Microsoft Business Central: an overview of the finance module
My sister took over the family business of doors and windows manufacturing many years ago. She doubted for a long time that she could do it, not because of her managerial skills, but because she had a lot of trouble putting her vision of expansion with the outdated financial management system of my parents. I don’t think my father even opened a computer in his life as an entrepreneur. So, if my sister would have known that she could have simplified her life and bring her strategic plan to life without losing her head more than once, she would probably have adopted an ERP on the spot.
How can entrepreneurs manage their company seamlessly?
With allies like the ERP and CRM of Microsoft, there is nothing simpler. Because they take charge not only of the whole operation, but especially your finances. The biggest difficulty for my sister was, after all, the finance management. So, when your software automates some actions, manages your organization in a flawless way, and helps you to clearly see in your chart of accounts: there is nothing easier than bringing your company to unexpected victories.
So, what is Business Central?
Business Central is an ERP from Microsoft that targets and suits the needs of small and medium size businesses. As an “Enterprise Resource Planning,” Business Central offers software in an all-included formula to help you manage your entire company: from manufacturing to finances with a stop at your supply and distribution chain.
Business Central is way more than a simple accounting software because it offers you, amongst other things, a complete overview of your company, an automating and securing tool for your supply chain, and an ally that allows you to sell more and more intelligently. Your efforts will be put at the right place with such software.
And the finance module in all of that? What is so special about it?
Your financial life is the heart of your company: if it is not healthy, the rest may suffer. This is why Microsoft Business Central has decided to offer you a finance module tailored made for small and medium enterprises. Honestly, it is the kind of software that has the power to handle bigger business but is specialized for the need of smaller companies.
By connecting your data through all the operations of your company, you will have access to in dept information and a better understanding of your financial life, your performance, and your results.
Besides, all this information will be easily transformed in reports so you can make better decisions before taking actions.
By gathering all your data under the same interface and trusting such a powerful and reliable software with your data collection, you will have access to the finest precision and predictions.
Have I caught your attention? You probably wonder what it does concretely? Let’s see the different particularities of the finance module of Microsoft Business Central.
An overview of the different particularities of the finance module in Business Central
Since the finance module is a key element of the Business Central, it is important to take a moment to look at its impressive functions.
A role center oriented for finances
First, whether you work with an external accountant or someone in your team, you have to know that Business Central has a role center specifically oriented for accountants. The dashboard will indicate the numbers in real time and give you quick access to the data.
You will also find the most seen reports, the last files published by the companies and even your lists in a click.
Basic data for your finances
Whether it is through financial reports in the account schedule and the account categories or with a tool of business intelligence like Power BI, it is extremely easy to extract basic data from your finances. So, you will have access to all the information needed to inform your decisions. By benefitting from the power of analysis in the business intelligence tool of Microsoft and the power of Business Central, your finances will never have secrets for you.
An overview of the chart of accounts
First, you have to know that a chart of accounts will display your accounts and financial data in your Dynamics Business Central. You will find a standard chart of accounts which will offer you all the needed cells to manage your financial life without you configuring anything. However, it is possible to modify the accounts or add one.
Besides, the chart of accounts is an essential point of the finance module because it displays the account balances or the reports with all the entries and balances, it allows you to close the results and even see your report groups.
And it is essential to know that the chart of accounts takes your future into its hands because it gathers all the needed data for your decision-making process. That way, you will have the chance to add dimensions to your numbers and refine your analysis.
In fact, you will have the opportunity to add dimensions to your Dynamics Business Central whether it is for product categories, market sectors, consumer types, and more. With this type of information, it goes without saying that you will easily find answers to your questions.
In short, you will find 3 important columns which are the number, the name, and the type of account. You will be able to create new sub-categories by clicking on new, but you won’t be able to create new categories. However, you can change their name by clicking on them. In your new sub-categories, you will have the choice of the account category, the sub-category, the type of account, and the direct report. And the most interesting thing is that you will have many possibilities for the type of report that best suit your needs.
Understanding the general journal
In Business Central and in its finance module, most of the transactions will be published in the general ledger through files dedicated to various financial aspects of your enterprise like invoices or receipts. But what is interesting with Business Central finance, it is that you will be able to use the general journals to process transactions in order to simplify your life since they will be found in the General Ledger.
By using different journals and different lines to publish your transactions, you will have the choice of the right document to publish your numbers so you can see them. What is amazing is that the general journals will be customizable to optimize your finances according to different types of transactions.
And what about processing client and supply invoices?
As I was saying earlier, it is possible to reconcile the General Ledger and your account balances without worrying in Dynamics Business Central. Its finance module will take charge of doing it while processing payments from your bank statements or as separate processes.
Whether it is for payments, expenses, memos, reminders or prepayments, your finance module from Business Central will take data from your bank report to update your General Ledger and make sure to have the latest data up to date. That way, your numbers in Business Central will reflect your reality without a lot of effort. Managing your money will have never been easier.
VAT, to know everything
If you need to calculate the VAT tax (value-added tax) and report your numbers to the authorities, you will love Business Central. Why? Because it is pretty easy to get mixed up and forget exceptions when it comes to taxes, but Business Central can handle it for you.
Indeed, the VAT can be automatically calculated in your purchase and sale files and if you need to modify the numbers (because you have discovered that the retailer used another method to round numbers for example), you will be able to do it manually. Of course, you will be able to calculate the tax manually from your general journal if you want.
Finally, you will also be able to report the amount of VAT to the authorities without any complicated procedures. In fact, since everything has been automatically calculated by Business Central, it is quite easy to have access to reports that are already made and send them to the people who needs them. You will have the choice between the sale list EC (European communities) for the amount collected from the sales made in different countries of the European Union or the VAT return which is for all the sales and purchases with VAT in any country.
The accounting periods, nothing more easy
As you know, the accounting periods are the periods of time used by the company to organize their financial performance reports. The accounting periods are often associated with the fiscal year which can include many accounting periods.
In Business Central, there is nothing simpler than creating a new accounting period and specifying it when you create reports or look to analyze your numbers.
Finally, as you can see, Business Central and its finance module is a true ally in your daily life as an entrepreneur. If, like my sister, you are looking to focus more on your products than the complexity of an Excel sheet, it is time to make the transition toward an ERP as powerful as this one. You will see, it is way easier to manage a company when you have the right numbers in front of you, but also when you don’t lose time with elements that you aren’t passionate about.