IRIS 10.3 not much better...

Beware if installing the IRIS 10.3 patch.  Whilst this will fix the 2010 capital allowances, if effectively breaks all 2009 tax computations by ignoring WDAs.  (See KB8981)

Surely our firm can't be the only one that reviews prior years tax computations during meetings etc?  IRIS support informed me that "the issue won't affect many people, so is not scheduled for fix until the October release"...

Comments

Shocking

cjtrevor | | Permalink

 

If this fault is as serious as described then I am shocked that Iris would allow such a serious fault to go out, demonstrating again a serious lack of testing.

After the previous problems, and having to wait so long for this update, the expectation was a stable and reliable release.

We are constantly running 2009 computations on the system when clients phone up, to compare to the 2010 figures being run, etc etc.   Iris support are totally out of touch with the requirements of their customers if they believe that this is not an important issue and can wait until October to be fixed.

 

IRIS 10.3

tonyarm | | Permalink

I'm getting more and more concerned with IRIS and their poor performance with new issues and even worse performance with correcting the problems they have caused.  It's evem more dissapointing given that they previously had a pretty good record.  Maybe they've just got too big to care anymore.  There are plenty of alternatives out there and I for one am reviewing a couple of them with the intention of changing if I feel it worthwhile.  They are also cheaper which is an added bonus in today's economic climate.

kwright's picture

10.3

kwright | | Permalink

Hi, thank you for your comments. The three known problems that shipped with the 10.3 release are documented in the Release notes within the product and listed on the website in the knowledgebase. We intend to fix these in the next servicepack 10.3.1. over the next 4-6 weeks. We have always put service packs out to solve urgent issues and historically, these have always followed a major release within 6- 8 weeks, hopefully this clears up any confusion. Kip Wright Head of Customer Support IRIS Accountancy Practice Solutions

 

Phil Rees's picture

But the point remains

Phil Rees | | Permalink

The price continues to spiral and the standard declines. This is not good enough.

We don't want politician style spin; we want a decent product.

 

Not good enough

cjtrevor | | Permalink

I've just downloaded the release notes again, and found the "known issues".  These weren't included on the version I downloaded on Friday.

These state that there is still an issue with Capital Allowances for cars additions with under 110 or over 160 Co2.

Capital Allowances haven't worked reliably since the April release.  Each release 10.1, 10.2, 10.3 hasn't been able to fix the problems. 

How many times do we have to wait 6-8 weeks for yet another update before we can just use the product and rely on it?

 

10.3

DonDan | | Permalink

Mr Wright,

 

Assuming you are the same Mr Wright who works for Iris can you explain why you are responding here and not on the Iris forum? Surely a response on both would be a sensible plan?

Perhaps you can answer why Iris are so cagey in owning up to mistakes? Everyone makes them, it would go some way to improving your customers opnion of your company, which at the moment is very poor.

 

 

The standard setters always become complacent...

the_fishmonger | | Permalink

As Phil says:

"But the point remains. The price continues to spiral and the standard declines. This is not good enough.
We don't want politician style spin; we want a decent product."

This is true and, from someone who has used IRIS from the beginnings of its life, I find the past 3-4 years have been spiralling downhill much faster. I can add on to my package within an hour, but try to get a patch fix in under a week and you are stuffed. Iris used to be the cats' pyjamas and I extolled its virtues to anyone and everyone.

Was a time when you rang support and received an answer from a human rather than myriad press x, y or z and 10 mins or more schpiel. Those people were capable of putting the error straight to programmers who patched, usually within 24 hours. Okay, so these weren't rolled out to all users, but you could get them if you asked.

Adrian started the thread with the WDA issue - well here's what it's done for me:

10.3 has fixed the CA issue where private use existed on disposed items (BAs and CAs were showing) but, and it's a worse one, you now get issues (at least on 2009 SATRs) with:

  • the pool CAs showing in BusTax correctly;
  • showing on the CAs tab of sole trades correctly;
  • showing correctly on the SE pages;

yet look at  the personal tax comp and you see the CAs (not AIA tho) are omitted from the comp. And lo, the TC pages have a higher tax liability amounting to CAs x tax/NI. 

You could fudge the BA issue to fix an e-return. There's no workaround besides paper filing for this one.

It seems like very little joined up thinking/discussion between the sub-product programming teams to me. Sort it out.

 Thanks a ruddy lot!

 

Iris

amarshah69 | | Permalink

If only it was a relatively quick and painless process to switch suppliers!

I am increasingly getting fed up of Iris and their piss poor product, arrogant attitude and sky high prices!

They should perhaps merge with Sage - who seem to share their disdain for customers, and think arrogance is a virtue, or leave exit the accountancy market - as obviously producing software that works, is getting beyond them!

Rant over! SIGH!!

IRIS

tonyarm | | Permalink

They are a typical large corporate now.  They're into so many products that they can't keep focused on the one business strategy that ultimately determines success - customer service with competitive pricing.  Eventually they'll lose out to an upstart company(s) that does put the strategy into place. But at this moment - they don't care because they know it's a big decision to change.  However, it's a mistake because our feelings now are detemining our view of them in the future and when we talk to fellow practitioners we are not going to promote them anymore - even though we have to use them.  I know that I will change from them eventually because I've lost faith in them.  I wouldn't even have contemplated changing if they had maintained the customer service I was used to when I first bought their product (over 10 years ago).

MORE IRIS PROBLEMS

P&G | | Permalink

I do hope everyone complaining here are also complaining directly to IRIS, because until everyone does they will not change their complacent attitiude to their customers. We definitely do, but keep getting told we are the one ones complaining or having problems! The people you need to be emailing are phill.robinson@iris.co.uk (IRIS software MD) and peter.scott@iris.co.uk (Head of customer services, IRIS don't consider it necessary for there to be a director of customer services!!). I spoke to someone in the Business Tax support team last week and he likened it to buying a Mercedes and receiving a Skoda. I would add he later said he was leaving the company that day, enough said!

Leave off Skoda!

cymrococh | | Permalink

Many in the recent past would have thanked the Lord to have ordered a Mercedes and received a Skoda (see various Customer Satisfaction Surveys).

The analogy should probably read "... akin to ordering a Mercedes and receiving a crocked one ..."

The thought has also just occurred, given that the 2009 CAs computations have been affected by the fixes to 2010, how will that affect averaging claims (Farmers or otherwise) between the two years? 

Will the automatic IRIS calculation feature work on the original or "new" profit computation figure? I'm sure there's a lot of "fun" to be had there.

 

TURBOD's picture

A Common Theme

TURBOD | | Permalink

 

Firstly I must say that I am not a user of the Iris Accountancy software but reading the threads fills me with total empathy as the depth of these problems must be mindboggling and likely to lead you to a most horrible place. 

All I can comment is that the experiences encountered by members in terms of the reaction and response from Iris is not just reserved for you users.

As an Iris Exchequer customer and user, I can report that we have encountered just the same response both from a customer service standpoint and from a technical standpoint. 

You are not alone! 
I feel there is a lot of 'brushing dust under the rug' at Iris and having now spoken with many other Iris Exchequer customers who feel this way too, I know I am not alone. 

How they win awards for customer satisfaction leaves me as confused as you must be! 

Some smoke and mirrors and a fantastic marketing team?  

Peter Marsh 
Managing Director 
Turbo Dynamics Limted 

View from a long time user

davidakime | | Permalink

I have read the comments posted above with great interest, having just found out that 10.3 has been released.

I have complete sympathy with everyone who is getting stressed ( I have 300+ staff using Iris in one form or another so I get my fair share of moans)

I would however jump to Iris's defense on some of the issues.

Firstly - what other software manufacturer issues a list of known problems? We are not going to install until 10.3.1 comes out because we were alerted to the problems it will cause. Yes this is inconvenient and in an ideal world these issues should not exists, but having the knowledge allows you to make an informed decision.

I also agree that their support quality has fallen, but they have tried to tackle the issue of having to wait on the line for hours at a time. This solves one problem but creates another. Most of the time now, we know more than the support staff (which means those of us with that knowledge get a lot of routine support calls)>

We subscribe to their enhanced support, which is email only but is superb. I would suggest you all speak with your account managers and look into this, as it will pay for itself in reduced non chargeable time very quickly.

Being an attendee at a recent meeting with Iris, the staff on the ground held up their hands about getting things wrong and were happy to share with the group of users, what is being done to try to stop it happening in the future. I am under an NDA so cannot go into detail, but I am sure Phill Robinson (email address on earlier post) would be happy to enlighten you all. I do agree though that we need less spin and more home truths. Trust me when I say they left that meeting in no doubt how users felt.

Whilst the above might sound like I am paid by Iris, but I am not (I wish!!). I feel all of your pain (and a bit more with the size of practice we are) and I am waiting to see the improvements promised.

I think the best way to address these issues is to email them to Iris, so that they know exactly how many people are effected, how many are disgruntled, so that the whole issue can be sorted.

There are some positives (honest!), for example iXBRL - Iris are way ahead of many providers and the filing rate of CT comps is way above anyone else. Again whilst under NDA, I am also very confident that ixbrl for accounts will be delivered on schedule as well, way ahead of the deadline so we get chance to try it and adapt our processes to cope with that.

All in all Iris is not that bad when you look at the rest of what we do, it is just that the quality of the recent releases has let them down

Now all of you go off and email them with your gripes

 

 

 

RichardWhight's picture

For a long time user

RichardWhight | | Permalink

Comment Deleted for personal reasons

TURBOD's picture

Transparency

TURBOD | | Permalink

Personally I feel anything other than total openness and transparency when it comes to bugs in software is very foolish. Most people, I am sure, accept that bugs are inevitable and that in itself is not so much the issue. Any company, whatever the industry are judged on how they deal with problems and issues. My experiences to date with Iris I am afraid have been extremely negative in that respect.

 Peter MarshManaging DirectorTurbo Dynamics Limited

David

cjtrevor | | Permalink

David

You make some interesting comments and seem to have at least some more insight into what is happening than most of us.

I'd make the following comments though -

You say that you chose not to install 10.3 because of the list of "known issues". However, on Friday when the release was put up on the website, there were no known issues advertised and the email informing of the update didn't mention any either.  The release notes which were downloaded on Friday doesn't contain the page which has now been added.  Therefore we did not have the information to make the decision that you did.

Also staying on 10.2 was just not an acceptable option.  Hours have been wasted trying to operate work-arounds for the capital allowances errors.

Our client base is full of sole traders and partnerships with private use cars.  The errors have cost us an enormous amount of wasted time.  Maybe if your client base is more Limited Companies the errors have been less of an issue.

You mention paying for "enhanced support".   I've never heard of this.  I was under the impression that the annual fee already included top level support.  It is disappointing if now one has to pay extra to maintain the level of support that we have historically been used to.  

You also mention account managers.  We've not had contact from an account manager in a long time and have no idea who ours may be.  Indeed I've phone two times to request an increase to our licence on one of the modules, but on neither occasion was it actioned so I just gave up.

Historically the software has been great and I have recommended it in the past to every other small accountancy that I have known.  But four months of capital allowances errors and the decline in support is a very worrying experience and I certainly won't be recommending until this is long in the past.

As someone mentioned above, not that long ago the support staff could get bugs fixed and an update out within a week or so.  Our payroll software provider still manages to do this and at an incredibly low price.  What has caused Iris to now be unable to maintain past standards while still maintaining premium pricing?  

Richardrussell's picture

"Known issues"

Richardrussell | | Permalink

This probably sounds obvious, but if Iris KNEW about the issues, surely they would not have released the software?

Or perhaps there are other (political) issues here.  I don't know, I could be wrong, but having worked for large organisations, I know it doesn't always make sense!

b.clarke's picture

I'm confused ...

b.clarke | | Permalink

We haven't installed 10.3 yet. Are we better off waiting till 10.3.1 comes along?

 

 

RichardWhight's picture

Known Issues @ Richard Russell

RichardWhight | | Permalink

Hi

Software houses sometimes put out releases that do not contain a fix for every issue known at that time and therefore the release notes would take two parts.

1. Fixes for issues that are known about

2. Issues that are still outstanding and not fixed

This is quite sensible as you can prioritise fixes and not work on minor bugs so that the most destructive bugs are fixed asap and delivered to the clientbase. Minor bugs are probably along the lines of cosmetic changes and issues that rarely occur and have acceptable work arounds but how each software house comes to those decisions will vary as will the update policy.

So, IMHO, issues would be known at the point of a release.

Hope that helps

Rich

BigBadWolf's picture

Price hike

BigBadWolf | | Permalink

 And they had the cheek to hike their prices even further!

How do they justify a 6% increase across the board, and a staggering 12% increase on Charity Formats for accounts production?

How they can expect us to pay for a defective product that doesn't work I do not know. I think they should refund everyone's licence fees from the day 10.2 was released until such time as they fix the bugs! And on top of that as a thank you to customers for bearing with their ghastly support they should reverse the above inflation price hikes made in April/May this year!

 

WE ALL KNOW SENIOR STAFF AT IRIS READ THIS THREAD - HOW ABOUT AN HONEST, OPEN,  "SPIN - FREE" RESPONSE ON HERE - AN APOLOGY TO CUSTOMERS WONT GO A MISS EITHER! 

 

Ownership, INVU and Support

grant170479 | | Permalink

Happy campers arn't we?!

I recall asking a room full of 100+ key decision making accountants twwo quesions in 2007 to identify which system they use and to confirm if they would recommend it.

Survey result (approximate)

Iris (used by approximately 65% recommended by all but one of those users

MYOB (used by approximately 25% recommended by about half of them

Sage FAP, Word/Excel and others (remaining 10% recommended by about half again)

I wonder if the results would be the same now???

Ownership

I also question whether the change in ownership I understand to have taken place in 2008 or 9 has led to the problems we are all suffering with now filtering down as a result of 'efficiency' savings and a different approach to the goals of the company.  I agree that a company that expands as rapidly as Iris have is going to have some difficult resource issues to deal with but I remember being seriously concerned about the change of ownership when I heard about it and am afraid to think that these fears may be becoming reality.

Having committed our entire software future and spent thousands of man hours switching, training, tinkering and now patching, my greatest fear is having to do it all over again!  I just hope the people in charge realise the amount riding on their attitude to resolving the situation and quickly before it is too late.  I know this sounds dramatic but I don't feel it is unfair given the amount we have all invested in putting our eggs in their basket!

INVU

Did anyone else take Iris' recommendation and acquire INVU on the basis that it fully integrates with Iris?  I would be pleased to see your responses to the query - Could anyone actually make it work.  The product itself I have no comparison for and it has proved to be quite useful in some ways (archiving old accounts files), but for concerns we have about the sql database file size, the lack of archiving ability, the instability of the product and the terrible implementation support we were given have caused a few headaches.  We have now been told that to implement the new version of the software (which only NOW links with Iris Automail!) we will have to change the way we file documents and none of the old documents will be portable unless individually refiled!  Beware.  I just wish there was an expert independant software due-dilligence company who could cut through the marketing rubbish for us. 

Support

Do Iris publish the results of their customer satisfaction survey, with targets and actual performance etc etc?

Iris and Invu

davidakime | | Permalink

In response to grant170479, we tried the very first integration between Iris and Invu, as we had been looking to implement a document management system as soon as the link was available.

In those days it just did not work. We then switched to an offering by Lindenhouse Software Limited, who provide a virtual integration, and I would certainly recommend talking with Alison Jackson about it.

The attraction to us for going along this route is as follows:

  1. It provides up with greater flexibility for filing structures
  2. The installation and set up from LH is second to none
  3. At the time the speed issues and stability of the original release made it an unworkable option. I understand that this has now been largely overcome, and I know the latest Iris management structure is working on this.

One draw back of this is that the template maintenance becomes very important, and using the correct template is crucial.

The biggest headache for us has been staff taking on new procedures, and this is where we have spent a lot of time and effort coming up with methods of working that are practical and work. I have done some consultancy work on this with Lindenhouse for some of their other practices and this has helped them settle into Invu much better.

As for data not being able to be transferred - I find that hard to believe and again would recommend you get a second opinion from Lindenhouse.

All in all I think Invu is fantastic and the ease of use for end users is one of it's great pluses, however it a big change for people and so the processes need to be enforced rigidly and also NO exceptions given allowing correspondence onto a desk.

Contact me if you, or anyone else out there wants to any help or assistance

 

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