Like many office managers, Alison Phillips of Moyle Bendale Timber in South Australia finds herself doing pretty much everything!
Established by R.G. Moyle in 1952, Moyle Bendale Timber imports quality rough sawn timber and machined timber mouldings, as well as manufacturing in their mill a range of timber mouldings of their own for the Australian market.
“There is a staff of 7 in the office and there are 15 in the factory. My role is to oversee all aspects of the operation, everything from orders through to production, accounting and finance, so I need an understanding of everything from an administrative point of view.”
And Alison uses SapphireOne to do it.
“In previous jobs, I worked with many different accounting software programs and this was one of the reasons I was employed here at Moyle Bendale Timber. When I began, and through no specific fault, the implementation of the systems was in disarray and I was given the job of bringing the software back to a meaningful and successful operational capacity.”
“Sapphire, as it was called then, had just been installed and through the process of sorting out the business operations, I learnt all of the application’s ins and outs – its attributes and downfalls.”
“However, if you know what you want to achieve, Sapphire One is only limited by your imagination.”
SapphireOne offers a portfolio of default modules which suit a wide range of business types, but because of its modular design, there is a huge degree of flexibility built in and the potential for customization.
Rather than adapting your business to your accounting system, SapphireOne allows plenty of scope to suit individual business circumstance with a myriad of customizing choices built into the application.
Explained Alison, “In our business we sell timber packed in bundles or loose, by the length. This requires two very different costing and inventory models, but with SapphireOne and some modifications to handle our specific situation, I can now handle both concurrently. SapphireOne really is very flexible and there are heaps of choices as to how you operate with it.”
“I’m not an accountant, but our accountants love the system because I can provide them with any information they require. SapphireOne is open in a way that lets us massage and query the data in any manner we see fit – and this would be the same for any other business as far as I can tell.”
Good Accounting software should be designed so that not only accountants can follow it, but also management who need to understand the financial management processes.
One of SapphireOne’s strengths is how all the different modules dovetail with the general ledger. “I know from other software that sometimes the general ledger can be left behind or not quite fit the bill, but in SapphireOne it works really well. Integration between modules is very comprehensive.
“For instance, a few years back we had a separate payroll module which used to upload into the general ledger, but now it is all integrated into the one database. This is not only very practical, but also very flexible. For instance, our staff can be working in different roles at different times, but I can still track them from a costing point of view, departmentalizing their worked hours right through to the GL if required.”
“This is really useful when we’re looking at our internal costs, what areas are effective and so on. It all comes back to the reporting and while there are plenty of standard templates, SapphireOne’s user-defined reports are brilliant. I can define my queries very easily to see how we are travelling and whether a particular moulding machine is cost effective or not.” SapphireOne developers put significant emphasis on financial management and reporting.
“I can export data directly from an inquiry screen or call up a “Quick Report”, where it is just a matter of putting a number of fields together and even adding in some calculations. It’s a bit like Excel in one sense and I now have a plethora of saved report formats that I use regularly for various tasks.”
“One report that I have created in this way, and our accountants really appreciate, is the audit line report. I can show them exactly what each transaction was all about, without them having to look at SapphireOne itself.”
“I know accountants and financial controllers all have their personal preferences. For instance, MYOB is very popular and I have worked with it too. However, if MYOB is an aeroplane, SapphireOne is a rocketship!”
“What I like about SapphireOne is that it’s an Enterprise Resource Planning solution. We don’t need lots of third-party applications to supplement it. For instance, electronic document storage is built into SapphireOne, so everything to do with a transaction is all stored in the one place.”
“This feature has saved us heaps of time, especially mine! In the past, I needed to be a regular sleuth to find all the paperwork for a particular transaction, but with SapphireOne, all the documentation is in the one place, from the picking slips to the proof of delivery. I used to spend hours in the filing room tracking down this type of information on hard copy, but now it is all on the system.”
“And we email our invoices and statements directly from SapphireOne, either singly or in batches, whereas I’ve noticed that some of our suppliers seem to be using a separate application to email their invoices to us. It’s so much better to have everything integrated into the one application.”
“I’ve been using SapphireOne for 15 years and, in my experience, they have always kept up to date with the latest technology.
“This is what I like about working with SapphireOne, along with their wider experience.
We are in the timber industry, but SapphireOne is used by a host of different businesses and, as I understand it, if there are features that have been implemented for one client, they are available for other clients as well. Of course, most clients aren’t aware the functionality is there, but it’s reassuring to know that this added expertise is available if required – and automatically built into the system as a whole.
“I’ve often said to John Adams that SapphireOne is a very complex system, but it is not necessarily complicated. In fact, I find it very intuitive to drive. And when new staff join us at Moyle Bendale TImber, they pick up the skills to operate SapphireOne really quickly.
“I’ve personally always had a very good relationship with John and his staff over the years. Paul has been there from the beginning and has always been very helpful, and now with ‘Zax Ma‘ on board, the support situation is brilliant.”