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MYOB US — Premier Accounting Small Business 2008

800-322-MYOB (6962)

From the June/July Review of Small
Business Accounting Systems

MYOB (which used to stand for “Mind Your Own Business), has been producing
accounting products for the global small business community since the late 1980s
and focuses several of these products on the U.S. market, most notably its AccountEdge
and FirstEdge systems for Mac users, and Premier Accounting and BusinessEssentials
for PC users. The Premier Accounting line is the company’s most comprehensive
accounting and small business management suite, providing compliant GL, AR and
AP functions, along with payroll and HR functions, inventory, sales and purchasing,
time-based billing, contact management, electronic banking, financials reporting,
customer/vendor communication tools, and appointment/scheduling capabilities.
The program supports multiple currencies.

MYOB also offers multiple add-on options for the program, including credit
card processing, direct deposit, electronic payment functions, wage reporting
services and fully outsourced payroll. Premier Accounting 2008 costs $299 for
a single-user license ($159 if upgrading), with additional concurrent users
costing $149 each or $499 for five. The multi-user upgrade pricing is $249 no
matter how many licenses are being upgraded. The system is offered free to accounting
professionals who serve small business clients using the system.

Ease of Use/Basic Functionality — 4.5 Stars
During initial installation and setup of the company, MYOB Premier Accounting
provides a wizard called the New Company Assistant that guides users through
required basic steps including setting up initial charts of accounts for which
more than one hundred types of businesses are included based on industry classification.
A Setup Assistant then further guides users through additional tasks. The program
is then centered on the Command Center, which opens into a subwindow and provides
icons for the core areas of the program, including Accounts, Banking, Sales,
Time Billing, Purchases, Payroll, Inventory and the Card File. Selection of
one of these modules brings up a workflow diagram that shows specific tasks
to which the user can jump. For instance, the Purchases section includes links
to the Purchases Register, entering purchases, paying bills, preparing electronic
payments, printing checks, printing or e-mailing POs, printing 1099s and 1096s,
printing or e-mailing payment notifications, or accessing the transaction journal.
This intuitive layout makes it easy for a user to get to a specific task, such
as entering sales transactions or receiving payments. The Command Center also
provides access to a transaction search function, reports, analysis and a user-specific
To Do list.

Transaction screens provide customer/vendor selection lists, which can be
quickly searched and also allows on-the-fly addition of new customers/vendors.
Lists are available for selecting salesperson, standard comments, shipping options
and payment method, while the windows offer icons for printing, e-mailing, accessing
the journal and changing invoice layout. Full contact lists, including employees,
customers, vendors and personal contacts, are available through the Card File,
which supports multiple shipping addresses, e-mail contact and other data. All
functions of the program are easily accessible and easy to use. Communication
tools and customization options further enhance the system.

Core Accounting/Security Functions — 4.5 Stars
In addition to key accounting modules for GL, AP and AR, the payroll function
has the ability to track hours, vacation and sick leave, benefits, direct deposit,
and customizable deductions. It also includes W-2, W-3 and 1099 reporting. As
well, MYOB offers outsourced payroll options. Premier Accounting includes a
respectable inventory module that allows up to 30 pricing levels per item and
handles kit building, negative inventory, multiple location support and inclusion
of item photos. It also enables setting of re-order points. For sales, the program
makes it easy to convert a quote into a work order and then into an invoice
as the sales process continues, with the ability to e-mail or print such documents.
The sales function also provides job tracking options that include four levels
for sub-projects. The payables component enables electronic payments or printing

Additional features include contact management, time billing, credit card
acceptance and electronic banking and reconciliation. A Customer Appointment
Manager add-on provides scheduling for multiple staff, with multi-person calendar
views (see
The system includes a full-time audit trail that enables tracking of all transaction
activity along with security options that can restrict users to specific program
areas. New for 2008, MYOB has enhanced Premier Accounting’s customer,
vendor and employee relations functions, adding itemized customer statements
to the invoicing functions, enabling printing or e-mailing of check stubs and
payment notifications for vendors, and improving benefits and leave tracking
in the payroll system.

Reporting & Management Functions — 5 Stars
Premier Accounting has a broad collection of reporting options, including more
than 200 stock reports that can be customized, providing everything from full
financials, aging and customer lists to prior-period comparisons and detailed
reports on sales, purchasing, banking and payroll. When viewed on-screen, reports
offer drilldown functionality, and they can be enhanced with graphical elements,
e-mailed or output to Word, Excel, PDF or HTML formats. The system also can
print wage and contractor reporting forms.

Import/Export/Integration — 4 Stars
Premier Accounting is based on an ODBC database, which enables sharing information
with other programs. It can import from QuickBooks using a conversion assistant
and can output reports into Excel and Word formats, while the contact management
and calendaring features integrate with Microsoft Outlook. Premier Accounting
also integrates with CaseWare. The program does not offer remote access capabilities.

Help & Support Options — 4.5 Stars
Premier Accounting provides great wizards that guide users through processes,
along with right-click menus and content-sensitive Help tools. The company’s
online support center is well-stocked, providing product documentation, training
guides, webinars, FAQs and a guide called Accounting 101. Also available are
industry-specific guides that help users tailor the program (and other MYOB
accounting applications) to their specific industry. Guides for manufacturing,
wholesale, service and retail are currently offered, with plans to add guides
for tradespeople, consultants, health professionals and builders later this
year. Support plans are subscription-based and available in either monthly or
annual packages. The company’s website is very upfront with pricing information
on all programs, add-ons and support plans.

Relative Value — 4.5 Stars
MYOB’s Premier Accounting 2008 starts with a traditional collection of
core accounting command centers that is complemented by an impressive set of
additional features, including strong inventory, payroll and sales functions.
It is even further enhanced by great business management tools like contact
management, electronic banking, electronic payment functions, and a powerful
reporting and analysis system.

2008 Overall Rating: 4.5 Stars