For every shop manager using Equipment360, there should be an accounting department that is benefitting from the information being collected. Beyond just managing the labor hours to pay mechanics and shop employees, this fleet management solution can create exports that provide evidence of use and misuse of equipment, differentiates costs that are the result of regular maintenance or something that occurred on the job, and it can help you understand when it is time to sell a piece of equipment to maximize uptime for a type or class of equipment.
Where Can I Begin?
The first thing you should do is to test your Accounting Export regularly to ensure that you are getting the right information. If you need multiple exports to separate costs, Equipment360’s Accounting Export allows you to customize the export without requiring a programmer. If you change ERP or accounting software, you can modify your export fields to match the new system needs, and run tests to ensure your export is correct. Equipment360 creates a log after each export is complete to notify you of what passed and failed to export.
This help article is a good starter for creating a custom accounting export template:
If you want to maximize your time when you are creating an export to accounting template, know what your accounting needs first. Write down the exact fields that you need, and in what order you need them in. You cannot go the other way around because the input(accounting) determines what will be accepted. There is no point in generating an export that you will have to format again after it has been exported. Once your template is established, run small tests that you can easily remove from accounting if there are problems.
If you need help setting up the template, you can always call our fleet support at 855-231-7877.
Implement Creative Use of Overrides
When a mechanic enters labor to complete a task on their work order, there is an option to flag each line item of the work order as “damage” or “on-site.” These simple checkboxes have a lot of power when it comes to the accounting export. We programmed the damage check box (if checked) to allow you to separate the cost of that line item in case you want to charge the cost to the job if the damage was incurred by the job instead of charging it to the equipment. Creatively, you could use this flag for purposes other than damage or work performed on-site and designate its override purpose in the export accounting template.
If you are using the damage check box traditionally, we would recommend creating a cost code to contain that damage cost in your accounting system. If you are using the on-site check box, this is traditionally used to be able to switch labor rates for the mechanic in case you have a prevailing wage for performing work on-site rather than in the shop.
Asset Management and the Churn Chart
Having data and being able to report on it is priceless when it comes to accounting. The fact that you are tracking your equipment and cost to maintain and repair it means that you have the ability to know if you have a problem, and facts to prove it.
The Asset Manager allows you to quickly create and export reports that show you equipment usage and cost details. You can even organize the reports by type so that you can compare how each piece of equipment of that same type or class (organization is an important step in your setup to see this properly) performs.
The Church Chart is a visual rank of your equipment according to its age and expected life to forecast the best time to replace it. This is a fairly new report and uses basic colors to show you when a piece of equipment is nearing the point where it could be cost-effective to replace it rather than repairing it. Here is an article on that chart: Is Your Fleet Reliable and Cost-Effective?
Again, if you need any help with what we’ve covered so far – please call our Fleet Support.
Importing can be as Useful as Exporting
There are cases when equipment costs are not tracked in Equipment360, but you need them to understand your equipment costs. For example, if you have a separate parts application or work performed by a subcontractor, you can import these costs to work orders using the Work Order Cost Ledger. This import can read both .csv and .xls file types, so you can create your import file in Microsoft Excel. The import requires a Work order number and date at a minimum.
Here is a Support help article to get you started with your Cost Ledger Import:
Use the APIs to Program Solutions
APIs that currently exist for Equipment360 include Work Orders, Purchase Orders, Meter Readings, and Maintenance Requests. One example use for this API is if your company uses a subcontractor for a lot of work on your equipment, you can use the Work Order API to pull their work orders assigned to that shop, and they can notify Equipment360 that the work is complete. The Purchase Order API can be used to interact with your accounting if you keep track of your purchase orders but want to import that cost into Equipment360. The API developer portal is located here if you would like to explore your options: https://developer.hcssapps.com/
Community is Important
In an ideal world, we would just pick up the phone and find out how our neighbor is effectively solving their business problems. HCSS connects you in a way that is unique to your industry and your type of problems. Connections made at our Users Group Meetings are evidence of how helpful you all are. The HCSS Community is a place where you can post your questions, comments or helpful replies to the community. We have found some creative ways to handle business during COVID, and we have had users offer some great ideas for program enhancements. You’ll find many power users that enjoy helping others, and maybe build a network of your own to go to for help. Join the Community HERE.
We appreciate you. If you need any help at all – feel free to call our support. Let us know what we can do to serve you better in the comments.