In a typical structure of a business, there will always be cost centers and cost centers under cost centers which will require separate reporting and summed up reports.
The current Tracking Code system allows for stand alone cost centers. There is the need to be able to have cost centres/Tracking codes under Tracking Codes. I need it for the following situations
- Division/Category reporting
- For project and sub project reporting
- Tracking performance of Sales groups or individuals
The current company I am working with for example has two branches and all the branches have their respective cost centers and sub cost centers e.g. General Admin Expenses, Finance, Canteen and IT. We also have projects, an example is the LCDEp project which has sub programs/projects called MobRwa, LCD Business, and LCD Agriculture. Under LCD Agriculture we have two acrtivities, 1. Cash Crops 2. Livestock.
We want to be able to see Profit or Lose for LCDEp as a whole which sums up all the figures allocated to all the Tracking Codes under it and also a report for any level we choose that sums up every tracking Code under it. We also want to be able to see a standalone report e.g. P/L for Livestock
This way we will create a Division Tracking Code e.g. Branch A and create other tracking codes e.g. Br A – General Expenses, Br A – LCD Agriculture and Br A – LCD Agriculture – Livestock.
If Possible the user should be able to create many levels as needed but should be able to see report to any level. So from the table above, the user should be able to see a report for any sub activity or Activity or any Cost center or the division/Branch/Cost Category as a whole, with each tracking code report summing up the levels under it.
To enhance this feature, the upcoming budget feature could allow for setting up budget either based of Tracking Codes or Accounts. So I could enter $5000 as budget for Livestock and if the net amount of Livestock exceeds $5000 in it Profit and loss report, the report will display the difference and the project Manager of Livestock will have to explain the variance.
What your say everyone?
You would use the tracking codes for the two branches, but for the rest you could use the unlimited multi steps/layers available within the COA’s - including groups and totals to suit
That a good suggestion but we do not want the name of our projects to appear in chart of accounts, it simply is not a place for them.
Creating sub classes/tracking Codes/Cost centers is pretty much a common thing in accounting apps,
@Abeiku makes a very good point. The chart of accounts should not be used for either solving transitory problems or tracking ever-growing lists related to customers, suppliers, projects, etc. A well-designed chart of accounts can endure through everything but company reorganization, tax law change, or changing accounting standards.
Chart of Accounts is a management tool and if it’s structure suits the organizations requirements then go for it. Not all Manager users are businesses so their ability to report the results of various activities/fundraisings simplistically (without needing sub-reporting) would look quite odd to a business. For myself I have one Manager “business” where the P&L has multiple groupings and not one of them is an expenses group. That’s the beauty of Manager, flexibility.
But for an organisation (NGO) always doing different projects you just can’t flood your C.O.A with projects or cost centres. You leave the chart of accounts intact and be using tracking codes.
You don’t flood your COA - as the P&L is zeroed out at the start of each financial year you just recycle them. Event A last year becomes Event E this year (assuming there is no year end carry over activity)
Gala Day 2015 becomes Gala Day 2016 or Castle Visit becomes Winery Visit. Whilst this could be done by tracking codes, this just complicates the processing and reporting for volunteer treasurers with zilch bookkeeping knowledge.
Windows user also have an added advantage, right click the Summary tab and click print - the BS & P&L all on one easily understood page.
I am not saying your request doesn’t have merit, but increased sophistication comes with increased competency - getting sub sub sub allocations correct. Added to this, would be the future alluded to Consolidation feature.
While generally designed for the accumulation of independent legal entities into a group picture, it could also be used where the one entity has completely alternate divisions - manufacturing and retailing. Each division could have their own COA without being polluted by the requirements of the other division.
Well I don’t see any complications this can bring. It rather will reduce the work load on the accountant by making it easy to pull out all revenue and expenditure for an area of interest no matter how deep it buried in the organisational structure.
I didn’t quite get you right but were you suggesting I change the name of Accounts or tracking codes every year? That would be a very bad practice, retrospective investigations or adjustments would be very difficult.
The suggested feature would be simple like the account groups we have already, just create a tracking code group and choose if it falls under another tracking code, during transactions, search for the right to tracking code and select. I believe this has almost no complications. Further more , this wouldn’t be a feature that everyone would have to know and use, users could always decide if they will involve groups or not just like the Group function in COA.
@lubos what say you about this suggestion? Does it sound like a good suggestion to you? And what the possibility of this being tried out?
Yeah, I don’t think there is a reason not to implement tracking code groups. How many levels are desired? Just one?
Probably as many as a user may require. You never know how many project fall under the same tracking code
@lubos thanks, well I believe being able to create groups in a similar fashion as creating groups for accounts would be great for this accounting application. That it, create groups as deep as the user’s organisational/operational settup requires.
But it all depends on what you can do. I don’t know anything about programming and don’t have any idea about the complexities/difficulty you must go through to do this. So if you can do the unlimited level feature like we have for accounts groups then please do because it will pay off.