SAGE INSTANT ACCOUNTS - initial reactions

  Forum Editor 07:26 AM 01 May 10

Now that you have installed the software it's time to start using it. Over the next few days please experiment. Explore the software's functions and features, and find out how intuitive it is - do you find your way around fairly easily, or are there things which baffle you?

  Pine Man 08:46 AM 01 May 10

The uninstall facility leaves loads of files littered all over the place and takes some time to find and remove them. A very poor facility.

Most of the program seems fairly intuitive and I tried to create a quotation, which included both products and services and was only able to do it on separate quotations, one for the labour involved and the other for the parts used.

Couldn't find a way of importing bank information from other programs such as excel or MS Money.

  Proclaimer 09:43 AM 01 May 10

INSTALL- No Problems, that always impresses me.

SETUP; Using the 'Setup Bank Account Wizard' I was asked for a ref number for the account. The wizard enters the next default number, it was 1251. I thought 'the wizard knows what it is doing, leave it like that'.

I Click on 'Next' and get this pop up message; 'The Bank Code is outside the range of the chart accounts, therefore its balance will not be reflected in your balance sheet reports. Either choose a different bank code or ensure you update the chart of accounts layout'.

That does not sound good and I am not sure what or where the 'accounts layout' is so I choose 'Help' and read about 'ref' numbers and it says 'We recommend you use a number within the range 1200 to 1299 as Sage Instant Accounts uses this range for the default bank accounts have already been set up.' (sic)

I select 1200 and Sage tells me that exists and suggests 1201. I accept that and so does Sage. I wonder why 1251 which is within range was giving a pop up warning. One that is not very clear either and why Sage was giving 1251 as the default when 1201 was available and I wonder what it all really means in the grand scheme of things.

The next step is setting the Account Type, the options are Cheque, Cash or Credit Card Account. I am not sure which I want being a sole trader, I select 'Help'. That helps a bit and confuses me too by changing the words used to bank and visa. It says 'A bank account can be a cheque account, cash account or a credit card account. The bank types generate different transactions types. For example, payments can be bank payment (BP), cash payment (CP) or visa payment (VP).' I just choose cash and be done with it.

On the 'Bank Information Screen' there is an option to enter a credit card expiry date If this account is for your company credit card. The account I chose is not (it is cash) but Sage insist that I enter a date in order to continue. I enter a valid date and continue.

That took the best part of 40 minutes to setup. Whilst not being too frustrating I would think first time users would reaching for a spreadsheet to keep it simple.

IMPORT; Importing Products from a spreadsheet was easy enough. Got an error for product description being too long at first so I just omitted that data and the import went well for over 250 products.

Overall my first impression is 'Good' no big hassle setting it up or getting my products listed in the Accounts Package. I could be up and running live with this in just one day if I wanted to.

  Proclaimer 10:29 AM 01 May 10

Try <File> <Import> Select Next from the Popup and then Nominal Accounts will allow you to pull in a CSV or xls. That might help you.

  Pine Man 10:50 AM 01 May 10

I actually converted a Money file into excel and then tried to import it but I didn't seem to get any indication about where I was importing it to. ie into the bank account. I went ahead anyway and never did find the data!

  jjss 13:26 PM 01 May 10

Set up customer & supplier base, no problems, straight forward enough.

Went to sent up Bank Details and opening balances and made a simple transposal error in opening balance. Tried to correct the error but couldn't get control. Went through the correction process, (having first looked through the help menus), the box to 'edit' is greyed out in the account details and therefore I can't edit the error. Tried to delete the account to start again, Sage wouldn't let me.

I appriciate that Sage may be trying to stop me from making a "fatal misstake", but there must be some way of correcting simple basic errors, maybe I just haven't found the answer yet...

Time to do some more digging into the help menu.

  woody 14:33 PM 01 May 10

When the program is started for the first time it should open the "Activation" window.
No other choices should be offered till the activation is completed.
Allowing other choices ,"Logon" for example,only causes unnecessary confusion.
Once logged on the program should allow movement between all parts of the program.
I found that by switching between different parts of the program meant I had to keep logging on - very frustrating.
Menu bar across top - file edit etc. click on "tools" opens another menu with "options" at last but one - click on that and I can only
see part of window.
At the bottom (of options)there are two box's -I can just see a small part of top of box's but not what is typed in them.
Now we click on "Weblinks" and most pages listed under "Weblinks" do not show correctly.
Click on "Welcome to Sage" and the menu bar shows -back - forward etc but only shows the top three quarters of the printing - the rest of the page seems ok.It does however refer to sage 14 - not 16.

  Pine Man 16:55 PM 01 May 10

If I go to tools/options I get the Options window open with six tabbed headings - and two boxes at the bottom - OK and Cancel.

If I open any of the weblinks they open in a 'browser' with a slider bar on the right enabling me to scroll from top to bottom of the page.
The Welcome page does, however, refer to v14.

Generally - I was surprised that I had to go and look for the password set up rather than being offered it at startup and even more surprised that it didn't work with either 'demo' or 'practice'. Both need their own logon and password - strange!

  Newuser38 17:29 PM 01 May 10

Worked through set up of company, suppliers,customers and tried quote, sale invoice etc. I wanted to set up a not registered for VAT operation and have not found that yet. Also wanted to include service and supply in a quote and found it came up as 2 quotes.I wanted to try the demo and the practice.(I think this is probably a must to understand the detail of the program but kept getting advised you cant do it when other windows are open) Will start practice operation from scratch later. Overall at first go I found the whole thing a bit cumbersome.

  woody 19:04 PM 01 May 10

Pine Man
Thank you for confirming the box's are - ok/cancel - i can not see those words but i did guess -from trial/error!

I do get the main page with slider bars.
I am referring to above the main page but not at the very top.The items are - back/forward/stop/refresh etc.I can only see the top portion of the word.

  mark2 19:25 PM 01 May 10

Have created supplier and customer database, entered some purchase invoices, I like the batch invoice method,had trouble finding where to enter credits, look under suppliers, then change view from supplier process to suppliers.

jjss there is an option to rebuild when exiting and running backup but this will DELETE all your data, enable you to start from scratch.


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