A Few Good Reasons to Upgrade Your Older Sage 200 System

If you’ve been considering upgrading an older version of Sage 200 to the most recent version of Sage 200cloud, we hope this look at some of the best reasons to do so is helpful.


First things first – let’s acknowledge that the naming around a lot of things Sage related can be a bit confusing. In a nutshell, Sage 200cloud is any version of Sage 200 released AFTER 2016.


Also, the name Sage 200cloud suggests that it is a fully cloud-based solution, it’s not. It’s still a client server application, but it is cloud ‘connected’, which has many benefits.


When we talk about versions of Sage 200cloud, this refers to the updated versions released around three times per year. Until recently these releases were seasonally named, e.g. Sage 200cloud Summer 2019, but they are now named in the more helpful format of, e.g. Sage 2020 R1.


Now that we’ve cleared that up, what are the benefits to moving to the most recent release? We’ll look at some overall benefits, and then take a look at some of the most useful recent features.


The first general benefit is that the latest versions are fully supported by Sage. Eureka Solutions is a Sage Business Partner and our customers will continue to be supported by us whatever version they are on, but the extra level of support from Sage – which can be handy for bug fixes among other things – is removed over time. One of the older versions goes out of Sage support every time a new version is released.


Another general benefit is that Sage build in features to their new releases that support customers to adhere with legislative changes and other external changes. Making Tax Digital (MTD) is a recent example – MTD is fully incorporated into the recent versions of Sage 200cloud. Brexit changes are another good example, there are a number of changes in the most recent version at the time of writing – Sage 2020 R2 – which support organisations to be Brexit ‘ready’.


Other factors, such as changes to TLS protocols, can also make older versions unsupported. Customers using Sage 200 2013, 2015 and 2016 versions, for example, require to be upgraded by 30 Sept 2021 due to TLS 1.0 and 1.1 protocols being replaced by TLS 1.2 and 1.3.


Customer Feedback Taken on Board

The most positive reasons to upgrade, however, is that new versions incorporate a raft of improvements, the bulk of which are included off the back of customer feedback and customer requests on system improvements, which can only be a good thing.


One of the most useful features introduced in Sage 200cloud after 2016 was the new Invoicing module. This was the number one requested feature back in 2016 – customers wanted a portal for looking at invoices and credits in a list view, and they got it. You can just raise an invoice from this area of the system without having to go through the whole sales order process via other routes – putting the sales order on, going through the despatch and allocation processes – to then get to the invoice. You can quickly go direct to raising an invoice or credit note from this portal.


It just gives users more flexibility, and they can perform the task they want more quickly and easily.  This is particularly useful for companies that aren’t using real stock routines, they can go straight to what they need.


Next one to point out is the scanning and/or attaching of documents in Sage 200cloud. With older versions of Sage 200 this would have required a third-party product but Sage has now caught up. Originally brought out in 2018 to attach documents to transactions, the feature has now further evolved and enables attachments elsewhere in the system, including nominal journal entries and goods received. The files themselves are stored in a location on your server, which we or your Sage Business Partner can set up for you via your system administration.  It keeps everything in one place and gives much better visibility. Everything is in Sage, we don’t have to go anywhere else for it …. including the filing cabinet!


There are some newer features on the accountancy side too. Some of these seem like very small features, but they do really enhance the user experience. Again, these were asked for by customers regularly.


One example is related to the opening and closing of accounting periods. Previously you would have had to go through each module – sales, purchase, cash book, etc. – to close them individually, but now we can save time with the ‘Close All’ button. It runs the same routine you would have previously had to do manually – and same reports are produced – it’s just so much quicker for you to do and our customers love it.


Another feature is again on the financial side, namely improvements to the bank reconciliation structure and how we can approach bank reconciliation. Instead of having to match a whole transaction when we are doing a bank rec against our bank statement, we can now do a part reconciliation. We get the same reports – what’s been reconciled and what hasn’t – and when we go into our bank account again, we can see now that some might have a status of part reconciled. Enhanced flexibility in your bank reconciliation routine – another feature that was heavily requested.


Users of the Eureka Addons Plus Pack for Sage 200 will know that it crams over 80 different features into one addon that enhance and streamline Sage 200. It’s so good that Sage themselves have now adopted some of its features as standard! One such feature is controlling access to supplier bank details to give you greater control of these and prevent the chance of any fraudulent activity. Access to these can now be controlled based on user roles.


There are plenty more features, but here’s just one more for now – in the nominal ledger we can now hide accounts, both for customers and suppliers, to prevent accounts we’re not using anymore being posted to inadvertently. We used to get asked about this a lot on our Support desk, so it’s great that it’s now been incorporated as a feature in Sage 200.  If a nominal code isn’t needed anymore, we can hide it in the account status. It is still there and can be accessed if needed under ‘Accounts not active’, but it doesn’t appear in main account list. It also provides an audit history of who did what in relation to hiding the account.


We hope this quick review of some of the reasons to upgrade your Sage 200 to the most recent version has been useful. If so, you should have a look at our recent webinar where Eureka Solutions Account Manager Tom McEntee runs through the features in a bit more detail.


The next release – Sage 2021 R1 – is just around the corner too, so we’ll follow up with a review of what to look out for in there too.


Eureka Solutions has been a Sage partner since 2004, and our Sage team is amongst the most experienced and technical proficient in the UK. As five times winner of Sage’s ‘Custom Solutions Partner’ award, we specialise in tailoring systems to exceed our customers expectations and meet their exact requirements.  We are also a leading NetSuite partner, as well as being system integration experts.


If we can help you at all, or you’d like to talk through some of the challenges you’re having, whether with Sage 200 or any other system, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with us.