Insights

A Year in Review: New Features From Sage Intacct in 2018

 

A Year in Review: New Features From Sage Intacct in 2018

Many companies choose Sage Intacct for its frequent, user-focused releases, which provide robust updates not once, not twice, but four times per year. This is one of the reasons some companies choose a best-of-breed model, as vendors are able to respond much more quickly to user requests by focusing on fewer modules to change.

Over the past year, we’ve discussed some of the new features in each of the quarterly releases and would today like to recap the year, exploring the key changes made throughout 2018.

2018 R1

Contracts have controlled a large part of the discussion in accounting in 2018, due in part to the changes that companies will face under ASC 606 (revenue recognition). This will continue to be a major theme throughout the blog, but only represent some of the new features.

  • Accounts Payable: A core improvement made in 2018 R1 focused on accounts payable, eliminating errors that may occur if two users print the same check at the same time.
  • Global Consolidations: Added to the Action UI early in 2018, Sage Intacct made a variety of changes to make user experience easier. In R1, SI revamped the look of consolidations, made it easier to duplicate books and change rates. Learn more here.
  • Projects: R1 featured two enhancements to improve usability, project management and data-entry control. SI added timesheet entry for dates outside open periods and added the Preview Invoice functionality for all project managers.
  • Contracts: The most robust change in R1 pertained to contract management. This release allowed companies to bill before a contract started, post revenue and expense recognition offline and add fair value as a percentage.

Additional improvements were made to integration, web services and platform services to simplify day-to-day operations.

2018 R2

In one of the biggest updates during the year, R2 introduced the Nonprofit Financial Board Book powered by GuideStar®, which continued to improve contracts, integration and UI, and made a variety of administrative improvements.

  • Nonprofit Financial Board Book: Sage Intacct teamed up with GuideStar to bring you the Nonprofit Financial Board Book for unparalleled visibility into your financial health and how you compare to similar organizations.
  • Accounts Payable: This made more improvements to the AP workbench, including the ability to merge draft payment requests into one, rather than creating multiple payments. Additionally, users can merge payments on the pay to contact of the bill.
  • Contracts: Major changes to the contract’s functionality included deferred revenue updates regarding performance obligations, the ability to un-cancel a contract, the addition of percentage of completion, MEA allocation improvements and new GL posting field. See more about the wide range of contract enhancements here.
  • Inventory: Ever since becoming part of the Sage family, Sage Intacct has brought more control to inventory management. The continually improving platform added warehouse user type, landed costs and replenishment as the company worked to grow their inventory power.
  • Action UI Menu Changes: Dramatic changes to menus and navigation. Additionally, global consolidations became a core part of Action UI and was removed from old interface.

Additional improvements included an advanced audit trail, project management updates, GDPR improvements, Smart Event enhancements, integrations and more. See all R2 release notes here.

2018 R3

The third release in 2018 brought even more functionality to the way users interact with Sage Intacct. Featuring additional improvements to contracts, reporting, consolidation and more, R3 improved the following, many of which we explored in our blog and webcast on the topic:

  • Global Consolidations: R3 offered more flexibility to branches without forcing the headquarters to surrender control. The R3 update now allows headquarters to grant access to designated users to independently run their own consolidations whenever needed. For instance, your EMEA team no longer needs to wait on headquarters to get their reports.
  • Contracts: R3 brought a wide range of improvements to contracts, including new billing frequencies, templates for renewal billing, MEA enhancements and GL posting date configurations.
  • Nonprofit Reporting and Compliance: As part of a larger FASB 958 compliance initiative, Sage Intacct added compliance and disclosures dashboards and introduced new account categories, including federated campaigns, contributions in kind, contributions event related and contributions related organization.

Read more about the improvements in the R3 release notes.

2018 R4

Released shortly after R3, the 2018 R4 update quietly brought important enhancements to NFP revenue recognition, GL, reporting and much more.

  • Custom Report Writer: Possibly the biggest enhancement to the platform in the R4 update was the Interactive Custom Report Writer, which allows users to see reports in real time without having to run reports to see data. This feature, added to the Action UI, significantly improved reporting in Sage Intacct.
  • Contracts: Continued improvements to the contracts module included the ability to reallocate daily rate or straight-line revenue and expense schedules based on different start and end dates, expanded MEA functionality to include negative value contract lines, event-driven recognition enhancements, improvements to the SaaS Digital Board Book and much more. See the R4 Contract improvements here.
  • General Ledger Improvements: The R4 update brought a variety of GL improvements, including Dynamic Allocations and additional posting flexibility to allow for improved analysis.
  • Inventory: Continued inventory enhancements, including improvements to the landed costs functionality and replenishment workflow enhancements.
  • Projects: A few improvements to the project management functionality offered users more control and flexibility. Users now have the ability to post statistical account data to a closed period and bill GL transactions using the Project Generate invoices.
  • Grant Tacking and Billing: This allows you to create records with descriptive elements and tag select financial transactions (e.g., AP bills, purchasing transactions, AR invoices, order entry transactions and journal entries) with specific grant information for reimbursement request generation, invoicing if needed, analysis and reporting. When combined with nonprofit revenue recognition, it also enables revenue recognition based on condition/barrier complete milestones.
  • Not-for-Profit Revenue Recognition Module: This is the only not-for-profit recognition solution that makes for painless nonprofit organization compliance. We enable organizations in the nonprofit industry to save time with automated compliance that satisfies the new ASU2018-08 standards.
  • Budgeting and Planning Module: Enables scaling for organizations who have outgrown Excel to collaborate, align and achieve targets. Our cloud-based module is dedicated to providing a collaborative environment that streamlines and ratchets the budgeting and planning process up a whole new notch. Streamline the entire cycle in one place, from creation to sharing and reviewing, to forecasting. And the functionality is easy to use, affordable and rapidly deployable. 
  • Dynamic Allocations Module: Delivers true performance analysis with tools that streamline the process of period end allocation of revenue and expenditures based on complex business drivers. As your business scales, an after-the-fact allocation tool can save time and effort at period end and help provide an understanding of fully loaded costs for departments, projects and more. Some limitations include allocations across entities, and Statistical Account Allocations. See AllocationEdge to meet these needs.

Additional improvements were made to administration, web services, platform services, user experience and planning.

Stay Tuned: More to Come in 2019

2019 will bring four more releases to the Sage Intacct calendar. These automatic updates will take place on February 22, May 17, August 23 and November 22. We will discuss what’s new in each of these as they are announced alongside our quarterly webinar series: Elevate Your Sage Intacct With Wipfli.

If you have specific questions on Intacct or how your organization can benefit from these upgrades, please let us know.

Author(s)

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Brian Dietz, CPA
Partner
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