Accelo has completed the work on its expenses module but has yet to launch the new release. Accelo believes that its module should stop the need for customers to use a separate, and sometimes costly, expenses module. It delivers several key advantages according to a blog by Hugh Cowling, Product and QA at Accelo and Lovelie Faustino, Content Specialist at Accelo.
They highlight two advantages over stand-alone expense trackers:
- You can see the impact of expenses on the profitability of work
- You can flag expenses as billable, turning them into income
There are others, however, even if these are not immediately available on the current version such as the data is now stored in a single location. It also reduces the complexities of integration that another solution brings.
The new module also delivers a better experience for Accelo users than previously. It also introduces more configuration settings for managers and has a deeper integration with both project and financial accounting. For example, it now includes the tax payable on expenses. However, the blog falls short of saying what jurisdictions are supported for sales tax.
There are several new options available for users that make the process of recording expenses easier. It is now possible to create an expense record from within Accelo. This means that the entry can be tied to the current project, ticket or retainer to track the cost of delivering a service accurately. It also supports an “Add another” option which retains the data from the the previously entry.
Expanded Expense Types
Managers are able to create and manage new expense types. They can define each expense as billable or non–billable. Thus Food and beverage can always be set to non-billable. If required.
There is also new flexibility within the mileage expense so that they can be recorded as miles rather than units. For expenses that do not require a unit this can be switched off, thus removing input fields for a user. Some settings can also be fixed, for example in mileage entries the finance team can determine the payable rate per mile.
There is support for Xero categories in the new solution. Also products and materials can be linked to an expense type. The data from an expense can also flow through to the creation of an invoice. Vendor information can also be collected. Though this is not available yet, in a future update this should mean that companies are able to track expenditure by vendor.
Enterprise Times: What does this mean
This latest iteration by Accelo shows what is possible rather than catches up with some of the more sophisticated expenses applications out there. There are advantages for customers, especially if they are not using a third party application. Even if they are, it is worth taking a look at where the Accelo expenses module is now.
There is, however, no mention of a mobile app which other vendors such as Kimble and FinancialForce already have in their expenses arsenal. Currently the Accelo iOS app only deals with timesheets. The next iteration should be interesting, Accelo are delivering the basics of expenses but where they go next could be differentiating.