BTerrell Group Blog

Keith Karnes

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When to Implement a New ERP System - Reason #3 Work is Done Outside Your ERP System Due to Integration Issues and Complex Workarounds

Posted by Keith Karnes on Thu, Jul 31, 2014

I recently started a blog series discussing some of the main reasons companies need to implement a new ERP system. Reasons #1 and #2 can be found here. Today, I'll discuss Reason #3.

Reason #3: Work is Done Outside Your ERP System Due to Integration Issues and Complex Workarounds
Technology should be an asset to your business, not a hindrance. Unfortunately, disconnected software systems and complex workarounds still thrive in businesses today. Without the ability to seamlessly integrate ERP systems with your proprietary systems and industry-specific applications, businesses are spending more and more time getting information where it needs to go when it needs to go there.

"Too much time is spent rekeying information from one system to another.”
“Mistakes are common because we have to enter data multiple times to get it saved in all the right places.”
“Excel spreadsheets are taking over my life.”

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Phrases like these can sometimes stem from unhappy employees, efficiency problems, or convoluted systems. Many times, they are one in the same. We see this far too often in our industry when we run across companies who rely on complex workarounds and manual processes to make up for process gaps left by disparate systems. Information is printed from one system then manually entered into another system. Many times, we even see calculations taking place on a scratch sheet of paper, in Excel, or on desktop calculators before data is rekeyed!

Recently, we spoke with a controller who juggled her company’s revenue recognition process using constantly growing spreadsheet tabs in Excel. The process caused countless “cut and pastes” as well as extra journal entries. Now, she completes the process simply by reviewing the log of entries each month for completeness. The entries are generated directly from her sale transactions thanks to seamless integration with Intacct!

If you were to tally the time lost due to inefficient processes in your business, you would be astounded at the cost. In fact, one company we worked with recently found that they could save as much as $100,000 per year by eliminating the integration restraints in their asset management processes alone! Now, what would $100,000 per year mean to your business? To me it means moving forward with simplified processes with fewer errors, time saved, and a more profitable bottom line!

Tags: ERP, ERP system, Intacct, disconnected software systems

Payroll Tax Update Now Available

Posted by Keith Karnes on Tue, Jul 08, 2014

The June 30, 2014 Payroll Tax Updates for Sage 300 ERP as well as the Sage HRMS Q214 Product Updates are now available. To download the Payroll Tax Update, login to support.na.sage.com and click on Sage 300 ERP downloads and updates or Sage HRMS downloads and updates, depending on your software. Click on Payroll Tax updates and choose the correct version of the update to download.

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Importantly, if you are using Sage ERP Accpac 5.6, this tax update release is the last update. To receive further updates, you must upgrade to a supported version of Payroll for Sage 300 ERP.

Please give us a call if you have any questions or require any assistance with getting this update installed.

Tags: Sage 300 ERP, payroll, update

When to Implement a New ERP System – Reason #2 Total Cost of Ownership Cannot be Justified for Your Current System

Posted by Keith Karnes on Thu, Jun 19, 2014

I recently started a blog series discussing some of the main reasons companies  need to implement a new ERP system. Reason #1 can be found here. Today, I'll discuss Reason #2.

Reason #2: Total Cost of Ownership Cannot be Justified for Your Current System
Despite the comforts of existing system and process familiarity, sometimes the high Total Cost of Ownership (TCO) for a legacy ERP system speaks for itself… something must change. Some ERP systems were not designed for growing organizations that need advanced functionality to manage sophisticated processes; so costly workarounds are put in place. More often than not, every time the on-premise legacy system has an upgraded version, the work-arounds also require changes. In addition, maintenance costs, both direct and indirect, continue to compound year after year. In today’s economic climate, businesses need technology solutions that grow and adapt with them, allowing leadership to focus on the “business picture” of goals and profits, not the compounding costs of ERP systems.

ERP Servers

When thinking about the TCO of legacy ERP systems, the cost of adding new hardware, paying for regular upgrades, hardware maintenance costs, and adding additional personnel to handle the increasing complexities of a company’s IT operations are common components. Many times, as business leaders, we get so wrapped up in our day-to-day responsibilities that we become accustomed to familiar processes and don’t realize the hidden, indirect costs associated with our current technology. Unfortunately, the workarounds put in place to manage an ERP system that a company has outgrown or outlived, result in hidden costs such as reporting based on incorrect or stale data, lack of control and compliance, process inefficiencies, and additional time and resources needed to achieve results. These direct and indirect costs multiply over time and can have an adverse effect on your bottom line.

According to a recent report from Nucleus Research, companies using Intacct to run their back office achieved both direct and indirect benefits including increased productivity, increased visibility, reduced or avoided IT costs, improved inventory management, accelerated financial processes, and reduced audit costs. Specifically, the Nucleus report provided these examples of companies switching to cloud-based ERP solutions from outdated, on-premise systems:

  • Saved 500 hours a year on manual data entry
  • Eliminated $30,000 in annual IT costs
  • Avoided hiring an additional accounting employee

I don’t know about you, but as President of BTerrell Group, these types of savings would outweigh the thought of an out-of-control TCO any day! If I can reduce TCO and improve my bottom line by taking advantage of cloud technology, that is the validation I need.

Tags: ERP, Intacct, TCO, Total cost of ownership, implement a new ERP system

When to Implement a New ERP System – Reason #1 Software Limitations of your Current System

Posted by Keith Karnes on Thu, May 15, 2014

I spoke with a CFO of a small, but growing business recently, and he asked me a simple question, “Why should I implement a new ERP system?” The answer is simple, robust, and one I explain quite frequently. That being said, I want to share, over the next several weeks, some of the main reasons I believe companies may need to implement a new ERP system.

Reason #1: Software Limitations of Your Current System
Baseline entry systems are just that…entry systems. Just because the system got you started…initially meeting your needs, doesn’t mean it will continue to meet your needs as you grow and become a more complex organization. That requires a system built for enterprise needs (not necessarily expensive, but built for growth).

Software Limitations

In my experience, many emerging companies begin to feel “growing pains” with their current software…limitations, indicating it is time to implement a new ERP system. These companies experience major software problems including the lack of real-time reporting, multi-currency capabilities, frequent software crashes due to the amount of data stored in their systems, and no integration between disparate systems.

There’s no doubt that deficiencies in generating accurate, timely financial intelligence due to software limitations negatively impacts a President or CFO’s ability to drive performance in an organization, but it is difficult sometimes to make the leap to a new ERP system. Cost, time lost during research and implementation, as well as comfort level with the current system can all lead to a company choosing to stay with their current system “a little while longer.” But often the hidden costs are even greater…the inefficiencies and lost management information to build business. Since financial transactions are the lifeblood of business, the need for an ERP system that grows with your business should be a tool to drive success, not just a historical reports tool.

For many companies, Intacct is a great next step from their current system as it handles the increasing complexities of growing businesses, utilizing cloud multi-tenant architecture for great functionality with low cost. With Intacct, you can improve financial controls across multiple business entities, deliver robust cloud financial management to finance without IT infrastructure, streamline financial processes, and reduce close processes from a few weeks to a few days. It helps eliminate growing pains, enhance productivity and visibility, reduce capital expenditures, and speeds up the flow and accuracy of reporting and intelligence for better informed business decisions. Isn’t that what we want as Presidents and CFOs of growing businesses?

Tags: ERP, Intacct, software limitations, why implement new ERP system, software growing pains

KPIs Lead to Improved Performance in the Service Industry

Posted by Keith Karnes on Fri, May 02, 2014

When it comes to staying on top of company performance, industry-specific KPIs such as new projects booked per month and A/R aging as well as company-specific KPIs are imperative for CFOs and Presidents of professional service organizations to know. Unfortunately, the information isn’t always real-time, which makes it ineffective.

I found a great whitepaper recently from Intacct and Service Performance Insight, LLC about KPIs for businesses in the professional service industry, recommending a focus on financial performance for greater financial success. It advises integrating financial management solutions with other departmental solutions for seamless reporting. Reporting is crucial when it comes time to present to key stakeholders, and it is crucial for timely visibility into the performance of the organization.

By narrowing your lens of focus on only those KPIs that are relevant to your role, it will allow you to communicate effectively and make better business decisions. For me, an opportunity would have been missed to improve our company’s utilization and realization if I had not been aware of our metrics in real-time. Now, I am able to tie employee rewards and compensation to metrics to drive improved performance and employee satisfaction.

Here’s an example of what it looks like to track KPIs using Intacct:

Intacct KPI dashboard

In January, CodePartners posted a great blog explaining how to set up a dashboard in Intacct. Once you set up your dashboard, you are on your way to optimal success!

Tags: KPI, KPI service industry, service industry