Software Africa Newsletter - May 2018

Green Tip ~ Excel Tip

Editorial

These last few weeks have been loaded with major changes. These all have implications for businesses, homeowners and everyone in general.

The first is the proposed requirement to register any generating equipment, via your municipality or Eskom, that enables you to be off the grid. This information will then go to NERSA. 

Next is a new costly and onerous CIPC requirement for doing your returns to them. More below on both:

National Energy Regulator's New Rules for comment by 31 May 2018

In terms of this, the draft regulations can be found here (pdf file) It is a lengthy and somewhat ambiguous document. The forms of generation include even solar power cellphone rechargers(!), solar water heaters, and diesel generators. NERSA wishes to regulate and license al of these!

A good petition site is https://eeco.co.za/projects/generator/ where you can add your information and objections to a petition that will be submitted by the Energy Expert Coalition. They had 8317 comments by 11:00 on 8th May.

Please inform your colleagues about this as we would like to avoid another eTolls situation.

Changes to CIPC Information Requirements

This will come into effect on 1st July 2018 and will mean that we all have to submit our financial statements in XBRL format. What, you may ask is that?

Well here's the explanation from the CIPC site in all cases: "XBRL is an Extensible Business Reporting Language for electronic communication of business information providing major benefits in the preparation, analysis, communication of Annual Financial Statements."

This will enable CIPC to create a searchable database of all our information.

"XBRL Programme Objectives are:

This means that PDF files will no longer be accepted and your PDF return will be invalid. This has extensive repercussions for all businesses and the XBRL solution is applicable to all accounting software solutions. There is an annual fee to license the software and we are busy going through the agreement to provide companies with the software and support in doing returns. It links itself to your reporting Excel spreadsheet for easy updating each financial year end.

For more information, please use this link, which will tell you everything about what CIPC has been doing since February. We will keep you informed as we become familiar with the software.

Green Tip

Green and less expensive cleaning solutions - going back to our grandmothers' way of working! You can use bicarbonate of soda and white spirit vinegar to clean just about everything. Not only is it less costly but it's just as effective. Ground salt is great for cleaning teeth!

Adobe - an Exciting Development

We have linked up with Dax Data to take advantage of their rich offerings of this dynamic and growing range of products. We will focus on Creative cloud and Adobe Pro, whilst Judith gets up to speed on the other, very exciting products.

Activating your Autodesk Software

Please note that your new Autodesk software has to be activated using your account log on within 30 days. Thereafter, please log onto your account monthly to receive the latest updates, so that your software stays current. You can use your account to access training videos and support via AVA as well. If AVA can't solve your problem, it can be escalated to Autodesk Support who will phone you to sort it out. This is an exceptional development as it makes problem solving so much faster than previously.

As an Autodesk customer, you matter to them as well as to your reseller. More and more solutions are sitting on your customer account - please explore them!

AutoCAD major change

All full AutoCAD products (Mac and Windows) now come with special tools To quote Marcus O'Brien of Autodesk:

"Increase Productivity With Specialized Toolsets

"With access to 7 specialized toolsets, subscribers have more than 750,000 intelligent objects, styles, parts, features, and symbols to choose from when drawing. Designers can automate floor plans; quickly draw piping, plant equipment, or electrical panel layouts; incorporate GIS data into the planning process; edit scanned drawings and convert raster images into DWG objects all while working in a familiar AutoCAD interface.

"The toolsets now included in AutoCAD offer intelligent features that will help users work faster and be more efficient. For example, by using the Architecture toolset to model a design, you’ll save a significant amount of time incorporating real architectural elements such as doors, walls, and windows, instead of starting from lines and circles; creating a wall in AutoCAD requires 5 steps, whereas the same outcome in the Architecture toolset requires only 3 steps.

"Now imagine how productive you could be with all of the industry-specific toolsets at your fingertips.

"When you subscribe to AutoCAD 2019, you will gain access to the following toolsets:

"Architecture Toolset: Use specialized building design features and 8,000+ intelligent architectural objects and styles to speed architectural drawing and documentation.

"Mechanical Toolset: Use specialized mechanical design features and 700,000+ intelligent manufacturing parts, features, and symbols to speed product design.

"Electrical Toolset: Use specialized electrical design features and 65,000+ intelligent electrical symbols to boost productivity for creating, modifying, and documenting electrical controls systems.

"MEP Toolset: Use specialized MEP engineering features and 10,500+ intelligent mechanical, electrical, and plumbing objects to draft, design, and document building systems.

"Plant 3D Toolset: Use the specialized plant design and engineering toolset to efficiently produce P&IDs and then integrate them into a 3D plant design model.

"Map 3D Toolset: Use specialized mapping features to incorporate GIS and CAD data to support planning, design, and data management. Access spatial data stored in files, databases, and web services, and aggregate it with your AutoCAD design data.

"Raster Design Toolset: Use raster to vector tools to help you edit scanned drawings and convert raster images into DWG objects."

For the full story, go to this link. The solution will also include mobile apps to use with AutoCAD. This makes it very powerful.

QuickBooks in the Cloud

We are now moving into reselling this solution and doing full support on it for users. Please contact Judith for a full overview and pricing. The solution means that you can access your data from anywhere at anytime, giving you far better control. In addition, your data is backed up daily and updated speedily whenever new releases are made available. The really good news is that you can access low-cost solutions for self-employed business people up to the more sophisticated ones for more complex businesses.

Quick Payroll

Please contact Judith for the new KeyPlayer software. This Payroll complies with all statutory regulations and is simple to use and update.

Excel Tip #165 -- What's New in Excel 2016 for Windows?  New Pivot Chart (I) -- What is a Pivot Table?

We are looking at what is new in Excel 2016 for Windows Desktop, compared with Excel 2010.  On the Insert ribbon, in the Charts group, there is a new button for PivotCharts.  Before we get into that, we want to look at what a Pivot Table is.

The Pivot Table is a useful way of summarising data.  Consider, for example, this data representing sales to various cites by different divisions of a fictitious company:

Date Division Invoice Amount Destination
06/03/2018 East 1824 R36,000 Cape Town
08/03/2018 East 1825 R198,200 Pretoria
09/03/2018 West 1782 R40,000 East London
11/03/2018 East 1826 R80,000 Cape Town
17/03/2018 West 1783 R221,100 East London
03/04/2018 South 2953 R244,000 East London
08/04/2018 South 2954 R95,800 Kimberley
12/04/2018 South 2955 R166,600 Cape Town
16/04/2018 North 2376 R152,400 Kimberley
24/04/2018 East 1827 R175,300 Pretoria

A Pivot Table based on this data might look like this:

Sum of Amount Column Labels      
Row Labels East North South West Grand Total
Cape Town R116,000   R166,600   R282,600
East London     R244,000 R261,100 R505,100
Kimberley   R152,400 R95,800   R248,200
Pretoria R373,500       R373,500
Grand Total R489,500 R152,400 R506,400 R261,100 R1,409,400

This particular Pivot Table gives us the total sales per Division (column) to each Destination (Row), with totals. 

Next we have the most recent invoice date per Destination (column) and Division (Row), with "Grand Totals" (actually "Grand Max"), which looks like this:

Max of Date Column Labels      
Row Labels Cape Town East London Kimberley Pretoria Grand Total
East 11/03/2018     24/04/2018 24/04/2018
North     16/04/2018   16/04/2018
South 12/04/2018 03/04/2018 08/04/2018   12/04/2018
West   17/03/2018     17/03/2018
Grand Total 12/04/2018 03/04/2018 16/04/2018 24/04/2018 24/04/2018

Pivot tables allow us to view a summary of the data in many ways, and are easily copied and changed for multiple views.

Now that we know what a  Pivot Table is, we will look at how to create one next time.

Computius Say:

Computius writing a book. He has got the page numbers done.

Remember:  We can make your business run better by:

All the Best from the team!
Judith and Rick

Members, Communication in Action cc trading as Software Africa
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