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Sage Software — Timeslips by Sage 2009

From the Nov. 2008 Review of
Time & Billing Systems

Timeslips by Sage 2009 has been around for more than 20 years and has proven
to be a very effective time and billing system for accountants, lawyers, consultants
as well as architects and other service-based businesses. The powerful and well-established
feature set makes Timeslips a program worth consideration. Pricing is not a
major obstacle; a single-station license is $499.99, and a five-station pack
is available for $899.99. For a network environment, a five-user license is
available for $699.99.

Ease of Use & Navigation Features – 5 Stars
Timeslips is designed with a graphic user interface that allows the user to
visually move through their daily tasks. Much like the navigation homepages
of Peach-tree and Office Accounting, this program is easy to understand and
easy to work with. The navigation page has an Out-look feel. Selecting the “enter
time” tab on the left brings up the layout of the process and features
related to entering time. You have these same tabs for entering expenses, clients
and tasks, slip reports, preferences and Help/support. The layout of the homepage
eases navigation from one home screen. Also on the home screen are little portlets
of relevant information, this information allows you to see, at a glance, items
of importance without having to run a report.

The main function for most users will be the entry of time and expense. The
slip entry screen is very easy to use and understand. Timeslips also gives the
user multiple methods for entering time. The timer can be used when on a timesheet,
time can be entered after the fact, or the TS Timer function (which is a pop-up)
allows you to track time without having to be in the program. You can also purchase
an add-on feature to interface with your PDA and enter time while out of the

Management Functions – 4.5 Stars
The timekeeper collections and contribution report is new for 2009. This report
gives management information about WIPs, billed, collections and more for each
timekeeper in the firm. Standard accounts receivable information is available,
and the user can create user-defined accounts receivable reports. I like the
functionality of the backdated A/R report; this gives the user the ability to
list the A/R balance of any client at any period in time. Alerts is another
important management function that lets you know when you’ve gone over
budget, when a client’s balance reaches a certain level, and other custom
criteria. You can trigger an alert when a specific client goes over an allotted
amount of time. This feature will give a manager the opportunity to make adjustments
as soon as information is available.

Other management functions such as applying payments to invoices, credit memos,
refunds and write-offs are easily done within the program. The client funds
feature allows you to view separate accounts that enable the tracking of retainer
fees, management of trust funds or tracking of escrow accounts for clients.
This feature gives the program greater flexibility in the way a firm can handle
multiple accounts.

Billing & Reporting – 5 Stars
Billing is solid, intuitive and easily done in Timeslips. The bill design tool
allows you to customize your bill by drag-ging and dropping the required fields
onto the bill. When previewing a bill on-screen, you can click on an item to
drill-down to view and edit the source data.

When preparing bills, guides and wizards make the process fairly simple. You
can make use of the billing assistant and firm assistant to become better oriented
with the program, as well. An approval process can be set up and maintained
to provide some control if that is necessary in your firm. Sometimes you need
to have the option to un-bill a bill that had been previously billed, and Timeslips
gives you the flexibility to undo a bill, change it and then reprocess.

The report listing is more than adequate, and information is also available
through the dashboards. The report wizard assists in the selection and generation
of the reports, making it an easy task. The report design tool eases the process
of creating new report templates and modifying existing ones, and it can be
accessed with one click when viewing a report on-screen. The interactive report
feature allows the user to get to source data faster by instantly drilling down
to the details in the report. Reports can be exported to Excel and modified
to meet the user’s needs.

Integration – 5 Stars
Timeslips integrates with Peachtree and QuickBooks and includes a two-way link
with both programs. If you are using Peachtree or QuickBooks, you can stream-line
the management of your client database using the two-way link between Time-slips
and these accounting packages. Timeslips Remote allows you to take your laptop
away from the office and track time. When you return to the office, you can
synch your time entries with your desk-top or server-based version of the program.

Timeslips eCenter gives you or your staff the capability to enter time on the
web, which is very useful for entering time when away from the office. With
one click, you can synchronize the eCenter transaction with your office. Other
add-on products that are specifically designed for Palm and Pocket PC handheld
devices are also available. As well, the product offers some integration with
Outlook and Excel.

User Support & Help – 5 Stars
New users can get up and running quickly with Timeslips, and support options
are available via wizards and instructional videos. When writing these reviews,
I looked at the product tours on the web to gain additional information. Live
chat assistance is available as well as a knowledgebase that is kept up to date.
As well, you can locate vendors that have passed a product certification program
to provide you hands-on assistance.

2008 Overall Rating: