From the April/May 2010 Review of Small Business Accounting Systems (Locally Installed).
Red Wing Software was founded in 1979 and continues to offer high-quality accounting and financial software products designed for small to mid-sized businesses. TurningPoint Software, the more robust of Red Wing’s products, is a modular accounting product that provides a powerful system specifically designed for mid-sized companies.
BASIC SYSTEM FUNCTIONS:
I downloaded and installed TurningPoint in about 15 minutes from the Red Wing website with no problems. Setup wizards make setting up new companies a breeze. The program’s main screen contains a grid listing all system modules. Function keys are at the top, and frequently used functions such as access to Outlook, Excel, Word and Access can be found at the top of the grid. The left side of the grid is an expandable menu with available selections appearing on the right side of the grid. Journal entry screens are free of clutter and contain function buttons on the right side for adding, editing, deleting, listing or finding transactions. All data-entry screens contain lookup options and function buttons for quick entry. Unnecessary fields can also be eliminated, displaying only the needed functions within each screen.
There are currently no industry-specific templates available in TurningPoint, but when setting up the program, users can choose the type of chart of accounts that best suits the business, allowing for more accurate transaction posting.
CORE ACCOUNTING CAPABILITIES:
Journal entries must be entered using a batch system, and can be entered individually or as a multi-module posting. The Change Posted feature allows users to modify previously entered batches. The transaction inquiry allows users to search for specific system transactions. In AP, both paid and unpaid bills can be entered, as can credit memos. Recurring invoices can also be set up in AP. Invoices can be easily voided prior to paying. The AP transaction entry screen allows for the entry of customer sales information, credits and account adjustments. Recurring invoices can also be entered, and customer payments, deposits, pre-payments and write-offs can be processed.
Sales tax rates are set up for each taxing entity. All taxing entities must then be added to a sales tax group that will display the available tax jurisdictions that are included in each tax group. This feature is useful for invoicing those that have multiple taxing parties. TurningPoint provides no formal audit trail functionality, but the Journal Report does provide limited audit trail information. As well, the program does not currently offer multi-currency capability. The program has multi-warehouse capability, and multiple locations can be tracked by setting up sub-accounts in the GL Setup – Account Structure screen.
Quotes can be printed or easily converted into sales orders. Real-time sales information can also be processed in the AR module. Users can view on-hand quantities of all products, and change sales details such as cost or discounts, if necessary. There is no point-of-sale functionality within TurningPoint, but users will be able to directly link to UPS Worldship for shipping management capability.
All customers can be added on the fly when invoicing. Users can also enter unlimited shipping addresses, handle mass updates when changing customer information, and choose the type of statement that each customer will receive. Vendors can also be added on the fly when entering invoices for payment. Users can drilldown for originating transaction entry, view purchases by vendor and easily process 1099s. Employee management capability is handled by the add-on Payroll module.
TurningPoint contains a wizard for easy inventory setup. The product handles up to 20 product pricing levels and multiple units of measure for all inventory items. Up to five user-defined fields can also be tracked. TurningPoint support assemblies and will easily manage inventory totals in multiple warehouses, as well as product transfers between locations.
Quotes, invoices and statement can all be emailed to recipients, as well as exported to a variety of formats including PDF, Excel, HTML, RTF and Word. Currently, the product does not provide synch, e-payment or e-banking functionality.
The Financial Snapshots report provides a quick glance at vital company balances including cash, AR, inventory, AP and gross profit. The Business Graphs provide a colorful display of the information. While these are not dashboards, they do provide similar information quickly.
TurningPoint contains an impressive selection of standard reports. Each module offers standard reports specific to the module, as well as management and transaction reports. All reports can be previewed, printed or exported to a variety of file formats such as Excel, Word, HTML, CSV, Crystal Reports or RTF. They can also be saved as PDF files. The product provides multi-level security functionality with options to set up and maintain user groups, and set user access to individual modules and features within each module.
The export wizard allows users to create templates for exporting. The import migration wizard lets users select an import location as well as what file groups need to be imported. The mail merge wizard simplifies the creation of customer letters, shipping labels, inventory labels and vendor credit memos. This makes it easy to create custom documents for both vendors and customers. TurningPoint is a modular product that integrates with all of the suite’s modules and a variety of add-on products, including CenterPoint Payroll. The program does not currently provide an option to transfer data files to an accountant.
Excellent Help is available within each module. Users can search for a specific function or simply click on the question mark in each module for Help directed at that particular function. System downloads are available on the TurningPoint website and can be accessed by clicking on the link found within the program. The How2 Support document viewer offers access to instructional documents and videos, including in-depth software training demos. The website also offers access to complete training manuals.
The TurningPoint Customer Care Membership is required for all new system users and is renewable annually. Support is available in Gold and Silver levels, and costs are based on the number of modules purchased. Benefits include toll-free support, major maintenance and product upgrades, updated tax tables, and discounts on training seminars.
SUMMARY & PRICING
TurningPoint can be purchased in suites. The Financial Suite costs $2,495 and includes GL, AP and AR. The Inventory Suite costs $4,495 and includes GL, AP, AR, Inventory, Order Entry and Purchase Order. Modules can also be purchased separately and generally run $895 each. So the total cost for the core module set of GL, AP, AR and Payroll would run about $3,390 for a single user; $4,570 for up to five users.
TurningPoint is a solid, modular product, well-suited to businesses experiencing a growth period. Outstanding import/export options and excellent system integration both internally and with add-on modules make this an excellent fit for mid-sized businesses looking for a more powerful product than an off-the-shelf product.
2010 OVERALL RATING: