Do you practise good housekeeping with your Sage 50 Accounts Data, or your Sage Instant Accounts? We have regular enquiries from clients with errors in their Sage data which have to be sent away to be fixed, but with good housekeeping this cost could be avoided.
So – what is ‘good housekeeping’ in Sage? What should you be doing on a day-to-day basis to help prevent errors, or give you the ability to return to ‘clean data’?
Sage recommend that you check your data regularly, always before taking a backup, and after restoring your data too. I would also add that data should be checked when data has been imported. You check your data by going to File -> Maintenance then clicking the Check Data button.
Sage then runs through your data, checking for input errors, internal inconsistencies, missing data and invalid nominal account types, and presents you with the File Maintenance Problem Report. The report contains 3 pages – Errors, Warnings and Comments.
- Errors show data problems.
- Warnings indicate serious problems which should be attended to but are not as serious as errors.
- Comments are usually the least serious, and often refer to inconsistencies which probably exist just because of a perfectly valid way that you are using the data – e.g. future dated transactions, negative budgets or negative balances on the sales or purchase ledger. ****Update – read my post When a Comment is really an Error – Sage File Maintenance
The File Maintenance Problem Report will look different in Sage 50 2012 and newer versions compared to older ones. In 2012 and above you have Recovery Tools and in earlier versions there is a Fix button. I will go into more detail on what you should do if you have Errors in a later post.
So 3 simple rules for Good Housekeeping in Sage Accounts:
- Check your data
- Back up your data
- Stop for Errors
If you follow these rules you should find you never need to send your data away to be fixed. And sod’s law states that if you do practice good housekeeping then your data will never corrupt! Get in touch if you do get problems as we can provide a Data Fix Service quicker and cheaper than having Sage Cover if you do need it.