Converting your company’s historical data can be a daunting task and almost always takes more time than you think. Although cloud systems are extremely flexible, the limitations of QuickBooks combined with the large amount of data being extracted can easily become a headache. Here are 8 things you will need to ensure data conversion.
1. A Full Understanding of Intacct’s Capabilities
Having a well-rounded understanding of Intacct’s capabilities is of paramount importance when you begin your conversion. If you do not have a solid understanding of what the system can do then you will not be able to create your most efficient future state. You should leverage your implementation consultants because of their expertise in all things Intacct.
2. Clear Data Conversion Parameters
You should clearly define what data you will be bringing over from QuickBooks and at what level of detail you will be converting that data. You have the option to convert summary level balances, journal entries, bills, etc. So, it is important to address how much and what types of historical data you would like to convert. Will two years be helpful for comparative purposes? Do you only want to bring over vendors who were active in the past year? No matter what data you choose to convert you must clearly define your scope in your initial planning phases.
3. Access to QuickBooks or a Clearly Defined Data Request
Unsurprisingly, in order to convert historical data you will need access to the historical system. One way to do this is to create a data request document clearly defining the data you need. However, it is recommended that whoever is doing the data conversion has access to the source system. This allows QuickBooks administrators to continue their day to day tasks without having to constantly answer questions about historical transactions.
4. Finalized Version of New Chart of Accounts
It is also important to have a finalized version of your new chart of accounts. Converting to Intacct often means creating a leaner chart of accounts as you are able to track transactions with different dimensional tags in addition to the traditional account structure. This means that your current chart of accounts could go through some significant changes (for the better) and it is important that these changes are finalized before data conversion has begun. Things like renumbering and changing account names once conversion has begun can, and almost certainly will lead to data validation issues in Intacct.
5. Validated Source Data
Before you start converting your source data make sure that it all balances. Even though everything may balance in QuickBooks in your current state it is important that all historical data balances given the newly designed chart of accounts. Some accounts may have been eliminated, others may roll up to different sections on your financial reports. Regardless of the degree of the changes made to the chart of accounts, data must be validated before being uploaded into Intacct.
6. Strong Understanding of Excel
The data conversion process requires an in depth knowledge of excel. Formulas, formatting, and macros are all used to expedite the data conversion process so a strong understanding will be of extreme help.
7. A Retirement Plan for your Old System
You must have a plan to “retire” your legacy accounting system as it will contain all of your historical data. You do not have to throw it a party or pay it a pension, but you must create a plan to deal with your existing system once you have converted to Intacct.
QuickBooks can be finicky and exporting data to excel can be painfully slow. Tack this on to all future state considerations and mappings and it is easy to see the multitude of challenges presented. Although the conversion process can be painful and slow, it will ensure that you have accurate and complete data in your new Intacct solution.