- Cashmanager RURAL
- Customer Support
- About us
We are very proud to be celebrating our 30 year Anniversary in October.
CRS Software was established on the 21st October 1981 as ‘Computer Concepts’. Farmers Ian and Isabel Campbell had a vision to create a software program that would improve financial management for New Zealand farmers. They were joined in the mid-eighties by David Howden and Brian Eccles who shared their enthusiasm for farming and computers.
It was quite an achievement to get a software company up and running in the early years of personal computing but to have continued to thrive as an independent software company for 30 years is a testimony to the drive and vision of those at the helm. As part of the celebrations we are running a competition draw for the clients that have been using Cashmanager RURAL the longest.
Have you been using Cashmanager Rural continuously for more than 20 years - then enter our competition draw for a HP Laptop, in a few words tell us about your history with Cashmanager RURAL - when you started using it and why it works for your business, email to firstname.lastname@example.org . Competition closes 21st October 2011 - our ‘30th Anniversary’.Ian Campbell, David Howden and Brian Eccles circa 1992
One thing Mark Harris knows a lot about is farming, and the importance of good financial management to ensure success. Today, the former sheep and beef farmer from Gisborne works for Beef + Lamb New Zealand as their Extension Manager in the Eastern North Island.
As a farmer Mark says he was ‘pedantic’ when it came to ensuring the books balanced and quickly saw the benefits of a computer to achieve this, buying his first, a Commodore 64 with a Cashbook program back in the early eighties.
“I’ve always viewed the computer and its programs as a tool and something that helped streamline our relationship with the bank, which we always regarded as part of our team and communicated with regularly.
Because of this communication with the bank it made our relationship, even under ‘tight financial restraint’, a lot more harmonious than it may have been.”
While banks may be more inclined to support farmers who are proactive in providing them with regular financial information; Mark says it must be ‘trusted information’.
“The top operators talk the facts rather than the fiction. By providing regular updated information to your team player (the bank) you make it easier to do business with them and make that relationship a lot more beneficial for both parties.”
Budgets are a big part of the picture for banks and Mark agrees it is important people ‘own their own budgets’ and says it is something he has always done.
“My personal opinion is a budget is a ‘live’ document, unfortunately a lot of farmers tend to put a budget down and then put it in a drawer and forget about it until next year.
“A budget is only a ‘live guide’ document if you are updating it every month, then it will travel with you and you’re able to make informed decisions.”
Technology and software has advanced greatly from those early days, and Mark continues to make full use of it. He has no doubts, for farmers, using a program such as Cashmanager Rural Online, which he describes as an ‘integrated complete package’ is the way to go.
“When I was farming I often spent Sunday afternoons updating things. I know when I was in the economic service there were three of our clients I was able to access through online. I didn’t have to annoy them on a Sunday evening to say can you send me your latest update, I could just go in.
So certainly for people who want to share information with their team being online makes it very convenient.
Mark Harris - Photo kindly supplied by Marie Taylor
Improving communication with your bank can be as simple as providing Cashmanager RURAL reports regularly as the year progresses. Clients that take a proactive approach and keep the bank informed throughout the year comment that their financier is far more supportive.
EFS Report - The Economic Farm Surplus (EFS) report includes key performance indicators (KPI’s). To be really useful it requires a balanced stock reconciliation but if this is done and the change in livestock value is calculated the EFS report provides your financier with a good indication of profit.
Stock Reconciliation Report - On any livestock farm presenting this to your financier is very important as it shows whether you are increasing or decreasing capital livestock. Any change will have a big impact on cashflow and profit – this is something they must know!
Worksheet Reports - Worksheets let you record detail behind your budget and make it easier for you and your financier to understand how the numbers are prepared. It’s a good idea to supply worksheets for the biggest value codes.
Cashflow Report - A single page month by month summary of your plan, showing the expected peak working capital requirement after interest and after GST.
Variance Report - Comparing the forecast with last year.
Chartered Accountant Nick Hoogeveen, of Nick Hoogeveen and Associates, in Paeroa has no hesitation in recommending Cashmanager RURAL to his farming clients.
Mr Hoogeveen has personally used the farm accounting software for his own business affairs for many years, and describes it as a product he prefers his farming clients to work with for management of their farm finances.
Mr Hoogeveen also sees the advantages of using Cashmanager RURAL Online, which he describes as good from an accounting perspective especially when dealing with matters such as GST returns.
“It enables us to access client’s records straight away and view records before they actually finalise their returns. So instead of emailing files they can go online and it’s a very efficient way of dealing with clients.
“Online has certainly made life simpler with regards to file management because we have been in a number of situations where clients are not that ‘savvy’ with restoring files and continue to work with old information. That can cause a lot of duplication or elimination of transactions that requires us to redo or double up in some situations which is unnecessary.
“It’s taken away the whole risk of file management and the hassle of having to work at restoring files which has caused some problems in the past.
“Those are definite advantages. It’s also excellent when reporting for clients involved with business entities such as equity partnerships where we are involved in assisting them with their financial management. With Cashmanager RURAL Online we can access information which operates in conjunction with the other partners.
“CRS Software Ltd has provided some very good facilities in terms of how their Online system works.
“Cashmanger RURAL is certainly the product I prefer my farming clients to work with for management of their financial affairs, I always recommend it as the product of choice.” www.hoogeveen.co.nz
Our recent release 4.2f includes a new code mapping feature that makes it easy for Accountants using BankLink Practice to work with Cashmanager RURAL.
Transactions coded in BankLink to accountant’s general ledger codes can now be loaded automatically into Cashmanager RURAL. The CA and client will be able to utilise the unique strengths of Cashmanager RURAL for farm management, budget preparation and revised Cashflow forecasting. While the CA retains the simplicity of integrating BankLink Practice with their GL Systems, this innovation means that data only needs to be coded once for both systems.
If you would like more information about this new feature please give us a call on 0800 888 707.
Thank you to those who took part in the customer survey about your experience or perceptions of Cashmanager RURAL ONLINE. We really appreciate so many of you taking the time to fill it in.
The three lucky winners of the Martinborough Vineyard Wine packs were R Bunny, G Hunt, and D Little.
The reason for the survey was to find out how ONLINE clients are finding Cashmanager RURAL what they liked about it and whether it met their expectations. We also surveyed desktop clients to gauge their perceptions of ONLINE as we were keen to know what they had heard about ONLINE and its benefits.
From a users perspective the best things about ONLINE are the
The reason most had made the move to online was to be able to easily share information with others. 96% of the respondents were very satisfied with the ONLINE product which is great news. Users also provided a range of suggestions for future development which are being reviewed by the development team.
For our desktop customers we wanted to assess how well we had communicated the benefits of Cashmanager Rural ONLINE. About 20% of desktop customers hadn’t heard about the ONLINE product so a bit of work to be done there – otherwise the benefits of ONLINE seem to be well understood.
Desktop customers rated the following features as most important.
One of the main reasons given for not moving from desktop to Online was Internet speed but many of these users are on Broadband and with our program designed for the variability of RURAL Broadband this is not always an issue.
Thank you again for your participation in the survey and congratulations to the draw winners.
We have heard that some other ‘online’ products are struggling with Rural Broadband. And that’s why we designed Cashmanager RURAL ONLINE to be a bit different.
Cashmanager RURAL ONLINE is internet based software that uses a synchronising system which makes it tolerant of brief internet outages and variable speed. We realize (many of us from personal experience) that even Rural Broadband is not always consistent in its speed or connection and designed an Online system more suited to our rural clients. So even if you have experienced problems with other Online Software don’t rule us out.
We are able to help clarify if your broadband is up to the task - call us on 0800 888 707 for more information.
(We reccomend a minimum of 500kbs download and 256kbs upload but please call us to discuss).
With 20 years banking experience in Sales, Service and Management, Julian Rowntree has joined CRS in the role of Customer Services Manager. Julian will look after our Product Support, Sales and Administration teams, to ensure that we deliver an exceptional service experience to our customers. Julian is married to Carol and has two daughters. In his spare time Julian enjoys 4WDriving along with pounding the pavements and hitting the gym to keep fit.