If your small business contracts with the Department of Defense and it has been several years since your last DCAA audit, how do you know whether or not your accounting system (not just your software), is DCAA compliant?Read More
DCAA Compliance Blog
Your Source for DCAA & FAR Compliance News and Discussion
ReliAscent® LLC is the only government contract accounting firm that specializes in all aspects of government contracting compliance. From our DCAA compliant accounting services, to monthly government contract accounting for all government agency awards, contract management & administration, and financial services & planning, our goal is to ensure the success of our clients, and all small business government contractors and grantees.
In our DCAA Blog, we discuss the latest government contracting news from the Federal Government, the DCAA, and DCMA, as well as promotions offered by ReliAscent, and helpful tools and resources for contractors.
We hope you will visit and take part in the discussions on our blog on a regular basis. If you ever have any questions or would like to discuss how our experts can help, do not hesitate to contact us at any time!
Many new/start-up small business federal contractors often ask the question: Will not having an approved accounting system disqualify our firm from bid opportunities?Read More
If you are like me, a picture is worth a thousand words, and a moving picture is worth a thousand pictures. I am visually oriented and I think many people in today’s world are the same way. Some of us come by this naturally and others may be conditioned to this by the exploding digital and media technologies. Regardless, it has never been easier to view a video on just about any topic you want. Heck, they even make video cameras small enough to strap to our heads to record risky and or spectacular feats that some of us might be enticed to perform. The bottom line is that our current culture likes to view video. It is not only a means of entertainment, it is also a way of learning that was not available in the past.
I often hear people say they want to buy accounting software that is “DCAA Approved”. Or sometimes they say that they need an accounting system that is “DCAA Approved”. This is a bit of a misnomer. First of all, the DCAA does not “approve” software packages nor do they “approve” accounting systems. A software package may be designed to meet FAR and DCAA requirements, or as it sometimes is referred to, to be “compliant” with DCAA requirements. As we have discussed in previous blogs, there are accounting software packages out there that are designed to be compliant with DCAA requirements. There are also accounting software systems that are not designed to be compliant with DCAA requirements but they can usually be incorporated into a compliant system by adding on some external features to cover all of the compliance issues. These “external systems” usually include things like timekeeping systems, expense reporting systems, indirect rate calculation systems and complete subsidiary job cost reporting systems among others. Finally, whether the software is designed to meet DCAA requirements or not, the company employing the system must have a set of policies and procedures to support operation of the system in a uniform manner.
At ReliAscent we realize that a large number of small government contractors use QuickBooks® as their accounting system. Since QuickBooks® is not designed to meet FAR & DCAA requirements, there must be some add-ons as well as a strong system of policies & procedures in order to have a compliant system.
A small business that is a government contractor doesn't have a lot of choices for DCAA compliant accounting software. Most small businesses start by using QuickBooks®. While QuickBooks® is a very good accounting system for a small business, it is not designed to meet DCAA requirements. There are ways to make a QuickBooks® based system into a DCAA compliant accounting system (ReliAscent has been doing this for years), it involves integration of several different pieces. The operation of this type of system can become cumbersome as the company grows in either employees or number of government jobs or both. In the past, many growing small businesses looked to software such as the Deltek GCS Premier® product to accommodate the growth. The Deltek product has been recognized as the "industry standard" for many years. While this is a solution, some of the complaints from small business has focused around the age of the software, the cost of the software and the inflexibility and difficulty of use of the software.
ReliAscent (and our predecessors) have been in the business of helping SBIR firms install and operate compliant accounting systems for over 22 years. As most SBIR firms are aware, a Phase I award is usually a fixed price type award and since the dollar volume is relatively low, a compliant accounting system is not required during the phase I award. For the past 22 years we have encouraged Phase I winners to begin developing their accounting system in anticipation of a Phase II award that would require a compliant accounting system. There is not a government requirement to do this and thus many companies understandably chose to ignore the compliant accounting system requirement until they got to that "bridge to cross".