Insolvency Filing and CCH Document Management

CCH Document Management is one of the leading products for the UK Accountancy profession.  It does all the things you’d expect of a Document Management product, but it’s key strength is the high degree of integration with the ‘CCH Central’ suite of products.CCH Document Logo

CCH Central is a framework into which each of the CCH products can be ‘plugged’.  They all share a common set of screens and a common database, and each product benefits from the presence of its siblings so that the overall utility of the suite grows exponentially as you purchase new elements of the suite.

If you have CCH Central (core client database) and CCH Practice Management (Time & Fees), and you then add CCH Document Management, the document management functions appear as extra features and screens within the existing software.   There is no new desktop icon, just a set of extensions to the software you already have open on your PC all day anyway.    The new product already ‘knows’ about your clients and contacts the very first time it loads up, and automatically makes use of that data.

When you file a document into any Document Management system, you must complete a database record for the new document.  This can be considered as an ‘Index Card’ for the document, and no document can be filed without one (The industry term is ‘Metadata’ : data about data).     In the case of CCH Document Management,  the document metadata is intimately connected to the rest of the CCH Central database.   If you have created a ‘Personal Tax’ assignment against some clients in your Time & Fees setup, then CCH Document Management knows this, and offers to apply this information against any document filed to a Personal Tax client.   It also knows what tax years you are currently working on, and also offers to code the document to the right one – All very neat.


What if your filing requirements don’t match nicely with your Time & Fees analysis codes?  Insolvency (or Corporate Recovery as fashion dictates we now call it) typically uses a quite extensive filing structure, while simultaneously running a fairly simple Time & Fees design.  The demands of SIP9 are not that complicated, but insolvency files often are.    In these situations, CCH’s use of Time & Fees analysis to drive document filing can cause one or two challenges.

I have prepared a White Paper that discusses two approaches for configuring CCH Document Management to successfully support the needs of a Corporate Recovery division alongside those of a general practice. It describes how the software will appear for users, how to configure the software, and highlights the relative advantages and disadvantages of the two approaches.

To download a free copy (PDF 1.2Mb) click the link below…

Implementing Insolvency Filing in CCH DM

Secondary Benefits of Document Management

I was recently asked by CCH and AccountingWeb to write up a discussion paper on the less obvious, second-tier benefits of Electronic Document Management – the stuff that doesn’t become apparent until a system (any system – not just CCH’s) has been in place for a little while.

Return On Investment is a commonplace mantra with technology offerings for business at the moment (as indeed it should).   The ROI of Document Management can be quite tricky to pin down at times, because the impact tends to happen in terms of lots of little advances and benefits – how do you quantify the  benefits of NOT losing a client file?

Anyway – you can access a copy of this White Paper at the CCH web-site.. here.

There was follow-up discussion on the subject on AccountingWeb here.

White Paper – “Retiring Singleview”

Good old Singleview – which has been around in one form or another for the best part of a decade – is now in ‘maintenance’.   This is another way of saying that it’s no longer being developed.   It’s not dead yet, as there are more than a hundred organisations using it every day, but CCH are starting to make noises about migration to their new product: CCH Document Management.

CCH have put a fair bit of effort into ensuring that most (but not all) of Singleview’s features are present in the new product.  Nevertheless, the new software is very different (visually and in terms of the underlying ‘ethos’).

I’ve prepared a free white paper that discusses the differences, and provides guidance on how to start planning for the inevitable.

White Paper – Moving from Singleview to CCH DM  (PDF – 2Mb)

CCH are pretty goood about support for old products – they don’t cut users off at the knees like some software providers.  Nevertheless, the product inevitably starts to age, and  it won’t be updated for future versions of Windows or SQL-Server, making it more troublesome to keep using.  CCH did release an update to resolve an issue with Outlook 2010, but this is going to be the exception rather than the rule in the future.

This white paper was written to compare the final version of Singleview (v4.40) and CCH Document Management v1.3.