC
https://nexlan.com 

AccountMate Payroll Tax Update for the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act of 2021

The ARP Act of 2021 provides eligible employers with tax credits to cover certain costs of providing employees with paid sick and family leave for specified reasons related to COVID-19.

Eligible employers may claim tax credits for qualified leave wages (plus allocable qualified health plan expenses, certain collectively bargained contributions, and the employer’s share of social security and Medicare taxes imposed on the qualified leave wages) paid with respect to leave taken by employees beginning on April 1, 2021, through September 30, 2021. Of course, consult your tax accountant on the applicability and implementation of ARP for your specific business.

The American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act of 2021 Enhancement for AccountMate allows companies that have the PR Tax Subscription Program to record and track COVID-19-related earnings and tax credit claims.

Note: You don’t need to add the ARP enhancement if you don’t need to track COVID-19-related paid leave and earnings paid from April 1, 2021 through September 20, 2021. You can update the PR Tax Subscription anytime as usual without having the ARP enhancement package installed in your AccountMate system.

Installation of the ARP Enhancement requires a few steps:

  • Installation of the COVID Tax Relief (FFCRA and Cares Act – 2020) enhancement. If you’re running AccountMate 12 for SQL/Express and higher, it’s already included/installed.
  • Installation of the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act of 2021 Enhancement package that’s specific to your AccountMate version.
  • Updating the PR Tax Subscription Program if it’s not already at Version #2020.10 or later.
  • An updated Recalculate Employer FICA Utility is available with the enhancement.

Installation is a billable event but it won’t take us long at all to do it, so hit us up to schedule your update if you’ll need to track any earnings under the ARP act.

Oct. 7 to Nov. 11 Core Product Training for AccountMate SQL/Express

Coming right up is the October 7 – November 11, 2021 Core training for AccountMate users. These outstanding and comprehensive online classes are conducted by the good folks at AccountMate a few times per year. This time the sessions are spaced out over 6 weeks, for 2-4 hours per day:

  • Oct. 7—System Manager 1 / System Administrator
  • Oct. 13—System Manager 2 / User Interface
  • Oct. 14—General Ledger
  • Oct. 20—Inventory Control
  • Oct. 21—AP/PO Master Records
  • Oct. 27—Purchase Order
  • Oct. 28—Accounts Payable
  • Nov 3—AR/SO Master Records
  • Nov 4—Sales Order
  • Nov. 10—Accounts Receivable
  • Nov 11—Bank Reconciliation

Imagine heading into year-end with many new AccountMate skills, a better understanding of how actions in one module impact things in other modules, and new insights into how to do things better and more efficiently! This class draws both novice and experienced users. You can ask questions specific to your company’s processes, as these aren’t webinar recordings, these are “real” classes, live with hands-on exercises.

Do you want to attend one or more days but not the whole thing? You can do that! The class is $2500 per person for all of it, or $400 per day for one or more days. And companies on LifeCycle Maintenance get at least one FREE seat per year (more seats depending on your number of users) and 50% discounts for additional seats. See details on all the discount levels on the Course Overview page.

And here’s the Course Outline and the Course Schedule. Let us know if you’d like to register and don’t be shy about asking questions first.

September 20-24, 2021 Online Training for AccountMate Payroll

The annual Payroll Product Training Class is scheduled for September 20-24. It includes 18 hours of online instruction (2 to 5 hours per day), as the topic of payroll has many aspects and the Payroll Module is powerful. We recommend this high-quality class to any company running the Payroll Module. Even longtime payroll gurus learn new things and get ideas to enhance their processes.

The Payroll class is $1,500 per person and it isn’t eligible for the free Lifecycle Maintenance training seats. Or you can choose to attend any of the 5 days for $400 each if you’re interested in specific sub-topics within Payroll.

  • Sept. 20—Introduction and Payroll Module Setup
  • Sept. 21—Master Records Setup
  • Sept. 22—Payroll Process
  • Sept. 23—Other Payroll Transactions and Reports
  • Sept. 24—Tax Forms, GL Integration, Tax Year Closing, and Payroll Tax Subscription

Here’s details on the Course OverviewCourse Outline, and Course Schedule. Contact us with questions or if you’d like to register.

AccountMate Tech Note: How to Handle Federal, State, and Local Tax Withholdings for an Employee Who Received Third Party Payroll Payments

There are situations where third-party organizations including health insurance companies cover the wages of employees for the duration of their sick leave and the payments are required by law to be entered or accounted for in your system to update your employee’s Federal, State, and Local withholding records.

Article # 1046: How to Handle Federal, State, and Local Tax Withholdings for an Employee Who Received Third Party Payroll Payments guides you on how to record these transactions in the AccountMate Payroll module.

 

AccountMate Tech Note: Function Keys and Hot Keys

AccountMate is equipped with function keys and hotkeys that allow you to perform tasks more quickly than using a mouse or other input device.

An updated list of these shortcuts is found in Article # 1318: AccountMate Function Keys and Hot Keys, which lists the different AccountMate function keys and hot keys. It also explains their functionalities.

Look through the list and choose one new-to-you shortcut that looks helpful. Try it now and adopt a new habit that will save you time going forward!

AccountMate Technical Tips

    Version: AM12 for SQL and Express

    Module: DW

    Q: Why do I get the “Country [xxx] is an invalid code” error when attempting to import vendor records into AccountMate using the Data Wizard utility?

    A: The error is displayed if the country code is one of the selected fields and you did not enter the correct country code. For example, you must enter US for United States or CA for Canada.

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    Versions: AM12 for SQL and Express
    AM11 for SQL and Express
    AM10 for SQL, Express, and LAN
    AM9 for SQL, Express, and LAN

    Module: BR

    Q: I created Receipt and Disbursement transaction type codes in the Transaction Code Maintenance function in Bank Reconciliation; however, I cannot find the transaction codes when I attempted to record a deposit or a check. Why?

    A: Access the transaction code records in the Transaction Code Maintenance function and verify whether the Require Deposit/Check # checkbox is marked. This checkbox must be marked so that you can use the transaction codes when recording deposits or checks.

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    Versions: AM12 for SQL and Express
    AM11 for SQL and Express
    AM10 for SQL, Express, and LAN
    AM9 for SQL, Express, and LAN
    AM8 for LAN

    Module: AP

    Q: We have an AP invoice that was created two fiscal years ago. The invoice was partially paid. We want to close the invoice (i.e., zero-out the balance) without recording any payment. What is the best way to do it?

    A: You can close the invoice by posting an adjustment with these steps:

    1. Access the Post Handwritten Check function; then, enter the Vendor #.
    2. Select the invoice in the grid; then, enter the balance in the Apply Adj field. Verify that the Unapply Balance field shows zero (0.00).
    3. Click Save; then, select the Non-Check Transaction option in the second Post Handwritten Check window.
    4. Enter the Reference # for the transaction and click the Save Check button to commit the transaction.

    This transaction creates the following journal entries:

    1. DB: Accounts Payable (from the AP Invoice Transactions ► GL Distribution ► Accounts Payable field)
    2. CR: Payment Adjustment (from the AP Module Setup ► GL Accounts ►Liability Account ► Payment Adjustment field)

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    Versions: AM11 for SQL and Express
    AM10 for SQL, Express, and LAN
    AM9 for SQL, Express, and LAN
    AM8 for LAN

    Module: GL

    Q: I still have transactions to post to a fiscal period that has been closed. How can I transfer the data to GL for these transactions?

    A: You can temporarily transfer data to GL by running the Transfer Data to GL function (or the Batch Transfer Data to GL function in GL). To permanently transfer data to GL, you must close the current period using the Period End-Closing function (or the Batch Period-End Closing function in GL). This will permanently transfer to GL the current period data as well as data for prior periods.

    Note: The Batch Transfer Data to GL and Batch Period-End Closing functions are available only in AccountMate for SQL and Express.

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