THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO CHOOSING ACCOUNTING SOFTWARE

THE ULTIMATE GUIDE TO CHOOSING ACCOUNTING SOFTWARE

Some 40 percent of business owners surveyed in 2015 by the nonprofit SCORE said it’s their least favorite part of owning a business. That makes sense. You want to run your business, not spend 80-plus hours a year on bookkeeping and taxes. The right accounting software puts everything you need for efficient financial management and bookkeeping at your fingertips.

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Software Features for Government AccountingEvery organization needs accounting. But what about a government agency, what kind of accounting does it require? According to AccountingEdu.org, “The goals of federal, state or municipal government agencies when applying the principals of accounting are different from the private sector’s main business objective of earning profit…government agencies and other recipients of government money are fiscally accountable to tax payers and must demonstrate compliance with the intended uses of…resources.”

We compiled this list of Top 5 Software Features for Government Accounting to help you determine what is most important for your agency.

Fund Accounting

Fund accounting is a method of accounting that allows you to keep the programs within your organization separated by fund numbers. Each fund, labeled as restricted, temporarily restricted, or unrestricted, contains its own chart of accounts. The biggest difference between fund accounting and regular accounting is fund accounting emphasizes accountability rather than profitability.

Let’s dig a little more into how fund accounting works.

Do you see that? The big plume of smoke rising from the bottom of the canyon, up, up, up. All the way up to our vantage point where it drifts past the jagged boards where the bridge ends. See it curl around the signs painted in red, “DANGER – BRIDGE OUT AHEAD”?

We’d like to prevent your business from being the cause of that plume of smoke because your decades-old accounting software crashed and burned through all the warning signs.

THE PROBLEM

CMS Pro is no longer supported by Cougar Mountain Software.

Progress doesn’t stand still. The fact that the product we introduced over 20 years ago still functions and contributes to so many successful organizations gives us no small amount of satisfaction. But when it’s compared to contemporary industry standards for capability and convenience, CMS Pro is just a fast horse racing against ever-more innovative vehicles.

As of September 1, 2017, CMS Pro reached its end of life. This is a normal and expected phase of any software’s existence. The best parts of the program were carried over into the next generation, contributing to a never-ending cycle of improvement.

Dave and Robert working with CodeWorksSpring of 2017 brought with it a sterling opportunity to enact one of Cougar Mountain Software’s core values: to be “Accountable to our Communities.” Robert Geier and Dave Parvin, two of the company’s best programmers, offered their time and extensive knowledge to assist aspiring developers on the 4th and 5th of April 2017. In conjunction with Boise CodeWorks, Southern Idaho’s premiere coding bootcamp, Geier and Parvin conducted mock interviews for trainees in the final week of their Boise CodeWorks training. The programming-language school covers HTML, CSS, JavaScript, Twitter, Google, .NET, SQL, and Git. The mock interviews covered all of that, as well as workplace etiquette, resume construction, and the difficult art of self-promotion. The half hour interviews occurred between the hours of 1 and 4 pm and were hosted on-site at the CodeWorks facility.

Proving the old adage that goodness breeds goodness, the benefits of this exercise were two-fold. Students were questioned, advised, and in some cases championed by Cougar Mountain Software’s veteran programmers, bolstering these new computer linguists, web developers, and analysts entering the local job market. This, in turn, will elevate the performance of the entire area and hopefully foster innovation. The second benefit impacts Cougar Mountain Software clients more directly, in that for each student, mock interview, curriculum question, and out-of-the-box answer that Geier and Parvin were exposed to, their own knowledge was stretched. Their enhanced perspective was taken back to the Cougar Mountain Software Dev department and applied to how their teams think about or will execute future projects. If you ask them, they’ll confess that they only teamed up with Boise CodeWorks to help. Plain and simple. Especially for a profession that is often associated with loners and dark cubicles, Geier and Parvin recognized this as an opportunity to use their experience to engage with the future talent in their field and help the local community.

Top 5 Security Features for Public Service AccountingThis week, Target announced that its 2013 data breach had been resolved for $18.5 million. That breach involved access to consumer data for over 110 million Target customers. Public service accountants should take notice. Whether you work with a school district, a fire department, police department, or any other public service entity, you will access and be responsible for sensitive data. Cougar Mountain Software’s DENALI allows you to breathe easy because its accounting solution solves common public service accounting security challenges with these five enhanced security features:

Third-Party BillingHave you ever noticed the eye roll when you ask for a split check at a restaurant? You’re having a great time with your friends and the wait staff is doing a great job, and when you ask to split the check the server’s demeanor instantly goes icy. It’s because split checks are a hassle. But split checks are part of doing business, any business. Beyond the restaurant world, third-party billing and split payments are a headache every accountant faces whether it’s between providers and insurers in the medical profession, or multiple donors in the nonprofit sector. Virtually every business will confront a third-party billing or split payment inquiry at some point. Denali and Denali Fund accounting software make it easy to answer those requests with an enthusiastic “YES!”

Denali offers a one-of-a-kind solution to the third-party billing and payment dilemma that is unmatched by other accounting software providers. In today’s business world, third-party billing and split payment capabilities are non-negotiable items for accountants—they are simply a way of life! Cougar Mountain Software’s Denali allows users to intuitively split billings and payments, and then reconcile them without creating headaches. In fact, third-party billing and split payments in Denali and Denali Fund are as simple as adding a payer and assigning them to the billing item. One of accounting’s perpetual puzzles is easily solved by deploying Denali or Denali Fund within your organization.

Cougar Mountain Software develops leading on-premises accounting solutions. Our hallmark software, DENALI, is specifically designed to scale to clients’ needs while maintaining an unbreakable audit trail.