We’ve all heard tales of smooth software transitions, where all your valuable data flows seamlessly from the old application to your new solution and tomorrow you’re back to work without a hiccup. However, data collected over the years on ERP implementations state that 50% fail the first time around. While that sounds scary, the reality is that transitions can be smooth, with minimal disruption to your operations. This is possible if they are well planned, skillfully executed and if your expectations are fairly and reasonably set. Below are some of the complicating factors you and your consultant should discuss prior to implementation, so you can ensure when you convert QuickBooks to Sage Intacct, it goes as smoothly as possible.
Prepare For a New System
What a lot of businesses don’t realize is how massive of an organizational change it is to go from QuickBooks to Sage Intacct. While the benefits are great, they fail to identify the potential risks involved and don’t pre-plan adequately by creating an effective strategy prior to the transition. Are employees prepared for the system change? Will they embrace the change, or will they become resentful and disengaged through it all?
It’s common for QuickBooks users to struggle with letting go of the mentality used with that system, which is more focused on checklists than financial management. The users are often too loyal to QuickBooks and their existing business processes to embrace the new Sage Intacct system properly and confidently. That’s why to ensure a smooth transition, you must include significant change management activities to minimize employee resistance. Every person on the team must be on board with the change and feel ready for this level of a system for the transition to be successful.
Start by involving your staff with the change by reviewing your existing business processes with them. Determine what processes need adjusted and can be improved so users can take advantage of the benefits Sage Intacct offers effectively. Identify best practices and document them. If possible, start by looking at your data to find the processes producing the best results and go from there. Share these results with the team and continually request feedback.
Collaborating with staff during the planning phase will build trust and engagement and keep them committed to the goals of the project. A strong business partner, like BT Partners, can assist with this process and help guide you through it. Choosing to convert QuickBooks to Sage Intacct is so much more than a system change, it’s a human change as well, and a company must be fully prepared for the transition for it to be a win.
Determine What To Bring
The ability to quickly produce accurate financial reports from Sage Intacct after the transition is most businesses’ first imperative. To achieve this requires proper planning on your part and the part of your consulting team. Again, a business partner can provide some great support here to help you with this process. Some things to consider are:
- Decide whether you want to start with beginning balances at a point in time, or migrate full general ledger detail since beginning of the ledger?
- Do you want to be able to run comparative financial reports in Sage Intacct (i.e., year over year), or will you be using your previous financial system and Excel for historical reporting?
- Do you want to migrate subledger information from your legacy system, such that all bills and invoices are recreated in the Sage Intacct’s AP and AR subledgers.
Based on your answers, you and your Partner can best determine the appropriate starting date and amount of data for the new Sage Intacct system.. A common approach includes migrating a beginning balance sheet for the year of implementation. Then, make monthly net change journal entries to provide month over month balances.
If you prefer not to rely on your legacy system for any information, detailed general ledger history may be migrated as journal entries. This allows you to do more detailed financial and general ledger reporting on your historical data within Sage Intacct. The journal entries include any existing memo and/or description and appropriate “dimensionalized” vendor or customer data. This approach allows detailed transactional reporting in Sage Intacct for vendor or customer history.
Historically, it has not been feasible economically to migrate detailed GL history. Often, the juice wasn’t worth the squeeze. However, it is now quite cost effective to accomplish the detailed migration using a Sage Intacct data extraction and loading expert such as Platform Transition. Platform Transition nearly eliminates the effort required to pull the detail from QuickBooks and create the correct journal entries. With Platform Transition, customers avoid approximately 20 hours of valuable time doing the migration manually.
Identify Where It’s Coming From
It goes without saying that to generate historical reports in Sage Intacct, you must first get the data into Sage Intacct, but determining precisely where to find the specific information needed within QuickBooks can be a challenge. This is complicated by the fact that many businesses elect to make changes to their chart of accounts as part of the transition, requiring an extra level of effort as you need to map those changes prior to data migration.
Yet Another Dimension (Or Two)
Are you using Classes in QuickBooks to handle what Sage Intacct calls Dimensions or different locations? If so, you’ll need to run separate reports by Class, so that you can isolate those amounts and bring them into Sage Intacct under the correct Dimension.
Standing By To Help
With proper planning and follow through, getting the information smoothly out so you can convert QuickBooks to Sage Intacct will require work, but shouldn’t require any hair pulling! It’s helpful to know what complicating factors you can anticipate, so your time and resource planning can address them. We are available to help with any part – or all – of the process, just let us know.