User Review( votes)
Once upon a time (just last week actually, but isn’t that how all good stories are supposed to start?) I received a call from one of our clients. “My Aged Accounts Payable report no longer ties to the general ledger!” she nervously said.
“Oh my,” I said. “When did this start happening?”
“Just in the last 2 weeks,” she said. She pulled out her prior month printed report, read off the total amount and showed me the balance in the accounts payable general ledger account as of that date. The report and GL balance matched! So, we focused on the most recent month to determine the cause of the out of balance this month.
What could be the cause?
We considered some of the normal culprits.
- Did anyone direct post to the account? Yes, they did! Though not a best practice, they allow this. We quickly determined these GENJNL entries were not the problem.
- Since they allow direct posting to the AP account, were there any purchase or credit memo transactions expensed to the AP general ledger account? This would create an open vendor ledger for the amount but post nothing (net of zero) to the general ledger causing an out of balance issue. This was also not the cause.
- Was a payment applied to an invoice using an application date prior to the invoice date? Users cannot do this at the time of the payment, but they can go into the vendor ledger entries and apply it manually. In much older versions of the program this could cause aging and other reporting issues, however once again, this was not the case.
None of the normal causes applied
Next, we decided to narrow it down to the exact date it went out of balance. We ran the aged accounts payable report as of the end of the prior month that did balance as a starting point. We compared the report total from the preview on our screen to the AP general ledger balance. OMG, it did not balance! The results we got today when running the report did not match the printout in her hand. We ran the report for several months back and got the same result – every month no longer tied to the general ledger AP balance. I know they have been fastidious about locking down posting date ranges, so this just didn’t make any sense.
Time to compare reports
At this point, we decided to take the prior month’s printed aged accounts payable report and compare it to the report we were previewing. (This was one time I was very happy to find out a client was still printing out her reports!) We found many invoices on the printed report missing on the report we were previewing using the same “as of” date. After a little bit of investigation, we determined that if today the vendor balance is zero, the vendor was not included on the report. When did this start happening?
The real problem
The Aged Accounts Payable report is using the system date, not the Aged as of date used to run the report, to determine a vendor’s zero balance and if that vendor should be included on the report..
Unless we indicated to Print Vendors with Zero Balance, the report was excluding open entries as of our report date when the vendor balance is zero today.