CCH — ProSystem fx Trial Balance

From the August 2009 Review of Engagement & Trial Balance Systems

The primary function of ProSystem fx Trial Balance is to control the trial balance function of an engagement. Thus, this product from CCH has fewer workflow features than its sister product, ProSystem fx Engagement (see www.CPATechAdvisor.com/go/2468).

Set Up & Implementation:
This is a client/server application that requires a firm to install it on its internal server and on each desktop/laptop that will be using the application. A firm shouldn’t see any significant additional IT costs to complete the installation of the product. The product is very intuitive and easy to use.

Integration with Other Tax & Accounting Products:
The product website states that the user can import a trial balance from virtually any accounting system, including QuickBooks. Trial Balance has a QuickBooks import utility, and it allows the user to import trial balances from all accounting packages that can export trial balances into spreadsheet files. Most accounting packages allow spreadsheet export. Trial Balance also integrates with other ProSystem fx products, such as ProSystem fx Write-Up.

ProSystem fx Trial Balance also integrates with ProSystem fx Tax for Corporations, S Corporations, Partnerships and Exempt Organizations. This integration allows the user to set up tax codes in the application and then import these tax codes and groupings directly into the tax software. My favorite tax integration feature (Quiklink) allows changes that are made in ProSystem fx Trial Balance to be automatically reflected in ProSystem fx Tax. This feature saves a lot of time.

If your firm is not currently using this application, client files from ACE, ATB, FAST!, FAST Advantage and GoSystem Audit can be imported to ProSystem fx Trial Balance.

Integration with Office Productivity Applications:
As I mentioned in the ProSystem fx Engagement section, CCH has built all of its applications to integrate well with all Microsoft Office applications. This is the case for ProSystem fx Trial Balance, as well. All of the reports that are created by ProSystem fx Trial Balance are in Microsoft Office formats and are very flexible. ProSystem fx Trial Balance has the capability of exporting reports to Word; embedding document links into Word and Excel for creating custom reports; and embedding workpapers into any Office application.

Workflow & Engagement Management:
As I mentioned above, the primary focus of ProSystem fx Trial Balance is to manage the trial balance and the adjustments made to the trial balance. This program makes it very easy for you to import the trial balance accounts with intuitive processes. Once the trial balance is imported, adjusting journal entries are very easy to make. CCH has spent a great amount of time ensuring the integration with its tax products is efficient and effective.
ProSystem fx Trial Balance also makes it easy to do your job between trial balance import and tax export. You can customize the look and feel of the product as well as set up unique financial formulas and ratios that can be used year after year. Reporting is very flexible, as well. Users and reviewers can present data in many different ways to ensure quality service is being delivered to their clients.

Relative Value:
As previously noted, CCH has continually improved this product over the years. They have created a trial balance product that is very easy to learn, use and maintain. ProSystem fx Trial Balance is especially attractive if your firm is currently using other ProSystem fx products along with MS Office. Pricing for the trial balance system starts at $1,400, although discounts are often available.

2009 OVERALL RATING:

 

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