DCAA Compliant Accounting Systems
What is a DCAA Approved Accounting System?
Perhaps one of the first and most important concepts to understand is that "DCAA approved accounting" is a bit of a misnomer. Despite what you may have heard, there is, in fact, no such thing as a "DCAA approved cost accounting system (or approved DCAA accounting software)," nor is there such a thing as a "DCAA certified accounting system (or services)." There are simply systems that are compliant with FAR & DCAA requirements, and compliant accounting software, that is designed to pass the accounting system audit. The cost of setting up and operating a compliant system are recoverable from the government as part ot the contractors indirect billing rates.
Many DoD, NASA, DHS, and even DoE contractors are often instructed by the Federal Government (or prime contractors), to "get their accounting system compliant," in order to be considered for award. Whether this is because they have just been selected for an SBIR award, or a cost type (or even some T&M) contract(s), the awardee needs to move quickly to:
- Install a compliant accounting and timekeeping system (or convert their existing system)
- Draft compliant policies and procedures
- Train their employees
To learn more about the components of a compliant system, download our popular white paper: "A Quick Guide to the DCAA Compliant Accounting System - Understanding the SF1408," now.
DCAA Accounting - Step 1: Setting Up Your System
At ReliAscent®, our experts handle the setup (install or conversion), process for you. First, we can install your accounting software (or bring your existing system into compliance), and then make the system--as a whole--compliant (via "satellite" systems/add-ons, and through the work of our experts).
Setting up the system starts with installing and/or properly formatting your accounting/general ledger software (ReliAscent® recommends small businesses use the desktop version of QuickBooks®, as it is the most user-friendly and affordable system, and does not lack many critical components required for compliance, like the Online version).
However, setting up a compliant timekeeping system, and then bringing your accounting system into compliance is only the first step---you must also maintain your compliant system throughout the duration of your contract (usually indefinitely, should you plan on continued federal contracting). This means having experienced experts handle things like monthly closes, DCAA ICE submissions, and audit support services (see Step 2, below).
DCAA Accounting - Step 2: Maintaining Compliance
The ReliAscent® difference is that once the accounting system is brought into compliance, ReliAscent® offers different levels of compliant accounting services to Federal Contractors and Grantees, each tailored to your business and compliance needs. We have over 200 years of collective experience in Federal Government accounting and provide a "solution", not just a software package that can easily lead the user astray.
We've had many clients come to us after purchasing another system or software, and then not getting the support to operate it properly and maintain compliance. While this approach may work for the rare case in which a company already has an accountant on staff with extensive experience with the DCAA, FAR, and government contract accounting, for most small businesses, this approach often leads to failed audits and headaches down the road.
ReliAscent® can take this worry away from the contractor by providing full "turn-key" outsourced compliant accounting. What sets us apart is that we don't simply hand you software and leave you to fend for yourself (and offer overpriced "training" when you can't run the software properly).You do what you do best and we do what we do best and the company benefits as a result.
The specific level and type of services is often dictated by your contracting agency, contract requirements, and budget. To learn more about our government contract accounting services, visit our DCAA Accounting Services page.
Our Cloud-based government accounting program and services include:
- Cloud-hosted QuickBooks® for confidentiality, security and ease of access by you, the client, from anywhere you can access the internet
- Web-Based automated Timekeeping with electronic integration to QuickBooks®
- QuickBooks® structured in a Job Cost environment compatible with FAR & DCAA requirements
- Project burdened cost reporting
- Indirect rate calculations
- Chart of accounts structured to meet the Federal Acquisition Regulations
- Financial management tools
- Profitability on current contracts
- Financial position of the company
DCAA Accounting Services