Next steps after conversion to Exact

We try to make your conversion as comprehensive as possible, aiming to save you as much time as we can. However, there are some things that we are not able to do because of limitations in the software process we use.

This means that there will be some post-conversion tasks that you will need to perform and this document is provided as a guide to assist you in completing these tasks. The post-conversion tasks should be done as soon as possible after your conversion. If you encounter problems or think something might not be right please refer to our troubleshooting page.

We also recommend you create a backup in Exact before making any significant changes.


These are the tasks we recommend you perform post-conversion:

  • Enter the Company Settings / General Ledger links / VAT Authorities
  • Processing transactions
  • Linking VAT codes to returns
  • Finalise VAT Returns
  • Tidy bank reconciliations
  • Matching
  • Cost Centres

Enter the Company Settings / General Ledger links / VAT Authorities

Our conversion starts with an empty Exact company.

Update the company settings so you can enter journals and book transactions to financial accounts. Click your company name followed by Settings. This should take you to the Financial tab of the Company Settings:


The Financial tab has five sections and we recommend completing all of them; G/L Accounts: Links, Journals, General, Tax and Dates.

The Define G/L account links and company settings | Financial tab Help Centre page provides details and explanations of the different options and there's also the video below:


Processing Transactions

Processing transaction is like finalising them. It's mandatory in order to run the VAT return for a financial period. We'll be running a VAT Return in one of the later tasks. You'll also want to process your entries when you close your financial year or when you want to make sure nobody edits an entry. You'll need to process all the transactions in Exact at least up until the end of the period covered by the last VAT Return submitted to HMRC. Depending on how close you are to the end of another VAT or financial period you may wish to go ahead and process all transactions.

To do so:

  1. Go to Financial > Entries & G/L Accounts > Entries > Process
  2. Leave the Financial year / Period blank
  3. Sort the columns on Financial year / Period
  4. Select the periods at least up until the end of the period covered by the last VAT Return you submitted (selecting all and deselecting some may be quickest)
  5. Click Process
  6. Click Yes
process transactions.png

You can in some circumstances reopen processed transactions if you need to make changes to them.

Linking VAT codes to returns

Before being able to run a VAT Return you need to tell Exact which boxes on the VAT Return should be populated by what rates.

  • Go to Company name > Master data > Tax > VAT codes.
  • Click the code hyperlink for the VAT rate you want to link to a box on the VAT Return
  • Under VAT links click Add
  • Select the return boxes that you want to link to the VAT code and move them into the Selected column
  • Click OK

The Link VAT Return Boxes to VAT Codes Help Centre pages and VAT Codes training pages (slide 13 onward) provide further information and instructions.

Finalise the VAT

Exact will include any transactions that haven't already been included in a VAT Return in the next return processed. It's important to indicate to Exact which VAT periods have already been submitted.

To create and finalise your VAT Return covering the period up that which was last submitted:

  1. Go to Financial > Taxes > Returns > VAT return.
  2. Click New.
  3. Select your filter settings making sure the Return Period is set to the month end the last VAT Return was submitted to
  4. Make sure to leave the From date empty to include all historical transactions
  5. Click Start
  6. The return fields are filled automatically based on your entries. Don't expect these fields  to agree to an aggregate of your actual VAT Returns submitted to HMRC for the conversion period.
  7. Click Make the return final.
  8. Click Confirm.

Note that when preparing your first VAT Return in Exact, it won't include any unfiled "late" claims relating to prior periods and may be incorrect if we'd had to use some workarounds. We recommend you carefully check the figures in this first Exact VAT Return. If the figures provided by Exact are different to those you need to file with HMRC you may need to manually edit the VAT Return. This should only affect the first VAT Return to be submitted to HMRC. To read more about why VAT Returns may be different for the same period in the old and new software please click here.

Tidy bank reconciliations

Exact requires a bank statement to be entered or imported before any transactions can be reconciled. This isn't possible as part of the conversion and we don't recommend attempting to import all the historical bank statements and attempt to reconcile them.

Instead, we suggest that you enter a summary bank statement manually. You might like to contact Exact support direct (or your Exact partner) for help with this. An overview is provided below.

Ensure you have the user rights to Enter, modify and delete financial statements.

  • Select Financial > Banking & Cash > Enter manual statement
  • Enter the balance of unreconciled debits on one line and credits on another
  • Select reconcile next to the debits and reconcile all debits to the debit value.
  • Repeat the above step for credits
  • Click Save


It's possible there may have been rounding differences on some of the converted transactions. This may mean we won't have been able to match the corresponding payment. Both the transaction and payment will have been converted but won't have been matched. This means the balance will only be a penny or two out, but both the transaction and payment will remain unmatched. Follow the steps in the video below to match the payment to the transaction and account for any differences.


Cost Centres

If you've converted from Sage and chosen the option to include department data then Cost Centres will have been created in Exact. You won't however see the option to select a Cost Centre until you enable it for each transaction type. To do this you'll need to customise the transaction screen to display the Cost Centre option.

When on the transaction screen click the tools icon then customise.

The options available will depend on the transaction type but you'll need to enable the tick box to include Cost Centres and then Save the changes.

You should see the transaction entry screen refresh with the option to select the Cost Centre now displaying.