Finance & Accounting

Accounting Information Systems And Controls 2

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Assessment Type

Assignment

Word Count

2500 Words

Subject

Accounting

Deadline

4 Days

Assignment Criteria

Question 1 (20 Marks)

Research the accounting software systems SAP.  

Required: 

  1. Provide an overview of each of the accounting software SAP-ERP. (4 marks)
  2. Identify key features of each (4 marks) and use screen shots (or demos) to discuss these features. (4 marks)
  3. Compare the advantages and disadvantages of using this accounting software.(8 marks)

Question 2 (30 Marks)

Shane Matthews is the new accountant of Brubeck's Furnishings. Shane wants to revamp the information system, placing increased emphasis on decentralized data access and online systems and developing a new system that integrates the company's accounting functions.  Shane provides design characteristics and reporting formats that he used at a former company. He sends these details of the new AIS to the departments that interface with accounting, including inventory control, purchasing, human resources, production control, and marketing. If they do not respond with suggestions by a prescribed date, he will continue the development process. Shane has established a new schedule for many of the reports, changing the frequency from weekly to monthly. After a meeting with the director of Information Systems, Shane selects a programmer to help him with the details of the new reporting formats.

Most control features of the old system are maintained to decrease the installation time, with a few new ones added for unusual situations. The procedures for maintaining the controls are substantially changed. Shane makes all the AIS control change and program-testing decisions, including screening the control features related to payroll, inventory control, accounts receivable, cash deposits, and accounts payable. 

As each module is completed, Shane has the corresponding department implement the change immediately to take advantage of the labour savings. Incomplete instructions accompany these changes, and specific implementation responsibility is not assigned to departmental personnel. Shane believes operations people should learn as they go, reporting errors as they occur. 

Accounts payable and inventory control are implemented first, and several problems arise. The fortnightly payroll runs, which had been weekly under the old system, have abundant errors, requiring numerous manual pay cheques. Payroll run control totals take hours to reconcile with the computer printout. To expedite matters, Shane authorises the payroll clerk to prepare payroll journal entries. 

The new inventory control system fails to improve the carrying level of many stock items. This causes critical stock outs of raw material that result in expensive rush orders. The new system's primary control procedure is the availability of ordering and user information. The information is available to both inventory control and purchasing personnel so that both departments can issue timely purchase orders. Because the inventory levels are updated daily, Shane discontinues the previous weekly report. 

Because of these problems, system documentation is behind schedule, and proper backup procedures have not been implemented. Shane has requested budget approval to hire two systems analysts, an accountant, and an administrative assistant to help him implement the new system.

Required

  1. Describe at least FIVE steps Shane should have taken while designing the AIS to ensure that end user needs were satisfied. (10 marks)
  2. Identify and describe THREE ways Shane violated internal control principles during the AIS implementation. (6 marks)
  3. Identify and describe FOUR weaknesses in Shane's approach to implementing the new AIS. 

(8 marks)

 For each of the weaknesses identified in 'c,' above, recommend improvements for the development process for the remaining parts of the AIS? (6 marks)

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Assignment Solution

Question 1

Accounting Software of SAP ERP

The overview of core finance SAP ERP and SAP Business One are described below.

  1. Core Finance for SAP ERP

SAP has developed the core finance module to assist companies in integrating different business functions and systems to arrive at a single solution. It is designed to be an all-inclusive, multichannel platform automating financial operations and at the same time, offers real-time outputs of the financial performance. It also allows for easier integration with existing software, thereby enhancing user adoption rate, emphasises cost reduction and process simplification. Reporting is carried out at the product and customer level, which allows better decision making.

This system is capable of providing multi-dimensional support by consolidating legal and management functions. The presence of real-time data analysis reduces the duration, cost involved, and time is taken to conduct financial accounting. It is designed to ensure accuracy and helps organisations to develop proactive plans and manage business operations.

Reporting on profitability and margin information is carried out down to the customer and product level, enabling better decision making. It can be deployed using different methods- as software as a Service (SaaS), on-premises, or as a hybrid model with a mix of benefits of both methods. There is full web-enabled support, and also access authority is to give irrespective of being at work, home or travelling.

  1. SAP Business One

Supported through SAP HANA, SAP Business One financial management is designed to offer businesses with the reliability, and an integrated solution to cater to the financial operations (SAP 2017). This results in enabling the transaction processing speed and assist in improving cash flow. It is designed to ensure flexibility and adaptability. This software is available under two options – on-premise and in the cloud.

 It is designed to evaluate all financial information, cash flow management, tracking assets, and budget control mechanism in a single solution. It is reported to enhance month-end close and to be in compliance with accounting standards. Due to its integrated setup, SAP Business One is able to streamline reconciliations, bank statements, and other payments. It also offers detailed insights into planning and auditing aspects of a business.  It facilitates the ease of management of branches and business units of an organisation and holds an end-to-end control over the fixed assets. 

This application simplifies and automates the financial management function of an organisation. The main objective of this ERP solution is to restructure and enhance the existing inefficient processes with the elimination of redundant data and the integration of finance and accounting with other key business functions. It is designed to offer real-time access to financial data for calculating periodic closings, generate financial reports and help in decision making. 

  1. SAP Revenue Accounting and Reporting

  • The revenue accounting software is designed to assist organisations to be in compliance with emerging statutory regulations pertaining to for revenue recognition and offers the necessary support to existing requirements (SAP 2017). It provides orders, invoices, and events management from multiple SAP or non-SAP systems. This system gains flexibility due to the decoupling of revenue recognition regulations from order placement to billing. The revenue accountants are handed with an easy to use accounting solution.

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