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software for industry?

Need an alternative to Sage business cloud financials

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I know very little about accounting software nowadays - my CFO is very much on the Sage train so we've gone from 50 to SGBFN which they're now axing... CFO wants to go to Intacct but I'm wondering if there's anything more out there. So where else to turn but the learned colleagues at accountingweb? (sucking up always works, right?)

I've been looking at Netsuite ($$$$$), Intacct (Sage are not in my good books at the moment), possibly the old Microsoft Nav, Xero,  and AccountsIQ but it's been a while since I've properly been in the market so I'm not sure which holds up in day-to-day use.

Thing is, I liked Sage financials. It could do so much and it was so flexible in what it does. It did/does what we need it to do:

  • multicurrency
  • departmental reporting
  • endless GL accounts
  • approval processes for invoices
  • Excel import of transactions
  • PDF invoices attached to the transactions

to name but a few

I know AccountsIQ advertises heavily over here, but the features actually seem... Great? As in, I could sway my CFO to leave the comfortable bosom of Sage. What are your experiences with companies/clients using either Intacct or AccountsIQ? Are there any particular gripes or issues that keep popping up? Or is there another product I'm completely missing? I know I know, there's Xero but last time I used it I just wasn't a fan. It didn't seem like it did enough for what we'd need in this business and the fact it doesn't do native approvals is a big minus.

Thanks in advance!

Replies (8)

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By paul.k2
21st Feb 2020 10:50


You have mentioned an incredibly broad range of software. Many of them serving totally different sizes of companies.

Happy to have a chat if you send me a private message with your contact details.
(We are not software resellers)


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By tom123
21st Feb 2020 14:56

What line of work are you in? Practice / Industry etc.

Turnover, etc?

(Personally, I like Sage 200 for a £m turnover multi currency business)

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Replying to tom123:
By Selaen
05th Mar 2020 11:00

Hi Tom,

Apologies for missing your reply completely!

We're industry (shipowners) - in the end we have quite basic finance needs (apart from extensive reporting) but have volume on the purchases side. Turnover >10M but really doesn't need the complexities that f.ex. a manufacturing co with that turnover would.

The provision at the SME side seems to be lacking and/or secretive (trying to pry prices out of companies is... interesting.). If we were needing fixed assets/inventory/bells & whistles, there's plenty of choice. And if we don't need much, there's plenty of choice. But where we need a bell here and a whistle there, it's down to 3/4 options (looking at purely cloud based).


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Replying to Selaen:
By jonathan.kempson
05th Mar 2020 14:05


I should start by declaring an interest - I work for a Sage 200 reseller / Sage 50 consultant.

Intacct is quite new to the UK and suggests that it's being aimed at specific industries initially.

If you do look at Sage 200, then it's worth looking at Sage 200cloud Standard. It costs less than Sage 200cloud Professional (which is the product that people usually refer to when they say "Sage 200"), and while it's not fully cloud it's pretty close in practice. One of the areas where it has fewer options though is reporting - happy to discuss this and other differences if you message me.

One question - how are ships represented, are they separate companies or departments / cost centres within a single company (or some combination)?

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By Brend201
05th Mar 2020 13:11

I'm a long-term AccountsIQ user, although our volumes are fairly small and we don't use all of the functionality. It handles all of your specified requirements quite well. They have improved steadily over the years.

No significant initial outlay and a modest monthly cost. It's definitely worth a look. I don't know enough about the alternatives to say that AIQ is better than any of them.

There are some minor irritations with AIQ: it is not yet fully compatible with Chrome and works best on Internet Explorer; I don't think it works easily with Mac; I don't like the way it handles prepayments.

You may find that AIQ will give you almost all of what you need and the best value for money and it is worth a look.

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Replying to Brend201:
By Selaen
05th Mar 2020 14:32

Thank you for this, very helpful. Unfortunately with a single message you've pushed aIQ from the top of my list to somewhere in the middle... ;) I only power up IE to pick up BACS reports and even then I tear my hair out because of the speed of it! Do you know how it behaves in Firefox/FF portraying to be IE?

Do you use the approvals at all? We got told that it's essentially a single-layer and to get a dual layer we'd be better off going with the likes of Kefron re: integration. But to be fair, even with a Kefron monthly charge, it's still cheaper than some packages we've been looking at...

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Replying to Selaen:
By Brend201
06th Mar 2020 23:29

Sorry, unfortunately, I am unable to answer any of your questions. I haven't tried Firefox, nor have I used the approvals process. Still, don't shoot it down yet. They say that they are close to full compatibility with Chrome and, to be honest, I am able to live with the IE inconvenience.

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05th Mar 2020 14:46

Hey! I echo the previous at comment. We are a sage financials partner but we also work across the range of the sage portfolio so are speaking to each of our customers individually and not everyone is looking at intacct it very much depends on the business. Popular options are Sage 200 standard, sage 50 in the cloud and of course in intacct.

We have actually run a webinar going through the options and where the differences are. If you would like a copy of the recording, please email [email protected] and I can send it.

We also have a webinar on sage 200 standard in particular accessible via our events page Its the sage 200 one!

Outside of sage if you are integrated with salesforce, you could consider another salesforce based product but feel free to contact us and we can point you in the right direction if Sage isnt the one for you.

Hope this helps!


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