A full ERP system designed by TIW Technology.
ALERE Accounting contains the features you need to grow your business. Everything from keeping track of complex inventories, processing customer orders and managing payables, to providing sophisticated general ledger financial controls. ALERE does this by placing an emphasis on the details that make day-to-day activities run smoothly. Activities like processing a prepayment or handling a return are done quickly, logically and with a minimum number of steps.
Real Time Processing – Activities, such as GL journal entries and inventory transactions, take place in real time. This means:
Modifiability – The state-of-the-art architecture of ALERE is SQL compliant, uses object oriented programming (OOP), and is table driven. This means:
Dynamic Screen Sizing – Screens can be resized by dragging the edges with a mouse. Any grids, lists, notes fields or pictures on the screen are automatically sized with the screen. This allows
MDI (Multiple Document Interface) --MDI allows multiple screens and modules to be open at the same time. MDI improves work flow by allowing you to:
Advanced Browser - Browsers help find a specific record or piece of information. ALERE displays a browser each time the Get button is selected, the mouse is double left-clicked in a key field or F2 is pressed in a key field.
A browser provides a spreadsheet-like view of a table of information. Each column is a field, function or a user-definable field in the table. Each row corresponds to a record in the table. A browser:
Fetch Retrieval Tool – Reduce the time it takes to find information with this easy-to-use tool. Simply enter what you are searching for and click the matching link on the list. For example, enter a customer’s PO number and click on Order by Customer PO to find the matching sales order.
Fetch is independent of the program modules, so it can be left open on the screen for immediate access. Fetch can be used even if you are in the middle of doing something else.
Email - Key Sales and Purchase screens can automatically convert the order into a PDF file and send it via email. Stored notes can be added to the email besides being able to enter personalized messages.
At key points in the sales and purchasing processes, emails can be auto-generated and a PDF of the accompanying document attached and sent based on a set of user defined rules. This includes: acknowledging orders received from customers; forwarding invoices when orders are shipped; and releasing purchase orders and have them sent to suppliers. Groups of rules can be defined and assigned to individual companies to manage the process.
PDF Reports - Every report in ALERE can be turned into a PDF file to make it easy to share and add email. Reports that are printing multiple documents, a range of sales orders for example, will automatically be converted to multiple PDF files.
Language Sets – Language sets allow you to customize menus, screens and even have different languages on a user-by-user basis. When a user logs in they can have
Activity Tabs – Most screens that have processes in ALERE have an Activity tab. The tab displays information related to the record that is open. For example, a sales order Activity tab may list the quote that started the order, shipments and returns, invoices created from the order, and payments and refunds. The Activity tab
The Configuration Module is responsible for defining the product features and options that can be selected when entering orders for customers. The key features are
The SOC (Sales Order Configurator) screen, where the features and options for an item are shown, is automatically displayed when an item number that can be configured is entered.
Features and options for an item are chosen as it is being entered on the order. When one of the lines containing a configuration question on the SOC is selected, a list of the choices is shown along with the availability and cost for each. Selecting from the list enters the choice. The configurations for items are created and maintained on one single screen using Treevision. All the features and options and how they are related can be viewed at a glance.
A right-click menu makes it easy to add, edit, and delete choices and inventory items. Modular (make a choice) and variable (enter a quantity) rules are supported.
Modular choices within modular choices permit the construction of decision trees with dependency rules. For example- An order for a bike may have two top level choices - Men’s or Women’s. The choice of a Men’s bike provides the second level choices - Mountain or Street. Etc.
In addition to allowing choices to be made, variable information can be entered using a pop up numeric keypad. A practical example of the use for variable information is specifying how many reflectors to put on each bicycle wheel or the number of inches of steel tubing required.
The rules-based system contained in the SOC provides support for complex orders and ensures the correct configuration of products, which results in inventory savings and the best use of staff time. Similar configurations from previous or current sales orders can be located, copied into an order and edited. This saves a significant amount of time on orders with many features and options.
The SOC will recalculate the price and cost based on the features and options chosen each time the Save button is selected. Product configurations can be predefined and assigned finished good item numbers.
The configurations of similar finished goods can be copied to speed up the process of creating them.
The SOC will determine the correct finished good item number to use based on the configuration that was entered. Entering a finished good item number will automatically fill in the configuration choices that are associated with that finished good. A wide variety of costing and pricing rules can be established and used when a configuration is entered which does not have a predefined finished good set up.
Each item can have a default configuration, containing the most common choices from which to start when the item is first entered.
The choices for configurations can optionally include prices, available quantities and locations. There are six different ways of formatting the configuration information on a printed order as
A convenient Config button allows configurations to be changed even after they have been entered. The Configuration Module reports support data mining. This means that information on how many times a particular option was chosen, by whom and for what product is readily available. The reports can also provide information on the status of pending or unshipped orders. For example, the demand for certain features or options which are on those orders.
The Configuration Module has built in support for kitting, making it native to the accounting system. Kitting in ALERE far exceeds what is commonly considered standard kitting capabilities. Just as an order can be configured with features and options, so can a kit. This even includes building a kit on-the-fly by choosing the components from a list and entering the quantity required for each.
Orders for kits that do not require features and options to be selected are taken without ever seeing the configuration screen. Components are allocated in real-time when the order for the kit is saved. At the same time, the kit is placed “on order” in inventory.
For companies using ALERE Manufacturing, kits and their components are included in the MRP (materials requirements planning) process. Orders for kits generate picking tickets for either the complete kits if they are in stock, or for the components that make up the kits. Kits and their components are automatically issued from inventory when the order is shipped. Over shipping missing kit components is optional.
Bills of material that can be configured are displayed when ALERE Accounting is linked with ALERE Manufacturing.
The General Ledger Module is responsible for all activities related to managing the general ledger. The key features are
All GL transactions are posted in real time to the general ledger. Periods are automatically closed, which eliminates costly batch closings that interrupt business activities. Reopen closed periods or fiscal years. Critical financial reports are always available and up to date. Better data integrity is provided by avoiding large, complex batch postings which tax networks. An alphanumeric chart of accounts up to 24 characters wide and six user defined segments is used.
Create and maintain a chart of accounts using Treevision", an Explorerlike graphical interface. Drill down on the chart of accounts to
Drill up from journal entries to the originating document. Individual GL accounts can be marked inactive to prevent journal entries being made against them. Up to 99 periods in a fiscal year are supported with starting and ending dates for each period. The time during which prior period postings can be accepted before a password is required can be set from 0 to 999 days.
The number of periods in the future that can accept journal entries can be set from 0 to 99. A Period/Year Closing screen summarizes the status of each period and year at a glance and
Produce consolidated Income and Balance Sheet reports for any combination of companies on demand. Simple and advanced budgeting, using Excel spreadsheets, is supported. Create budget templates from actual data and maintain multiple budgets for “what if” analysis. Compare actual versus budget for any range of dates.
One single screen handles all default general ledger accounts which greatly simplifies the management of these accounts. Track inventory that is in transit with a dedicated default account.Monitor customer and supplier prepayments using separate default accounts.
Custom general ledger accounts act as rules for establishing which GL accounts to use for a transaction. Rules may be established for any combination of
Custom general ledger account rules can be tested on a special Inquiry Tab. Account distribution templates speed journal entries by predefining the list of accounts to be used and how the amounts are to be applied:
When percentages are used on the account distribution templates, only the total amount needs to be entered for the entire journal entry to be created.
Unbalanced account distribution templates can be saved so that only the amounts needed to balance the journal entry are required. A GL journal entry is completely accomplished using only one screen.
A detailed note can be added to each journal entry to allow for better documentation.
The journal entry screen has forward and backward buttons to page through transactions. A Get button helps find specific entries based on the journal ID, a reference key or the description of the entry.
A Search button permits conditions to be set that will then be used to filter the list of journal entries for only those that meet the search criteria. For example, creating a list of all transactions that were paid to a utility company. Journal entries will
Journal entries that are not ready to be released can be saved as “pending” entries then reviewed and released at a later time. This includes unbalanced entries. Auto reversing transactions allow the user to select the date/period that the reversing entry will occur.
Reversing entries are controlled manually and the postings can be edited before they are released.
Rules can be created that will filter certain financial reports based on individual GL accounts and/or account ranges.
Income Statements and Balance Sheets can be run for any period of any year.
Dated Income Statements can be run for any range of dates, which permits daily, weekly, quarterly, semiannual and multi-year statements to be produced.
Compare financial reports for any two periods of any two years. Dated Income Statement comparison report can be run for any two ranges of dates.
The 12 Month Income Statement compares twelve months of performance for any beginning period and year specified. Financial information can be exported to F9 Financial Reporter for further analysis or for budgeting purposes.
The Inventory Module is responsible for all activities related to managing inventory. The key features are
Average, Standard, LIFO or FIFO inventory valuations are supported. Item numbers are fifteen spaces wide and alphanumeric. The length of item numbers may be readily changed. Save time when entering new inventory items by copying the settings from another item. New items added to inventory can optionally be established for one or for all locations.
Set quantities for items to a precision of three (3) decimal places. Mark items as any mix of purchased, manufactured, component, sellable, stocking, drop shipped, and taxable.
Assign unique stocking units of measure for each item. Serial numbers, lot numbers and traits are supported. Traits are user defined. Each item can have up to three unique traits which allows a matrix such as style/size/color.
The actual cost of a lot can be recorded upon receipt and at the time of issue that cost will be used. A lot can be assigned an expiration date. Items that have passed that date can be marked as “expired” and cannot be used or marked as “degraded” which will make them still available but with a warning before they are issued. Lots may be assigned an inspection status of Uninspected, Passed, or Failed. Lots that fail may not be shipped.
Associate two images in BMP, GIF, JPG or ICO formats to each item. Matching memo fields for each image are available for long descriptions. Multiple warehouses are supported by location as follows:
Assign items a list of suppliers and locations that are supported as follows:
Drill down on inventory allocations and on order quantities to see a listing of the documents making up the numbers.
Assign Item Types to allow items to be categorized by function, such as SHIP for shipping or FIN for finance charges.
A Price Group field allows items to be assigned special pricing rules, such as belonging to a group that is on sale this week.
A GL Item Group permits each item to have a set of predefined GL accounts that are used when processing the item.
Track issues, shipments, receipts, and adjustments on the Activity tab. Drill down to see related documents.
Handle mass shipping of sales orders, transfer orders and purchase returns in any combination. The mass shipping function permits orders to be shipped completely or partially.
Filter the list of orders to be shipped for a specific location, a customer, and even a specific customer location.
Add shipping charges as orders are shipped. Orders can be shipped and not invoiced or shipped and invoiced. Mass receive purchase orders, transfer orders and sales returns.
The mass receiving function permits orders to be received completely or partially. Select line items and quantities to receive when receiving partial orders. Filter the list of orders to be received for a receiving location and a supplier. Orders and returns can be received and not released to payables or received and released to payables.
Mass record drop shipments reported by suppliers on one screen designed to handle complete or partial shipments. Transfer orders will:
Inventory adjustments can
Make inventory adjustments for single items or for mass changes. Print inventory sheets to assist physical counts. Produce “As Of” inventory reports for any date or range of items.
Distribute the GL effects of an inventory adjustment over a range of accounts. Review inventory movement on the Log of Activity screen with drill down to the source documents.
View anticipated inventory movement on the Future Activity screen with drill down to the documents that will generate the activity.
The As of Inventory Balance report can
The Manager Module provides support for housekeeping, password protection, modifications, and common processes and information that is shared among the modules.
The Executive Advisor provides a real time summary of a company’s performance.
A sales graph for the Executive Advisor displays key sales information for a range of dates in a variety of 2D or 3D formats with a resolution of days, weeks or months.
Information for all companies is kept in a single file making it easy to move and copy.
Companies may be marked “active” or “inactive” to control their use. SIC codes are assigned to companies from a built in table. Each company can have a user-defined status such as Dealer, Customer, etc.
Individual companies can be customers, suppliers, or both. Unlimited locations and contact information are supported for each company. Set up tax districts by company location. Set Bill To, Ship To, Remit To, or PO To options for each company location. Send sales invoices to a different location from where the order was shipped.
Receive purchases from a supplier location that is different from the Remit To address. Key changes, with the ability to merge information, can be made for company ID’s, company location ID’s, item numbers, payment terms, and product classes. Mass key changes can be processed by importing an Excel spreadsheet.
A non-stock item file is available for companies that do not carry inventory but require item numbers for billing. There is one central file for the creation and maintenance of system-wide codes like units of measure, price groups, product classes, etc. Quickly find all companies within a given radius of a zip code with a Proximity Locator. Set up locator rules to do searches like finding the nearest stores to a customer.
A Data Gateway provides central access to any designated browser. File supplier 1099 forms electronically. Auto number orders or enter them manually. Assign each order type (sales orders, invoices, purchase order, return orders, etc.) a unique order number sequence. Set deleted line items to be shown on orders or suppressed. Handle non-stock material three ways
Establish payment terms using net, calendar and prox terms rules. Net terms set the due date based on the number of days after an invoice date. Calendar terms are established by defining dates based on a calendar. Prox terms are a method that sets the due date by establishing a day of the month that acts as a closing date and a day that acts as the due date.
A schedule of payment dates may be defined. Use payment terms to control which customers receive statements. Set up conversion tables that allow the system to automatically convert one unit of measure to another. Establish an unlimited number of tax rates for federal, state, county, city, and local sales taxes. Value Added Tax (VAT) is integrated into the tax tables.
Assign individual GL account numbers to each tax rate. Separate GL accounts track outbound sales and inbound purchases. Active/inactive dates can be used for temporary taxes.Combine tax rates into tax districts to handle a wide variety of sales tax situations.
Use Bank Transactions to do deposits and withdrawals, post interest and credits, record bank fees, void checks, and handle returned checks. Print bank deposit slips. Voiding a check allows a payable to be reopened just as if the payment had never been made. A returned check reopens an invoice just as if the payments had never been received.
View GL postings made by the bank transactions as they occur. The Bank Reconciliation screen provides a checkbook register-like listing of all transactions that affect the checking accounts. Balance checking accounts and find errors with a practical bank reconciliation process. Reconcile internal system balances by module or by function.
A Data Dictionary lists and details all tables and reports to assist with modifications to the software. An unlimited number of individual companies are supported. Data for each company is kept in a separate directory and is easily moved or copied. Screen and report modification tools are built in and are a standard part of the package. Modifications are easily ported to new releases.
The Language Settings feature permits menus, screens, and even different languages to be customized on a user by user basis. Password protection privileges include No Access, Password, Unlimited, and Read Only. Set up temporary password privileges that expire on a specific date.
View a list of all users logged in on one screen.
The Multi-Currency Module allows companies that do business outside their country’s borders a way to take and place orders in currencies other than their own. The key features are
Currencies are easily added as a code definition and are then immediately available to be assigned buy and sell rates. Any one currency may be established as the “base currency”. General ledger transactions and financial reports are done in the base currency.
Exchange rates use a straightforward method to allow them to be quickly updated. Active currency rates may be changed until such time as they are used. They then become locked until a new set of rates is added. A history of rate changes is kept and provides an overview of how those rates change over time.
Colorful 2D or 3D charts show trends in rate changes in days, weeks, months or years. Customers and suppliers may be assigned currency codes. Sales and purchase documents will then automatically default to that currency when used with those customers or suppliers.
Currency codes may be assigned by location if customers and suppliers have more than one location.
Sales and purchase orders can be displayed in the currency in which they were written or in the base currency of your company.
The difference in value between when an order was taken or placed and the current value based on rate changes can be displayed.
Making and receiving payments using a foreign currency is supported. Special general ledger accounts are used to post variances due to currency fluctuations when making purchases or sales.
Both the A/R Receivables and A/P Payables reports have options to be run for specific currencies.
An Exchange Variance report provides a summary of currency variations that occur, for example, between when an invoice is written and when payment is received. The numeric calculator will allow currency conversion calculations to be made on the fly.
The Purchases Module is responsible for all purchasing functions, from entering a purchase order, through receiving and releasing to accounts payable, to approving and making payments. The key features are
Create or edit a quote, purchase order, return order, or a recurring order from one screen. Purchase orders and payables can be saved in a Pending state and later completed and released.
Email, view or print orders. Optional order version control for all orders. Orders may be “locked” to prevent further processing while still allowing changes to be made. Different Remit To, PO To, Ship To, and Refer To combinations. Override terms from suppliers. Assign expiration dates to orders. Auto complete orders or hold them open for further work. Load predefined comments and place them on orders. Accept and print orders from the entry screen.
Mark individual line items on a purchase order as a Purchase, Return or Credit. This permits returns and credits to be handled within one order. Change purchasing u/m on a line item using a conversion factor.
Each line item has a Need By date for receiving and material planning. A GL Group, which contains the GL accounts to use, can be assigned to each line item. Change purchase order line item unit costs right up to their release. Items on a purchase order can be received and the order considered complete if the quantity falls within an overage/shortage range.
Each line item has a Receive note for internal documentation which prints on the receiving ticket.
Each line item has a Line note which is printed on the purchase order that the supplier receives.
Convert a net negative order to a debit memo. Apply debit memos to invoices or auto convert them to a receivable or cash.
Return orders provide an easy way to ship items back to a supplier by producing pick tickets and tracking. Convert return orders to debit memos. Blanket orders can make releases to either a purchase order or directly to a payable. Auto convert quotes and recurring orders to purchase orders or payables. Line items on purchase orders may be partially or wholly received.
Line items on purchase orders may be
Orders may be received one at a time or mass received. Received but unbilled purchase orders can be closed with the Done button. This permits purchase orders to be closed in the situations where there is no invoice or the invoice is for less than the amount actually received.
During the receiving process, item numbers may be optionally displayed as either your item number or the supplier’s item number.
PO receipts may be reversed on a line-by-line basis. An Activity tab on each order permits all related activity to be viewed with drill down. A GL Posting tab on each order displays in real time the general ledger postings generated by the order.
Orders without activity may be voided. Copy and restart voided orders.
Assign a GL Group to each line item that contains the GL accounts to use as a Pending order with full editing rights.
Reopen closed purchase orders and add line items or receive additional quantities.
Start an internal requisition order with a list of items to be purchased and send that request to the purchasing department. Since it is common for the employees not to know the item number of the items to be ordered, the order can be filled out using only a description and quantity.
Each line on a requisition can be released to a different supplier as a separate order.
Multiple quotes can be created to send to various suppliers for pricing information.
Payables can be created directly and “pull” information from a single purchase order, multiple purchase orders or recurring purchase orders
Payables created from multiple purchase orders will
Create a payable from a recurring purchase order that will allow selection of the line items and quantities to be used and receive the items into inventory when the payable is accepted
One screen handles the approval of payables for payment and the printing of checks.
Multiple ways to sort the list of payables to be approved are available, including by available discounts.
Apply debit memos and prepayments to payables as they are approved for payment.
Group together multiple payments to one supplier on one check or they may be individually selected and printed on a separate check.
Write individual checks directly from the Payables or AP/Cash Payments screens.
Approve and make payments by company and location.
Support for voiding checks includes the ability to
Void AP payments and reopen the invoices as if they had never been paid. A separate single payment process specializes in handling payments made one-at-a-time by manual check or other methods.
The Aged Payables report supports
The Sales Module is responsible for all sales functions, from entering an order, through invoicing to managing the cash receipts. Key features are: Quotes, sales orders, sales invoices, return orders, credit memos, blanket orders, and recurring orders are supported. Email orders and invoices. Sales order configuration is integrated into the order entry process.
Use a grid-based order entry screen to speed up order taking with a heads-down keyboard oriented approach. Handle items shipped from stock, drop shipped items, returns, and credits on one sales order. Choose to ship an item from inventory or have it drop shipped. Multiple drop ship items on an order for one vendor are consolidated on one purchase order.
Save orders in an incomplete or Pending state without releasing them for processing. Customer numbers can be used to enter line items on orders. Optional order version control for all orders. Orders may be “locked” at the order level or the individual line level to prevent further processing while still allowing changes to be made.
Payment terms for customers may be overridden. Any Bill to/Ship to combination is supported, including manually entering a onetime shipping address for drop shipping.
A Refer To option on the sales order supports a third party. For example, a contractor that must be present to accept delivery. Order date verification checks for an acceptable range of dates within which an order can be accepted. Assign expiration dates to orders. Auto complete orders when they are completely shipped and invoiced or hold them open for further work. Load predefined comments from a file and place them on orders. Accept and print orders directly from the entry screen.
Orders can be copied and modified. Pinpoint your company’s critical geographic hot spots with a Location of Sales report. Change selling units of measure using a conversion factor. Assign Need By dates to line items for shipping and material planning. Modify the regular unit price, the discount % and the customer price on each line. Optionally hide the costs of line items during order entry. Specify the location to ship from by line item.
Assign a GL Group to each line item that contains the GL accounts to use. Each line item has a Pick note which is printed on the Pick List report. Each line item has a Line note which is printed on order reports that the customer receives. Convert net negative orders directly to credit memos. Apply credit memos to invoices or auto convert them to a payable. Partially or wholly ship line items. Line items on sales orders may be
Return orders place the items on order in inventory and can be shown separately when doing mass receiving. Receive payments by company and location. Auto convert return orders to credit memos when they are received.
Cash orders produce instant invoices and receipt of payment. Convert quotes, blanket, and recurring orders to sales orders or directly to invoices. Specifically allocate lot, trait and serial numbered items. Orders may be shipped one at a time or mass shipped. Void orders without activity.
Reopen closed sales orders and add line items or ship additional quantities.
Use the Activity tab to find the source of documents, such as the quote a sales order came from or the invoice a sales order created. See shipments, returns, payments, and refunds.
A GL Posting tab on each order displays the GL postings generated by an order. Mass invoicing allows multiple sales orders to be shipped and invoiced from one screen. The same process handles sales returns. Filters allow the list of orders to be narrowed and the list of orders may be sorted by value or customer.
Pricing rules can be set up using only one screen that will
Pricing rules can be sequenced so as to provide unlimited pricing tiers.
Mark pricing rules as either Active or Inactive. Test pricing rules before they are released. Release recurring orders as sales orders or invoices.
Assign a Release Group ID to recurring orders that allows those orders to be mass released as a group.
Use an Explorer-like interface, called Treevision® to drill down to sales information and even right to the actual orders.
The AR/Cash Receipts function includes support for cash, checks, direct deposit, account offsets, and prepayments.
Correct payments after they have been made.
Assign AR/cash receipts to Bank Deposit IDs where deposits can be managed and bank deposit tickets printed. Offset AR invoices, credit memos, debit memos, and AP invoices.
Accept sales order prepayments, non-invoice receipts and customer on account payments.
Automatically apply sales order prepayments when matching invoices are created.
During the process of recording a receipt for an invoice, the payment can be automatically applied, starting with the oldest invoice first, until the total payment amount is reached.
Automatically generate finance charges and late fees. Create separate invoices and statements for finance charges and late fees. Compound finance charges when they are generated.
Define separate GL accounts to support finance charges and late fees.
The Aged Receivables report supports
The Pick List report supports
The Statements report can
A History of Payments report evaluates the payment history of customers and will show the longest, shortest, and average times it takes for them to pay invoices.
Across the board, for the level of ERP we were looking for, they almost all offered similar functionlaity but it was Alere’s adaptability that had us move forward with them. We had a few specialized features that were essential and most of the providers told us they could not meet that need. ALERE jumped right in and customized what was needed to assure those needs were met.