Dear Clients,

Technical debt has been a buzzword amongst programming geeks for years but has been popularized from a couple recent examples that impacted millions of people—so am taking this opportunity to expound on the topic.

Technical debt accumulates as systems are put into place and then modified over time—sloppily to get the job done FAST rather than done RIGHT. The end result is systems that are inflexible, unstable, and labor intensive to operate and support. Internally, the “layers of spaghetti code” from applying quick fixes make every subsequent change difficult and error prone—jeopardizing the operation of the system as a whole.

Need examples?

Holiday air travel is always hectic with heavy volume and inclement weather, but Southwest Airlines was the sole airline to go off the rails in late December, cancelling more than 50% of their flights for three days in a row. How did one airline—one with a pretty good performance reputation—suddenly account for almost 90% of flights cancelled across all U.S. airlines? The technical debt of their scheduling software, which was written 20 years ago and patched repeatedly as their operations expanded over that time. Prophetically, last March the flight attendants’ union even cited improvement of Southwest’s scheduling system as a contract demand of higher priority than a pay increase, but no action was taken at that time and no other airline suffered such a meltdown.

Interestingly, the next example is closely related and occurred only two weeks later with the grounding of all U.S. flights for the first time since 9/11 due to the crash of the Federal Aviation Administration’s NOTAM system. More than 30 years old, NOTAMS has the technical debt of numerous manual procedures that have been added over the decades to accommodate changing requirements. Nothing says “error prone” louder than “numerous manual procedures” and we see exactly this situation when clients have a change in personnel who aren’t familiar with complex and arcane procedures in systems developed many years prior.

While your business systems might not strand travelers nationwide and be measurable in its impact to GDP, before a crash is clearly the time to identify and address these systems—and here’s my heartfelt appeal to do so.

I’ll be the first to say not every change requires a complete re-design, but at some point, in addition to the cost of the day-to-day inefficiencies, the bill comes due with interest on the accumulated technical debt.

Several of our clients are carrying significant technical debt due to extremely old systems and processes outside their core ERP system, and you can apply my simple rule of, “If you’re working hard, you’re screwing up!” as a good way to identify which systems and processes need attention first.

We look forward to getting your aging systems out of technical debt!

■ ■ ■

We’re in the process of implementing the new (as of AM/SQL V12.3) AccountMate-supplied Click2Pay customer payment portal, which provides your customers the ability to retrieve their invoices and post payments online – which is then automatically reflected into your AccountMate system!

AccountMate just announced a webinar with complete details and a demo on April 5th at noon CDT. [Update – Watch the recording: REPAY / AccountMate Click to Pay Portal Benefits]. Hope to see you there!

Regards,

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

Counter Credit Card Payment Fraud, with REPAY

As you’re surely aware from firsthand experience either in your business or as a consumer, ever-increasing credit card fraud incidents are costly to deal with—in both time and money.

You may be familiar with REPAY (we’re big fans) from our mentions of their Level 3 credit card processing add-on that reduces your transaction fees. Did you know that REPAY also secures payment processing to protect you and your customers from fraud?

You can wrap your system in integrated, state-of-the-art security layers for digital payment processing, including a PCI-compliant secure payment gateway, and automated payment verification to check credit card CVV codes, addresses, and device identifications.

Check out REPAY’s recent blog post, Forms of Payment Fraud. Then let us know what questions you have about improving your defenses against payment fraudsters.

Acumatica Updates Its Customer Bill of Rights

At the annual Acumatica Summit in January, an updated customer bill of rights was highlighted in the main stage keynote address. This bill of rights isn’t just marketing hype; it has promises and policies that have as much “sizzle” and value as any accounting or ERP feature in the product.

The original list from 2019 has been updated to stay current with the ever-changing marketplace, and does a good job of differentiating Acumatica from other ERP software. For example, mid-tier ERP software users can discover far too late that they can’t get their own data out of their ERP system should they decide to change systems—or, they can get some of their data out, but not in a usable file format. Acumatica’s Customer Bill of Rights includes the right to “Own and access your data, now and always—in full, usable data formats.”

The most popular item on the list is the right to pay based on what cloud resources you use, not based on how many users you have in the system—called consumption-based pricing.

Below is the complete list, and you can read more about each item on their blog post, “Standing Up for Customers: Acumatica’s Updated ‘Customer Bill of Rights’.

■ ■ ■

Acumatica’s Customer Bill of Rights

As an Acumatica customer, you have the right to:

  1. A software and services proposal with clear fee structures, and no surprises.
  2. Unlimited user access without having to purchase user licenses.
  3. Fully adapt and customize the solution to meet your evolving business requirements.
  4. Transparent, fair pricing and agreements without long-term commitments.
  5. Deploy the solution on a public or private cloud.
  6. An open platform with robust APIs to rapidly integrate your other systems.
  7. A complete security model that covers your application access, data, reports, and devices.
  8. Own and access your data, now and always—in full, usable data formats.
  9. Take advantage of all knowledge and resources developed across a broad community of employees, partners, and customers.
  10. Professional online training that is free and comprehensive.

We like this idea so much that on the occasion of our 25th anniversary last year, we published a NexLAN Client Bill of Rights to document long-held core values that we live by to treat our clients right.

AccountMate Tech Note: Reconciling the Accrued Received Goods Report with the Accrued Received Goods Liability GL Account Balance

AccountMate provides users the option to accrue liability for purchase receipts for which no invoices have been received so that your inventory quantities match the Inventory GL Account ID balance. Purchase receipts accrual affects the Accounts Payable balance in General Ledger (GL); thus, it is important to establish the accuracy of the balance held in the Accrued Received Goods Liability GL Account ID.

One way to achieve this is to reconcile the Accrued Received Goods report in the Purchase Order module and the Accrued Received Goods Liability GL Account ID balance. Reconciliation helps prove the accuracy of the accrued purchase receipts transactions that comprise the Accrued Received Goods Liability GL Account ID balance.

Article #1311: Reconciling the Accrued Received Goods Report with the Accrued Received Goods Liability GL Account Balance, discusses the factors that should be considered in the reconciliation and the formula used.

AccountMate Tech Note: Reconciling the PO Line Items for AP Matching Report with the Accrued Received Goods Liability GL Account Balance

As mentioned in the Tech Note just above, AccountMate provides users the option to accrue liability for purchase receipts for which no invoices have been received so that your inventory quantities match the Inventory GL Account ID balance. Purchase receipts accrual affects the Accounts Payable balance in General Ledger (GL); thus, it is important to establish the accuracy of the Accrued Received Goods Liability GL Account ID balance.

To achieve this you need to reconcile the PO Line Items for AP Matching report and the accrued purchase receipts transactions that comprise the Accrued Received Goods Liability GL Account ID balance.

Article #1316: Reconciling the PO Line Items for AP Matching Report with the Accrued Received Goods Liability GL Account Balance, discusses the factors that should be considered in the reconciliation and the formula to be used.

Acumatica Technical Tips

Where to View Inventory Allocation Details

Q: Is there a quick way for our inventory staff to identify the quantity being reserved for an item?

A: Go to the Inventory Summary to see breakdowns of inventory by location and status for a particular Inventory ID number. You can see quantities for a variety of total, sales order, production, and purchase statuses. Then double-click on any warehouse line there to view its Inventory Allocation Details.

■ ■ ■

How to Ship Partial PO Quantities

Q: Is it possible to partially ship an item on a sales order line that is marked for PO? We have a sales order line marked for PO. The vendor is sending part of the total quantity we ordered for that sales order, but not all of it. Our customer will accept a partial shipment and wants us to send what was sent by the vendor.

A: Yes. Just receive in the partial order from your vendor. You’ll then be able to create a shipment for it.

■ ■ ■

Need to Receive 0 Quantity on a Short PO

Q: We have an item that didn’t come in, and need to indicate that the receipt is short. When I create the receipt and change the Received Qty to 0, I get an error, “Quantity must be greater than 0.”

A: You need to remove the line completely from the receipt.

■ ■ ■

Setting Up Accounts That Aren’t Customers or Vendors

Q: We have a need to have businesses and contacts in Acumatica that aren’t customers or vendors. Examples are regulators and trade associations. Can we do that?

A: You can leave these as unconverted business accounts (Prospects) and assign an attribute to group them into regulators, trade associations, etc., and report on them as an option. If you ever did need to do financial transactions with them, they could be converted to a customer or vendor if needed, and they would still maintain their attribute information for differentiation.

AccountMate Technical Tips

Invoice Date Error When Trying to Amend an AP Invoice

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

Module: AP

Q: I attempted to amend an AP invoice by changing the invoice date; however, I encountered this message, “Invoice Date cannot be later than the Check Date [xx/xx/xx]”. Why?

A: The message appears when the AP invoice has been partially/fully paid. Verify the Inv Balance value in the AP Invoice Transactions ► Information tab. If the invoice balance is less than the invoice amount, then payment has been processed for the invoice. The [xx/xx/xx] is the date of payment. AccountMate does not allow the invoice date to be later than the check date. A similar validation message is displayed if you attempt to change the invoice Post Date to a date that is later than the check date.

■ ■ ■

How to Import Sales Quotes into AccountMate

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

Module: SO

Q: How can I import sales quotes into AccountMate?

A: You can import sales quotes into AccountMate using the Import Sales Order function. Be sure to include the Order or Quote field in the import file, then enter 1 for sales quotes or 0 for sales orders.

■ ■ ■

Why Was Money Transferred to Retained Earnings?

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

Modules: All Modules

Q: Why do I encounter the message, “xxx.xx amount has been transferred to Retained Earnings” when I perform Transfer Data to GL or Period-End Closing?

A: The message indicates that expense or revenue transactions recorded during the current period were assigned prior-year posting dates. In keeping with proper accounting procedures, these transactions are transferred to the Retained Earnings GL Account ID as adjusting entries.

■ ■ ■

No Records Found Error When Emailing Vendor Check Stub

Versions: AM12 for SQL and Express (AM12.3 and higher)

Module: AP

Q: I upgraded to AccountMate 12.3. I tried to e-mail our vendors’ check stub; however, when I clicked OK in the E-mail AP Check Stub function, the “No records found…” message is displayed. I am sure that I have checks printed that meet the criteria entered in the E-mail AP Check Stub interface. Why?

A: This happens if the E-mail AP Check Stub feature is not activated. To enable the feature, mark the Generate Check Stub File for E-mailing checkbox in the AP Module Setup ► Printing tab. Only checks that were printed after the Generate Check Stub File for E-mailing checkbox is marked will be available for e-mail. Note that this feature can be turned on and off at any time. If the feature is off when the check is printed, then that check will not appear in the E-mail AP Check Stub grid and it will not be available for e-mail.

Subscription Information

If you or someone else in your office would like to automatically receive our NewsLine in your inbox each month, please email newsletter@nexlan.com.