The value of good analysis and design of workflow and processes hit me again this week. I was fortunate to have drawn several companies together yesterday at the GPUG networking huddle on project accounting. All three companies had been implemented by novice consultants, pointed to GP Project Accounting for internal project accounting processes, and were unhappy with their result. All three would have been much more successful with
GPAA concepts were drawn from similar concepts available in Dynamics AX and SL-- dimensions added to core general ledger accounts that add analysis capability without increasing the number of accounts in the chart. GPAA is like adding an asterisk to an entry. " *in addition to this entry being a fixed asset, it's using funds from this grant, *the grant effective period crosses three fiscal years, *the grant source is HUD."
And when the accounting entry is completed, the users can use Management Reporter or FRx to view a report on the grant across all appropriate accounts for the grant time period or a report on the status of all HUD grants. They still have the capability to monitor the budget or view a standard balance sheet that includes Fixed Assets.
The implementation of GPAA isn't a panacea. If not well designed, it can become overly complex and won't make sense to the users. If it doesn't make sense, it isn't used correctly. Garbage in, garbage out.
Converting from project accounting to GPAA isn't easy. In a current a project where the entity wants to reduce from 22,000 account to under 2,000, we're estimating 80 hours of our time and 200 clerical hours.
However, if the client doesn't convert, they face a chart of accounts that will continue to increase by 20% each year, but still won't meet their needs.
The conversion is an investment that will pay back with decreased data entry time; better reporting on projects, grants, and funding sources; and easier monthly reporting drawn automatically from the system rather than being manually developed in Excel.
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