Ever since Spire 1.0 was first released in 2015, it has been improving significantly both in terms of features and stability. Since the program has been steadily expanding it is becoming more complex, and it was time to bring in some additional resources for quality assurance and product development.
The exciting news is that Rick Notman is joining Spire in this quest to create ‘perfect’ software. Rick was formerly with BusinessVision, where he started as a Tech Support Rep and finished as the VP of Information Technology 20 years later. Continue reading
Although my last blog post was, ahem, quite some time ago, a lot has happened in the world of Spire releases over the past year.
A significant number of improvements make Spire even better to use, by either adding features, automating processes, or improving reporting.
Here is a very brief list of the highlights since Spire 2.1, which was released in June of last year:
- User Defined Fields – can now be viewed on the screen where they can be filtered, searched, sorted and exported. (An example would be adding the dimensions of a box that could be used for shipping, or the manufacturer of an item)
- EFT for A/P – Spire can produce the file that is sent to the bank to pay vendors electronically, simultaneously reducing costs and the exposure to fraud.
- Batch accounts receivable – this automates the preparation of the deposit slip and the general ledger transaction that moves the deposit from a clearing account to the bank account.
- Filters have been improved once again – they are now even easier to create and modify. The ability to create custom filters means that information is readily available right on the screen, allowing for better and faster processing and decision-making.
- There are now an unlimited number of payment methods and UPC codes
- While adding an order, a ‘check stock’ button displays how many of that part are available in other warehouses.
- For customers who use lot numbers, a trace button has been added to reveal where that lot number was received or consumed.
The complete lists of improvements with accompanying videos are available in the on-line Spire manual located here.
For companies upgrading from BusinessVision, there continues to be a 100% data migration at the click of a button. Very impressive!
As always, please contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions or if you are ready for a Spire demo.
Spire 2.1 was released officially on June 1st, and it includes some great features that all users will find useful, leading to increased productivity and profitability.
If you prefer to watch a video versus reading about the enhancements, please click on this video link (9 minutes).
This release also includes the add-on module Service Manager, which has a few enhancements over the BVEssentials version. Follow this link to see the video (9 minutes)
Why should a company using BusinessVision accounting software switch to Spire? BusinessVision users will be very impressed by the myriad of ways that Spire will improve their productivity, help meet customer demand, and drive increased profitability.
Those at companies that have already switched to Spire have found that the work flow is familiar and have been able to quickly take advantage of the improved user interface and many new features. Upon conversion, companies use Spire in a way similar to how they used BusinessVision, and then take advantage of the new and expanded features and modules as they become more comfortable with the system.
Recently, I was asked by one of my customers to implement a new label printer, and the result was so successful that I thought I would write about it in case any other customers could benefit from similar labels.
If you have been using Spire to process payroll, you will need to complete a few important processes BEFORE running your first payroll in 2016.
Spire 1.1 was released in July and included Payroll, POS, and batches for Accounts Payable.
Spire 1.2 is on the verge of release, just in time for the next big seminar (in Mississauga). This version includes two important features:
- Production Manager, which is used by manufacturing customers
- Spire REST API (Application Program Interface), which allows third party developers to easily link into Spire
The seminar will include brief updates from third party developers who have worked with the API already.
In early February 2015, Spire was released to a limited group of customers (almost on schedule!) in several provinces and the results are excellent! Customers are now able to enjoy the great user interface of BVEssentials with a much faster database.
This first version of Spire is almost identical to BVEssentials version 6 which was first released in 2012. BVEssentials works with BusinessVision but adds significant functionality to existing modules as well as adding many new ones; Spire is the same program as BVEssentials but uses a new and improved SQL database. My favourite features are listed in the article on this website entitled ‘BVEssentials Features’.
Spire will be released to a larger group of customers in the next several months so I will update when the next milestones are reached. Stand by! Feel free to subscribe to this blog by clicking on the follow button on the left side of the page to receive the updates automatically.
For more information about Spire, please see their web-site at www.spiresystems.com.
Along with the gradual demise of BusinessVision comes the rise of BVEssentials and Spire. BVEssentials works with BusinessVision but adds significant functionality to existing modules as well as adding many new ones; Spire is the same program as BVEssentials but works with a new and improved SQL database.
20 years ago when I started independent consulting, I chose the very boring but practical name RJB Consulting Services (the middle initial being Johanna, btw). Now that the first version of Spire is being released, I have been ‘inspired’ to change the name to ‘InSpired Consulting Services’. Although it may seem a little risky to name my business based on specific software, I am very confident that Spire is great accounting software, perfectly suited and priced to meet the needs of the small and medium sized businesses for which it is designed.
You may be aware that Sage, the company that owns the BusinessVision product, is no longer actively developing it. It is staying current with Windows releases and payroll updates, and will continue to do so for years to come.
BVEssentials is a third-party product that works with BusinessVision. Although it started out as an add-on utility over a decade ago, it has grown into a fully functional suite that now basically replicates BusinessVision and improves the functionality dramatically. It now has all major modules covered:
- Inventory, Purchase Order, Purchase History, Production Orders
- Order Entry, Accounts Receivable, Customer
- Accounts Payable, General Ledger