The Bookkeepers.Network (BKN)

Post Info TOPIC: Convince me that I don't need Sage


Forum Moderator & Expert

Status: Offline
Posts: 11529
Date:
RE: Convince me that I don't need Sage


Just patching this link to a very similar conversation over on accountingweb which should be read in conjunction with this thread.

The question was asked by a bookkeeper who for once wasn't savaged over there. As usual the choice conversation boils down to Sage vs VT.

Seems as though some of them over there hold Sage in as high esteem as I do!

http://www.accountingweb.co.uk/anyanswers/which-version-sage-bookkeeping-services

Have fun peeps,

Shaun.

__________________

Shaun

Responses are not meant as a substitute for professional advice. Answers are intended as outline only the advice of a qualified professional with access to all relevant information should be sought before acting on any response given.



Guru

Status: Offline
Posts: 827
Date:

Another recent convert to the ease of VT is the girl who works with me. All she ever knew was Sage and commented on Friday how quicker. easier VT is.

I had a long conversation with the product development manager at Sage One following a post of mine he read on this forum. One of the things we discussed was the "usability" of SageOne from a bookkeepers perspective, I pointed out to him that if you ever want to understand "ease of use" - just try VT for a few hours.

__________________
Tony

Responses are intended as outline only. Formal advice should be sort from your Institutes Technical Department or a suitably qualified Accountant.
.



Veteran Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 62
Date:

This thread was interesting and helpful to me as I am currently looking at payroll software as i am expanding my bookkeeping practice.  I have used sage payroll in the past and to be honest prefer it but maybe thats just because i am familiar with it but because i will multiple companies the cost on the website states £100 per additional company!!!! i nearly fell off my chair when i saw this.

Therefore i am going with 12pay purely down to cost so hope it is ok.  Does anyone know anyway around the sage payroll multiple company cost?  i cant believe it costs this much?



__________________
lor


Guru

Status: Offline
Posts: 941
Date:

I use sage, as I am used to it, that is the main reason, and it works well most of the time!.


__________________


Guru

Status: Offline
Posts: 506
Date:

Well after reading this post, many reveiws, and lots of research I recently settled on QB Proadvisor scheme. VT looked fab but it only limited to one license, which sadly turned me off... The Accountants edition of QB can be installed of several computers with no questions asked, so this was the deal clincher for me!

The fact i can install on my laptop, desktop, and a clients work place and more computers if i need to is a must, all the company files are stored online in secure storage so they can accessed from any computer. so i can work fom home and away!

The fact that they give you free software to 'give' to clients too is good, but they dont check up on this so you can dispose of it other ways... **cough** ebay... and make your subscription fees back...! :D

__________________

Gary

W: www.backtoblackbooks.co.uk    E: gary@backtoblackbooks.co.uk     t: @backtoblackBK



Forum Moderator & Expert

Status: Offline
Posts: 11529
Date:

Hi Gary,

I think that you've misunderstood the VT license.

Its a user license, not a PC license

(a) The license allows you to have as many clients as you want.

(b) the license allows you to install the software on as many machines as you need. (I've got it on four).

What you cannot do is have multiple users. Each user must be licensed separately which makes sense otherwise VT wouldn't last very long.

Hope that clears that up.

Worth noting though is that if you produce final accounts you need to have VT as well as QB as QB does not have iXBRL filing. At the roadshow the guys from Intuit actually advised using VT, IRIS or something similar.

kind regards,

Shaun.

__________________

Shaun

Responses are not meant as a substitute for professional advice. Answers are intended as outline only the advice of a qualified professional with access to all relevant information should be sought before acting on any response given.



Guru

Status: Offline
Posts: 506
Date:

Oh, I didn't know that... bit of a bugger! :/ (im so used to seeing 1 license, and that normally meaning 1 computer...)

what do you mean by your last line about iXBRL filing? dont think i've heard of this... i assumed that QB produced everything i needed to produce a set of accounts??

-- Edited by ClawzCTR on Thursday 11th of October 2012 01:37:01 PM

__________________

Gary

W: www.backtoblackbooks.co.uk    E: gary@backtoblackbooks.co.uk     t: @backtoblackBK



Forum Moderator & Expert

Status: Offline
Posts: 11529
Date:

Hi Gary,

although QB provides lots of reports you cannot file a set of accounts from Quickbooks as it does not handle the iXBRL tagging required for filing with HMRC.

Without tagging the accounts you cannot file them.

Also of course it lacks the formatting required by the professional bodies such as the ACCA, ICAEW or UK GAAP generalised notes (sure that you saw those options in the VT trial version).

After the Intuit roadshow I think door old Alison was sticking pins in effigies of me as I was asking all the wrong questions.

My point was that if they call their software an accountants version then it must be able to perform the tasks that a UK accountant requires of it, and statutory filing comes pretty high on that list.

Don't misconstrue that as anti QB as I think that it's an excellent piece of software and I really like Intuit. QB seems excellent and I MUCH prefer it over Sage but despite its prettiness I would only put it on a par with VT.

However, as I say, if you need to file accounts you will either need to plug the information into the HMRC site or buy VT in order to read in the QB data and produce the accounts from there. (sorry, you could buy other packages such as IRIS as an alternative to VT but I feel that VT is "probably" the most cost effective solution).

Sorry about that matey,

Shaun.



__________________

Shaun

Responses are not meant as a substitute for professional advice. Answers are intended as outline only the advice of a qualified professional with access to all relevant information should be sought before acting on any response given.



Guru

Status: Offline
Posts: 506
Date:

Thats fine Shaun, you explained that nicely for me. Like you say why offer an Accountants version when you cant file accounts with it... did Alison care to elaborate as to why this wasn't a core functionaity of the QB software or did she avoid the subject??

__________________

Gary

W: www.backtoblackbooks.co.uk    E: gary@backtoblackbooks.co.uk     t: @backtoblackBK



Forum Moderator & Expert

Status: Offline
Posts: 11529
Date:

Hi Gary,

Alison stated categorically that Intuit had no intention of adding iXBRL functionality to quickbooks.

It was stated that QB grew from more of a management reporting tool than starting life on the financial accounting side of the fence.

I did sense that it was a subject that she was not happy being questioned on and I ended up worried that she thought that I was picking on her or trying to pull holes in the product.

Both were far from my mind and like many others in the hall that day I had been sitting there thinking how Intuit products could fit into my practice. And also of course what could QB give me that VT could not.

The key to that last one is that QB is the top selling retail acounting software in the UK (an example of being able to do anything you want there with statistics as Sage is the most used... All in the way one phrases the statement).

My practice has a no sage products or clients policy until Sage change the client tax and I have no intention of turning my bak on the other biggy espechially as it seems to be growing bigger.

I'm sure that there are a lot of QB users out there desperate for an accountant who doesn't tell them that they need to convert to Sage so that's the market that I'm aiming for.

That said, I've still to take the cellophane wrapper off the accountant edition as just too busy at the moment but when I do my first order of priority is to get QB and VT talking to each other so that I can sort out some form of one click conversion of QB data into a VT formatted set of accounts for filing.

Using Excel as the common link it doesn't actually sound difficult but that's how it always starts... Then there comes the sleepless nights, intrevenous caffeine and threatening one's monitor with terrible, terrible acts involving a 12lb lump hammer and a cricket bat.

THose clients that I can I will keep on VT but for any client that has their own version of QB (retail or cloud) I will of course need to be using QB & VT together.

kind regards,

Shaun.

__________________

Shaun

Responses are not meant as a substitute for professional advice. Answers are intended as outline only the advice of a qualified professional with access to all relevant information should be sought before acting on any response given.



Forum Moderator & Expert

Status: Offline
Posts: 11529
Date:

Great post by Redfive this morning that I feel should be included in here.

The post followed a listing of the software used in the practice which was :

  • Sage 50 : bookkeeping for VAT clients
  • VT plus : bookkeeping for non vat clients
  • VT Agccounts: prep of Final Accounts for all (sole / partnership / company )
  • Moneysoft: payroll
  • Taxcalc: Prep and submission of all types of tax return
  • Excel: practice management

to which I asked :

can you go into a bit more detail about Taxcalc please as I just use the VT Taxcomp to prepare my CT600's and as I notice you already have that what is it about Taxcalc that makes you purchase it?

Is filing easier with Taxcalc? How does the software do the actual filing step?

Also, why do you not use VT for VAT registered clients? I do and have no issues

Here is Redfives full and excellent answer :

When I first started I thought having all my software with one company would provide a seamless process and save having to re key data etc. My background in banking and using one in-house bespoke software solution that did everything meant when I emerged into the real world I had very little knowledge of external programs with even excel a current failing of mine. I presume solutions like Iris offer this but the cost / reward does not warrant that for the amount of clients I have. I tried Sage first and that was a disaster......

Hence the solutions stated above....and as Phil correctly states, it is important to understand what you need your software to do as you can hammer a nail in with the back of your hand, but I would much prefer to use the correct tool for the job.

I use TaxCalc proffessional which gives you unlimited submissions of SA100, SA800, CT600's etc. While you can use HMRC software for two of these for free I refer you back to my hammer analogy. You cannot currently submit SA800 via the HMRC gateway so you need something for any Partnerships you pick up anyway.

To input the data into TaxCalc you can use two different options - simplestep, which I use and guides you through the relevent information required and steers you via 'tick boxes' to only the parts of the return that are necessary. In other words it will ask about CGT, and if it is not relevent will jump straight to the next part of the return. The other method of input is 'HMRC Forms' which simply replicates the return as a pdf and you input as you would if filling out a paper return. Good for those that have been filling out paper returns for years and know exactly where to go and what to input.

Second selling point over using HMRC software is that it retains your client info so if you buy next years version it quickly imports your clients and pre-populates the details that will not change. Plus it retains figures such as your Payments on Account from the previous return and how much tax was owed, all the cap allowances you have used and brought forward etc - massive time saver and cuts down on potential errors by not having to re-input.

Thirdly is the output of the return - one click to print or save as pdf, with options to include authority space from customer to sign, plus prints of the tax comp, how much they owe, when they pay it - I used to re-key this into excel to present to client as the HMRC one is horrible, but again, that is all automated for me now and the output is more than good enough to hand straight to them.

Number 4 is the way it handles attachments - I use taxcalcs own computations for a CT600 return and it saves them automatically, but I attach the iXBRL file from VT Accounts for the P&L and Balance sheet. This is a two click process - one to save as iXBRL in VT then one (well maybe two) to save into TaxCalc.

I think that's enough for TaxCalc, and I expect my sales commission to be on its way (joke). As to VT vs Sage argument there are a couple of reasons I use both......

I like Sage (Don't judge me - in fact I have a great reciprocal arrangement with a local AAT accountant who will only use quickbooks for bookkeeping. If she gets a client enquiry from someone who wants to use Sage, and she can't educate them (!) then I get the business, likewise in return quickbooks only enquiries to me go straight to her as I have no interest in using a third bookkeeping program. Anyway, i have used Sage for a long time so like what goes on under the bonnet, especially the current version which allows much faster searching etc. I find the reports much more comprehensive than VT and I like to produce 'management accounts' monthly for my larger clients, hence those that are VAT registered have the larger turnover so need the extra info. I can also submit the VAT return straight from Sage whereas with VT you have to re-key (there is that word again) into HMRC gateway to submit. OK, it only takes 5 mins, but time is money.......

VT works extremely well for my sole traders / partnerships / SA100 type clients and I really like it as I have a good understanding of double entry so can see what is going on, but I would need to export the info into excel to produce meaningful reports which I (a) don't have the time, inclination or indeed uber knowledge for and (b) don't need to when I have Sage that will do that for the right clients.

VT Accounts on the other hand doesn't really care whether you have produced your trial balance on Sage, VT, quickbooks, or indeed the back of a cigarette packet - it allows very easy import via csv with an intuative screen to match your product codes to the standard outputs. Seriously, don't ever try to do this in Sage's Tax Solution - mine went back to them via UPS with a comprehensive letter detailing why the piece of junk that was sold by them shouldn't grace the shelves of a back bedroom software developer let alone the only tech company to be listed in the FTSE100. I got a refund........

An arguement there for a small practice software sollotuion to be Sage, VT, and Taxcalc which could as easily be an arguement for Quickbooks, VT and Taxcalc.

Add to that Moneysoft or 12pay, plus MS Office (especially Excel) and that pretty much sounds like a full small practice software sollution.

The interesting thing there is that VT accounts is coming out as something to co-exist with other sollutions rather than my initial sollution of VT being instead of others.

An interesting post there that can be found in its entirety in this thread :

http://bookkeepers.activeboard.com/t51472073/well-what-a-fracar-not-impressed-with-intuit/?page=last#lastPostAnchor

(another one that went totally off piste... And further off piste after the above).

kind regards, and thanks again Redfive,

Shaun.



__________________

Shaun

Responses are not meant as a substitute for professional advice. Answers are intended as outline only the advice of a qualified professional with access to all relevant information should be sought before acting on any response given.



Expert

Status: Offline
Posts: 1716
Date:

The other thread prompted me to visit the TaxCalc website as three of us in this office have struggled to file iXBRL.
We have used their own iXBRL conversion service as well as attempting DIY. The accounts are originally prepared on our own Excel template eg. not in VT, Sage, QB etc.

Anyway, Taxcalc have a new product called "Accounts Production" starting at £99+Vat. for 12 clients.

Has anybody used this, and would you recommend it?

http://www.taxcalc.com/products/hub/

Thanks,
Tim



__________________


Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 19
Date:

Hi Don Tax, I'll reply as it was my post above (thanks Shaun)

I have not used Taxcalc for accounts production but have seen negative feedback on accounting web primarily due to its cost. Hence they have brought out this 'lite' product.

When up against VT though it still looks expensive as VT is £150 plus vat per year but grants you unlimited production of client accounts. My experience of Sage Tax product as compared to VT means I would gladly pay VT twice this every year because of how easy it all works including disclosures and inserting extra bits and pieces.

For you though it might be worth a try given that it would cost you less for the amount you need to process - one warning though if you then need to produce more the full version is about £500 which is a bit like how Sage get you with the 'Client Tax' as Shaun so nicely puts it.

VT all the way for me.



__________________


Expert

Status: Offline
Posts: 1716
Date:

Thanks Luke. I am very tempted with VT having used and liked it before. My bookkeeping and final accounts, however (with Moneysoft) carries next to no costs as I've not renewed since 1998ish.

I've not checked with VT but the three of us here are quite mobile so we would need 2 additional £100 licenses, whereas Taxcalc are quite liberal on their policy for laptops etc.

Regards,
Tim

__________________



Member

Status: Offline
Posts: 14
Date:

I used to use SAGE and quick books, but at my current job was introduced to VT Transaction+ and VT accounts. I was very impressed by its userbility and how easy it is to amend transactions etc.

__________________


Expert

Status: Offline
Posts: 2021
Date:

K3 Accounting wrote:


Cheers Peasie, anybody else got any 'real life' experience as reading manuals etc don't always give the full picture. Thanks for your help though.

Front of Sage AP box says ' produce drfat and final accounts in minutes' - maybe you have to be ACCA or something because I certainly can't.


 I use Sage APA and I would be lost without it.  SAPA is different to SAP, as they were bought by Sage, from two different companies.  When I used SAP one time, I wasn't thrilled with it at all... but perhaps I had already been ruined by SAPA.



__________________


Forum Moderator & Expert

Status: Offline
Posts: 11529
Date:

Are you sure of your facts Michelle?

Sage to Sap is like comparing Tesco's to your local corner shop (bit of artistic license on relative sizes there).

I know that back in 2011 both SAP and IBM were considerig buying Sage but it seems that nothing came of it (although at the time it was Sage that wanted someone to invest in them).

SAP is hugely complicated and aimed at businesses further up the food chain so not something that we encounter very much although like yourself I have used it (mostly just in order to create CSV files in order to create management reports in Excel).

SAPA (Sage Accounts Production Advanced) was I thought a home grown rather than an acquired product.

I suspect that this might be another one of those cases where we are talking about completely different products that seem to have accidentally acquired the same acronyms (thinks IFA!).

Shaun.

p.s. just to put things in perspective (figures in Euros):

Sage revenue (2012) : 1,548,700,000
SAP revenue (2012) : 16,220,000,000


__________________

Shaun

Responses are not meant as a substitute for professional advice. Answers are intended as outline only the advice of a qualified professional with access to all relevant information should be sought before acting on any response given.

«First  <  1 2 | Page of 2  sorted by
 
Quick Reply

Please log in to post quick replies.

Tweet this page Post to Digg Post to Del.icio.us
Members Login
Username 
 
Password 
    Remember Me  

©2018 The Bookkeepers Network (BKN). All Rights Reserved. The Bookkeepers Network (BKN) is a trading division of Bookcert Ltd. Registered in England Company Number 05782923. 2 Laurel House, 1 Station Rd, Worle, Weston-super-Mare, North Somerset, BS22 6AR, United Kingdom. The Bookkeepers Network and BKN are trademarks of Bookcert Ltd. This forum is a discussion forum only. There will usually be more than one opinion to any question and any posting should not be viewed as a definitive solution. No responsibility for loss occasioned to any person acting or refraining from action as a result of any posting on this site is accepted by the contributors or The Bookkeepers Network. In all cases, appropriate professional advice should be sought before making a decision. We reserve the right to remove any postings which are offensive, libellous, self-promoting or engaged in covert marketing. We will not notify users of removals. The views expressed in the forum posts are those of the individual and do not necessary reflect or agree with those of The Bookkeepers Network. Any offensive or unsuitable posts will be removed by the moderators. Any reader of this forum can request for a post to be looked into by sending an email to: info@bookkeepers.network or info@bookcert.co.uk.

Privacy & Cookie Policy