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A Q&A with Hall Ambulance: Migrating from Sage 300 to Sage Intacct

Hall-Ambulance-50th-Logo-Master-300x274Over the past 50-years, Hall Ambulance has stayed at the forefront of advancements in emergency medical services and investments in technology. Hall became the first local ambulance service to provide paramedic service, implemented Kern County, California’s first critical care transport program and, founded the Harvey L. Hall EMS Academy. Today, Hall Ambulance serves as the 9-1-1 paramedic provider for 88% of Kern County’s population.

Following their company’s culture of technological progress, in March 2020, Hall Ambulance’s accounting team went live with a new Sage Intacct cloud financial management solution. Before they decided to make the switch to Intacct, Hall Ambulance was using Sage 300 and struggling with clunky reporting and dated technology in the old system. Recently RKL eSolution’s Director of Cloud Sales, Mark Severance, sat down with Michelle Garretson, Financial Controller at Hall Ambulance, to discuss her experience in migrating to Sage Intacct.

Mark
Michelle thanks so much for your time, it’s fun to see you again and I’ve heard great things about how you're utilizing Sage Intacct. So this is a treat to be able to connect and review some of the benefits Hall Ambulance has experienced.

Let’s get started with some background, before Hall Ambulance migrated to Sage Intacct, tell us a little bit about how you were using Sage 300.

Michelle
It was our accounting software. It handled all facets of accounting, the P&L, the general ledger, reporting, accounts payable, etc. We also used it for analytics and managing the chart of accounts.

Mark
Can you describe some of the challenges that Hall Ambulance was facing with Sage 300?

Michelle
Yes, first, bouncing back and forth from module to module to get the figures and make sure that the entries were posted properly. We could run reports, but had no way to know what the details were, the reports were just numbers and we couldn't drill down to get the information that we were looking for.

If an error occurred, we would have to run a report to find out what was posted, add an adjusting journal entry, and go back to run another report to make sure that it was posted correctly. It just took a lot of back and forth correcting entries.

Mark
What was the final straw? In other words, what was the factor or factors that compelled you to make the decision to evaluate and ultimately select and implement Sage Intacct?

Michelle
Well, in June of 2019 we had an issue with our servers. It disrupted our access to our accounting program, we did not want to continue updating information over and over, so we were forced to process everything manually. It was at that time that I started researching various accounting software solutions. We wanted to make sure that it was cloud-based so that we would not be put in that position again.   Then, when the servers were fixed and we could get back online, we had to go in and enter the transactions and try to get caught back up.

Mark
Now that you have implemented Sage Intacct, what are you able to do that you weren't able to do before?

Michelle
We can actually see the figures that we posted in real-time without going back and forth from one module to the next. Now, we can drill down to see the detail of the amount that we're actually looking for, without having to run a report or give an account number, we can continue to do this until there's nowhere else to drill, we can go as far down as we need to. It works the same on accounts payable, general ledger, and all modules. Errors are also easy to find and adjusting journal entries are easy to create and post. It’s just a great user experience!

Intacct ComputerMark
Now that you are able to do these things better, what kind of benefits is Hall Ambulance seeing?

Michelle
It’s a time saver. The amount of time it was taking to go back and forth was costly. The staff is more productive after using Sage Intacct now that we can see a transaction in detail, without going back and forth to the various modules. The risk reduction is a huge factor, by being on a cloud-based software, we have greatly reduced the risk of having our accounting processes come to a complete halt if our system fails or if there's a hardware problem. We can operate Intacct from any computer, anywhere, and still be productive.

Mark
During the evaluation process did you look at any alternative products when you considered Sage Intacct and, if so, how would you compare the various systems?

Michelle
We did look at several other products. I don’t remember who they were but I wasn’t as impressed with the other software companies as I was with the ease-of-use and the user-friendly design of Sage Intacct. It was also the only accounting software that was approved by the AICPA and they named it as their preferred accounting provider, which made a huge difference to me. That meant that we would be gaining an accounting program that is GAAP compliant.

Mark
How has Sage Intacct been helpful for you, with the last year and the COVID-19 pandemic?

Michelle
It’s cloud-based so we can literally work from anywhere. Fortunately, the members of the accounting team are a little bit isolated, and we don’t have that much interaction with the other departments; however, we did have an individual who worked from home and was able to log in on the laptop to perform her functions with no problem.

Mark
Now that you've had Sage Intacct up and running, how long have you been live on it now?

Michelle
Since March 1, 2020.

Mark
Wow, so you came online like two weeks before the pandemic shutdown. Okay, so you've been on it for a year, what has the experience been like?

Sage Intacct Cash ManagementMichelle
It's working perfectly well. In the beginning, after the implementation, I was impressed at the overall look of the modules. Now, after a solid year of use, I'm even more impressed and very happy with the functionality and the software itself. It was very easy to learn, easy to move in and out of the modules, and is very user-friendly. Running reports, pulling financial data, and adding new accounts to the general ledger tree are all very easy to accomplish.

Mark
Could you tell me a little bit more about the implementation experience with RKL eSolutions?

Michelle
The experience was very, very robust. We met with the RKL team in our office and they answered all our questions. Nothing was hidden or held back. They gave a very good presentation, which showed us how each module worked, how each employee was going to be utilizing a particular module in their daily use, and they answered all the product questions the team had. They were also available by phone or email if we ever needed them for any help down the road.

Mark
Finally, if a friend or colleague we're considering a migration from Sage 300 to Sage Intacct, what would your advice, be to them?

Michelle
Do it. You won't be sorry—we absolutely love the software, love that we can do it anywhere and that it's very, very user-friendly.

 

Hall ambulance logo


If you’re experiencing issues with static reporting, antiquated account management or hardware breakdowns on your legacy accounting software, contact us to learn whether a modern cloud-based solution is right for your business.

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Mark Severance

Written by Mark Severance

Mark is based in the Los Angeles area, working as Director, the Cloud Sales at RKL eSolutions.

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