Sage Software Inc. — Peachtree by Sage Premium Accounting for Nonprofits

From the Oct. 2007 Review of NFP Accounting Systems

Sage Software has recently released Peachtree by Sage Premium Accounting for Nonprofits 2008. This latest version contains several additions to the core product along with enhancements to the industry-specific nonprofit edition.

The Peachtree desktop screen contains a drop-down menu bar at the top that provides access to various system functions such as File, Lists, Analysis, Reports and Services. To the left of the screen is the navigation bar, which provides access to the Navigation Centers. Also found on the navigation bar are shortcuts to frequently used system functions. This area is completely customizable, allowing users to add shortcuts to any system functions or reports that are used frequently.

The Navigation Centers provide a graphical flowchart interface where functions are listed in logical sequence and are accessible from this centralized area. The Business Status Center displays fully customizable company information that can be updated by simply clicking on the “customize this page” tab at the top of the screen. Navigation has never been easier. Data-entry screens are simple in design and contain lookup options for all appropriate data fields. Customers, vendors, accounts and items can all be added ‘on the fly’ when necessary.

The nonprofit edition of Peachtree allows users to choose from several business types, including Day Care Centers, Educational Institute, Nonprofit Organization and Religious Organization. Users can use either the United Chart of Accounts or the United Way Based Chart of Accounts. Once a company is created, a complete setup guide will appear on-screen to assist with all additional setup functions. The easy-to-use Import/Export function can help even the most hesitant user with importing or exporting data to or from third-party applications.

Rather than offering modules, Peachtree by Sage Premium Accounting for Nonprofits contains Centers, which house the various functions within the system. These centers include Customers and Sales, Vendor and Purchases, Inventory and Services, Employees and Payroll, Banking, and Company. Other functions found within the Centers include Sales Quotes and Proposals, Invoicing, Purchase Orders, Electronic Bill Pay, Time and Expense, Employee Direct Deposit, and a complete GL and Banking function.

Although Peachtree Premium for Nonprofits is better suited to smaller nonprofits, those who find themselves outgrowing the system can upgrade to Peachtree Quantum, which can support up to 10 users and offers industry-specific functionality, as well.

As previously noted, Peachtree by Sage Premium Accounting for Nonprofits 2008 contains several enhancements and updates both to the core accounting product and to the nonprofit edition. These enhancements include numerous reporting improvements to frequently accessed reports, such as the addition of 100 new fields, better drilldown capability, the addition of custom data ranges and improved income statements. Better forms customization capability has also been added in the 2008 edition, and files can now also be attached to system records. The 2008 edition also includes a better variety of financial statements and reports, better system security, and a solid audit trail feature.

The specialized chart of accounts ensures that all cash receipts are properly allocated to the correct accounts, and a detailed customer transaction history allows for close monitoring of incoming and outgoing transactions. The Forms function provides fully customized templates for Donation Receipts, Fundraising Letters and Outstanding Pledges.

REPORTING – 4.5 Stars
More than 140 pre-formatted, fully customizable reports are included in Peachtree by Sage for Nonprofits. A special edition of Crystal Reports designed specifically for Peachtree is also included with the core product. The Reports and Forms option displays all available system reports and forms, along with a brief description of each. The Options icon allows users to choose filters and sorting options, and all reports can be e-mailed, exported to Excel or saved as a PDF file. Nonprofit-specific reports available include Statement of Revenues & Expenditures, Donor Grantor Summary List Report, and Statement of Financial Position.

Thirty days of free product support is available to all new Peachtree users upon registration. Peachtree by Sage also offers a variety of support options, including the Freedom Support Plan for single- and multi-users, and Peachcare Support, which provides 60 minutes of support annually. Users will also receive access to the product knowledgebase and Live Chat Assistance. Local support is also available in most areas from certified technicians. Training options include self-study guides, an accounting tutorial and local training. The Help function found throughout the product also provides good assistance.

Peachtree by Sage Premium Accounting for Nonprofits 2008 is currently priced at $599.99 for a single-user system. Peachtree is a good option for newer or smaller nonprofits that need nonprofit functionality along with a solid accounting system.

2007 Overall Rating: 4.5 Stars