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Irish Football Association

Client Profile

Client Profile
Customer Irish Football Association
Location Northern Ireland
Staff 115 employees
Sage Solution Sage 200

The Irish Football Association is the governing body for football in Northern Ireland, looking after the interests of the game in the six northern counties, with 960 registered clubs and 25,000 players.

Founded in Belfast back in 1880, it is the fourth oldest governing body in the world after the other three home associations. Today, it is still based in the city but has grown to 115 employees and a £10 million turnover.

The Challenge

The Challenge

The Irish FA had used a Sage 50 Accounts system for several years to manage its financial activities. This had served the association well but was beginning to show its age.

Accountant John Toner says, "After nearly six years, we’d reached the limits of what the system could deliver in efficiently processing increasing volumes of data and generating dependable data.

In addition, it could not provide the level of reporting that an organisation of our size and structure requires, especially in terms of our monthly management accounts. With an increasing number of departments, we also needed greater segmentation of our data in order to keep track of individual cost centres."

The Solution

a review of the technology available on the market. The aim was to find a more powerful, robust and secure system that would deliver improved management information through better reporting functionality and analysis.

Describing the selection process, John says, "We did look at competitive products but we felt that Sage 200 fitted best with where we wanted to go as an organisation. Its business intelligence (BI) capabilities were a big plus, and, of course, it meant that we would be using a system similar in look and feel to the software we were replacing, which would make it easier for our users to adopt."

Commenting on the choice of Pinnacle Computing as the Sage Business Partner to tailor and implement the system and provide ongoing support, John says, "It wasn’t just that Pinnacle were local. They clearly had a lot of experience, offered high quality resources and seemed very knowledgeable when advising what would work best for the organisation."

The Benefits

A major benefit of implementing Sage 200 has been improved management reporting. John is clear about the difference that greater automation has brought to this area: "Whereas previously we had to export data into Microsoft Excel to produce reports on spreadsheets, it’s now all done within Sage 200, which means the data is timely and accurate and manual intervention is significantly reduced."

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