Because of the upcoming lease accounting changes, just about every organization with leased assets is shopping for lease accounting software. The vast majority are buying lease accounting and lease administration platforms for the first time, and may not be not quite sure what to look for.
What makes a product stand out as the best lease accounting software? And most importantly, which one is right for your organization?
Compliance is the goal, but how do you get there?
When organizations reach out to us looking for a lease accounting solution, we always begin by asking about their needs and priorities. For the past couple of years, the answer is always the same: compliance. While every organization has their own specialized requirements, the top priority is achieving compliance with the new IASB and FASB lease accounting standards.
Can the product produce the lease accounting calculations we need? Can it integrate with our technology and reporting infrastructure? And can we get up and running in time to meet the compliance deadline?
Here’s the difficulty: you probably already know that ALL the lease accounting software solutions claim they can meet these needs.
So how do you choose the best lease accounting software?
In this article, we will share some advice to help you make your decision:
- How and where to find evidence that a product can get you to compliance.
- What features help you get compliant faster.
- What features provide the most long-term value above and beyond compliance.
How to identify the best lease accounting software
Here’s what to look for as you evaluate lease accounting software solutions. And a preview of what you’ll find when you experience Visual Lease.
Evidence of compliance.
As we mentioned, you won’t find a lease accounting product that doesn’t say they can get you compliant with the new lease accounting standards. Will you take them at their word? There are many nuances in the lease accounting regulations. And you have your own unique challenges that must be overcome to achieve compliance. You need to be sure that your chosen lease accounting solution will work for you.
Since compliance is the primary goal, your first step in identifying the best lease accounting software should be to find evidence that the product can do what you need. Here’s where to look:
The company’s website. Does the company publish content that articulates a deep understanding of lease accounting requirements and challenges?
Sales reps and customer service staff. Can the vendor’s staff understand your specialized problems and demonstrate how the product meets your needs?
Recommendations. Since you have likely never bought a lease accounting tool before, it’s important to look to those with a great deal of expertise in this area: the top accounting firms. Is the product recommended by major accounting firms, including yours?
At Visual Lease, we demonstrate our compliance-readiness and expertise in lease accounting and administration with everything we do, from our product design to our website to our sales demonstrations and customer training.
We do more than promise to get you compliant. We show you how and work beside you every step of the way to achieve not only compliance, but also the best possible outcome for your organization. That’s why Visual Lease is recommended and deployed by every major lease accounting firm and real estate services firm.
When it comes to lease accounting compliance, time is not on your side. The deadlines for the new lease accounting standards are looming, and there is a great deal of work to be done before you can flip the switch. That’s why the best lease accounting software is quick and easy to deploy.
Visual Lease is designed for easy setup, integration with other systems, and data migration. Plus we provide helpful tools and services (such as migration templates and lease abstraction) that speed the process.
Ease of use.
Why is it so important to choose a product that’s designed to be simple and intuitive?
- All levels of users can accomplish work faster… so you get compliant faster.
- Making things easy greatly reduces the chance of accounting mistakes due to user error.
- No need for extensive training.
- No worries about losing product expertise due to employee turnover.
We make a point of asking every prospect we speak to (as well as the experts from accounting firms) how Visual Lease compares to other products they are evaluating in terms of usability. We always score high marks. But you don’t have to take our word for it: schedule a demo to see for yourself.
The ability to customize the system is something you might not consider to be an essential requirement for the best lease accounting software. After all, everyone is trying to get compliant with the same standards, so why the need for flexibility?
The fact is, every company is unique. You have your own terminology, corporate structure, industry-specific information to track, and your own way of doing things. You will very quickly realize that you want to add fields, change labels, and create your own reports.
With most lease accounting software solutions, it’s difficult and expensive (if not impossible) to make these kind of changes.
Visual Lease was designed for virtually unlimited flexibility. You can quickly and easily add fields, change labels, and create any report you desire. It’s the closest thing to getting a custom system without building it yourself.
Every lease accounting tool comes with a list of pre-formatted reports. A list of a hundred or more reports probably seems adequate… but is it? What about when you want to query your lease data to get information that’s specific to your organization?
In our experience, everyone needs custom reports. With many lease accounting systems, you are forced to go back to the vendor or to expensive consultants to make any changes to reports. With the current demand for lease accounting implementation, that could take quite some time.
That’s why Visual Lease provides a powerful ad-hoc reporting tool that makes it simple to create any report you need, and format it any way you like.
Learn more: The Power of Ad Hoc Lease Reporting & Data Visualization
When you’re evaluating lease accounting products, don’t forget to vet the company’s customer service as well. The best lease accounting software comes with implementation and training services that guide you through a complex and unfamiliar process to compliance.
These services can make the difference between a fast and smooth implementation and a nightmare scenario that leaves you scrambling to get compliant by the deadline.
Here at Visual Lease, we provide customer service using an account management model. That means you get a dedicated liaison… someone who knows your business and your issues… to work with you throughout implementation and beyond. Plus a customer help desk that’s always available to answer questions in real time.