General Ledger - Boost Your Accounting Efficiency

General Ledger Overview

A General Ledger is an essential component of accounting and bookkeeping that maintains a record of all financial transactions made by a company. It is also known by various terms such as GL, Ledger, and Nominal Ledger.

Sub Ledgers

Your General Ledger is updated by General Ledger Journals and sub-ledgers such as Accounts Payable, Accounts Receivable, Fixed Assets, Inventory, Job Projects, and Payroll/HR. These sub-ledgers hold specific financial data that is summarized and recorded

Chart of Accounts

Each account in a company’s Chart of Accounts corresponds to a Ledger account, categorized by account type like Income, Expenses, Assets, Liabilities, and Equity. The collection of these categorized Ledger accounts is known as the General Ledger, which provides a comprehensive record of the company’s financial activity.

Income Statement

The Income Statement (Profit and Loss P&L) and Balance Sheet of an organization are derived from the data recorded in the General Ledger’s income and expense account categories.


SapphireOne Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) Software is designed to automatically update sub-ledgers and the General Ledger with entries sourced from the SapphireOne data file. This data is shared with other processes managed through the SapphireOne ERP system, ensuring that all financial information is consistently recorded and accurate.

SapphireOne offers an unparalleled level of customisability within the General Ledger, allowing users to create up to forty five unique identifiers that are fully reportable, searchable, and sortable.


Users can set up 13 reporting levels in the Details and More Details pages for each General Ledger account. They may then further customize the General Ledger accounts by adding 12 GL Alpha fields, 8 Real fields, 10 Numeric fields, 2 Text fields, and 10 user-defined fields on the Custom page.

Customization at this level is not found in any other ERP General Ledger. This gives SapphireOne users a truly unique opportunity to tailor their General Ledger to meet their specific reporting needs.

General Ledger Inquiry Overview

General Ledger Inquiry functionality is vital to your organisation, providing SapphireOne users with unlimited access to information held within each General Ledger account.

The General Ledger Inquiry screen, displays General Ledger accounts in the Master or local currency only. For information regarding Foreign Exchange General Ledger details, please refer to the SapphireOne FX General Ledger Inquiry screen.

The General Ledger Account ID’s and Names listed above, along with their corresponding account Class, provide a clear indication of each account’s intended purpose and the financial data it contains.

In the second-to-last column labeled Side, is the default side (Credit Cr or Debit Dr) that each General Ledger account operates on. This which provides an insight into the type of financial data contained in the account. The last column, labeled Balance, displays the current balance of each General Ledger account.

After highlighting a General Ledger account and either Viewing or Modifying it, the Page menu becomes available, allowing you to access additional pages of information about the account.

For audit purposes, it is not possible to delete any General Ledger accounts in the SapphireOne General Ledger Inquiry screen.

However, users have the option to mark any General Ledger account as inactive. During normal operations, SapphireOne only displays and prints active accounts.

How to Customise the Inquiry Screen

The General Ledger Inquiry window displays all General Ledger accounts for the Company that the user is currently logged into. These are sorted by General Ledger ID in ascending order by default.

You can easily change the sort order by clicking on any of the column headings. Additionally, you can toggle between ascending and descending order by clicking the column heading again.

To adjust the order of the columns in the General Ledger Inquiry window, simply click and drag the column to the desired position. Similar to other List Windows, you can also re-organize the displayed information by highlighting and utilizing functions from the Options Menu. 

You also have the ability to swap to a Custom Inquiry Screen as detailed below.

All inquiry screens in SapphireOne offer the option to customise the list of items displayed on the page. This feature, known as Custom Inquiry, allows you to select the data fields to be shown and the order in which the columns of data appear across the screen. Although a client list is used as an example below, any type of inquiry can be customised within SapphireOne.

The list below represents the standard inquiry list, displaying a basic set of data fields for each client record:

Swap to Custom Inquiry

When you select the ‘Swap to Custom Inquiry’ button in the lower left-hand corner of the screen, SapphireOne will display the default Custom Screen, as shown below. This Custom List screen provides the user with two main options for organising the data display:

  1. To add or remove the data field columns displayed on the screen, click the ‘Setup’ button in the bottom right corner of the screen. Within the Setup screen, you can right-click on the column lines and choose from Delete, Move Left, or Move Right. More information on the Setup screen is provided below.
  2. To change the order in which the data field columns are displayed, click the ‘Setup’ button in the bottom right corner of the screen. Within the Setup screen, you can right-click on the column lines and choose from Delete, Move Left, or Move Right. More information on the Setup screen is provided below.

Once you have customised the Custom Inquiry screen, the screen view will be unique to you, and each time you log in, you will see the same custom view. You also have the option to select and save an unlimited number of custom views. This can be done in the ‘Setup’ screen, as detailed below.

The Inquiry screen below is the initial Custom Inquiry screen, which can be modified by the user.

Custom Inquiry Screen ‘Setup’ Function

To begin setting up your Customised List screen, click the Setup button, as shown above. The Setup screen will appear, as displayed below.


From this screen, users can add and remove data columns as needed. Almost every field within the SapphireOne data tables can be included in the Custom List screen, provided the user has the necessary authorisation.

The screen features several menu items across the top, which include:

  • Reset to Default – Clicking this button resets the display to the default settings determined by SapphireOne. When you add a new data field, SapphireOne will place it on the right-hand side of the data columns. You can then click on the field heading and drag it to your desired location on the screen.
  • Show Related Record – This option allows you to add related fields from other tables. By ticking the Show Related checkbox at the top of the screen, you can select a related record, and a mini view of that related record for the chosen entry will be displayed for the currently selected record. You will need to select the fields to be displayed.
  • Favourite Set – Located at the top left of the screen, this option enables you to save a custom-created screen for future use. For instance, you can have a simple Inquiry screen for general use and a more complex screen view when auditing specific information.

Details Page

General Ledger Area data entry

  • Account ID – Enter as required.
  • Account Name – Enter as required
  • Company & Company Name – The company used in the screenshot above is 0, zero, as an example. This ID and name is drawn from the set up of your Company in Utilities > Controls > Company.
  • Department – SapphireOne appends the Department ID to the end of the Account ID to determine the Full Account ID. For example, 1000-0.
  • Active Checkbox – Users have the option to deactivate General Ledger accounts as needed, but SapphireOne will not allow accounts that are essential for proper system operation to be deactivated. In such cases, an alert will be displayed to notify the user.
    • Inactive Accounts – It is important to exercise caution when deactivating General Accounts, as once they have been made inactive, SapphireOne will be unable to access these accounts for data entry purposes until they have been reactivated again.
    • Reports – Although General Ledger accounts may be marked as inactive, users still have the option to include them in reports generated by Sapphire Standard Financials. Users can choose to include inactive accounts with no balances or include all active and inactive General Ledger accounts in the report.

Reporting Groups Area Data Entry

It is important to establish General Ledger Classes prior to creating General Ledger accounts.

You can create these classes by navigating to Accounts > General Ledger > Class Inquiry.

  • Class ID – Enter the Class ID.
    • Group & Report – The Group and Report positions in the Class file, determine the structure of your Income Statement and Balance Sheet, and are read to ensure proper functionality.

Controls Area Data Entry

When creating a General Ledger entry, you must specify whether it should be placed on the Debit or Credit side of the account. It is important to note that the selection of the Debit or Credit side is primarily a preference for the trial balance and when entering payments and receipts.

Notes Area

Time and Date stamp functionality has been provided to add the current date and time. You can also include notes about your actions. Additionally, you can customize the font, style, color, and background color of the text in the notes area by highlighting it and right-clicking.

More Details Page

The More Details Page provides additional access to areas of account information beyond those available on the Details Page.

Custom Area

A General Ledger Inquiry Custom area functions like other Custom Pages within SapphireOne. This allows users to enter custom classes and fields to store unique information for a particular record. Users can customize the names of any field by navigating to Utilities > Controls > Change Names.

User Defined Area

The User Defined area provides an area to enter user-defined information.

General Ledger Inquiry Balances Page

The General Ledger Inquiry Balances page tracks the current year General Ledger balances for an account. This account may contain up to 30 accounting periods within a single year. Additionally, it includes balances from the previous year.

By selecting the Find Period Audit Line button, users can choose a period to view a breakdown of all audit lines that contributed to the balance for that period.

General Ledger Inquiry Budgets Page

This General Ledger Inquiry Budgets page enables users to create budgets for a specific General Ledger account.

By selecting the drop-down menu labeled Fill Next Years Budget To Revised, users can choose from various actions. Once an action has been selected, users can execute it by clicking the Budget Fill button.

General Ledger Inquiry Loan Page

The General Ledger Inquiry Loan page enables users to set up a loan associated with a specific General Ledger account. Once established, the SapphireOne will automatically generate a journal based on the loan’s installment dates.

General Ledger Inquiry Analysis Page

This page provides users with the ability to review a line graph of their current, last, and next balances.

General Ledger Inquiry Audit Lines Page

This Audit Lines page displays a detailed breakdown of all audit lines that comprise the balance for a General Ledger account. By default, this includes all unposted transactions.

  • Exclude Unposted – This excludes un-posted transactions from the display.
  • Look Transaction – You may select an Audit line and look at the transaction that created them.
  • Open in Inquiry – This open an inquiry window for all audit lines currently displayed.
  • Complete History Checkbox – Displays all audit lines for this General Ledger account.
  • Recent History Checkbox – Displays the last 12 month audit lines for this General Ledger account.

Documents Page

Documents Page Overview

The Documents Page centralises document and information storage for transactions and master tables, streamlining organisation and management for easy access and improved efficiency.

Documents Area

The Documents Page simplifies file management by allowing various document types to be attached via drag and drop, including PDFs, spreadsheets, photos, and more. It provides a centralised location for document and information storage for transactions and master tables, streamlining organisation and management for easy access and improved efficiency.

Documents can only be attached once the corresponding record has an assigned ID.

Documents List Screen Options

There are eight buttons on the Document List screen, as follows:

  1. Open – Allows viewing of the currently selected document.
  2. Update – Prompts the user to import a new version of the selected document while maintaining links to any associated transactions.
  3. Scan – Accesses a scanner for scanning documents directly into the data file and linking them to the current transaction (requires a compatible scanner with software).
  4. Save – Saves the currently selected document.
  5. Link Document: Enables linking of the selected document to other transactions in the data file, presenting a popup for user selection.
  6. Link Document – Allows linking of an existing document in the data file to the current transaction or record, displaying a popup with a list of documents to choose from.
  7. Link Existing Document – Allows linking of an existing document in the data file to the current transaction or record, displaying a popup with a list of documents to choose from.
  8. Delete – Deletes the currently selected transaction or record.
  9. Add – Displays a search function for selecting a document from the local computer or device.

Details Area

The Details area allows users to add a custom name, description, and tags to each document, enabling easy search and location of specific documents. These details can be customised to meet the specific needs of the user or organisation, further improving the efficiency and organisation of the Documents Page.

Last Modified Area

The Last Modified section displays the date and time when the document was last modified, as well as the user who made the changes. This feature helps maintain accountability and enables efficient tracking of document modifications.

History Area

The History area records changes made to the document, including the date, time, and user who made the changes. This provides a valuable tool for tracking and managing document revisions.

The Links area allows users to record links to other places where the document has been attached. Links can be added or removed using the (+) and (-) buttons, providing an efficient way to manage and organise related documents.

Notes Area

The Notes area allows users to add any relevant notes related to the document. Clicking the green clock button will add a date/time stamp, further improving document tracking and management.

GL Budget Tools

The Sapphire GL Budget tools allow the user to modify multiple General Ledger budgets simultaneously, by selecting or highlighting all relevant items on screen. These tools are listed in the Sapphire Tools menu and enable bulk management of budgets.

  • Copy Last Year’s Actual Into Budget – This Sapphire tool will copy this years Actual expenditure in to a budget for next year
  • Copy This Year’s Budget into Next Year – The Sapphire tool will copy last years Budget into next years.
  • Copy This Year’s Actual into Next Year – The Sapphire tool will copy this years Actual balance into next years.
  • Copy Budget to Revised – Copy the current budget to a Revised Budget.
  • Copy Revised to Budget – Copy a Revised budget into an actual budget.
  • Swap Budget and Revised – Swap the Budget and Revised Budget values.

Find out more about a specific GL Budget tool functionality here.

You can review our Blog and YouTube channel for additional information and resources on SapphireOne ERP, CRM and Business Accounting software.

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