2014 Review of Acclivity AccountEdge Pro 2014

Best Fit: Growing small and mid-sized businesses needing strong reporting options and advanced features, such as warehousing with multiple geographic locations and multi-currency capabitlities.

Strengths

  • Supports advanced features like multiple currencies and multiple warehouses, and also has related integrated products for web store/shopping cart and point of sale.
  • AccountEdge Pro 2014 has a strong Mac OS version, and company data files are designed to be hosted and accessed by up to 10 users with either the Windows or Mac OS version of the application.
  • Strong reporting with many options for export and customization built-in, including export to CSV, PDF, Excel, and HTML.  Users can also use third-party report writers with the available ODBC connection to the application’s database.
  • Acclivity provides active public accounting firms with multiple paying clients with a complimentary copy of AccountEdge Pro 2014 upon request.

Potential Limitations

  • The available add-on products and services for the application (as shown on the Company’s website) are fairly limited, and integrations to common tools like the SalesForce.com CRM system are not available.
  • Although the application supports foreign currency translations and adjustments, users must manually update the exchange rates used for calculating the adjustment.

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Full Review:

Acclivity’s AccountEdge Pro 2014 is a U.S. small business accounting software application for both Windows and MacOS which originated as the U.S. version of global small business management system MYOB.  AccountEdge is now available in three versions (AccountEdge Basic, AccountEdge Pro, and AccountEdge Cloud) with three localizations (U.S., Canada, and a generic international version).  Acclivity also offers solutions for point of sale, a free mobile version of AccountEdge (AccountEdge Mobile for iOS), a web store service, and a time tracking application

AccountEdge Cloud is a new subscription-based service which allows others to access your AccountEdge data in computer or mobile browsers.  Subscription plans for this product start at $10/month for single user access, up to $100/month for as many as 50 users.  The company has also updated its companion iOS app called AccountEdge Mobile for quicker synchronization with the product’s database. 

The 2014 version of AccountEdge Pro added support for departmental accounting, the combining of inventory items, a tab for tracking variations of a product (e.g. size, color, gender, age, etc.), as well as improvements to the products job costing reports which support jobs which span as long as two fiscal years.  The application also now supports a new intergration which simplifies the use of payments service Rerun for automated processing of recurring invoices and subscriptions.

The application has historically been known as one of the stronger accounting applications available on Mac OS X, but both the Mac version and the Windows version of AccountEdge Pro offer advanced features to small business users such as multiple currency support and multiple-warehouse inventory support.

Basic System Function: 5 Stars

The application was simple download and install onto an instance of Windows 8.1 Pro.  Acclivity allows users to have a thirty day trial of the software, and we used this trial to complete our review.  The Command Center (shown in Figure 1) is the main point for navigating the application, and this screen has tabs for common functions, including Accounts, Banking, Sales, Time Billing, Purchases, Payroll, Inventory, and Card File.  The screen has drop-down menus, there are drop down menus across the bottom of the screen, and a task pane with recent menus, favorite items, and help appears on the right hand side of this screen.

Acclivity is a forms-driven application, however, the software is a true, double-entry general ledger.  The new company setup process is relatively easy to use, and a new company can be created using the included New Company file Assistant in a few minutes.  A wide range of business types and industry chart of account templates are available through the application.  Once the file is created, the Easy Setup Assistant helps users get their customers, vendors, payroll, and settings configured for the initial use of the application.

As mentioned earlier, the application is available for both the Windows and Mac OS platforms.  Data files are designed so that they can be accessed on either Windows or Mac versions of AccountEdge.  An iOS mobile app is also available which connects to data stored on Acclivity’s servers that has been uploaded from a desktop instance of the software. 

Core Accounting Capabilities: 4.5 Stars

The product has strong modules for general ledger, accounts receivable, and accounts payable.   The general ledger has either 12 or 13 periods per year, and periods can be closed to lock out accidental postings.  Invoices can be printed, e-mailed, or faxed to customers.  The application also supports e-mail delivery of statements to customers as well.  Accounts payable bills can be entered and checks printed through the Purchases module.

AccountEdge Pro includes support for multiple-rate, multiple payee sales tax calculation, and offers a Canadian localization of the software which supports Canadian payroll and GST calculations. 

Payroll can be processed in house; a support agreement is available to insure that the payroll tax tables are current.  Technical support via e-mail is free (takes 24-48 hours), and telephone support is provided during the first 30 days for new customers.  Telephone support agreements for existing customers start at $199.00 per year for one user.  AccountEdge offers integration with Sure Payroll (part of payroll processing giant PayChex) for those interested in a web-based payroll option. When using Sure Payroll, journal entries are sent to AccountEdge to record the payroll transactions.

AccountEdge Pro supports multiple currencies, however, users must manually enter the exchange rates used to translate foreign currency transactions into the native financial reporting currency.  The application also supports multiple warehouse locations, although data entry at remote locations would require that the software be accessed through remote access or a hosting provider.  Different divisions of a company can be tracked using “categories” within the application, and the product added support for departments in the 2014 version of the software.

The product’s audit trail function is turned off by default, and must manually be enabled.  Once enabled, the Audit Trail Report shows changes to settings, standing data, and transactions.  There is also an optional preference which requires that transactions be reversed and reentered once posted that enhances the product’s internal control.

The application supports simultaneous access by up to 10 users on the network edition of the application, which is available for computers running Windows or MacOS X.

Day to Day Operations: 4.5 Stars

AccountEdge Pro includes sales tax calculation with multiple rates/payees, and integrates with Acclivity’s point of sale application for Mac as well as the company’s hosted shopping cart/eCommerce platform for web sales.  The software does not offer integration with UPS and FedEx shipping tools.

The application includes a feature called “Card File” which is a basic contact management tool.  A number of business management tools, including CRM, appointment management, timekeeping tools, human resource management, and reservation management are linked on the AccountEdge add-ons page at http://accountedge.com/addons/.  The add-ons page does not list integrations to SalesForce.com or other major hosted CRM applications.

Inventory and purchasing features included the support of multi-location inventory and committed inventory (pending orders). The Auto Build feature enables the user to create a bill of materials that can be used to “build” and item for sale. AccountEdge only supports the weighted average cost method for inventory valuation. Standard inventory reports for management purposes include an Inventory Value Reconciliation (Book to Physical report), pricing analysis, and stock alert.

The inventory item maintenance screen (shown in the figure below) shows the depth of information which can be maintained on the eight tabs associated with each item in AccountEdge Pro.

Management Features: 4.5 Stars

A Dashboard Overview is not included as a home page in the application, however, charts and graphs are available as menu options from the reports menu.  Reporting is available from the command center and is organized by category. Reports can be filtered, report fields can be or removed, and reports can be printed, e-mailed, saved in various formats including PDF, Excel, CSV, HTML. Reporting capabilities are further enhanced by ODBC capabilities built into the product, so third party report writers like Crystal reports would be able to access the data on the Windows platform.

Security is organized by two levels; system wide which includes locking open periods and user security that is restricted by access to specific menu options. When closing a year the user has the ability to purge data to reduce the file size.

Integration and Import/Export: 3 Stars

Data Transfer uses the import/export feature listed on the file menu using Tab-Delimitated or CSV files. The AccountantLink feature also allows transfer of accounting data to the outside accountant. Acclivity supplies a free copy of AccountEdge to the accountant to facilitate this transfer of information.

Help and Support: 4.5 Stars

Built-In Support features and help menu link to the Acclivity website. Additional support includes a U.S. based call center, a YouTube channel with videos, and a blog. Users can also schedule a Concierge Call from the program’s Start Here pages, and are free to new customers. Free e-mail support is available. Service package, payroll tax tables, support, US support, upgrades, 30 days with purchase of new package free e-mail support.

Summary and Pricing

Acclivity’s AccountEdge Pro 2014 is a U.S. small business accounting software application for both Windows and MacOS which originated as the U.S. version of global small business management system MYOB.  AccountEdge is now available in three versions (AccountEdge Basic, AccountEdge Pro, and AccountEdge Cloud) with three localizations (U.S., Canada, and a generic international version). 

Pricing: AccountEdge Pro is $399 for new users, and is $159 for s single user upgrade or $249 for a multi-user upgrade version.  A Basic version is also available starting at $99 for new users.  AccountEdge Cloud plans start at $10 per month for a single user.

Acct Programs:     Acclivity offers separate partner program for bookkeepers and accountants.  Members receive a copy of the software, technical support, updates, product discounts, and listing in a database of accounting professionals who support AccountEdge.  Membership is $100 for licensed public accountants (CPA, CMA, EA, CGA, or CA), and is $299/year for members of the bookkeeping program.  More information and registration is available online at acclivitysoftware.com/partners/accountant/.

Best Fit: Growing small and mid-sized businesses needing strong reporting options and advanced features, such as warehousing with multiple geographic locations and multi-currency capabitlities.

Strengths

  • Supports advanced features like multiple currencies and multiple warehouses, and also has related integrated products for web store/shopping cart and point of sale.
  • AccountEdge Pro 2014 has a strong Mac OS version, and company data files are designed to be hosted and accessed by up to 10 users with either the Windows or Mac OS version of the application.
  • Strong reporting with many options for export and customization built-in, including export to CSV, PDF, Excel, and HTML.  Users can also use third-party report writers with the available ODBC connection to the application’s database.
  • Acclivity provides active public accounting firms with multiple paying clients with a complimentary copy of AccountEdge Pro 2014 upon request.

Potential Limitations

  • The available add-on products and services for the application (as shown on the Company’s website) are fairly limited, and integrations to common tools like the SalesForce.com CRM system are not available.
  • Although the application supports foreign currency translations and adjustments, users must manually update the exchange rates used for calculating the adjustment.

2014 Overall Rating: 4.25 Stars

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