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MIS Systems Thread, Multi-Academy Trust Financial Package in Technical; Hi We are looking to become a MAT and the FMS Package that we have will not support the multiple ...
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    Multi-Academy Trust Financial Package

    Hi

    We are looking to become a MAT and the FMS Package that we have will not support the multiple locations that we need directly, I have been advised that we need to buy the Capita MultiView.

    Has anyone else got this setup running properly?


    Our accountants have suggested a package called PS Financials as a replacement, does anyone have any experience of this in a MAT Setup? What are their pros / cons and their after care support like? Can you import all your FMS Data and reports?


    How does the multiple locations work? Do their servers connect to our servers or go via a third party?

    Thanks

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    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    PS FInancials is SH**.

    Ask your finance staff if they'd like to go back to doing everything on 5 different systems and spreadsheets. I bet they say no.

    That's PSF.

    We have Multiview up and running for both SIMS and FMS and it appears to work really rather well. I know FMS is old and crap, but compared to PSF it's a gift!

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    Our accountants have said it is like working with Excel, which we dont fancy.

    Is MultiView good then? How does it work? Do we host their data or is it duplicated?

    Or are there any other alternatives that you looked at?

    Quote Originally Posted by synaesthesia View Post
    PS FInancials is SH**.

    Ask your finance staff if they'd like to go back to doing everything on 5 different systems and spreadsheets. I bet they say no.

    That's PSF.

    We have Multiview up and running for both SIMS and FMS and it appears to work really rather well. I know FMS is old and crap, but compared to PSF it's a gift!

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    I am a Director of a Multi Academy Trust which switched to PS financials and is happy. PM me if your Finance people want contact details for ours to discuss.

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    GREED's Avatar
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    Corero is another choice (Now Civica)

  6. Thanks to GREED from:

    Oaktech (25th March 2014)

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    Thanks
    Quote Originally Posted by GREED View Post
    Corero is another choice (Now Civica)

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by darrenmcginnis View Post
    Thanks
    I should have said the choice came down to PS Financials or Correro, but our Finance team found PSF did what they needed better. It was the more expensive of the two.

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    synaesthesia's Avatar
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    Multiview is transparent as far as the individual schools are concerned, they may be involved in installing it but otherwise it basically lets the academy chain/trust/charity/whatever remotely access the databases and pull the data across in a good format without having to change everything as far as the school sees.

    My understanding of PSF is limited and will continue to stay that way - the experience comes from working with a school with it. I hope the academy guys don't mind me saying, but they don't think much of it either! The business manager(s) involved felt it was like going back 10 years. It may improve, but in it's current state I really couldn't recommend anyone seriously considers it! (I think when you call a product "something from the past" *in direct comparison* to FMS which still looks and behaves like something from the 90's is very, very telling)

    Multiview is quite a new option hence why it hasn't had a huge amount of review.

  10. Thanks to synaesthesia from:

    elsiegee40 (14th March 2014)

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    Theblacksheep's Avatar
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    PSF After care support is non-existent and you can only submit a certain amount of cases per month. Access to more support is chargeable. Access to their support area is chargeable.

    Nothing will work from FMS. You need to design your entire input/report structure/trust/costcenter before you go with them and through the process. Making changes afterwards is chargeable. GET IT RIGHT.

    Their web 'portal' is a basic IIS site that leverages, SQL reporting and reporting services to do the real work. Which doesn't work correctly with some remote access solutions and not all browsers load it correctly.

    Their actual client software for finance is separated into each component. Each need installing and configuring. Some installs for all users, some installs for per user. Some data is stored in the roaming profile.

    If planned right, their software is great for multi-academy schools. Everything around it from a technical and support point of view is a shambles.

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    Oaktech's Avatar
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    We are using Corero and it's quite frankly a brilliant piece of software, yes, OK it looks old fashioned, but it bloody well works!

    It wraps up finance and HR together, runs on one server taking up very little space (currently less than 10gb including scanned docs) and is dead easy to install.

    Support is excellent, to the point where I don't really get involved unless a server side session is involved.

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    I'm the Business & Finance director for a multi-academy trust comprising a secondary school and 7 primary schools. We originally converted on 1st April 2012 and we made the decision to switch our accounting software at the point of conversion to ensure that we were appropriately placed to meet the many accounting challenges as a MAT. We looked at 5 different software packages from 6 different companies and engaged our newly appointed external auditors and all of our finance officers in the process. The decision was unanimously in favour of PS Financials and I would standby this decision 2-years downstream. Our conversion was straightforward, the training provided was excellent and the support has been first class. We have developed an extremely positive relationship with the desk leads that look after our MAT and I would have absolutely no hesitation in highly recommending PSF to any MAT. Moreover, incontrast to a couple of the unprofessional comments posted in this thread, I would suggest that for any serious MAT, PSF is the only credible accounting software on the market. It allows centralised control and decentralised execution, provides the means to look centrally at each school in 'stovepipe' or look cross functionally at ledger codes. In my experience, many companies make this claim but none to my knowledge offer the same level of flexibility and agility. Another major factor is that PSF hold by far the market share for MAT's, not only does this tell its own story, but it means that it remains in PSF's interest to continually develop their software and reporting packages to keep hundreds/thousands of customers happy. PSF are also engaged by the EFA as they look to develop their reporting needs. Finally, our external auditors comment on the ease with which they are able to do their audit, aided considerably by our accounting software.

    Choosing an accounting package for a MAT is a big decision and not one that you will wish to repeat in the short to medium term. Make sure you look at the market and go and see the software in operation before you decide.

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    I should have added to support Ben's post above that PSF have signed a technical agreement with OroviaBPS to ensure the budgeting package works seemlessly with PSF.

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    Quote Originally Posted by JMBanbrook View Post
    I'm the Business & Finance director for a multi-academy trust comprising a secondary school and 7 primary schools. We originally converted on 1st April 2012 and we made the decision to switch our accounting software at the point of conversion to ensure that we were appropriately placed to meet the many accounting challenges as a MAT. We looked at 5 different software packages from 6 different companies and engaged our newly appointed external auditors and all of our finance officers in the process. The decision was unanimously in favour of PS Financials and I would standby this decision 2-years downstream. Our conversion was straightforward, the training provided was excellent and the support has been first class. We have developed an extremely positive relationship with the desk leads that look after our MAT and I would have absolutely no hesitation in highly recommending PSF to any MAT. Moreover, incontrast to a couple of the unprofessional comments posted in this thread, I would suggest that for any serious MAT, PSF is the only credible accounting software on the market. It allows centralised control and decentralised execution, provides the means to look centrally at each school in 'stovepipe' or look cross functionally at ledger codes. In my experience, many companies make this claim but none to my knowledge offer the same level of flexibility and agility. Another major factor is that PSF hold by far the market share for MAT's, not only does this tell its own story, but it means that it remains in PSF's interest to continually develop their software and reporting packages to keep hundreds/thousands of customers happy. PSF are also engaged by the EFA as they look to develop their reporting needs. Finally, our external auditors comment on the ease with which they are able to do their audit, aided considerably by our accounting software.

    Choosing an accounting package for a MAT is a big decision and not one that you will wish to repeat in the short to medium term. Make sure you look at the market and go and see the software in operation before you decide.
    Thanks for that, I have passed your comments onto the Business Manager here.

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    Maybe i'm just suspicious but an account with only 2 posts bigging up PSF...

    No offence intended

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