Wrong! Wrong! Wrong!
XBRL Consistency Suite
XBRL US Labs
Learning a new language is a great way to expand your horizons, communicate more effectively with more people, and make thousands and thousands of mistakes in a short period of time. We mention this because lots of companies are busy right now learning a new language - the financial tagging system called XBRL - and might find the new XBRL Consistency Suite useful in their efforts. The suite is a set of online tools that run thousands of checks on companies' XBRL documents to identify incorrect use of signs, missing tagged elements, tags that should not have been reported, and more. As it was developed by the same folks who developed XBRL itself, it's like having a native speaker correcting your every mistake. And we all know how much fun that is.
The coursework remains
CCH, a Wolters Kluwer business
Before you get too excited, please note that CCH's new CPE Assistant will not take your CPE courses for you, or whisper answers in your ear. It will, however, track your progress in fulfilling your CPE requirements, send you e-mail reminders on your status, and help you plan your CPE based on the regulations in your jurisdiction. It will also store your CPE certificates for easy retrieval, and even recommend courses for you from CCH's stock. Attendance is up to you.
New ways to watch
Continuous monitoring has become a valuable tool in keeping corporate financial systems in order, and tools are proliferating to help companies implement it. One of the latest is Approva One, a continuous controls monitoring suite with a number of new capabilities. From a single, intuitive interface, it covers both continuous auditing and continuous monitoring; lets users investigate exceptions and drill around to related information directly from the CCM app; simultaneously monitors transactions, master data, user access and application configurations; and lets users create and edit rules to monitor new controls.
Student Care Center
Accounting and tax educator Universal Accounting has formed a Student Care Center to help its customers start, pursue and complete its home study courses. An orientation counselor personally calls each student to get them started, and sticks with them to keep them motivated throughout the course. Some programs also include continuing support, where a student who has completed the course can call on a Universal Accounting expert for advice, answers and coaching. All in all, it's an excellent way to make sure you get the most out of your home-study course - unless avoiding this kind of attention is why you take home-study courses in the first place.
IFRS Health Check and IFRS Buyer's Guide
Unit4 Business Software
The future of International Financial Reporting Standards in the U.S. is murky at best, but with the possibility of adoption looming, companies need to start taking it more seriously. A suite of tools from ERP vendor Unit4 Business Software may be a good place to start - it includes a white paper explaining the impact that IFRS would have on ERP systems; an easy-to-use IFRS Health Check that companies can use to gauge their readiness for the standards; and an IFRS Buyer's Guide. Best of all, they're free - which any switch to IFRS definitely won't be.
Spendvision has released some significant improvements to its transaction management solution to make it easier for multi-division and multinational companies to keep control over their corporate spending. Its Multi-Program Reporting lets finance officers access spend levels across their entire organization, as well as more detailed breakdowns by transaction type, merchant category, account or even supplier. It also lets them see a single-currency view, and customize the platform for specific local spend-management requirements, as well as offering new access and approval controls, and new filtering and searching capabilities.
The price of meetings
MeetingZone and MetraTech Corp.
As one of the reasons for the uptake of online conferencing and collaboration solutions is that they cut down on the expense of face-to-face meetings, it's entirely appropriate that MeetingZone should release a new collaboration portal with tools built in to help users access their billing data and usage reports in real time. The functions, powered by MetraTech, help managers add users, monitor their spending, change preferences, manage multiple accounts and more.
Calculators don't lie
Paperless Payroll Calculator
If you're trying to convince your clients to go to paperless payroll, consider introducing them to the Paperless Payroll Calculator. Unveiled for Earth Day, it tells companies how much paper, greenhouse gases, water and - most important - money they can save by moving their payroll to an entirely paperless model. It's good for the environment, and good for accountants looking to sell their business clients new payroll services.
Arcplan has released Version 2.0 of its Arcplan Edge, a budgeting, planning and forecasting tool that it has enhanced following its acquisition of Excel-based planning and budgeting tool vendor LumenSoft. It lets users work in a Web-based environment but in the comfort of Excel, allows all sorts of strategic analysis and reporting options, and includes adjustable templates to facilitate planning, budgeting and other processes.
One less difference
There are a great many differences between small businesses and big businesses. To start, there's size, but there's also the fact that many useful tools seem to only be available for large companies, often in areas where small companies are particularly vulnerable. Concur is doing its part to eliminate one of those differences, with the release of Concur Breeze through the Google Apps Marketplace. Breeze is an expense reporting solution designed specifically for small businesses. The online application is quick and easy to set up, automatically creates expense reports using imported credit card data, and can archive digital images of receipts, at a small-business-friendly $8 a month per user. Which is nice, because one of the few areas where small and big businesses don't differ is in the fact that their employees will all spend money.
New and improved!
CCH has added an Internal Audit Library and a Fraud and Forensic Accounting Library to its Accounting Research Manager. ... NetSuite Inc. announced plans to make its cloud-based ERP suite available in the Google Apps Marketplace. ... Smart WebParts has made its time capture and entry solution Smart Time available in two editions: the original Professional version, and a new Enterprise version with more features. ... Project InVisionInternational has released the 2010 version of its Software-as-a-Service-based project office solution. ... Transcepta has partnered with Oracle to make its e-invoicing services available to users of Oracle's E-Business Suite and PeopleSoft Enterprise. ... Plustek Technology Inc. has released a line of scanners aimed at finance, accounting and tax users, including mobile scanners like its MobileOffice D428, check and small-item scanners like its MobileOffice AD450, and full-size document scanners like its SmartOffice PS282. ... ADP announced that it is rolling out its Run Powered by ADP Software-as-a-Service small-business payroll platform nationwide. ... ACOM Solutions Inc. has released Version 3.10.0 of its EZ ContentManager document management solution, with a new AP Payable General Ledger module that integrates with Sage's MAS 90, 200 and 500. ... Colligo Networks Inc. has released Version 4.1 of its Contributor for SharePoint line of collaboration tools.
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