Not All Sage FAS Users Should be Created Equally

Here at Fixed Asset Consulting, we have been performing many data conversions lately.  Mainly data that has been in the Sage Fixed Assets Depreciation (formerly Sage FAS) and was outsourced.

The biggest problems we are running into during our analysis and process is that those ‘outsourced’ professionals who are using the Sage Fixed Asset System (or any automated fixed asset system) are not entering the asset information in correctly.  Here is a list of what we have been seeing (note: not all the data we are analysing and fixing are from the same source/end users):

  • Bonus depreciation not being utilized consistently.  Some assets have it on, others don’t.  Same property type, same placed-in-service year, etc.
  • Bonus depreciation not being used at all even though the Client is claiming in on their tax returns.  This means that even though the Tax calculations are outsourced, the Client still has to perform off-line adjustments and calculations on a spreadsheet.
  • Inconsistent data entry and misuse of critical depreciation fields.
  • Property Types are incorrectly used. I.e. Buildings and building remodels are set to Personal Property with a 39 year life and a straight-line method.  Should have been set to Real Property.
  • Adjustments were never taken and trued up on the data.  This is causing a lot of over and under depreciated assets to occur at the end of the assets life, creating a NBV on a fully depreciated asset.
  • One line items that represent 3 or sometimes 10 assets.  When reconciling this information back to the customers off-line data or internal data, some of those “assets” where disposed of.  Or… the sum of the 3 assets don’t equal the total amount of the one asset in the outsourced system.

We could go on and on, however, many times this stems from the end-user not being professional trained on the system, being thrown into fixed asset management role without training, not communicating properly with their clients or just not knowing what they are doing.

Not all fixed asset users or those managing fixed asset data should be created equally.  Problem is, many don’t know this is happening until it’s too late.  Don’t be one of them.

Are Your Fixed Assets Audit Ready?

While on site last week performing fixed asset consulting and data work, my client had encountered last-minute auditors. Not just one, but three (3) from different places. Funny thing was, they were keeping their fixed asset listings and their CIP (construction in progress) accounting assets in the same spreadsheet. Boy, was it a long one with filters and pivot tables, etc.

During the first day of my stay, I uploaded their fixed asset records into FAS Asset Accounting, ran some preliminary depreciation to balance back to FY 2010. In a matter of hours I was able to prepare a report in 3 different formats and export out to a PDF for the corporate Controller. At the end we noticed about a $95K difference in depreciation – in their favor!

The next day the Auditors were in and out of the Controllers office asking all about fixed assets and their current schedule and if they could get a listing sorted by asset class / asset type with sub-totals by location. With their current “system” (aka: spreadsheets and SAP fixed assets), they couldn’t get this or make this readily available. However, with Sage FAS Asset Accounting they were able to very quickly.

Thank goodness they had a fixed asset Consultant on deck that week. Next time they have an unexpected / unanticipated audit (they thought they had until December), they will be even more ready with CIP reports as well. So the question is… are YOU and YOUR fixed assets audit ready?

Fixed Asset Inventory and Disaster Recovery

Insuring your fixed assets is useless if you aren’t prepared to substantiate your cliams when your worst nightmares come true.  Does your recovery plan include YOUR valuable fixed assets?

Del Papa Distributing is celebrating 100 years distributing fine beer and beverages across 17 counties in Texas. The company sells more than 10 million cases each year from three distribution centers and employs more than 340 individuals. To ensure its numerous assets are efficiently tracked and accurately accounted for, Del Papa Distributing relies on Sage FAS Fixed Assets software and Paragon Systems. Recently, the company sought to better control its assets through a barcode system, and contacted Paragon Systems, a Sage business partner specializing in the implementation of asset management and asset inventory applications.

Maximize Your Investment

“We have a large number of assets throughout the company and tracking them by barcode makes good business sense,” says Crystal Bryan, director of accounting services for Del Papa Distributing.

“Barcoding speeds the count of assets and the simple presence of an asset tag on a piece of equipment lets people know an asset is being tracked,” Bryan explains. “We looked at several other asset tracking systems, but selected FAS Asset Inventory for its capabilities and also because it integrates with our existing asset accounting software. The integration helps us to maximize our overall investment in technology.

How did we (Paragon Systems) help Del Papa get back on track?  What should you be thinking of?  Read the full article…. Fixed Asset Inventory and Disaster Recovery

Top 5 Ways To Find Money Through Fixed Assets

Wow… today the stock market crashed so big it has probably got us all thinking… where do we go from here? Which also gets me thinking — how can businesses find some cash flow so they have some “rainy day funds” (or for operating expenses) in their back pockets?  Then it dawned on me… if they manage their fixed assets properly and received detailed cost segregation studies or had a proper 3115 study done, then shoot, EVERYONE could have extra cash flow.

If you think about it, there really are many ways to capture extra cash flow through fixed assets.  From very small efforts to large.

Top 5 Ways Fixed Assets Can Capture or Re-capture Cash Flow

  1. Cost Segregation Studies – extra Tax Deductions with properly classified fixed assets.  Money is in the DETAILS, not in bulked entries everyone!  Make sure you capture your 100% bonus depreciation for 2011 – it will go away soon.
  2.  Rev Proc 2007-16 Study – 3115 assets; allows taxpayers to change their method of accounting and claim the allowable depreciation (or amortization) amount they never claimed (i.e. bonus depreciation, etc.).
  3. Physical Fixed Asset Inventories – cost savings all across the board with Property Taxes, Insurance Premiums, Financial savings impact and more.  Have you ever done one of these before?
  4. Asset Appraisals – is it really worth TODAY what it once was?  Probably not.
  5. Automated Depreciation System – if you are still stuck in spreadsheet land for calculations, believe me when I say, YES you ARE missing additional expense and bonus that you are entitled to.  I see it every time I open someones spreadsheet!  Doesn’t matter the size of the organization or spreadsheet, there is ALWAYS calculation error, sometimes in the millions.

Which industries would benefit from these services / studies?  Just about all industries, well, maybe government and non-profit wouldn’t benefit from all five, but certainly from a couple.  Industries that would uncover a ton (always in the thousands – sometimes millions) from one or all five: hospitality, data centers, banks, manufacturing, retail, healthcare to name a few.

Now I know why I love waking up every day to go to work for the past 14 years (and growing)… because everything I (and my associates) do each and everyday help people and their businesses grow.  Who doesn’t like that?  Probably the same people who don’t like furry fuzzy kittens.

 

 

New FAS Asset Accounting v2012 Coming in September

I am finally back into my humble office after attending the Sage Software Summit 2011 with an immediate trip to some customers out in Boston and Maine, now playing a serious game of catch up.  Ugg, one thing is for sure, when you leave, nothing just stops and goes away. 

What I wanted to bring to everyone’s attention is the new version of Sage FAS (v2012) that will soon be released – starting in mid-September.  Sage FAS division had a handful of breakout sessions @Sage_Summit letting both Business Partners and Customers play around with the latest version – one even showcased the ease-of-use on customizing the new interface and layout.  Feedback was a-m-a-z-i-n-g!  I myself am extremely excited to start implementing it world-wide.

Some of the changes to the Sage FAS Asset Accounting software that I (and my customers) are excited about are:

  • The capability to perform Task Based functionality (like you do in Outlook).
  • Ability to drag and drop columns in the Group View – now appropriately named: Asset ListNew Sage FAS Asset Accounting v2012 Layout.
  • A user can now drag the general field section (in Asset View/Detailed View) down to view all the fields as needed – seriously, this is a HUGE one for every user.
  • Capability to UPDATE asset information through the custom import wizard – this is the big dog!
  • Much, much, much more…

I don’t have all day to type out this blog entry so I am trying my best to keep it short and sweet and highlighting only a handful of things I and you will love about the upcoming release of Sage FAS Asset Accounting v2012.  It may seem a bit young for a facelift… but 14 [personal] years in the business — well, in software years, that facelift is long over due.  To Sage FAS division I say – GOOD JOB and way to be the best plastic surgeon in the U.S.!

Sage Summit 2011 Fixed Asset Management Workshops

Sage authorized consultants from Paragon will team with current Sage FAS customers in three breakout sessions to discuss best practices in fixed asset accounting and management at the Sage Summit 2011 conference.

Chicago, IL – July 5, 2011 – Paragon Systems (www.FixedAssetExperts.com), a nationwide provider of Sage FAS Fixed Asset Management software, has announced participation in the Sage Summit 2011 conference as an exhibitor as well as a workshop host.  In addition to their display in Booth 733, Paragon will also present three breakout sessions discussing the advantages of fixed asset accounting and management with Sage FAS Software.  The conference will be held at the Gaylord National Hotel and Conference Center in Washington, DC.  July 10 – 15, 2011.  Sage Summit 2011 represents a new format that combines both Sage Authorized Business Partners and Sage customers at the same event.

FULL PRESS RELEASE ]

ERP Fixed Assets Workflow To Sage FAS Asset Accounting

It’s obvious that companies utilizing an ERP for their fixed asset depreciation and management are getting frustrated – or perhaps they are just now seeing the benefits of implementing a true fixed asset module.  Because of this many are asking what or how do we update FAS Asset Accounting or keep both systems in tune.  Maybe it’s best to just explain what the choices are and we can move on from there.

With this being said, I thought I would explain the two options in a basic format – without giving away all of our knowledge.  After all, this is why we get paid the big bucks – but not as big as an ERP Consultant. 

When implementing a true fixed asset system to work with your ERP system, you have two options:

  1. ERP Parent—FAS Child: Maintain GAAP/Internal depreciation inside ERP asset management and only Federal Tax, AMT and State books in Sage FAS Asset Accounting.  Activity added/updated in ERP, exported out, format updated, imported into FAS AA.  Recommended that you also maintain the GAAP/Internal book in Sage FAS Asset Accounting but only for reconciliation purposes.
  2. FAS Parent—ERP Child: Utilize Sage FAS Asset Accounting for all depreciation—export entries out of AP/PO in ERP.  Upload into FAS, maintain ALL activity in FAS Asset Accounting (no need for disposal and transfer tagging), book depreciation entries into ERP GL.  No reconciliation necessary between ERP asset management and third-party solution. 

From the sounds of it, you would sway towards option 2 – FAS being the asset keeper, organizer, etc.  However, many organizations can’t step away from the ERP being finances Parent / Controller — so then, we are left with implementing option 1.  Either way, it’s far better than what occurs when you DON’T use a third-party solution to run, capture and report on federal tax and state calculations.

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