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FlexField Software for Oracle EBS – Easily change your accounting flexfields as often as your business changes.

FlexField1You define your new accounting flexfield and map your old flexfield to the new one.

FlexField2Our software recognizes EBS constraints, translates the code-combination ID and updates all transactions automatically.

FlexField3Result: Changes made to your Oracle chart of accounts – without reimplementation.

Model and change your Oracle chart of accounts as often as your business changes, without reimplementation, using our FlexField software for Oracle E-Business Suite.

Some of the most common reasons for changing charts of accounts include:

  • Reorganization
  • Mergers and acquisitions
  • Institutional and regulatory requirements, such as Sarbanes-Oxley
  • Outgrowing the ranges in the current chart of accounts

 

Our FlexField software provides fast configuration at a low cost through an automated process.


    • Low risk. Avoid problems associated with alternatives, such as losing history or violating integrity of data.
    • Fast configuration – typically over a weekend.
    • Low cost – less than a few weeks of consulting and reusable.
    • Protects and enhances your investment in Oracle EBS by creating a robust chart of accounts that more accurately reflects the financial picture of your business.
    • Load, map, and go – fully automated process.
    • Model your chart of accounts before implementing. Now you can forecast the potential benefits or risks of mergers or adding and deleting new divisions and products.

    FlexField logo
    • Easy to use graphical user interface that takes you through the FlexField process.
    • Built-in features automatically update related information to maintain the relational integrity among data.
    • Error checking that identifies exceptions and alerts the user, even across multiple charts of accounts.
    • Out of the box software to meet any requirements.
    • Retains all history, allowing for streamlined reporting.
  • Consolidation Requires a New COA Structure

    Problem

    An international financial services company had three instances of their Oracle E-Business Suites. One instance was for the European countries and the UK, another instance was for the US, and the third instance was for the Asia-Pacific region. In all, the three instances had approximately 30 modules of E-Business Suites. There were three different charts of accounts – one for each instance. They realized that the consolidation process would be much easier if the new instance had a common chart of accounts. With a common chart of accounts, all of the transactions from the sub ledgers would be able to be merged without writing translation scripts for each instance. They would also be able to write consistent interfaces to third-party systems from their single new instance. Finally, the performance for their new data warehouse would be significantly improved by not having to perform translation every time data was extracted from their E-Business Suite and loaded into the data warehouse.

    Solution

    The company designed a new global chart of accounts. They used ranges of values within the natural account segment to accommodate local statutory requirements. They finalized on the mappings from each of the three charts during their first test run. Before they went into production with their new chart of accounts, they used eprentise Consolidation software to merge their instances with the three separate charts of accounts. Then, in their target, consolidated instance, they changed each of the charts of accounts to the new global chart of accounts using FlexField software. They only had to create one set of interfaces to their third-party systems and greatly enhanced the performance on their OBIEE data warehouse.

    Move to a Single Global Chart of Accounts

    Problem

    A pharmaceutical company is upgrading to R12 in their Oracle E-Business Suite because of the capability to have multiple ledgers. Their current set up had a separate set of books for each of the European countries because they implemented before the Euro was the European standard currency. Since they originally implemented with seven separate sets of books for each of the countries where they did business in Europe, they didn’t see a need to standardize on a single chart of accounts. Now, in R 12, they can record all transactions in a single ledger because the currency is the same. However, in order to use a single primary ledger, they need to have a single chart of accounts.

    Solution

    The company created their new chart of accounts, and mapped each of the seven charts of accounts to the new chart of accounts. Using FlexField software, they completed the conversion process to their new chart of accounts with three test runs in 5 months. In two of the segments, they made the segments large enough to allow each country to have its own range of values. Using security and cross validation rules, they were able to restrict access to those values, giving each country some freedom in the way they controlled operations without limiting the company’s ability to operate globally with consistent data. As a side, they are able to close their books each month in 3 days instead of the 12 days that it took before the chart of accounts change. They estimate that they have reduced operating costs for their accounting team by approximately 35%.

    Add Additional Segments to Your Chart of Accounts

    You need to track financials for different areas of the business than when you first implemented Oracle E-Business Suite.
    Problem

    A hardware company that implemented Oracle E-Business Suite in 2001 acquired a services business in 2004. As a result, they wanted to track activity in each region so they could determine what the staffing requirements were in different locations and minimize travel time for their consultants. The chart of accounts they designed in 2001 gave them no way of accounting for different locations. No third-party reporting tools were able to solve the problem — there was not enough flexibility at the source, the accounting flexfield. The company needed a way to change the underlying structure of the accounting flexfield itself, but did not have the resources to go through a lengthy re-implementation.

    Solution

    The company used FlexField software to make rapid changes to the structure of their accounting flexfield. Their outdated chart lacked a location segment, so they had been forced to attach location attributes to other segments in the flexfield. Using FlexField, they were able to add a location segment. Along with a line of business segment, the company also gained the ability to track profitability by location and were able to determine where to recruit and hire for different skill sets to be more competitive in different markets.

    Comply with Regulatory Requirements

    Problem

    A prominent manufacturing and distribution company needed to change their chart of accounts a few years back. They followed Oracle’s recommendation, set up a new set of books with a new chart of accounts and used Oracle’s financial consolidation to consolidate their general ledger. However, when their auditor came to assess their Sarbanes-Oxley compliance, he said that since their history and their subledgers did not use the same chart of accounts for their detail transactions and it was difficult to drill down on their accounts, they were non-compliant. Since Sarbanes-Oxley’s inception in 2002, the company had complied by using third-party reporting tools, but management had finally made the decision that it would be more efficient to change the way they accounted for certain parts of the business at the source, the accounting flexfield. They were told that in order to make the changes they wished to make, a re-implementation of their E-Business Suite would be necessary, but they did not want to spend the time or the capital to get involved in a process that would likely last over a year. They needed a quick way to make fundamental changes to their accounting flexfield without the need for a re-implementation.

    Solution

    The company used FlexField software to restructure their accounting flexfield in a way that enabled them to save multiple millions of dollars in personnel and third-party software license costs over the next 3 years. Because their reporting, drill down and the transaction history was transparent (it looked like they had always used the new chart of accounts), the auditors and their compliance officers were pleased.

    Eliminate Thousands of Cross-validation Rules

    Problem

    A financial services company had over 2000 cross validation rules to enforce which departments could use which cost centers and accounts. In their current chart of accounts, they had run out of digits in the ranges that were defined, so the structure that was supposed to have Revenue starting from 1000 to 1999, Liabilities from 2000 to 2999, Expenses from 3000 to 3999, Assets from 4000 to 4999, and owner’s equity from 6000 to 6999 now looked like this:

     

    1000 – 1999 Revenue
    5000 – 5499 Revenue
    5700 – 5999 Revenue
    2000 – 2999 Liability
    5500 – 5699 Assets
    7000 – 7199 Liability
    7200 – 7250 Expenses
    7251 – 7269 Assets
    7270 – 7999 Expenses
    8000 – 8399 Assets
    8400 – 8499 Liability
    8500 – 8999 Expenses
    9000 – 9010 Owner’s Equity
    9011 – 9198 Revenue
    9199 – 9399 Expenses
    9399 – 9999 Randomly assigned to different account types

    It was almost impossible to remember what account went with which cost centers for each department. Every time the company wanted to add a new value, they had to rearrange all their cross validation rules. Maintenance on the chart of accounts was taking days each year end when they added new tax accounts.

    Solution

    The company expanded their account segment to 6 digits using FlexField software, put everything in ranges, and went down to a total of 17 cross-validation rules. There was no longer any maintenance to add new accounts or new departments. As an aside, they were also able to streamline their reporting so new reports were generated quickly.

    Take Advantage of Oracle's Subsidiary Ledgers

    Problem

    A multinational manufacturing company wanted to upgrade to E-Business Suite R12 from 11.5.9 in order to take advantage of its subledger accounting functionality. With locations across the globe, secondary ledgers that use accounting methods and currencies specific to the location of the business – while all still using the same primary ledger for headquarters in the UK – was an attractive feature for the company. However, the company’s business had changed since it first implemented E-Business Suite, and much of the data in the current chart of accounts was obsolete (location, product line, and cost center values all needed a thorough overhaul). They also carried customer information in the CoA since they did not have receivables when they first implemented. Since it did not make sense to carry over the junk during an R12 upgrade, the company needed a way to clean up their chart of accounts before upgrading so that they could have a fresh start in R12 and use subsidiary ledgers with only the information they needed.

    Solution

    The company used FlexField software to clean up their chart of accounts in 11.5.9. They decided to use the FlexField software prior to the upgrade process since 11.5.9 was a known stable environment and an environment that the users were familiar with. They designed their new chart of accounts without a customer segment and, using FlexField software, cleaned up the values in the other segments by mapping the obsolete values to a single new value for each segment. After they made the change using FlexField software they upgraded to R12. There were no issues with upgrading, adding new modules in R12, and implementing the customer master in their Oracle E-Business Suite. The integrity of the database was maintained, and they were able to use the features of R12 effectively. They now consider using FlexField software a part of their routine maintenance to continuously change the chart of accounts to reflect changes in their business.

    Comply with CGAC or SFIS Federal Standards

    Problem

    The National Business Center of the Department of the Interior operates as a shared services center. The Federal Government has mandated that each federal agency must change its chart of accounts structure to comply with the Common Government-wide Accounting Classification (CGAC) structure. One of the National Business Center’s customers, MCC, needed to change their chart of accounts to comply with CGAC. They needed to add two additional segments and change the length of two other segments.

    Solution

    Team members from the National Business Center worked with the MCC users to design a new chart of accounts and used FlexField software to make the change. Because the federal budget tables use segment values rather than code combinations, eprentise developed a new Federal Budget Allocation module for federal agencies that aligned values in the federal budget tables to the new CGAC-compliant Chart of Accounts. The customer was able to optimize their accounting flexfield structure to comply with CGAC as well as support the current state and future growth of the organization.

    Shorten Month-end Close Process

    It takes you 14 days to close each month because you are using hundreds of spreadsheets to reconcile your financials.

    Profile

    A financial services company had 27,000 cost centers in their chart of accounts. Reconciliation from their subledgers was a nightmare because the users didn’t have consistent posting processes. Values in that cost center included project values, department values, location values, and product line values. They had to break up every transaction to reflect the different segments that they wanted to track. For example if a transaction was for $1000 credit and was a project in New York for a security product, they created 3 credit accounting entries to each of the three cost centers representing the project number cost center, the cost center for New York, and the cost center for the security product. Of course, they created 3 or more debit entries for the offsetting entries. Anyone was allowed to create new cost centers for any reason. The cost centers were not in any logical ranges so creating reports was hard, budgeting was hard, and the maintenance on any accounting reclassifications was overwhelming.

    Solution

    They used FlexField software to map many of their cost centers to one new cost center value. They also created a separate segment for locations, and a separate segment for product lines. They reduced the number of cost centers to approximately 1100 and reduced their close cycle to 2 days.

  • What does FlexField software do?

    FlexField runs one time, changes your data, and then is removed from the E-Business Suite instance. FlexField transforms an existing accounting flexfield’s segment structure, values, code combinations, and CCIDs according to your mappings, and applies the new code combinations and CCIDs. It propagates the change throughout your existing E-Business Suite data, everywhere the accounting flexfield is used. It removes the old code combinations and CCIDs, and aligns the new Chart of Accounts (COA) so that all balances belonging to a single CCID are summarized into a single line.

    Can I use eprentise and FlexField on E-Business Suite R12?

    Yes. eprentise and FlexField can be used for these E-Business Suite releases: 10.7, 11.x, 11i, and R12 (all current versions).

    What happens after I run FlexField and change my COA?

    Your E-Business Suite looks like the new COA has been in use since you first implemented Oracle. The database is functionally and technically consistent and correct.

    What does it mean to have a Complete, Consistent, and Correct database instance?

    Consider the following observations about what is not complete, consistent, or correct.

    • If there are multiple E-Business Suite database instances, no instance provides the complete business data. There are often inconsistencies among instances. The inconsistencies lead business users to conclude the data is incorrect and can’t be trusted. They often have external spreadsheets to fix the data and reconcile the differences among the instances.
    • When there are multiple EBS instances, you usually find data is passed between them via interfaces, to synchronize data and couple business processes together.
    • Some approaches to consolidating multiple instances leave out the transaction history, so the business users are left with “sunset” instances that contain all the history up to the point of consolidation. They may need to access these sunset instances to look up prior events and transactions. Thus the single consolidated instance is not complete.
    • Even when there is only a single instance, there may be different charts of accounts, or different business rules employed by different parts of the organization. If the business users employ external reconciling spreadsheets because of these differences, the instance is not complete, consistent, or correct.

    This is what complete, consistent, and correct means.

    I’m going to upgrade from 11i to R12 soon. Can I use eprentise or FlexField before the upgrade, and if I do, are there any special considerations?

    In most situations we suggest that customers change their COA in 11i and go into production prior to the upgrade. Alternatively, the COA change can be the first step in the upgrade project, or the last.

    We will evaluate with you the comparative level of effort and elapsed time to use eprentise for a consolidation, split, or reorganization compared to your R12 upgrade. In most situations, we suggest these paths:

    • Consolidate 11i instances, then upgrade the single consolidated instance.
    • Upgrade to R12, then split the instance into two R12 instances. However in some situations an M&A transaction may force a timetable where the split must be done first, and then later the two parties each have to upgrade.
    • When eprentise will be used to reorganize and transform the data in a single instance, the sequence depends on whether the reorganization or the upgrade provides the most value to the business. Most eprentise reorganizations will be smaller in scope than an upgrade, easier to test, and quicker to get into production.
      • If one provides significantly more value, then do that first, put it into production, and do the other later. If there’s a new functional module in R12 that you need, that might be an argument to upgrade before reorganization. In most cases a reorganization will be much less effort and take less time than an R12 upgrade.
      • If you have the resources and the timing works, it’s feasible to do both in a single production release. During development you still do one after the other in sequence, but perhaps you can have just one testing cycle.

    Will Oracle Support continue to provide support for EBS after I use eprentise or FlexField software? What is Oracle’s policy or position regarding your eprentise software?

    There are no statements from Oracle employees or in cited Oracle publications that support would be (or had ever been) denied to EBS customers due to making changes to accounting flexfields.

    This is consistent with the Oracle Support Policy which is analyzed in Analysis of Oracle Software Technical Support Policies: A Legal Review of Oracle’s Contract in Relation to Third-Party Software.

    Additionally, please click here for an analysis of Oracle software technical support policies.

  • FlexField Datasheet

    Download PDF
    FlexField’s built-in knowledge base of Oracle E-Business Suite provides a low-risk, low-cost way to make rapid changes to the accounting flexfield. Businesses can change their Chart of Accounts and bring in all transaction history over a weekend while maintaining relational integrity. Users also can model potential business initiatives in order to gauge the financial impact ahead of time.

  • FlexField software is affordable.

    FlexField makes changing your E-Business Suite Chart of Accounts very inexpensive, especially when compared to time-consuming reimplementations and months of consulting fees.

    Each FlexField COA Unit is a license to change one named accounting flexfield in one Oracle E-Business Suite production instance one time, and any number of times in associated non-production instances.

    Prices quoted are per accounting flexfield. The discount level structure indicated below applies to FlexField licenses purchased for the benefit of a single entity, such as a company, legal entity, subdivision of an ordering activity (service, bureau, agency, division, command), profit and loss center etc., or other similar operational unit. The discount level structure is based on the quantity discount level table structure (below) such that an entity purchasing four units (to change four charts of accounts), for example, must pay $29,750 for each of the first three units and $26,500 for the fourth unit for a total price of $115,750. Prices quoted are per accounting flexfield (per chart of accounts) in USD. The discount level applies only to additional licenses purchased within two (2) years of the initial purchase.

    The license fee includes remote support from the eprentise team to guide you through the installation and use of our software. There are no additional or ongoing product support or consulting fees.

    FlexField Pricing Table Click to enlarge.

    For customers in need of any of the below post-change add-ins, add $9,950 per accounting flexfield per module. Customers utilizing the HR module of E-Business Suite must purchase the HR Cost Allocation add-in in order to apply new chart of accounts changes to the payroll cost allocation flexfield. Federal government agencies are required to purchase the Budget Allocation add-in to apply the new chart of accounts changes to the federal budget tables.

    FlexField Module PricingClick to enlarge.

    For additional details about the pricing or discount structure, please contact us.