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MYOB Live Accounts, XERO and SAASU – My Cloud Accounting Journey

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So I’ve decided to try out moving from my current billing system to a Cloud solution. I’ve been happy with my current software (it’s not MYOB), it allows me to create and track invoices and a basic cashbook ledger. The software isn’t great but it is efficient, and after all I’m and IT guy, not an accountant.

I’m going to be making technical and book keeping  oriented comments, this isn’t a review as much as tracking my experiences.

Saasu won’t get much of a mention here, I signed up for it, paid the fee and linked my bank account. After a little while I ran into the problem of not having a proper ledger of accounts. Saasu looks great and works fine but it needs to be professionally set up to your business. Since I was looking for a more DIY solution, I went to Myob Live Accounts.

18/08/2011:

– Read Part 2 Here: My Cloud Accounting Journey: Part 2 XERO

12/08/2011: pm

– I’m going to start recreating my invoices in XERO over the weekend, fingers crossed.

12/08/2011 : am

[Update: 14/12/2011] Recent testing has shown MYOB now accepts partial increments in the Quantity field, this is fantastic! Also the slow page loads, dropping allocations and ‘reference number in use’ error are no longer presenting. It’s great that MYOB has matured and fixed the technical issues. If your considering cloud accounting, make sure Live Accounts is on your list.

– I’ve been using MYOB LiveAccounts since the beginning of July. In the beginning it looked perfect for my needs. Easy to setup and use with the built in accounts and easy to understand terminology. It all started well, but then progressed downhill from there. These are the issues I’m having at the moment:

  • Reference Number is in Use error – When I’m inside an invoice to amend or simply view it, I will not be allowed to save it. If I wait a few seconds then press Save it will work, sometimes it takes a few tries. This is a server timeout error, and it happens on all 3 of my browsers IE, FF, and Chrome.
  • Dropping Allocations – Same cause as above, server issues. Causes my invoice to open but all my line items will be unallocated. Before I can save the invoice I need to re-allocate them all (again & again). This is most frustrating as I’m always going into invoices to update them with new line items. I do not create new invoices for each line item, sometimes an invoice might sit for a month constantly being updated.
  • Slow Page Loads – Sometimes it takes seconds for the page to load, this might not sound like much, but over the course of a day, it get very frustrating. We all know what its like waiting for webpages to load, now image your accounting system being that slow.
  • No .5 increments – I bill time, and sometimes I bill half an hour. That is a quantity shown as .5. MYOB support told me to use QTY1 and halve my billable rate, but this gives the client the wrong impression. I really don’t want them thinking Im billing an hour for half hours work, and I don’t want them thinking my rate is 50% below its actual level.
  • $0 Dollars & Extra Line Items – MYOB will accept $0 sometimes, sometimes it wont and will register simply as ‘0’ – minus the $. When this occurs you cant save/send an invoice. I do this for a reason, my invoices contain data about my services rendered. So my first line item will be : Tech Support – xyz 1 Hour Billable Amount, then lines underneath showing specifics. However each line item needs to have a quantity and dollar amount. Yes there is a Notes section on the invoice but this is too small to hold all the relevant information.
  • Can’t Save Invoice as PDF – Cloud is all well and good, but I also like to keep PDF versions of the invoices I create. There is no Save to PDF option.
  • Can’t Print Well to PDF – If I chose to Print an Invoice, it opens it as a PDF, great! Not really, that PDF is now called ‘Invoice’ so I cant just save that filename. I can Print that PDF to PDF but then its name becomes ‘journalId=1068098&t=1313131619419’. Not much help. I just want to save my invoice as a PDF with something like INV0001. XERO has a PRINT PDF button – which allows you to save with the invoice number.

That’s it for now. I have raised these concerns with MYOB tech support. The timeout issues are not specific to one location, I get them from home and the office, on different computers. The only similar points are both use an Internode internet connection.

Read Part 2 Here: My Cloud Accounting Journey: Part 2 XERO