Volunteering

Earlier this month I attended the Rotary International Convention in Hamburg, Germany.  Hamburg is a beautiful city with excellent food and a very good public transportation system.  My wife and I had a great time walking around the city and attending sessions at the convention.  Hamburg is proud of being an “Active City.”  The city promotes all of their citizens to be physically active.  We saw many people riding bicycles around the city and being active in their many parks.  Hamburg also promotes over 1/3 of their residents do volunteer work.  It made me think, what if we in our communities had that type of participation in helping make our own communities better?  What could we achieve?

That made me reflect about the benefits of volunteering.  I have been an active volunteer since I started my own company.  Some of the time was to network with other entrepreneurs, and some of it was to support our children in their activities.  Sometimes it was just because I enjoyed the work.

When I first started to volunteer, I was told not to be the treasurer of an organization.  Since I am a CPA, I was curious as to why that was a bad idea.  The answer is:  when you volunteer you should be developing a new skill, not doing something you already know how to do.  Volunteering is a great way to expand your skills without jeopardizing your career.  If you attempt something beyond your skill level it will most likely have little or no effect on your career.  If you attempt that in your business it can be devastating!

Then I thought: what did I get out of volunteering?  It has been said, that when you learn how to lead volunteers you can lead anyone.  I have learned so much about myself and leadership.  Leadership is a skill that I strongly believe you cannot learn from a book or a classroom, but only from experience.  There are many leadership styles and each person must learn which methods work best for them and the appropriate time to use them.

Leadership is a participation sport.  Every organization is looking for leaders and a good way to improve those skills is by volunteering.  Try it, it may change your life.  It has mine!

“Remember that the happiest people are not those getting more, but those giving more.” ― H. Jackson Brown Jr.

Sage 50

I recently attended Sage Summit 19 in Atlanta and attended many classes about Sage 50.  I learned about the recent enhancements to the Sage 50 2019.2 release.  One of the enhancements is Sage Approvals, an expense approval process that uses a new product, Sage Capture.  Sage Capture is a product which will allow users to take a picture of expenses from their phone for reimbursements.  This will allow users to create an approval processes for expenses before posting.  Another new feature being added to Sage 50 is Sage Contact that links Sage 50 with Outlook to have a more complete picture of your customers and vendors.  You can learn about this and other Sage 30 2019.2 enhancements by viewing this well done, 13 minute video: (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=j_EWn0cNdEE).

In just 2 months, the next release of Sage 50 will be on a new pervasive database.  Sage is expecting to see a nice performance improvement.  Overall, there is a lot of work being done on the cloud version of Sage 50.  Some of the new features include adding a “pay now” feature to invoices where a customer will be able to pay their invoices via a credit card or ACH transaction via PAYA (formerly Sage Payment Solutions), Stripe, or PayPal.  The Bank Reconciliation feeds from banks is also being enhanced.  This new feature will be free for the online version.  Finally, Business Performance Dashboards with Office365 will also be enhanced.

Overall, everyone attending the Sage 50 sessions appeared to be pleased with the announcements and the enhancements being made to Sage 50. I attended to keep up to date as well as to get specific questions for my clients answered.  I left with answers and new ideas!  I am looking forward to the July release to see the improvements.  Please contact me if you have any questions about Sage 50 or any Sage products.

 

Sage Alerts

Running a business is not easy. There are so many different sides of a business that require constant monitoring in order to bring on success. From tracking invoices to tracking inventory, and keeping up with customers and vendors, to maintaining a best practice workflow process; how do you track them all? Luckily for business owners, you don’t have to keep track of your business on your own. Sage Alerts & Workflow is an amazing automated tool to help make sure your business continues to run smoothly. Sage Alerts & Workflow allows users to create automatic alerts to notify users of events such as late shipping, customers with past due invoices, when inventory quantity on hand is below a certain amount, and so much more! This tool can email, fax or text alert reports to users automatically at a scheduled time daily, weekly, or monthly to whoever inside or outside the company needs notifying.

 

A recent Alert I created for a customer is for Unbilled Purchase Order Receipts. A business that purchases inventory and records the receipt of the inventory, then expects to receive an invoice for the items received so they can pay for it. However, sometimes the vendor that sold the items doesn’t send an invoice in a timely matter, so it becomes forgotten. I recently created an Alert that will automatically scan through all the Purchase Order Receipts in the user’s Sage 300 ERP accounting system and find the Receipts that have not been Invoiced. Sage Alerts finds these Receipts and automatically emails the list to multiple parties so that the vendors can be contacted and paid.

 

Sage Alerts & Workflow can also be used to monitor a wide variety of other Sage products such as Sage HRMS and Sage CRM. This software can help users interact with their business systems more efficiently by sending an alert the moment a desired event happens. Users can become better in tune with their business with Sage Alerts & Workflow.