Sage 50 - When to Upgrade
The answer is ‘it depends’. More often than not, there is generally no need to upgrade between one year and the next. Each year Sage adds new features to their software. Some of these new features are fairly minor meaning an upgrade isn’t really worth the financial outlay. However, some new features may mean it is worth considering an upgrade.
Despite the constant drip of new features, the main factor which creates the need to upgrade is when Sage ‘pull the plug’ on a specific version meaning the software becomes ‘End of Life’ and is no longer supported.
To give you an idea of which new features have been added in recent years, please see below:
(Please note these all relate to the Sage 50 product range)
In Sage 50 2010 and above, it is possible to suppress the year end date warning message.
Select the settings menu and then click ‘Company Preferences’. Now Select the ‘Parameters’ tab. In the ‘Others’ section at the bottom, you can simply tick the ‘Pause outside Financial Year message’.
If you do decide to do this, please remember that you will still need to close down the previous year.
In Sage 50 2011, when you start up a new company, the Set-Up Wizard now provides the Flat Rate VAT options for both invoice-based and cash-based businesses, alongside the existing options for Standard Rate VAT and VAT Cash Accounting. The program will ask you to specify the standard rate of VAT.
If you choose one of the Flat Rate options, you will also need to enter the percentage rate for your industry within the Company Preferences dialogue box, and this is also where you need to enter any future rate changes.
The Flat Rate scheme will also be available for existing companies that have successfully applied to join the scheme.
A new feature in Sage 2012 was the posting date ‘lock down’. This simply means that you can lock down a specified period which will then prevent a user from back dating any transactions into an earlier period.
To access the lock date screen, chose the ‘Settings’ drop down menu then select ‘Lock Date’.
You can then enter an appropriate date and tick the box. This is a helpful facility to have but is useful when you have multiple users with one user wanting to make sure other users don’t back date into a period they have previously reconciled.
Sage 50 2013 includes a new section called ‘Email Defaults’ which can be accessed from the ‘Settings’ drop down menu.
This section provides the user with the ability to define precisely your email program common settings and also how you want your emails to appear to your customers and suppliers.
Taking the Invoice tab as an example, this allows you to set up some basic defaults for when you send an email to your customer:
If you require more information regarding any of the Sage Instant or Sage 50 ranges, please do not hesitate to contact Alan Taylor at the office.
Author: Alan Taylor FCCA
A former pupil at Ripley St Thomas C of E High School, Lancaster, Alan joined Scott & Wilkinson direct from school in 1994 and qualified as an Accountant in 2001. As practice manager, Alan is responsible for the day-to-day...
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