Possible renaming of Cash Accounts tab

I would like to hear other user’s thoughts about this suggestion.

The combination of Cash Accounts and Bank Accounts with version 16.5.6 put different kinds of accounts under the same tab, but seemed to be a logical change. After all, these were the accounts where one could spend, receive, and transfer money. The operations available with them were similar. So it made sense to have them together.

Now, version 16.5.32 allows us to assign these accounts to control accounts of our own choosing. One welcome result is the ability to show pending credit card balances as liabilities rather than contra asset accounts. Revolving charge accounts with merchants, where a purchase invoice makes little sense, are another example. As a consequence, the Balance Sheet can more intuitively show how much cash is actually available, without the deduction of pending credit balances on which payments might be adjusted to match cash flow, etc. But after such credit accounts are moved to a newly created liability control account, they must still be accessed under the Cash Accounts tab.

My suggestion is to rename the Cash Accounts tab to something that better reflects its current purpose rather than its historical origin. I believe this will make the overall interface more intuitive, since you won’t be going to a misleadingly named Cash Accounts tab to record a credit card purchase that shows up under Liabilities. The common factor among these accounts is no longer that they are cash accounts. In fact, many will now explicitly not involve cash or a cash equivalent, but rather some form of credit. I especially believe this will help new users, who will have no idea of the history behind the current configuration.

The common factors between accounts in this tab are (1) you can move or obligate money, (2) they frequently involve external institutions, and (3) many share the possibility of having uncleared payments or deposits. For those that don’t share one or more of those characteristics, the presence of such features are obviously inapplicable or can be suppressed. I have had several ideas about how to rename the tab, including:

  • Cash, Bank, and Credit Accounts (this is probably too long for the space available, and may not reflect all types of accounts that might reside here)
  • Institutional Accounts
  • Monetary Accounts
  • Transaction Accounts

My personal favorite (at least for now) is the last one, Transaction Accounts, because it clearly indicates what you can do in the tab. Whatever name is used, including the word Accounts shows what sort of thing is accessible under that tab. Those principles seem consistent with other naming conventions in Manager.

Other thoughts, anyone?

I fully agree. The word cash in the name is ambiguous to say the least, especially as many of the accounts will be nothing to do with cash.

I would go for Cash, Bank & Credit (no accounts in the name)
or Financial Accounts or Finances
or Monetary Accounts

I would not go for Institutional accounts as petty cash is not an institution and Transaction Accounts doesn’t really make me think of banking and financial accounts.

In my part of the world, in a financial statements, credit cards, overdraft etc are all shown under Cash and Bank or Cash on Hand and Cash @ bank . The idea is to make it simple for everyone to understand the financial statement.

And I think the creator has mentioned how you can use the cash accounts to manage credit cards etc.
I believe journal entries, credit notes, debits notes etc are transactions so Transaction Accounts is confusing to me, besides all these nature of transactions (credit note, journals, debit notes) have monitory values, so naming the cash accounts Monetary Accounts will be confusing to someone who doesn’t know much. Calling themInstitutional Accounts for me complicates it.
The first option is good but like you said it kind of long, Let us not forget that the creator wants the application to have a lot of features but also wants to make it simple. I remember when I saw the app first, I wanted Debit and credit Columns when I view transactions in accounts but he never changed it and now I love it like it is because it easier for people without any accounting Knowledge to use it. (Debit and Credit scares people :smile:)

For me Cash Accounts is perfect. He just has to mention in the guides the other things you can use the Cash Accounts to do, which I think he has done.

Well, we are doing great so far. No agreement at all. :grin: But these are all good points. The cultural expectations are important. So will translations be.

I share @dalacor’s dislike for “institutional” because it leaves out physical cash accounts held at the business. I hadn’t thought about @Abeiku’s very valid point that lots of other things besides spend, receive, and transfer could also be thought of as transactions. I strongly support the idea of simplicity. But after I moved credit cards to a liability control account, it didn’t seem intuitive or simple any more, even though I had followed every step along the way. I am concerned it will be confusing for the novice.

But it seems several of us like Cash, Bank, & Credit Accounts except for its length.

What about Spend, Receive, & Transfer or Spend/Receive/Transfer? The trouble with that is that it doesn’t suggest the tab as the place to look for information about an account. Hmmmmm.

Any other thoughts out there?

I think we should just keep it simple and call the tab Money :slight_smile: (with the smile he he).

I agree with @Abeiku - I don’t like the name transactions for the reasons he listed.

Cash Account doesn’t say Bank to me so I do agree it should be renamed. Cash, Bank and CC might be ok except for length.

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Cash Accounts might not be the best name but proposals are not any better.

How long is a piece of string - in my world of simplicity - CASH reigns supreme and is universally recognised.

I support that some of the alternatives could create more difficulties then provide a solution but to clarify a couple of points:

Credits Cards (poorly named in my opinion) are CASH.
What Mr MasterCard, Visa and others are saying is - we will advance you cash and “pay” the merchant “now” on your behalf and you can reimburse us later. As a payer you have choices (1) cash from your pocket - Petty Cash, (2) cash from your bank - Debit Card, Cheque, or (3) cash from a lender - credit card, overdraft (cheque).

In fact, there is no difference between credit cards and overdrafts - both are cash advances (allowable credit) from institutions that need to be re-paid. Credit card providers and banks are both financial institutions therefore if overdrafts are acceptable as a BS Liability “cash” account, then so should credit cards (mini overdrafts).

The accounting transaction doesn’t change because of the cash source - the merchant is being paid - they aren’t providing credit. Only the type of Cash Account being used to record the transaction changes.

Revolving Charge Accounts aren’t CASH nor are they alternate Credit Cards.
Merchants have choices, they can provide 30 Day Credit Account or Charge Card with credit limits. Putting transactions on either doesn’t involve cash but credit (deferred payment). The transaction stays internal of the business. Merchants are “not” financial institutions

With either facility you would set the merchant up as a Supplier and process all transactions as Purchase Invoices and Spend Money to settle the balance. In fact, the charge card has no accounting standing at all, it’s just a symbol used by the merchant to communicate that the holder can purchase on credit - pay later.

If there was to be a change my support would be for @dalacor suggestion “Money Accounts” as that includes cash without having to be in actual “cash”

I agree with @Brucanna, Money Accounts is more general and would include cash, cheques, credit cards, electronic transfers, cash floats and imprest systems. It would also be consistent with the Receive Money, Spend Money and Transfer Money functions.

I suppose what initially bothered me about the current name of the Cash Accounts tab is that I’ve spent many years thinking of cash accounts as asset accounts. Now it seems strange to see something listed under a cash banner showing up as a liability on the balance sheet (assuming something like a credit card account is assigned to a custom liability control account). Then again, I’ve never used an accounting system with a structure like Manager’s.

The suggestion of Money Accounts has some appeal, largely because it parallels the commands available within the tab. But if it came down to Money or Cash, Cash is a much more traditional term in accounting. You don’t typically see Money listed on a balance sheet.

I can certainly continue operating with the Cash Accounts name. But it feels a little discordant, while what I like so much about Manager is its natural feel. Over time, the evolution of the program has been to smooth out rough or counter-intuitive behaviors. But maybe I’m the only one who had that reaction. If so, I’m perfectly willing to surrender and abandon my proposal.

You can have “Money Accounts” as the tab name - as the tab name, like the current Cash Accounts tab name, doesn’t flow through to the BS. You get Cash on Hand & Cash at Bank as the displayed BS account names.

Similarly, with any new control account you create, Credit Cards, Overdrafts, those names will be the BS account names - not “money”

One would have been “thinking (misled) of cash accounts as asset accounts” only because Manager has been amalgamating credit cards and overdrafts under the Assets banner. Overdrafts are a legitimate cash account but they aren’t an Asset

This mismatch of tab and BS names is not new to Manager: Sales Invoices & Purchase Invoices tabs both turn into Accounts Receivable & Accounts Payable accounts on the BS

As stated “the evolution of the program has been to smooth out … counter-intuitive behaviours”. Implementing the custom control accounts for cash related accounts so they can be assigned correctly as Assets or Liabilities has been a huge step in that direction - therefore the re-titling of the tab as rightfully highlighted by this topic could be the final step.

The word “cash” tends to imply positive balances like the word “loan” implies negative balances.
The word Money distances itself from implying balances in any direction.

As @tony and @Tut both noted - the Money Accounts tab title would directly relate to the named functions - Receive, Spend & Transfer

Money Accounts name is good alternative to Cash Accounts, it is also consistent with Receive Money, Spend Money and Transfer Money buttons which is very good point.

I think that Money works very well especially as you have spend money, receive money and transfer money concepts (which I had not noticed) - so it flows really nicely. And as @Brucanna pointed out the name of the tab does not necessarily have to transfer to BS and P&L.

I personally would go for just “Money” rather than “Money Accounts” as it sounds strange to say Money Accounts! But no doubt I will get used to it quite quickly.

Failing that, I think that Spend/Receieve/Transfer that @Tut suggested is also a good name for simplicity and flows well for those people who don’t like the idea of using the Money.

I don’t agree with @Abeiku about keeping it as Cash Accounts. I live in England and I grew up in South Africa and nobody would ever refer to a bank account or credit card as Cash. When I think of cash, I think of whats in my wallet or petty cash!

It cannot be called just Money… it would break consistency of how tabs are named. Each tab is explicitly named by what it contains and the figure on the tab indicates how many items are inside (the only exceptions are the first tab Summary and the last two tabs Reports and Settings)

How about calling it Financial, that way it refers to any type of monetary activity. The only possible drawback from this would be whether it could be confused with Capital Accounts, but as this is contained in a separate area of the programme I don’t think it should cause too many issues.

Financial probably has more common usage with Financial Reports and Financial Accounts.

I am totally very satisfied with the name we have currently (Cash Accounts), but if I have to suggest anything, I will suggest renaming it to Funds

Actually, I was referring to experience with other systems that always did include credit cards, overdrafts, etc. as some form of current liability. So the only thing ever meant by cash and showing up under an assets heading was liquid money of one form or another. Thus, the word cash did, indeed, have the connotation you mentioned of positive balances. Obviously, for many businesses, most of what was deemed as cash was in a bank account, not hard currency. The way we were forced to set up credit cards as contra asset accounts was an unusual aspect of Manager and, I suspect, confusing to new users. Now that we are freed from that restriction, I wonder if inexperienced users won’t be confused by the Cash Accounts name. But I’ve made that point enough times.

The idea of Money Accounts is growing on me for two additional reasons:

  1. It allows any form or source of liquid funds, including electronic and “unofficial” mediums of exchange.
  2. As several have pointed out, it doesn’t carry through to the balance sheet and P&L, which actually might reduce confusion. Users would not be wondering why information referred to as cash in one place wasn’t showing up as cash in another.

Correct, Bitcoin & Ethereum are definitely not cash but they are a form of money.

Here is how Manager would look like if Cash Accounts was renamed to Money Accounts. Not sure how I feel about it.

I’ve had a little bit of the same reaction–it seems somewhat strange. It’s helpful to see the change, though. Maybe we should all give this a few days and see what we think. I would very much like to see some additional users offer their opinions, too. We may suffer from groupthink. :wink: