MoneyWorks blog

Mobile Access with MoneyWorks Datacentre 6.1

The advent of smart devices (iphones, ipads etc) means that mobile connectivity is becoming more and more realistic. In the release of MoneyWorks Datacentre 6.1 we have included two sample mobile apps which provide direct communication over the internet with MoneyWorks Datacentre, eliminating the problems of data synching, which is the bane of most mobile solutions. These samples are intended to illustrate what can be accomplished using MoneyWorks.

The two “webapps” we have provided are:

Reports: An app that will generate and display a nominated report in real time. Any report created using the MoneyWorks Report writer can be displayed; this includes any of your own specially developed reports, as well as most of the standard report. So now, when you are out on the road, the latest information is always available, whether it is sales information (what is the purchasing history of the customer I am about to visit), management information (how did the business perform today?), or traditional financial reports.

Timer: A timer application that allows you to record time and materials against jobs – simply tap a job to select, then start the timer or record materials used. The information you enter will go live into the job system back to your Datacentre, ready for collating and billing. Ideal for people selling time and expertise (consultants, tradespeople etc).

List of current jobs on iPhone

List of current jobs

Performance is astonishingly fast. I was recently in Vancouver, and it took just a few seconds to display a sales report generated live in Auckland, 11,000 kilometers away on the other side of the Pacific.

Of course there are limitless other possibilities for this technology, such as direct order entry, invoice creation, point of sale and more, with a number of developers already working on specific solutions for clients. It is all very exciting!

Our sample apps are written in javascript and html5, so can be easily modified by others to meet your specific requirements. They require an active internet connection to work. For more information on these web apps and how to access them, please download this pdf. More technical developer information can be found on the Developer Page.

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Developer Documentation

For developers interested in integrating with MoneyWorks Datacentre, there is now new developer documentation on the Developer page for the new REST (HTTP) interface introduced with Datacentre v6.1.

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Support availability during partner conference

We will be holding our sesquiannual International Partner Conference this coming weekend. This conference is attended by MoneyWorks consultants and support personal from around the world. This means that telephone and email support services will be unavailable or limited for several days before and after this weekend. Cognito’s New Zealand telephone support line will be unavailable on Thursday 10 May and Friday 11 May. Support services in other countries may also be limited while our staff and partners are travelling to and from our conference. We apologise for any inconvenience this may cause.

If it all possible, please keep non-urgent support or office queries until next week. Thanks for your patience.

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MoneyWorks 6.1

MoneyWorks 6.1 is now available for download.

Many of the improvements in this release focus on Datacentre, which now has facilities to greatly simplify integrating with web-based systems via a REST API. Two sample WebApps are included with this release, one for pulling up a nominated MoneyWorks report, and the for other recording time and material “on the go”. Information on these is available in this pdf.

There are also many stability enhancements and minor tweaks for all MoneyWorks applications, so all users are encouraged to install this update.

The Mac version of Datacentre has undergone some technical changes to enhance performance and security. Mac Datacentre Administrators see the Mac Permissions page for more information.

To update a Datacentre server, use the Update tab in the MoneyWorks Datacentre Console application. First, before installing the update, do check that your data is backed up. Look at the date and time of the latest backup in your Backups folder. There should be a new backup created when your database closes after everyone has logged out.

To update MoneyWorks Cashbook, Express or Gold, use Software Updates in the Help menu.

A full list of changes is available in the change notes.

MoneyWorks Cashbook purchased via the Apple App Store should have an update available via the App Store in the near future.

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MoneyWorks in action: On track with StarShip

With MoneyWorks in use in so many industries and places around the world, we want to share stories of how organisations use MoneyWorks in innovative ways. The first of these is from Alex Webster, a long time MoneyWorks user who took advantage of MoneyWorks Automation (MoneyWorks Automation allows other systems to “talk” to MoneyWorks in real time) to overcome his frustration with “the antiquated process of shipping goods by courier”.

Alex created StarShip, an application that integrates with MoneyWorks and allows Alex to manage the entire courier fulfilment process from his desktop, save money and improve customer service.

Courier Ticketing and Tracking with Starship

StarShip starts by validating the delivery address (which can be entered manually or loaded direct from MoneyWorks), calculates the correct shipping rate, and then prints a fully addressed courier ticket. Outgoing consignments can be actively tracked once they have left the building via a simple dashboard, so Alex knows if a parcel has gone astray, and can take action before his customer calls to complain. StarShip even emails tracking details to the consignee, reassuring them that their order is en route and allowing them to track its progress themselves.

Alex developed the first version of StarShip for use in his own business.  The system was so successful, and improvements in productivity and efficiency so pronounced, that he needed to share it, so founded Elegant Solutions to develop the software further.  StarShip has since been extensively rebuilt and  continuously improved and now operates in a growing number of businesses across New Zealand.

MoneyWorks users can download StarShip (without charge or obligation) from www.elegantsolutions.co.nz and put it through its paces using a demo account.  MoneyWorks integration is extremely straightforward, and even allows tracking numbers to be written back to MoneyWorks transactions. At present StarShip supports CourierPost, NZ Post and DHL, with support for other carriers in the pipeline. Alex welcomes feedback and suggestions from all MoneyWorks users, and can be contacted at info@elegantsolutions.co.nz

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MYOB users—time to switch to MoneyWorks

There has never been a better time for MYOB users to switch to MoneyWorks.

As you may know, MYOB is a large Australian-based (but now largely US-owned) marketing company that has historically marketed accounting software acquired from other developers. For the first time they have made a stab at developing an all new accounting software platform under the “MYOB” brand. This was released recently as an “upgrade” to the MYOB AccountRight line….to the apparent displeasure of their user base, who have complained loudly on the MYOB official user forum:

“MYOB! – what the bloody hell have you done to this product?? It is spectacularly awful and sluggish.”

“Sorry MYOB, but AP 2011 is an absolute lemon.”

” What used to take minutes can now take more than a hour. And yet you charged a fee us for this ‘upgrade’.”

“Not impressed with the problems I have already faced with new version. Programs is slow, problems importing customised plain paper invoices, intermittent problems printing from card search screen, problems with selecting the OK or Cancel buttons in screens with the mouse to finish transactions. Overall, not particularly happy.”

“Anyone tried MYOB lately? Or their latest upgrade? What a disaster!”

Fundamental complaints/flaws appear to be:

  • it is unreliable and buggy;
  • it is slow;
  • there is no Mac version (so no future compatibility);
  • new users get a licence for one data file only.

In contrast, MoneyWorks is reliable; very fast; provides feature, file format, and network compatibility across Mac and Windows platforms; and allows an unlimited number of company data files. And MoneyWorks has been developed by, and continues to be owned by, the same team that created it 20 years ago, and continues to evolve it to keep pace with modern technology.

MYOB users can (and should!) convert to MoneyWorks now—our free MYOB Converter works with previous versions of MYOB Accounting/AccountRight (and AccountEdge). However it won’t work with the new 2011 version (and it is unlikely that we would make a new one).

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Purchase Order Approval

Using the new Validations features in MoneyWorks 6.0.8, coupled with the smarts in the Forms designer and the user privileges, it is relatively easy to implement a purchase order approval system in MoneyWorks Gold/Datacentre.

In essence, this allows an employee to enter a purchase order, but not to be able to print or issue it until it has been authorised by the employee’s supervisor in MoneyWorks.

You can download more detailed instructions. Note that some knowledge of how simple expressions (formula) work is required.

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BNZ Invoice Finance

MoneyWorks 6 users who are with the BNZ can now take advantage of their innovative Invoice Finance package, which:

lets you access up to 80% of the face value of your BNZ approved invoices, immediately through Internet Banking for Business

We have prepared a suite of reports that prepares the information that the BNZ requires. Once you have BNZ approval, you should download and install the reports, which can be downloaded from here as a zipped archive.

The archive will need to be decompressed (normally by double-clicking it), and the three reports moved into the MoneyWorks Custom Plug-ins/Reports folder.

To find where your custom plug-ins folder is, open your MoneyWorks data file and choose Index to Reports from the Reports menu. If there is a big button there that says Make Custom Plug-Ins Folder, click it and then click Reveal when prompted. If there is no button, change the All Reports pop-up menu to Custom Reports and click the small folder icon to the left.

You should now be looking at your MoneyWorks Custom Plug-ins/Reports folder (in Windows Explorer if on Windows, or the Finder if on Mac). Copy the (decompressed) reports into this. They will then be accessible under your Reports menu (you might need to restart MoneyWorks).

Please call the MoneyWorks support line on 0900-55-444 if you need additional assistance.

Note: Reports were updated on 7 June 2012 to version 1.0.4 (which will appear in one of the header lines on the report); if you are using an earlier version please download the updated reports and install, replacing the older reports.

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Lion Compatibility

MoneyWorks 6 is compatible with Lion, the new Mac OS (10.7). MoneyWorks 5.3 also appears to work in Lion (but no further updates will be issued if compatibility problems turn up). MoneyWorks 4 (and earlier versions) will not run on Lion since it predates Apple’s switchover to Intel processors and Apple have removed the compatibility layer (Rosetta) from Lion that allowed older software to run on Leopard and Snow Leopard.

Lion also introduces a variety of new technologies such as Versions and iCloud. These were not designed to support complex databases, and hence do not appear to be a good fit for MoneyWorks at this time. This does not mean that you cannot use iCloud as a backup for your MoneyWorks files, it just means that you cannot run your MoneyWorks file directly from iCloud.

Important Note for MoneyWorks 4 Users

You must upgrade your MoneyWorks data file(s) to MoneyWorks 6 before you upgrade to Lion. The process of converting a MoneyWorks 4 datafile to later versions of MoneyWorks relies on Rosetta, which, as noted above, is not available in Lion.

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Reports as Scripts

In MoneyWorks 6.0.6 we have introduced the concept of running a MoneyWorks report as a script.

Basically a Report Script consists of a MoneyWorks custom report that, instead of being installed in the Custom Reports folder, is installed in the Custom Scripts folder. Such a report will appear as an additional command at the bottom of the Command menu.

You can do a lot with a Report Script that you had to previously use something like vbScript (Windows) or AppleScript (Mac), and of course the scripts are platform independent. For example, a Report Script can read a text file, massage it in some way, and then bring the data into your MoneyWorks file as a set of transactions (or customers, jobs etc).

As an example, we have created an “Apply Interest” Report Script, which takes the overdue balances in your receivables (either 30+, 60+ or 90+), calculates the interest on these (at a nominated rate), and then optionally creates invoices to charge the overdue debtors. You can download this from the link below. You will need to unzip the downloaded file to read the installation and running instructions.

Download

Apply Interest.zip

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