Sage One review - first of many

Following the previous debate about Sage One, here is a summary of the review by Nigel Harris we have just posted in IT Zone:

Target market Very small businesses supported online by their accountants.

Cost £5/month Cashbook edition; £10/month Accounts; £250/year Accountant’s edition (free to Sage Accountants Club members)

Strengths

  • Simple interface supporting quick/easy data entry
  • Summary home page (pictured above) presents good overview of company info
  • Competitive price
  • Can handle cash or invoice-based accounts, with VAT reporting for both
  • 24 hour telephone support lines

Weaknesses

  • Inability to post transactions to specific nominal ledger accounts
  • Limited reporting; no drill down to transaction detail
  • Banking command requires a two-step process to bank cash
  • No integration with Sage accounts production programs - yet

Following a conversation with a Sage product manager, Nigel added a postscript in which he commented, "My gripe over the double handling of cheque receipts fell on deaf ears... This is apparently the way the overwhelming majority of those they spoke to during the initial six month research phase preferred it. However, there are a number of other enhancements which have already been requested by early adopters that are likely to make it into future updates, such as more reporting options in the Accountants Edition, and payroll and CRM functionality, maybe as add-on modules...

"Overall impression - I like the pricing, it looks good and is easy to use. I'd just like a few of those niggles sorting out before I roll it out to too many clients, but I am optimistic that Sage will get there later this year."

Speaking of project roll-outs, we've finally got around to something that was long promised, for us to document the applications that are available and key comparison points that may help shoppers. Does the format and content of Nigel's review hit the spot for you, and are we on the right track if we try and cover 10-20 of the current contenders over the course of the year?

Any feedback will help shape our Cloud accounting software review programme as we take it forward - so fire away!

Comments
Michael Wood's picture

API...?

Michael Wood | | Permalink

I'm definitely not an impartial observer in pointing this out (as Receipt Bank integrates with a number of the online accounting / bookkeeping solutions) but I would like to see a mention of the presence / breadth of a public API in future reviews.

I believe that this is important because it is both:

1) an indicator of the potential of the solution - i.e. can it be linked to accounts prodution software, CRM systems, etc

2) an indicator of the commitment of the vendor to data portability - i.e. will you be able to move your/your clients data in the future if you would so wish.

Regards,

Michael

API...

johndon68 | | Permalink

There is no API for SageOne.

As a registered Sage Developer, I asked as soon as the product was announced and was told there were no current plans to make an API available.  Sage only made an Instant API available 2 years ago despite having one for Sage 50 for over 15 years so it may be a long wait...

John  

nogammonsinanundoubledgame's picture

Omitted from the list of weaknesses is a huge gaping hole:

nogammonsinanun... | | Permalink

In your course Defending Investigations 101, rule number one that is drilled into you as soon as you can walk is not to provide HMRC with more information than they have requested and to which they are entitled under statute.  *OR* if you decide to volunteer additional information over and above that which has been requested, and there may be strategic reasons for doing so, then maintain control over that information to prevent additional leakage beyond the planned disclosure.

One might be forgiven for "forgetting" this principle if you are trying to modernise an existing product already riddled with spaghetti code.  But here we have a product designed from scratch and built from the ground up, and yet they have built in absolutely no provision to enable the taxpayer to restrict HMRC's access to data relating to the period under enquiry in the event of an audit.  And this despite their publicity machine waxing lyrical about how security conscious they have been.

With kind regards

Clint Westwood

Customer data security is paramount

TEqLOGIC.COM | | Permalink

A constructive criticism that is not just levelled at Sage One, is that it is accessible by just email address and password.  SSL encryption is good, but will not stop keyboard logging software.  Every system of this sort, in my opinion should be front ended by a minimum of a 2 factor authentication system.

It is very easy to track and replay user access credentials without the injured party knowing.  A 2 factor security system such as those used for online banking will give you peace of mind that even if your computer is compromised, the connection credentials cannot be replayed.  All online providers who enable professional service based companies to store customer data, should provide secure access as standard.

Moyle Baker

TEqLOGIC

DuaneJAckson's picture

Key Logging

DuaneJAckson | | Permalink

 Hi Moyle,

Have you seen the KashFlow log in process? Key logging software would get you in as there is an extra step involving selecting letters from a drop down list, as used by some internet banking.

Key logging can't record that, which is exactly why it's there

nogammonsinanundoubledgame's picture

My bank ...

nogammonsinanun... | | Permalink

... just asks me to enter three characters from the full password, which vary at random at each login.  I think that this is intended to combat keylogging, although it seems to me that if the logger has a long enough log report he will get the full password.  Even so, it is better than nothing.

With kind regards

Clint Westwood

Key Logging Security

TEqLOGIC.COM | | Permalink

Key Logging...

I would suggest that a template for a reasonable anti-key logging system should have:

  1. An independent security system not linked to the desired service 
  2. username and password (hashed out) text boxes
  3. 3 drop down boxes and
  4. all delivered over an SSL connection
  5. 3 attempts, with the originating IP address blocked on failure 3 (permanently, unless administratively cleared)

The recent RSA two factor system breach, shows that no system is impenetrable, however we can but try.

Moyle

lordlancaster's picture

Sage One API is now available!

lordlancaster | | Permalink

Hi johndon68,

I'm pleased to say that we launched a Sage One API on 7th December 2012 so if you're interested you can find out more at http://uk.sageone.com/blog/2012/12/07/sage-one-partner-programme/ 

Thanks

Paul Lancaster
SEO & Inbound Marketing Specialist
Sage One UK
http://uk.sageone.com/blog

 

lordlancaster's picture

Sage One is listening to your feedback!

lordlancaster | | Permalink

FAO anyone reading this, I just wanted to add that we do read all the reviews and comments people write about Sage One online and listen to all the feedback which we take on board for future developments and iterations.

Sage is a FTSE-100 company with over 830,000 business customers in the UK but our cloud-based Sage One software is still in relative infancy. Other cloud-based software providers have a few years head start on us but we're catching up fast.

If you want to follow our progress, read my blog '5 ways to engage with Sage One UK'.

Thanks

Paul Lancaster
SEO & Inbound Marketing Specialist
Sage One UK
http://uk.sageone.com/blog

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