June 2018 Newsletter
What we’re talking about in June:
- The ‘secret sauce’ that makes your accounting solution tasty!
- Sage Summer specials are smokin’ til the end of the month (add Users and Modules now included)
- TimberScan now offers Core Cloud Systems! Check it out in a webinar next Wednesday
- Smooth sailing at the TUG Conference — review from the LAI crew
- Awesome ‘Tips and Tricks’ for Sage 300 CRE | Sage 100 CON | Sage Estimating
What’s inside your accounting solution?
by Joanie Hollabaugh, Sr. Director of Marketing
When you get a proposal from Tony Merry, VP at Ledgerwood Associates, you may be surprised to learn that he has already “customized” the solution for you.
And by “customized” — Tony always includes a special suite of complementary products for the core accounting modules that makes every company unique!
LAI’s ‘secret sauce’
So, besides the standard accounting functions (GL, AP, AR, etc.) there’s a special bundle that keeps your accounting software maximized for exactly how you want to run your overall business. They are:
- Information Assistant
- Report Designer
- Crystal Reports
- Inquiry Designer
- My Assistant
Let’s make sure you’re using them in the most effective and efficient way possible!
Information Assistant (IA) – Internal and external tool
Information Assistant is literally a snapshot view into your data, without actually having to enter the accounting system. IA is great for dealing with every day issues like cost overruns or insurance expirations. You can set alerts, customize your toolbar for frequently-used inquiries, and send info via email to anyone. If you’re into macros, this is the tool for you to automate almost anything!
Report Designer (RD) – Internal tool
Did you know that your Sage 300 CRE comes with 1,400 pre-built reports?? But we bet you’re still exporting data into Excel! The problem with that is, the moment you extract the data, it is no longer LIVE. The most common reason accountants do this is for running subtotals. And many times, there will be some manual data entry in Excel as well. YOU CAN STOP DOING THIS WITH TWO CLICKS in RD. This means your subtotals are in real time!
Crystal Reports (CR) – External tool
Crystal Reports, while more difficult to create than the canned reports in Report Designer, have a mission of their own — they are great for EXTERNAL or “executive” distribution. They look more refined than the system reports, and are far more customizable to the extent of the creator’s capabilities. These are the reports you want to send to vendors, your executive team, or your CPA.
Inquiry Designer (ID) – Internal tool
ID is the go-to app for drilling down, with 100 standard inquiries and the ability to create custom ones. This is a great way to access information instantly; you can include data from any Sage 300 application and apply any formula, condition, or note you choose. The ability to add columns, change forms and formats, create formulas or use standards included – the possibilities are infinite when it comes to accessing your company’s data. And it’s easy to save these to the toolbar, too!
My Assistant (MA) – Internal and external tool
Tony always says having My Assistant is like having another full-time employee, without the big salary. This awesome app will save you tons of time by automating internal and external tasks that make your day run smoothly — delivering KPIs, instant alerts, daily reports, financials, spreadsheets, documents, emails and more!
Your clever assistant integrates Desktop, Windows Desktop, and Microsoft® Outlook® with Sage 300CRE to email internal and external associates, from project managers to HR, or subcontractors and suppliers throughout the entire project! It keeps everyone in the loop, at the time they need to know.
There’s also wizard to help you set up your own customized rules, but it also comes with 350 pre-built rules that construction companies use regularly.
It’s built from experience
You already know that Sage 300 CRE is a great product. But because Tony has used the solution in his previous construction jobs, he also knows the tricks to getting the most data from the system, in the fastest way possible. And now you know his ‘secret sauce’ to success!
If you’re not using these tools to their fullest potential, and want some one-on-one consulting training, click below! It’s really “no big deal” to get a little help!
Dig in! We’re serving up 20% off specials four ways!
Ready to buy new, trade-in, migrate from your legacy system, or just add more licenses or modules to your current Sage Construction software? Good news – we have some smokin’ specials until the end of the month!
1. The more you buy, the more you save — when you add users and modules for Sage Estimating, 100 Contractor or 300 CRE
- Add 2 Licenses/Modules — Get 10% off
- Add 3 Licenses/Modules — Get 15% off
- Add 4+ Licenses/Modules — Get 20% off
Not sure how to add users or modules in Sage 300 CRE? Kyle Z. gives you step-by-step instructions HERE.
2. Bundle everything for a 20% Paperless Construction discount
Ready to get on board with Paperless Construction for Sage 100 CON or Sage 300 CRE?
Get a 15% discount on the ENTIRE PURCHASE when you include Sage Paperless APFlow or Premium.
Boost that discount to 20% off the entire purchase when you include Paperless e-Services! Learn more about Sage Paperless here.
3. Migrate! Replace your legacy ERP system for Sage 100 CON or 300 CRE for a 20% discount
Does your Maxwell, Jonas, Computer Ease, Foundation, Viewpoint, Dexter + Chaney, CF Data or American Contractor need to GO?
Come on over to Sage 100 CON or Sage 300 Construction and Real Estate and save BIG! Both are SQL ready, with loads of new features and enhancements!
4. Trade in your old estimating system for a 20% discount
Ready to replace your MC2, US Cost, WinEst, ProEst, Viewpoint (Quest or ProContractor), OnCenter or Planswift software with the SEXIEST release for Sage Estimating in a decade? Read our blog post: “The biggest Sage Estimating release in a decade.”
Just press the flipping burger to get started!
Core Cloud Systems from TimberScan
You’re invited — Webinar Wednesday, June 20th at 11am (AZ Time)
One place for it all!
Core Cloud Systems (CCS) gives businesses complete control over dedicated information streams for a connected, more convenient data management experience. With this single system you can:
- Design business forms
- Collect employee or contractor data
- Create customized portals
- Analyze financial data, and more!
CCS, from Core Associates, lets you build and deploy custom form applications and more, all from a single platform. An easy to use wizard walks you through it, plus it has seven solutions pre-built to get you going, including:
- CCS Daily is a solution for submitting and collecting daily production reports.
- CCS Time is a time management solution for tracking hours worked.
- CCS Credit Card is a credit card reconciliation solution for balancing paid and outstanding credit charges.
- CCS PO is a purchase order management module for producing and tracking work order documentation.
- CCS Inv-Control is an inventory control module that alerts users to excess or low level stock thresholds.CCS Bid lets you track bid submittal progress from start to finish in a single, mobile module.
- CCS Sub is a subcontractor portal that allows organizations to standardize how they collaborate with vendors using powerful, custom controls.
Smooth sailing at TUG — Recap from the LAI Crew
by Ruth Stockdale, Director of Professional Services
Another successful TUG Annual Conference
Several of us from Ledgerwood Associates just returned from another exceptional TUG Annual Conference, held this time in Orlando, FL at a wonderful Universal Studios resort. We were so pleased to meet many of our own customers there among the 900-plus attendees. TUG (formerly the Timberline Users Group and now The Users Group) is ever-expanding, and striving hard to meet the needs of Sage 300 CRE, Sage 100 Contractor, and Sage Estimating software users. If you’ve never attended a TUG conference, it’s difficult to describe the energy and enthusiasm present in every aspect of the conference!
TUG hosts one national conference and one regional workshop each year. The 2018 regional workshop will be held in November in St. Louis, MO, and the 2019 national conference is slated for May in San Antonio.
Five great reasons to go
If you’d like to know what you can expect from a TUG conference, here’s a recap of our experience in Orlando:
1. More opportunities to learn about your software than we can count!
In 23 separate session tracks over three and a half days, sessions were offered to help users expand their knowledge about how the software functions, learn tips and tricks, learn best practices for troubleshooting issues, and so much more! Topics ranged from beginner through advanced levels and basic workflows through a variety of report-design products. Sessions were either lecture/demo or hands-on labs and were led by experienced users, consultants, or vendors. Handouts for all sessions were available to attendees via download in the conference app. This way you can access information from sessions you could not attend. And CPE credit was available for most all sessions.
2. Ideas, ideas, ideas!
Users from across the nation attend TUG conferences, representing all types of businesses with all kinds of unique situations and needs. Whether during sessions or informally at lunches, breaks, or after hours, exchanges of ideas are one of the best reasons to attend TUG. You never know where you will encounter a valuable tidbit, trick, or report idea to take back to the office.
3. New faces and prized contacts
A large portion of participants were first time attendees, but not first-time companies. (Many companies are rotating who they send each year.) We also met users who had been attending for more than 20 years and everything in between. Networking with other users with similar operations and needs is another great reason to attend TUG conferences. Business cards and contact information are exchanged and many long-term friendships and business relationships are born at TUG.
4. The vendor trade show floor
This is an excellent opportunity to talk with vendors, see demos, and gather information about products that can take your business to the next level. Sage also has a booth, so you can find out firsthand what the next stages are for the development of your accounting software.
5. Recreation and relaxation
After long days of working your brain – 7:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. if you attended all session options—there were well-planned opportunities for winding down and having fun.
To learn more about TUG, visit the TUG website at www.tugweb.com.
Follow LAI on Social Media for current construction and technology news!
Upcoming LAI Online Training and Networking Events:
Estimating Reports Webinar
Join us for an informative presentation of the top reporting tool available for Sage Estimating, SQL Edition.
Learn how to:
- Create itemized proposals in Excel
- Explore your spreadsheet
- Create a summary of your group cost codes
- Drill into the details including subcontractor and supplier details
- View interactive estimate
- Excel-based view of the estimate sheet for Sage Estimating
- Utilize Excel capability for functions, filter, sort, subtotal, copy/paste and more
In addition to the reports on the Liberty Reports LaunchPad, learn how you can design your own Excel-based report.
Estimating Buyout Webinar
Sage is excited to announce “Buyout for SQL Estimating.”
See how the new Buyout module works allowing you to “buyout” your estimate to different vendors and then create Purchase Orders and Subcontracts for those items.
The construction season is fast approaching!
Join us for this informative presentation and learn how you can gain greater control over your projects, better communication between the field and office and higher confidence from your Surety by creating integrated project cost forecasting that backs up your Work in Progress reporting using Sage Office Connector.
Are you facing a cash flow crunch?
Submitted by Bryan Eto, CPA BeachFleischman
Use this financial health checklist!
Cash flow is always an important element in the smooth and successful operation of your business and is particularly key in meeting opportunities and demands.
Generating sales and managing operations are, of course, also important, but ensuring that that cash from those sales is collected and that your company’s daily cash flow needs are managed efficiently and effectively is even more important. And this is particularly true when the economy goes into a slump. Your business’s resources can be stretched to the max and you may find yourself scrambling to keep up with your own accounts payable, let alone worrying about your receivables.
Proper planning is paramount to be able to better avoid a serious cash crunch in the future!
As one step in that planning, it’s wise to diagnose your company’s cash flow health and ferret out any weaknesses that could create problems down the line. To that end, here is a checklist to help you get a picture of just how healthy your cash flow is.
If you answer “no” to any of the above questions, you may have profit and cash flow leaks in your company. Take steps to plug the holes before you face significant financial damage.
Beach Fleischman 2201 E. Camelback Rd. Phoenix, AZ 85016 | 602.265.7011 | http://beachfleischman.com | twitter: @BeachFleischman
Decluttering your views in Sage 100 Contractor
by Pam Schulz, Sage Certified Consultant
Limit your view to what’s relevant to you
Use Inactive Records, Job Level Security, and Screen Defaults to filter your view
Sometimes seeing every record is just too much! Inactive GL accounts, Cost Codes, Vendors and other records often need to be “kept” in the data past their usefulness, and sometimes they are accidentally used after they should be discontinued. For Project Managers, seeing everyone else’s jobs and associated records is just time consuming clutter. And every screen has fields and columns that are not useful to you. Here are three solutions that will cut down the ‘noise’ in Sage 100 CON.
Start with INACTIVE RECORDS
These records will no longer appear in the lookup windows, or be otherwise available.
- To tag a record as inactive (example: General ledger Account)
- Find the record in the menu where it is set up (Example – menu item 1-7 for a General Ledger Account, menu item 4-4 for a Vendor, etc.
- At the top of the screen, note: EDIT>Inactive Record
- Click on “inactive record”
The record still exists, but will no longer be available for use, or visible in lookup windows. This is useful when an account is no longer useful, but cannot be deleted because it is still “attached” to records. Inactivating the record keeps future unintended use from delaying the final deletion of a record.
Tag a record in a GRID as INACTIVE (example: Cost Codes)
Some records are stored in a GRID — to inactivate these, open the grid (in the example of Cost Codes, this is the menu item 6-5). Note the “Inactive” column on the far right hand side of the grid.
- Enter “Yes” to inactivate the record.
Limit the jobs and associated records visible using JOB LEVEL SECURITY
Limiting the visible records to certain projects can make every entry and query more efficient. Determine users that will be subject to Job Level Security. This is done at Menu Option 7-2-2 (Utilities>Company Security>User List.) Note the column to assign users to be “subject to job security” on the far right.
- Assign users to jobs
- This is done in the Job Set screen (menu option 3-5.) Note the “Job Access” list; assign up to five subject users per job
- Users that are subject to Job Level Security will see only records associated with jobs they are assigned to
- Users that are not subject to Job Level Security will continue to see all records
CUSTOMIZE fields and grids to remove clutter
Almost every grid can be customized to hide unused columns and resize to better fit the screen.
- RIGHT CLICK in the grid to see the options available.
- After changing the grid settings, remember to RIGHT CLICK one more time, and select “Save Current Grid View.”
- Individual Fields in a screen can be “skipped” using the F7 key and setting the field properties. Skipped fields are grayed out and skipped during entry
- The fields can even be renamed with a period so that their names are not distracting during entry
These solutions are so easy, and will make every lookup and entry so much simpler. Best of all, they are FREE!
Want help with customizing fields to remove irrelevant data? Use the form below to request an appointment with a consultant.
Kyle’s tip: Listen to your Uber driver!
by Kyle Zeigler, Sage Senior Certified Consultant
The best takeaways from TUG 2018
Some of the best tips come from attending a TUG annual conference, and this year was no exception. TUG (formerly the Timberline Users Group and now The Users Group) is a national event that brings together hundreds of Sage 300 CRE, Sage 100 Contractor, and Sage Estimating users, consultants and third-party product providers from across the nation. Attendees are afforded abundant opportunities to build their knowledge and skill in lecture-type sessions and hands-on lab sessions, network with other users and professionals experienced in their industry and with their software, and gain valuable tips – sometimes in unexpected ways, like from an Uber driver!
Top TUG highlights:
- Learning how to use Units accounts in General Ledger to track non-dollar values such as the number of months passed in the fiscal year or the monthly employee headcount so that these values can be used in financial statement designs to calculate other values such as average overhead costs per month and average labor costs per employee.
- Hearing firsthand from Jon Witty, Vice President & General Manager at Sage Construction & Real Estate, about the future roadmap for the development of Sage 300 CRE and other Sage products.
- Learning how to enhance performance in Crystal reports and Office Connector reports by creating and incorporating SQL queries into the reports.
- Meeting and mingling with users who freely and enthusiastically share the BEST tips and tricks from their wide range of experience with their software!
We always expect to come back to the office from a TUG conference excited about having attended and loaded with new information and ideas, but one of the best tips at this year’s conference came unexpectedly from an Uber driver!
After the last session was over on the last day of the conference, having several hours to relax, we decided to hire an Uber driver to take us into downtown Orlando, FL to sightsee. When he saw our destination, he asked why we were going there. Having responded that we wanted to see some historical sights, he wisely discouraged us from stopping at our original destination due to some unsavory aspects of the neighborhood, and kindly suggested an alternative.
What a tip!
Afternoon at Tiffany’s
We ended up having a delightful afternoon in a historic area that boasts a full assortment of authentic ethnic restaurants, interesting architecture, a gorgeous public park, and several museums and art galleries within walking distance.
Our serendipitous choice was the Morse Museum, which “houses the world’s most comprehensive collection of works by Louis Comfort Tiffany (1848-1933),” — including Tiffany jewelry, pottery, paintings, art glass, leaded-glass lamps and windows, and the chapel interior from the 1893 World’s Columbian Exposition in Chicago.” It was as fascinating as it was gorgeous!
While this Uber driver’s tip didn’t have anything to do with any Sage product, it provided a good analogy for reasons to attend TUG conferences and take advantage of the powerful expertise available to you: Listen to the experts, let them guide you away from potentially problematic or even harmful situations and instead lead you into a potent and rewarding experience.
How do I set default values in SQL Estimating?
by Renee Mullen, Sage Marketing Manager
When doing takeoffs have you ever wished that the location or other WBS values would automatically be assigned to items? Sage SQL Estimating not only makes this easy to do but also allows you to see what default values you’ve assigned as you’re doing a takeoff.
- In Estimating, from the Takeoff tab click Default Values (the window can be left floating or docked in the spreadsheet window).
- In the Default Values window choose default WBS codes, Location, or Alternate assignment.
- Leave the Default Values window open as you perform the takeoff for the defaults to be assigned to items as they are taken off.
Leaving the Default Values window open during takeoff is a slight change from the Pervasive version but allows the estimator to always know which defaults are chosen and to make changes to the defaults on the fly without having to find and relaunch the Default Values window.
Questions? Chat with Sage Monday through Friday, from 9 a.m.–8 p.m. ET.
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