2011 Review of CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business – ProSystem fx Fixed Assets

CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business - ProSystem fx Fixed Assets
800-PFX-9998

www.tax.cchgroup.com

Best Fit:
Firms with clients whose asset bases are large or complex, or potentially distributed across multiple geographical locations, particularly those using other components of the ProSystem fx Suite.

Strengths:

  • Comprehensive capabilities for all depreciation methods & treatments
  • Wizards for performing mass asset life events such as acquisitions and disposals
  • Good report export options, including to Word and Excel
  • User customization options
  • Tight integration with ProSystem fx Tax and Trial Balance

Potential Limitations:

  • Book projections are limited to seven tax years
  • No RFID or barcode scanning integration

From the December 2011 Review of Asset Management Programs

ProSystem fx Fixed Assets is an asset tracking, management, forecasting and reporting program designed for use by accounting and tax professionals managing depreciation and for multiple clients of various entity types. As a part of the ProSystem fx Suite of professional tax and accounting applications, the system can be used as a stand-alone solution or integrated with programs for tax, write-up, practice management and other applications.

Basic System Functions - 5 Stars
During installation of ProSystem fx Fixed Assets, which is an installed program either on a workstation or networked, the system offers the ability to import data from other programs in the suite or from spreadsheets and data files. It also offers a guided new-client entry process for entering basic client data and specific asset information. Users can choose default book settings, clone existing book structures from other clients or create completely custom schedules. The system supports any number of entities and any number of assets per entity, including organizations with multiple departments or geographic locations, and companies can be consolidated for reporting purposes. If using a network license, it allows any number of concurrent staff to work within the program simultaneously, and client-level security is available.

ProSystem fx Fixed Assets’ interface has a crisp design, with client selection screens providing multiple sort and filter options. System drop-down menus at the top of the screen offer access to clients, assets and tools such as preferences, mass disposal/sale options and other default settings. Within client files, the program maintains asset activity histories, which can be printed or saved to PDF. The client workscreen is a tabbed window that offers quick movement between a spreadsheet-view of the master asset list, which provides summary data. Other tabs include detailed asset information, vehicles and listed assets, disposal functions, projections, and other tasks.

Users can customize more than 400 fields on the master asset list, as well as many fields on asset detail screens, which give a side-by-side view of the books assigned to each asset. These detail screens also offer options for selecting asset type, convention and method. The system has the ability to assign and track assets based on cost centers, GL account numbers, depreciation expense accounts, departments, location and responsible person. As data is entered or edited on either summary or detail screens, the program performs calculations in real-time for all books and affected fields.

Core Asset Management Features - 4.75 Stars
ProSystem fx Fixed Assets includes built-in tools for maximizing Sec. 179 expenses and can automatically allocate available deductions by date in service or longest lives. The program supports all depreciation methods, including ACRS, MACRS, straight-line, declining balance, sum-of-the-years’ digits, amortization and units of production. Up to 99 user-defined depreciation methods can also be created. The program can track up to eight books per assets (five standard and three user-defined), with up to seven years of projections. Preconfigured, but completely customizable books include federal tax, financial, AMT, ACE and state, with all states included. Additional books can be added for State AMT and ACE, E&P, or custom ones.

Asset life event functions are generally easy to use, with special program areas that guide like-kind exchanges, partial and mass acquisitions and disposals, asset splits and unsplits, and transfers and sales. Consolidation capabilities are also available to merge the assets of multiple entities. Physical asset location tracking is aided by defined and customizable data fields, the ability to add pictures and digital documents, and asset custodian, but the program does not offer RFID or barcode scanning.

Reporting - 5 Stars
For day-to-day asset management, ProSystem fx Fixed Assets includes customizable calculation, projection, activity, status, asset and tax form reports which, along with additional options, are available from the main print menu. The system’s “next year” report provides expanded capabilities by using settings to adjust based on the reporting method. Prior-year reports can also be generated. Other reporting features include customization and editing tools, as well as the ability to save reports to Microsoft Word or Excel. The system can generate fileable versions of forms and worksheets, including Sec. 179, the ACE and 4562 worksheets, and accelerated depreciation.

Import/Export/Integration - 4.75 Stars
In addition to directly integrating with the other professional tax and accounting programs in the ProSystem fx Suite, the fixed asset system can import and export data from/to Excel, CSV and text files, which can be imported by most accounting, trial balance and tax compliance systems. In addition to Excel and Word, reports can also be saved to PDF formats.

Help/Support - 5 Stars
The program’s built-in assistive features start with friendly task wizards and extend to include field-specific Help and guidance, right-click menus and an indexed Help utility. The online support center includes user guides, FAQs, program tips, documentation, accounting-related news and training options, as well as access to an online user community. Program updates and live phone and online support are included with the program.

Summary & Pricing
ProSystem fx Fixed Assets is designed for professional accountants serving multiple clients and can be used as a stand-alone program or as a part of the larger ProSystem fx Suite. It provides comprehensive tools for asset depreciation and management for companies with asset bases of any size, with support for multi-divisional entities. Pricing starts at $2,100 for a single-user stand-alone or network license.

2011 Overall Rating 4.75

 

 

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