Take Charge of Your Contract Billing and Run with It

Take Charge of Your Contract Billing and Run with It

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Take Charge of Your Contract Billing and Run with It

By Paul Johnson
CPA, CGMA, MBA

As your subscription business grows and changes, so do your contracts. However, that means your billing and revenue recognition changes too.

bearded young business professional working at his computer on a contract

When it comes to aligning your contract pricing and billing schedules to your complex business model, you shouldn’t have to suffer under ill-fitting accounting software options just because your contracts become more complex.

To retain control over your subscription and contract billing to fit your business, consider modern options designed to accommodate the way your company works.

Sage Intacct, a best-in-class cloud-based financial management solution gives endless pricing and billing schedules for subscription and contract-focused businesses to create their invoicing around their contracts, instead of the other way around.

AUTOMATION

The easiest and simplest way to stay on the fast track to business growth is to remove productivity bottlenecks due to manual processes, by automating those areas of weakness.

Billing: Whether you need regular period billing, with milestones, or nonlinear, Sage Intacct’s wide array of billing options allows you to tailor automated pricing and frequency to fit your business, and speed your billing processes.

Renewals: Set up contracts in Sage Intacct to automatically trigger renewals as contract end dates approach.

Contract Modifications: Accounting for add-ons, cancellations and changes to existing contracts can be set for automation to free your accounting teams without missing important contract details.

FLEXIBLE OPTIONS

Not all subscription and contract pricing is alike. Having more pricing options means you can streamline your billing with a faster setup process.

Set Your Own Designations: Price per thousand, minimum flat fees, usage pricing and discount tiers are all options you can set within Sage Intacct for reduced billing errors, and a faster billing process.

Flexible Models: Fixed pricing can be set with a simple amount, or a combination of options in quantity, rate, multiplier or discount.

group of employees laughing at their desk

FEATURES FOR CONTROL AND SPEED

Small details, systems disconnection and dated reports generated from on-premises systems all add manual labor and hours to your teams’ workload and hold back growth. Sage Intacct supports contract and subscription businesses with unique features that cater to complexity.

Integration: Because Sage Intacct integrates well with Salesforce, your quote-to-cash process moves more quickly as data from Salesforce travels seamlessly to Sage Intacct for stronger collaboration, greater accuracy, and a faster moving sales funnel.

Visibility: Get deep insights into every area of your accounting for contracts billing and deferred revenues, and a 24/7/365 open window into your key metrics from your dashboard.

Compliance: Sage Intacct is the first software solution its kind specifically designed to support ASC 606 compliance, and make revenue recognition easier for subscription and contract-based businesses.

Is your contract billing wearing on your accounting teams? Take charge.

Give us a call – we want to help simplify the process.

Sales and Finance Unified – No More Compromises

Sales and Finance Unified – No More Compromises

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Sales and Finance Unified – No More Compromises

By Paul Johnson
CPA, CGMA, MBA

The Salesforce-Sage Intacct connection that bridges the gap between sales and finance is worth talking about now more than ever.

If it seems that what started off as a few extra work-arounds has devolved into a flurry of extra steps that bottleneck productivity, read on. There are fast-to-implement solutions available for you.

In light of the ASC 606 and IFRS mandates, it’s time to do away with outdated, and inefficient systems to streamline your processes, and get your teams working in a more connected way to work smarter, not harder.

The Salesforce/Sage Intacct integrations bring in automation to unify your sales and finance teams that can streamline your sales pipeline from start to finish.

QUOTE TO CASH

The road from quote to cash can be a long, and complex one. When Sage Intacct, a best-in-class cloud accounting solution links with Salesforce, a quote is converted to an order with just one click.

In SalesCloud, your teams can generate tasks, invoicing or even revenue recognition, and send information seamlessly into Sage Intacct for your finance teams’ immediate access, saving time and rekeying errors.

closeup of male hands working on sales and finance

DATA MANAGEMENT

When your company is working in disconnected systems, cascading errors and inconsistencies in your data can occur.

The integration between Salesforce and Sage Intacct in the cloud means all of your client’s data gets entered in once, for data accuracy and consistency throughout departments and systems.

REVENUE RECOGNITION

Having sales and finance software systems that seamlessly communicate frees up everyone to do what they do best.

  • Your sales team can easily input just an open and close date to clarify revenue recognition for finance with only the data that sales reps need to see to do their end of the job.
  • In real time, your accounting gets the data they need on their end to match expenses to revenue, to be allocated in line with the new ASC 606 and IFRS 15 guidelines.

group of two businessmen and a businesswoman working on sales and finance

COLLABORATION AND PROJECTS

The Sage Intacct/Salesforce connection streamlines communication and synchronizes activities for meaningful collaboration and powerful project management.

  • Integration bridges the front and back office through contextual data with orders and unique client questions or invoicing situations.
  • The finance team can access Salesforce Chatter from Sage Intacct to resolve client financial issues, and can keep a close eye on actuals versus estimates to stay within project budget margins.
  • Sales can answer client questions quickly and directly with access to company data from wherever they work.

Why compromise accuracy and productivity with outdated and disconnected systems? The integrations technology linking Salesforce and Sage Intacct means you don’t have to.

If you’re ready to unify your teams toward greater success, give us a ring. We are here to help!

Critical Signs That You’ve Outgrown Your Financial Software

Critical Signs That You’ve Outgrown Your Financial Software

Resources

Critical Signs That You’ve Outgrown Your Financial Software

By Paul Johnson
CPA, CGMA, MBA

Your company’s growing fast – and slammed with work. That’s considered a good problem, but at some point, keeping up with growth may start to keep you up at night, and your workers in the weeds.

Be on the lookout for these signs that your financials are due for a stronger solution.

1. Your teams are treading water to stay on top of everyday tasks.

Traditional legacy accounting systems don’t typically handle rapid growth easily.

That means your teams will have to apply more manual effort to add new entities and currencies, perform complex global consolidations, or manage new products.

Rapid growth companies need modern solutions that can switch gears as fast as the company does.

2.Compliance is a growing hurdle with the new regulatory guidelines.

Some modern businesses – especially SaaS – are still working from on-premises systems created before the new ASC 606 and IFRS 15 guidelines.

The work-arounds and retrofits they need to keep up, only creates massive headaches for everyone involved. If these companies don’t buckle under the weight of building work-arounds, they certainly will under the weight of the mountains of ongoing manual entry work.

A sustainable solution to the surmounting re-allocation work is to adopt a software solution that supports the new guidelines to streamline those tasks.

team working on computer with financial data

3. Your company software hasn’t been updated.

Some expanding businesses that already have too much to do, fear a system upgrade would take more time away from critical accounting tasks.

But companies that move to a cloud-based system like Sage Intacct get automatic updates and maintenance behind the scenes. In fact, 83% of customers report they decreased time spent on software management tasks when they switched to Sage Intacct.

4. You can’t fully track your business performance

Rapid-growth businesses need real-time visibility into business metrics as they change, to develop the strongest business growth strategies.

With traditional legacy systems, you often have to wait weeks for data, that once its delivered, already aging.

Companies that forecast with the cloud can see the latest, most current insights into their KPIs for strong growth strategy.

team working on computer with financial data

5. Your key software systems don’t connect.

On-premises and legacy systems often don’t integrate well with other software solutions, because they are location-based.

If your business is growing and your systems don’t integrate, your shared data is at risk for inaccuracies, and your teams are probably doing a lot more manual entry to shift data to other departments.

Sage Intacct offers features to streamline financial management for today’s businesses:

  • It integrates seamlessly well with many other best-in-class solutions to boost data accuracy and reduce time spent on manual labor.
  • The Dashboards feature showcases customizable metrics on one screen, with 24/7 real-time updates.
  • The first of its kind, designed to support ASC 606 and IFRS 15 compliance.
  • Streamlines growth tasks with one-click consolidations, automatic currency conversions, and fast multi-entity setups, to start.

Feeling the weight of your workload under outdated financial systems? We can help with that! Contact us to see how moving to a more modern system can scale with your growth.

Profitability Habits CFOs Use to Steer Project Success

Profitability Habits CFOs Use to Steer Project Success

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Profitability Habits CFOs Use to Steer Project Success

By Paul Johnson
CPA, CGMA, MBA

No two service companies are identical, but they do find common ground when it comes to guiding a project’s profitability. So, what do successful CFOs do to help steer project profitability, that you can start using today? Glad you asked!

1. They prioritize time for analysis.

According to a survey done by PWC, top-performing organizations spend 20 percent more time on analysis versus data gathering. You can have all the best data to use toward a solid project strategy, but if you don’t set aside enough time to analyze that data, it will do you no good.

2. They focus on the right metrics.

The most influential CFOs use their time wisely by sharpening their focus on the data that delivers the most value. Here’s a list from Services Performance Insight of the top 5 KPIs for services organizations:

  • Billable utilization
  • Project overruns
  • Project margins
  • Annual revenue per billable consultant
  • Annual revenue per employee

Conference Discussion Talking Sharing Ideas

3. They support their project managers’ success with dashboards.

Dashboards are the modern CFO’s go-to when it comes to task management and information analysis.

From Ernst & Young’s research, 67 percent of surveyed CFOs believe a top priority for finance is to improve cross-functional collaboration.

The most effective CFOs support their project managers by guiding them to the data and information most critical to making effective project decisions in the shortest amount of time by using dashboards. They conveniently showcase the most pertinent data, all on one screen, for fast access and analysis.

4. They apply analytics to drive company decisions.

According to Forrester Research, 74 percent of businesses want to use data to drive their decisions, but only 29 percent say they can successfully apply those analytics.

When data is easily accessible, consistent and accurate, CFO’s can more effectively encourage company decisions to be driven by data.

Brunette female team leader talking with mixed race group of people

5. They know the value of fixed-fee project costs.

Fixed-fee project cost trends are still going strong. 50 percent of professional services projects that TSIA analyzed are sold on a fixed-price basis, industry-wide, according to their research.

That said, whether you currently bill based on time and materials, or on fixed-fee basis, to understand your true project profitability, you need to know your cost details –And not just by way of spreading costs evenly over the project.

When your teams can see detailed labor costs, decisions become more insightful. Cost margins become clearer.

Sage Intacct, a best-in-class cloud-based financial management solution, offers data consistency, accuracy and data access for everyone involved in your projects.

Dashboards, highly customizable reporting features, and detailed chart of accounts tagging options streamline your analytics, and simplify the complex. A strong financial management solution like Sage Intacct can leverage your data to work harder and smarter for you.

Want to know more? Drop us a line! We can help you find the right tools to support you in your leadership role to drive your company’s project success.

Beat CFO Insomnia and Go from Chaos to Control

Beat CFO Insomnia and Go from Chaos to Control

Resources

Beat CFO Insomnia and Go from Chaos to Control

By Paul Johnson
CPA, CGMA, MBA

It’s a tough job. From drum-tight audits to flawless compliance, as a CFO, everything that drives the company’s financials rests on your shoulders. Seemingly small weaknesses can cause a rift in accuracy, leaving even the toughest of CFO’s to lose sleep night after night. We’ve listed 6 common financial system weaknesses, and how to strengthen them.

business organization

1. Spreadsheets

Love them or hate them, they have their place. Unfortunately, their place is not everywhere in your office. Spreadsheets are great in a pinch or for limited tasks, but their error-prone design can easily lead to cascading data errors.

Solution: For tasks like revenue management or consolidations, seek automation with the cloud.

2. Outdated Reporting and Slow Answers

Today’s companies make quick, informed financial decisions on the fly. If your teams are working with in-house systems to manually compile, filter, sort and re-sort your data, by the time those reports circulate, the data’s already gone stale.

Solution: Get real-time, system-compiled data available to decision-makers through cloud-based reporting and dashboards with the right financial system – like Sage Intacct. No time machine required.

3. Time Consuming and Error-Prone Consolidations

With multiple entities, if your company’s consolidations are being done manually, so much can go wrong. Currency conversions, complicated formulas and endless spreadsheets leave room for one manual mistake to throw everything into chaos.

Solution: With a financial management system that focuses on growth, your company can perform one-click consolidations reduce errors, save time, and ensure accuracy and compliance.

4. Under-billing Time and Expenses

When teams in the field and have to wait until they’re at their desks to track time and expenses, your billing may not be as accurate as you think. Chances are good that things are going undocumented, and unbilled.

Solution: Everywhere-accessible automation. With Sage Intacct’s cloud-based time-tracking and expense features, your team can log project-based items from anywhere, at any time.

5. Ill-Fitting On-Premises Software

With on-premises software, companies often have to upgrade for customizations, bend and flex to get system updates and maintenance, and endure long implementation timelines. Many times, these companies end up with wasted features that sound great at initial buy-in, but in the end, don’t meet a need.

Solution: With the cloud, growing businesses see tighter information security and software reliability, customizable options, and automatic updates and configurations for reasonable monthly subscriptions.

business organization

6. Software Solutions that Don’t Play Well Together

When software solutions don’t integrate, people can’t access information they need. Further, data needs to be manually entered sometimes two and three times in multiple systems, leaving it vulnerable to error. The company is left with disconnected teams and a fuzzy financial picture.

Solution: Sage Intacct – a best-in-class cloud financial management solution – offers seamless integrations so data moves easily between many of today’s best-in-class cloud systems. Companies can reduce their manual entry time, and customize their integrations to fit their needs while also getting a real-time company picture to keep every department running smoothly.

Still have questions? Pick up the phone or drop us a line. We’re here to help you get peace of mind, and some shut-eye!

Start the Year Strong:  5 Things to Ask Your Controller

Start the Year Strong: 5 Things to Ask Your Controller

Resources

Start the Year Strong: 5 Things to Ask Your Controller

By Paul Johnson
CPA, CGMA, MBA

The start of the year is the perfect time to pull out the magnifying glass and take a look at your financials to support the goals your teams set into motion to boost productivity and scale company growth.

To be sure you’re lined up to make 2018 your most productive year yet, here’s five questions to ask your controller to make sure your financials are on track:

finances

1. How many journal entries do you create during closings?

Too many journal entries can extend closing times and often means there are financial process problems under the surface which can lead to bigger audit problems later. They often are indicators of complexities in your processes and automation that could use some revising.

2. Is our company meeting the compliance of local jurisdictions?

You and your controller can look at your risk potential with current processes, and create a schedule for ongoing and regularly scheduled risk reviews. Focus on your policies, contracts sizes, and client subscriptions to be sure you’re meeting standards and adhering to compliance changes.

3. How long does it take us to close the books each period?

Closing times are a great measure for how efficiently your controller works. It pays to have a reviewing system in place to spot any potential errors, early and often. Try these tips:

  • Track manual entries, and measure accruals to help to identify potential productivity bottlenecks.
  • Automate as much as you can. You naturally execute your policies by automating them. Automation increases efficiency and reduces errors by eliminating manual entries and workarounds.
  • Use forecasts to your advantage. Get a sense of next quarter’s numbers, to more easily pick out errors, and give your controller a head’s up to take care of them before closing the books.

finances

4. Is Excel still our go-to for closing? If so, why?

Excel is great for some ancillary reporting, sub-ledgers and unique expenses and revenues, but it comes with a price. Manual entries make it prone to errors that can have a cascading effect on your other data, it’s limited in its shareability, and it can present security issues.

If your controller is still heavily relying on Excel to close at period-end, it’s time to start looking into more efficient and innovative options.

5. Can our company integrate our operations metrics and financials?

By integrating processes, you streamline productivity, protect data integrity, unify teams to collaborate between finance and operations, and give your controller a clear view into company performance.

Meet with your controller to discuss strong integration software options like Sage Intacct to bring innovation, compliance and streamlining to your closings.

If you could use some more pointers on how to collaborate with your controller to streamline your closings and boost financials, reach out and give us a ring! We want to help make this your best year yet!