Accounting Information System for Shipping Companies
TRANS-Account Introduction Case Study Interview

TRANS-Account enables us to quickly
extract data we want and perform
timely sales analysis

Mr. TSUYOSHI OKURA, General Manager, HR
& Administration Department
Nissan Motor Car Carrier Co., Ltd.

Nissan Motor Car Carrier Co., Ltd., established in 1965, is engaged in sea transportation mainly of finished cars. Operating worldwide as a comprehensive logistics service provider, it has bases in Japan, the U.S. and Europe. It introduced TRANS-Account in April 2012. What changes does GM Tsuyoshi Okura feel through the introduction of this new system?

A large share in the market for accounting software within Shipping Industry was important information for making the decision

-- First, what prompted you to review the accounting software you were using?

Mr. Okura: To tell the truth, the direct trigger was that the maintenance period of the accounting software we were using then was about to expire. In addition, no further services were going to be provided because of the software company's policy, we were forced to replace it with a new accounting software product. The maintenance period was expiring in April 2012 and so we desperately needed to establish a business environment to make new accounting software up and running without trouble by that time. After wide-ranging examination, we finally decided to introduce TRANS-Account.

-- Why did you choose TRANS-Account?

Mr. Okura: comprehensive examination, posing questions to be answered such as "whether it meets the accounting rules unique to the shipping industry," "whether it covers all the functions that the software currently operated has," "whether it can be used stably,"
"whether it can be really up and running from April 2012," "How well does the system scale in the future?," and "Is the potential vendor's support system satisfactory?" TRANS-Account's specialization in the shipping industry and its large market share in the industry were important factors in decision making. Although we had two major features in the previous system such as "Port Agent Management" function and "Voyage Revenue and Expense" function developed, we basically managed to make as least customization as possible.
A comparative study between features of old software and those of new software in the course of introducing packaged software is called "fit and gap analysis." AIS did a good job for us during this almost one year, starting with this fit and gap analysis up to programming, operational test, and starting operation. Additionally, as for the support after introduction, AIS established support system for us by assigning a dedicated staff within its support center playing a role as a consultation desk. We receive reports on such support on a monthly basis now.

TRANS-Account enables to digitize any report that it outputs, which makes secondary processing of such data easier

-- What's the greatest merit you think after actually using the software?

Mr. Okura: There are many merits. Among them, the greatest merit is that TRANS-Account enables to digitize any report that it outputs, which makes secondary processing of such data easier -- The feature is a material difference from the existing system. Previously, it was impossible to extract certain data immediately when necessary. Suppose you wanted to know profit and loss by ship, you had to output relevant data set from the accounting software in a PDF file, and then an accountant picked up data and computed with a calculator and/or spreadsheet software.
In TRANS-Account, however, with management items already established, you can take out necessary data easily such as profit and loss by ship or by route, or expenses incurred at each port. Extraction by currency type is also possible. Compatible with very popular spreadsheet software, it performs calculation and processing operation smoothly.

Accounting work has become more productive and creative

-- What has changed by the quicker accessibility to necessary data?/h4>

Mr. Okura: First of all, it is very useful in financialstatements audit. For example, when a question such as "Why did the cost of this part increase compared with the last year?" arises, our accountant has to do a search each time.
TRANS-Account, however, has the data in its system and we can take necessary data out of it right away. Now we don't need to have the certified public accountants wait for a long time in audits till we finish preparing for requested material. Responding to financial statements audit previously required engagement of all the staff in our accounting department, but now, with TRANS-Account, two staff members are enough.
As for details, TRANS-Account has a "drill-down" function, which is one of our accountant's favorites. Starting with the highest-level number in a trial balance, the function lets you find general ledgers and slips as you double-click on numbers. You don't need to search for slips to know which slips make up certain figures -- all you have to do is click. Moreover, as I said earlier, it has made sales analysis easier -- analysis of which route made more money, or where the costs increased, and what's the factor of it – and so on.
Now that we have every data in the system, the work efficiency has been improved greatly thanks to that human errors do not happen. Frank opinion from those who work at the job site is that they can spend more time in performing sales analysis, not number crunching with a calculator. It's very commendable that TRANS-Account has enabled our accountants to work more productively and creatively, not just chase figures.

AIS CO., LTD.

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