From the Nov. 2009 Review of Not-for-Profit Accounting Programs.
Peachtree continues its excellent tradition of providing smaller businesses with an affordable software product that can be geared toward a particular type of business or organization. Peachtree for Nonprofits 2010 offers smaller nonprofits the same benefits that users of Peachtree have enjoyed for years.
EASE OF USE/FLEXIBILITY-
Peachtree has remained an easily navigated system. Navigation centers can be found to the right of the main screen. Clicking on a navigation center will bring up a workflow interface that offers easy access to all features found within that center. The customizable interface allows users to display varying data that they wish to display upon navigation center access. Users can also customize the shortcuts option found directly below the navigation centers, adding quick access to frequently used functions. A drop-down toolbar offers access to various system functions, lists, tasks, and reports and forms.
When setting up an organization, the user can choose from several different nonprofit types including daycare centers, educational institutes or religious organizations. Or they may select the Unified Chart of Accounts or the United Way-based Chart of Accounts. The Setup Guide appears on-screen upon entering company information and guides new users through setting up customers, jobs, vendors, inventory, service items, employees and system security.
The product’s data-entry screens are easily navigated, with lookup options and navigational arrows found throughout. Peachtree’s account structure allows for up to 15 alphanumeric numbers in its sequence, and easy import/export capability allows users to work in Word and Excel.
Peachtree is a complete financial solution with a series of functions working together. Navigation Center functionality includes the Company Center (the GL), Customers & Sales, Vendors & Purchases, and Business Status (a dashboard where vital data can be displayed). Inventory & Services, Employees & Payroll, and the Banking Center are also included. If an organization is outgrowing Peachtree Premium, it can move up to Peachtree Quantum, which offers more powerful functionality while accommodating more system users.
Peachtree 2010 contains several significant program enhancements, including the addition of the Customer Management Center, where the page sections can be customized to suit organizational needs. Workflow centers (available in Quantum) allow vital information to be processed and then forwarded on to the correct source.
Unless you browse through the nonprofit chart of accounts, it may be difficult to distinguish what sets Peachtree for Nonprofits 2010 apart from standard Peachtree financial products, although the nonprofit-specific chart of accounts allows those familiar with nonprofit accounting an easy way to track necessary information. The fundraising letter template makes it easy to send out personalized letters to donors or potential donors.
Other features found in Peachtree include the Employee Management feature, which helps track all employee and volunteer information in one area. Users can also track specific dates including employee reviews and other time sensitive tasks. The Business Analytics screen allows users to easily view current organizational financial performance, view any financial trends, and review payroll, revenue and gross margin from a single screen.
Reporting options in Peachtree 2010 are excellent, with over 140 standard reports included. Report customization options are extensive, and the inclusion of Crystal Reports makes it even easier to customize or create reports. All reports can be saved as a PDF for easier distribution, or exported to Excel as needed. Standard Nonprofit-specific reports in Peachtree 2010 include Statement of Revenues, Donor Grantor Summary List Report and Statement of Financial Position.
Peachtree 2010 offers an excellent built-in Help function that assists new users. Though not industry-specific, it can act as a guide through general software setup. All new Peachtree users will receive 30 days of free support upon product registration. Peachtree offers numerous support plans. Users will also have access to the online Peachtree Knowledgebase and the Live Chat Assistance. The Peachtree Resource Center is also easily accessible from the desktop, which provides access to tips, training information and a detailed list of what’s new in the current version.
Also available is the Sage Advisor, which provides employees and volunteers with a guide to best practices, helping them discover software tips that make ease system navigation. Training options include self-study guides, numerous tutorials, as well as onsite training provided by local resellers and certified technicians.
Peachtree by Sage Premium Accounting for Nonprofits currently costs $344.99 for a single-user system and $749.99 for a five-user system. While Peachtree does not provide as many of the nonprofit specifics found in some of the other products reviewed here, it is ideal for smaller nonprofits that have no need for the complex reporting and tracking functionality that larger organizations require.
2009 OVERALL RATING: