Let’s talk about the Sage 300 Fiscal Calendar!

Have you ever wondered about inconsistencies between your trial balance and previous monthly reports? Have you ever noticed that your Aged Trial Balance reports do not match the GL Trial Balance? Have you expected to see an entry in a specific month/year but it is not there?

I have helped clients with these sorts of issues, and the answer is typically found in their Sage 300 Fiscal Calendar settings.

Sage 300 has a built-in calendar that controls postings in all modules, and if it is used properly, can eliminate a lot of headaches for those that generate reports!

The Fiscal Calendar is defined by a company and can span 12 or 13 periods. This is configured in Common Services on the Company Profile screen. Access to this screen and the Fiscal Calendar itself, is driven by the user’s authorization level.

Once the Number of Fiscal Periods are defined, the calendar can be built using the first day of your fiscal year to the last day, leaving you to define each period based on the end dates/start dates of each. Some companies may have a 4 week period while others follow the calendar months. This is found in Common Services under the Fiscal Calendar Screen.

In this company, the Fiscal Calendar follows the Calendar with a start date of 01/01/2021 and ends on 12/31/2021. You can see that there are no periods locked for any of the modules, so users could post to any month without problem. They will get a warning, based on the setting of ‘Warning’ for Locked Fiscal Period on the previous screen, but they would still be able to enter their transaction.

It is recommended, that at the end of a month after all entries are posted and reports are approved, the month should be locked. Furthermore, you should specify the type of message that appears if a user enters or posts a transaction to a locked fiscal period in any of the subledgers:

None. No message appears and the user can proceed.

Warning. A message appears, but the user can proceed.

Error. A message appears and the user is prevented from entering or posting the transaction.

Important! If you select ‘Warning’ or ‘None’ for this option, users can post transactions in subledgers and create batches for General Ledger even to locked fiscal periods. You should select ‘Error’ if you want to prevent posting to a locked period.

This option does not affect processing in General Ledger. Regardless of your selection for this option, no user can post transactions in General Ledger to a period that is locked for General Ledger. The system always generates an error when you try to post to a locked fiscal period in General Ledger.

You can lock specific modules as the various departments in your organization completed their work, leaving the General Ledger as the last module to lock. You can lock the entire month for all modules by clicking in the field where “Lock Column” is displayed, or you can double clock in the row/column intersection for the module/period you wish to lock.

In this example, periods 1-10 are completely locked, while only AP, AR, PJC and PO are locked for period 11 and Period 12 is completely open. Once the entire year has been completed, all adjusting entries posted and final reports generated for the accountant, you should make sure that all modules, including the Adjustment Period and Closing Period, are locked.

It is a good idea to check your calendars for all prior years, as well as any future years, to make sure you are controlling transactions to your General Ledger properly. A few minutes of maintenance every month can save you loads of time trying to find a wayward entry!

For other recommendations on Period End Maintenance take a look at this checklist.

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