Dimensions are a HUGELY powerful aspect of Intacct’s financial software. They allow you to transform your reporting from the mundane, ordinary income statement to an income statement by department or division or project – or most anything else you can imagine! But what if I told you that was only the beginning?
That’s right! Dimensions are only the beginning when it comes to truly being able to slice and dice your financial data inside Intacct’s financial system! Just imagine taking those dimensions to a whole new level with “All You Can Make” Dimension Groups!
Think about it! Not only can you run reports (both custom and financial) based on dimensions, but you can GROUP those dimensions and segment your reports based on those groups. AND, you can dynamically add members to those groups based on ANY field value on the dimension.
For example, let’s take a look at a professional services company that provides communication system support for small and medium-sized organizations. In addition to the usual modules in Intacct like General Ledger, Payables and Receivables, a services company will typically also use a Project Accounting module.
As with most project accounting modules, Intacct can provide reporting based on individual projects. HOWEVER, Intacct takes things a step further by allowing companies to create PROJECT GROUPS. As shown in the image on the right, a project group is a set of projects based on some criteria. In the image to the right, the group is based on the “Billing Type” field, so that the organization can analyze “Time & Materials” projects versus “Fixed Fee” projects.
Most standard and custom reports can be segmented by any of the dimensions. That’s a basic concept of Intacct. But, some users do not know that ALL dimension groups are also shown in the appropriate selection criteria.
For example, the screenshot to the left shows the General Ledger Report with the criteria for “Projects” set to the “T&M Projects” project group that we built in the previous screen. Imagine what that means… You can run a standard General Ledger Report by T&M Projects or Fixed Fee Projects – or certain Vendor or Customer groups for that matter! Wow!!
Curious about how profitable your projects are by manager or by crew leader? Wondering if that new product line is actually making the company money? Interested in how your locations or stores are performing by region? Or maybe, you are struggling to come to grips with how your sub-entities are performing based on your ownership model?
Well, never fear with Intacct, because you can use those same Dimension Groups we have been discussing to create Dimension Structures (checkbox on the dimension group setup screen does the trick!) and use those dimension structures as columns – or rows – in your financial statements. In our example to the right, this statement will show a column for “T&M Projects” and we can have another column for “Fixed Fee Projects” so that – side-by-side – we can see which project type is more profitable. Do we need to tweak our quoting process? Do we need to tweak our implementation process?
In summary, dimension groups extend the power of the dimension in Intacct by letting you create groupings and use them in financial analysis and research. Dimension groups can shed a light on different aspects of your business that were never before considered.
What will you do with a dimension group?