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CCH Tax & Accounting — ProSystem fx Fixed Assets

the Dec. 2006 Review of Fixed Asset Management Systems

Designed as a stand-alone system and as an integrated part of CCH’s ProSystem
fx suite, ProSystem fx Fixed Assets offers users a comprehensive
system for the management of fixed assets. ProSystem fx Fixed Assets
can meet the needs of very small organizations with just a few assets as well
as larger entities with more complex needs. The program includes a total of
eight books: five standard books and three used-defined books. ProSystem fx
Fixed Assets supports all traditional depreciation and amortization methods,
as well as custom calculations, and is capable of producing FASB-compliant and
GAAP-compliant reporting worksheets and financial information. ProSystem fx
Fixed Assets shares data with other products in the CCH suite, namely ProSystem
fx Tax, Global fx Tax and ProSystem fx Engagement.
ProSystem fx Fixed Assets costs $1,550 for the first user (stand-alone or network);
additional concurrent users cost $135 each.

ProSystem fx Fixed Assets’ user interface consists of a spreadsheet
view populated with book columns and featuring individual line support for selection
lists and asset information. This allows users to quickly view summary data
while providing the ability to drilldown to individual asset details. The program
features a customizable interface with traditional Windows pull-down menus and
icons, along with additional navigation features including tabbed data-entry
screens and collapsible menu trees.

ProSystem fx Fixed Assets starts out with a client selection screen,
which will be familiar to ProSystem fx users. With a single toolbar
overhead, new users can quickly figure out what to do. The client selection
screen is sortable, filterable and searchable. Once within a client’s
files, a tabbed interface allows easy movement between asset detail information,
the client’s asset list and disposition options. The program can be customized
on a per client or user basis via preferences. Helping to further streamline
the process, templates are available during new asset setup, as is the ability
to copy existing assets, and the program can be set to automatically assign
searchable IDs.

Asset information is populated in the Asset Detail section, which displays
a very complete compilation of asset information, including ID, acquisition
date, description, location, GL account and department info, cost center, customizable
sort fields, and much more. This is where the user can view actual depreciation
computations, with the single spreadsheet view offering immediate access to
all books for an asset. This enables the user to immediately spot differences
in calculated amounts from book to book. Would you like to see the effect of
a different depreciation method? This is the place where users can see and compare
the effects of the use of various methods all at once. Scroll lists are readily
available for selecting what is common asset information such as accounts, departments
and other input characteristics. Users can also take advantage of seven additional
fields for tracking data on a custom basis.

ProSystem fx Fixed Assets supports an unlimited number of clients and
assets. The five standard books are comprised of the Federal, Financial, AMT,
ACE and State. The program supports bulk/mass and partial dispositions, like-kind
exchanges and negative depreciation, with support for a variety of depreciation
methods, including MACRS, ACRS, straight-line, declining balance, section 179
and accelerated depreciation of Indian lands. Asset books provide users with
information on property type, cost, averaging convention, asset life, prior
depreciation taken, business use percent and current depreciation. ProSystem
fx Fixed Assets can project the future effect of various scenarios,
from a single asset to all assets in the book. It automatically performs calculations
as asset data is entered, but system calculations can be overridden as desired.
The Tax Link feature aids in transferring client asset data to tax prep systems.

As previously noted, ProSystem fx Fixed Assets integrates with other
programs in the ProSystem fx Suite, a valuable feature to users of
ProSystem fx Tax as well as the other suite programs. It can also convert
or import data from most other fixed asset management systems and spreadsheets.
Client data files and *.PDF versions can be exported into engagement binders.
ProSystem fx Fixed Assets does not support barcode scanning. Exporting
of program data is available via Excel spreadsheet or *.PDF files.

REPORTING — 4.5 Stars
ProSystem fx Fixed Assets is both FASB-compliant and GAAP-compliant,
and produces more than 20 reports, including asset expense and depreciation,
comparisons, variance, acquisitions, dispositions, projections, state modifications,
as well as customization options. Reports can be grouped by several methods
and viewed, printed or saved in Excel, Word, *.CSV or *.PDF format. ProSystem
fx Fixed Assets produces IRS-compliant Form(s) 4562 and 4797.

HELP/SUPPORT — 4.5 Stars
The program has an intuitive user interface that features Traditional F1 and
right mouse-click context-sensitive Help. A built-in tutorial is provided, and
support is available via traditional toll-free telephone or e-mail. ProSystem
fx Fixed Assets includes templates and a copy ability that can be utilized
during asset creation. Support and updates are included in the cost of the system.
Online training is available for an additional cost.

ProSystem fx Fixed Assets provides users with a powerful combination
— a viable fixed asset management system that can be used on a standalone
basis while also delivering ProSystem fx users with the ability to
integrate data with other CCH products. The program’s support for multiple
depreciation books should meet the needs of most entities with simple or complex
depreciation needs, while its single-screen view of all depreciation books is
extremely useful for comparison viewing.

2006 Overall Rating: 4.5 Stars