4 reasons why Sage 200 Fixed Assets wins over spreadsheets

Posted by Lisa Costello on Jun 30, 2021 1:15:00 PM


Fixed Assets may not be the most exciting dinner conversation, but it’s something that all businesses need to record and depreciate for accounting purposes.

This article looks at why spreadsheets are such a popular tool for maintaining your fixed assets and at the same time, we point out 4 reasons why the in-built Fixed Asset Register for Sage 200 is a much better option.

For Sage 200 users, as long as you are running Version 2016, the good news is that you already have the Fixed Asset module, so no additional software purchase is necessary.

Let's Get Started...

Just so that we are all on the same page to start with. There are two main types of Asset within a business, Current Assets and Fixed Assets. Fixed Assets are the larger long-term assets that a company has purchased and include such items as Plants & Machinery, Fixtures & Fittings, Vehicles, Hardware and Land. These are almost always tangible assets, meaning that they are physical items.

These Assets need to be recorded and depreciated as a part of your accounting process and the larger the number of assets, the more complicated the depreciation process as this includes purchase of new assets, sales of older or used assets, servicing of vehicles as they age and disposal of assets that are no longer in use.

Sage 200 vs Spreadsheets

Fixed Assets are typically managed and kept in a Fixed Asset Register for tracking depreciation over time.

Many businesses are still using spreadsheets as their main tool for Asset Management. It’s not a surprise as tracking fixed assets this way is easy and accessibility and the most businesses already have the tools they need, so no additional costs. Why pay for Fixed Asset software when Excel can do the job for you?

And while spreadsheets are just fine when you have only a few assets to worry about, as your business grows, this may become a little more arduous and has some pitfalls. We have listed some of these below:

1. Trackingmrspreadsheets
If you're using a spreadsheet, you will typically list out all of the assets along with data such as Asset Reference, Depreciation Method (such as Period Straight Line, Annual Straight Line Period Reducing Balance or Annual Reducing Balance), Net Book Value, Residual Value, Asset Life Span, Asset Owner, Cost Centre, Department and so on. It will include some calculations to help work out the depreciation to leave you with the Net Present Value. This data then needs to be maintained and used to journal back into your Nominal Ledger.
If, on the other hand you use the dedicated Fixed Asset Register within Sage 200 , you can easily keep track of all your assets in one place – no lost or forgotten assets, no formulae to take care of. Nominal Postings and reports are all managed directly within your accounting system.


2. Calculation Errors

We all know that spreadsheets are so easy to work with. We have found many customers over the years who had started their Fixed Asset Registers on spreadsheets only to discover a calculation error, which has been carried through to different periods.

Group of people working with laptops, tablet and smartphones together and making financial report

Using spreadsheets can be unreliable and messy to clean up mistakes, particularly if the error impacts multiple periods.

Again, with a dedicated Fixed Asset Register like that in Sage 200, you don’t need to worry about calculations behind the scenes. Once it is set up properly at the start, you can just run your depreciation at the period end and all the hard work is done for you.


3. Transactions
Data spreadsheet and pen
  In most businesses who use Excel for Fixed Asset management, there will be one main spreadsheet used – a master list. But as there is likely to be more than one person who has access to this list, it’s easy for items to be overwritten, amended or deleted and once the changes have been saved, there is no way to get the information back. 


Within Sage 200, you can assign access to the Fixed Asset module to appropriate users so that they can view all the relevant transactional data against an Asset including asset net book value, last depreciated date, total depreciation and so on.

And as Sage 200 has a full Audit Trail, each asset has its own depreciation history including a list of all the nominal codes that were updated with each months depreciation. Its not possible to overwrite items within Sage 200 as all values are set. And most importantly, you cannot over or under-depreciate within the Sage 200 Fixed Assets Register but as there are no such rules in Excel, it this can be done easily and you can also depreciate an item too often, creating incorrect values that will carry on through the life of the asset. 


business documents on office table with smart phone and laptop computer and graph financial with social network diagram and three colleagues discussing data in the background4. Centralised Data 

When assisting companies with their digital transformation, we always ask how many spreadsheets are in use, who uses them, why they are used so they we can assess whether they could be replaced with integrated processes

For Sage 200 users, the Fixed Asset Register is simple, it’s already there and it works a treat. You can keep a full track on the value of an asset from purchase date through the depreciation process to disposal.

In addition, the Sage 200 Fixed Asset Register will gather the value of all of your assets and deliver them to you in one detailed report whereas within Excel, the gathering of data from multiple spreadsheets is a lot more manual and time-consuming. Totalling the figures into one report is a lot more complex and you may still require multiple report types, depending on your requirements. 

It will take one more spreadsheet out of the equation, centralising the data for viewing/updating and reporting on. One or more less spreadsheets is always a good thing. And if the thought of manually inputting hundreds or thousands of assets into Sage 200, don’t worry, assets can be easily imported directly from your spreadsheet. 

Fixed Asset Register - How To Video:

If you’re a Sage 200 User and would like to get started with your Sage 200 Fixed Asset Register, we have created 3 short step-by-step videos showing you what to do.

We will walk you through:

  • Creating a Fixed Asset
  • Depreciating an Asset
  • Disposing of and Deleting an Asset
  • Asset Reporting & Enquiries

 all within the Sage 200 Fixed Assets module. 

To take a look, click below: 

Sage 200cloud Fixed Assets


Sage 200cloud Fixed Assets

Sage 200cloud Fixed Assets

Sicon Fixed Assets Module

If you are using the Fixed Assets Register within Sage 200 but feel you are in need of something a little more comprehensive, there is the option of a more advanced, fully integrated Fixed Asset module from Sicon. This goes a step further and includes some more comprehensive features. This guide below will show you the differences between both options.


Click to Download Guide


To discuss your Fixed Asset Requirements with a member of our team, why not get in touch by email: sales@envisagecloud.ie or phone +353 1 8223200



 About the author: Lisa Costello
Lisa works in our Envisage Support Team as one of our senior Sage 200cloud consultants. Having worked in Sage for a number of years prior to joining the Envisage team, Lisa brings a huge amount of experience with her and is very well equipped to assist our customers on a range of support topics and queries. 


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