Your accounting software is one of the most important tools in your arsenal when it comes to making key strategic and operational decisions. It not only performs the function of paying suppliers and raising sales invoices, it also acts as your primary system for monitoring all income/expenditure and when utilised to its full potential ensures compliance with statutory reporting as well as being the key control over your financial assets. Having the right system in place and ensuring it is maintained regularly will pay dividends, both in terms of efficient use of available resources as well as offering peace of mind that the financial information being presented to stakeholders is accurate.
With the ever-growing requirements of financial reporting in education, it is crucial that your accounting software not only offers a wide range of reports, but that the reports are up to date and reflect a true and fair position.
Effective internal controls are also essential to enable different levels of access to support the segregation of duties. It is key that the right parts of the system are only available to the right people.
How do I know if my finance system is working to its full potential?
If you answer “No” to any of the questions below, you will more than likely benefit from a free finance system health check:
- Are the reports you are running giving the figures you would expect?
- Are the fund balances in your last set of statutory accounts replicated on your balance sheet?
- Does your bank reconciliation balance? It is very common we see bank reconciliations not matching the bank statement, they can, and they should always balance.
- Do you close your VAT and accounting periods regularly – Do you know if there are any old periods which are still open? If you don’t close periods, why not?
- Do you know what version of your existing finance software you are running and if there is an upgrade available?
- Are you confident that the workflow and procurement process within your accounting software is efficient, effective and in line with your finance policies?
- Is the security within your finance system sufficient to ensure staff can only access the areas they need to view?
- Do you remove un-used or redundant nominal or account codes to prevent items being accidentally posted?
- Do all your control accounts balance at Month End?
- Do you monitor and clear out your suspense, hold and registered periods?
- Do you regularly run a system audit?
FREE finance system review for schools and academies and MAT's
If you have any concerns about the utilisation of your current accounting system, SAAF Education would like to help by providing a free finance system health check.
We will undertake a no obligation audit of your financial management system to ensure that you are using it to its full potential. This health check is designed to give you peace of mind that your financial management system is working as efficiently and effectively as possible, whilst ensuring all automated processes and procedures in place correspond with your finance policy.
The review will be carried out remotely and should take around half a day. Following the review, you will receive a report detailing any areas that require further investigation. If required SAAF Education can provide support with the implementation and resolution of any issues identified on the report or you are free to share the report with another provider if you choose.
SAAF Education are also able to offer impartial advice to help you find the accounting solution that best fits the needs of your establishment. We have supported hundreds of implementations over the years and across all platforms which gives us a unique insight and understanding of the education finance software world.
The finance system health checks are currently available to all schools, academies or MAT’s using PS Financials, Civica, SIMS FMS or Sage.