Sage Accountant Cloud is ready for lift-off

Sage Accountant Cloud
Sage Accountant Cloud
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After undergoing a few tweaks in development, Sage is rolling out its Sage Accountant Cloud, an integrated online suite that marks its next step towards becoming a provider of online tools for professional accountants.

The underlying idea is that once a firm has gathered its data in the Sage Accountant Cloud, it will have everything it needs to run an efficient, connected practice.

Sage UK and Ireland managing director Alan Laing told AccountingWEB the new product was, “One connected platform; the whole concept behind it is to eliminate admin and maximise productivity.”

The Sage Accountant Cloud will give practitioners the ability to look at all their client information in one place and serve them in a more proactive way. “The platform is flexible, so it’s adaptable to what each practice needs,” he added.

As the first practice-facing tool to emerge from what Laing called Sage’s “cloud-first” strategy, Sage Accountant Cloud combines a Client Manager to access their accounts data online, alongside new bank feed and practice management tools built on the Salesforce platform. This is the same architecture used for the Sage Live system that provides the accounting foundation for the new environment.

“It’s logical for Sage Accountant Cloud to be built on same platform,” Laing explained, adding that it can link to other Sage accounting programs including Sage One and Sage 50c Accounts.

In olden days, practice suites assumed that accountants and their clients would all be using a single, homogenous software family. Real life isn’t like that, so the plan is to plug the Sage Accountant Cloud into external data from other systems.

“We will continue to enhance the API to open it up,” Laing said. “We make no bones about it. Some apps may come from competitors. This is an open platform we want them to build their practices on. We are being driven by what accountants say they require. All the usual suspects will be in there.”

The difficulty surrounding something as nebulous as an online hub or service platform is defining what it actually is and does. The Sage Accountant Cloud combines some familiar and not so familiar elements.

What’s included

Sage Accountant Cloud - Practice Manager

  • Client Manager – Newly developed as part of the cloud platform, Client Manager gives both parties access to the online bookkeeping data in a manner that will be familar to users of the existing Sage 50 Client Manager and Sage 50c products.
  • Bank Feeds Manager – Work is continuing behind the scenes at Sage to automate the import of bank transaction data.
  • Practice Manager –  Practice dashboard pictured above; this module brings staff resources and workflows into the mix to support better productivity.
  • Sage Live  –  The underlying accounting engine, though the Sage Accounting Cloud can also link to Sage One and Sage 50c via the Client Manager.
  • Compliance tools – For practitioners, the key interconnections within the platform will allow them to produce final accounts, personal and business tax returns using Sage’s compliance tools.

Sage has been previewing its new practice suite for the past month at various live events and in a series of online webinars introducing the product. AccountingWEB will be taking a closer look in the next couple of weeks and will return with a more detailed review.

About John Stokdyk

John Stokdyk is the global editor of AccountingWEB UK and AccountingWEB.com.

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By djn24
03rd Aug 2017 12:40

I'm still waiting for sage one to be able to take the sage 50 backup file so we can start using that.
The online version of sage 50 is ridiculously priced at over 100 per month which means it's way over the top.
Maybe this will happen soon?

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to djn24
03rd Aug 2017 14:48

@djn24 we were told last week that they now expect this to be available in next couple of months. However, in the meantime, there are some reports available to download for Sage 50 which export into the format for SageOne import.

They look to cover most of those needed to enable a transfer if you have an hour to spare per client (ours are being moved onto the cloud drip by drip over 18 months, so not an issue for us).

We used to actively discourage the use of Sage 50 for reasons given elsewhere and the fact the people with 10% of knowledge (i.e. know where the 'corrections' button is) cause more devastation than it's worth.

SageOne in both the Accounting and Start versions are super for most clients and, with the App, allows them to do and see more than ever. Many are doing more of their own stuff and not asking for a fee reduction either!

It ain't a perfect product yet but they are listening and good stuff is in the pipeline.

No. I don't work for Sage but do shout out when something is actually useful for others to know :-)

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03rd Aug 2017 14:10

All we want is the current SAGE 50 in the cloud at a reasonable cost. Why would we go cloud base to incur such large costs when we can access the inforamtion by logging into clients own computers etc. they keep telling us what new features these programs have - but most clients dont want stock control and SAGE pay etc.

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