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What do we mean by “flexible” accounting software?

As software publishers, we tend to promote our products as "flexible" when it comes to accounting and timekeeping features. But, what exactly does that buzzword mean? In this context, flexible means the opposite of "rigid" - a moniker that is often applied to stovepipe software that was originally developed back in the 1980's and perhaps still in use today. Make sense? If not, the following  is a recent example of software flexibility when it came to the performance of an accounting task that was easily handled in its entirety within SYMPAQ, and not "outside" of the system (i.e., manually).

We received a call last week from a client  who had a requirement to reissue 1099's from 2011. The problem was that although the dollar amounts on the 1099's as reported were correct, some of the EIN's (and SSN's) had been entered incorrectly and not corrected prior to issuance. When this occurs, the IRS requires that the issuer zero out the 1099's that were issued with the incorrect EIN's, and reissue them with the corrected EIN's. So, we easily reopened calendar year 2011, and entered an adjustment 1099 to zero out the dollars on the 1099's that were originally issued with errors and printed those, and then we reprinted the 1099's that had both the correct dollar amounts and the corrected EIN's. No additional postings to a previously closed year were required, and the amounts reflected in the General Ledger remained unchanged. The problem was resolved, and the client was pleased that SYMPAQ featured  the native "flexibility" to make the necessary corrections without resorting to external inputs.

To be sure, there is a line to be drawn between an accounting software package that is highly flexible, but has few internal controls and is not inherently DCAA compliant, and a software package that is both flexible and has the required internal controls required by government contractors. SYMPAQ features tight internal controls and a highly visible audit trail, combined with the flexibility you would expect from modern accounting software.

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