Based in San Diego, Calif., G7 publishes several popular software solutions for home office and small business use. While some of you may not be familiar with G7 (or VersaCheck for that matter), the company's products are readily available at more than 4,000 retail stores throughout the U.S. and Canada.
G7 provides a variety of business automation solutions, such as form creation software, data capture programs, customer relationship management systems, and the like. For today, we're going to focus on G7's family of financial management tools and check creation products.
G7 recently added a new level of digital security to its VersaCheck lineup of check processing products. The upgrade, touted as CheckScape Digital Check, allows users to verify checks and track deposits electronically, in compliance with strict standards set by the United Trust Association (UTA). These standards determine how barcode readers and scanners decipher the digitized information embedded into each check.
The digitized system encodes the details of each check passed through the system, such as the amount, number, and payee details. Consequently, each check is assigned a unique identifier, which authenticates each check electronically. As a result, both the check recipient and issuer can rest assured that there is an electronic trail blazed recipients and issuers can verify checks and track the status of deposits.
What is the price of this new measure of digital trust? Less than you'd think. The VersaCheck Home and Business edition starts at just $59.99. With it, you can create and print your own custom checks (as long as your business has a Windows-based PC that is connected to a laser or inkjet printer).
According to G7, implementing VersaCheck Home and Business software could reduce your preprinted check costs nearly 50 percent. Certainly, VersaCheck's point-and-click interface makes creating custom checks easy. Just follow the on-screen instructions, type in your custom information, put you graphics in place, and print. It's really that simple. So if time is money, your business might enjoy greater savings by way of increased productivity. (Naturally, you trade-off speed and efficiency for beauty and branding if you opt to print pretty customized checks on a color ink jet printer.)
Taking payments are nearly as easy as making payments with VersaCheck. Using the same user-friendly, point-and-click interface used to write checks, VersaCheck Home and Business allows you to create check drafts, too. This means your business can accept payments from customers with just their basic checking account information. This information is saved in a database, which not only allows you to create additional check drafts for your repeat customers, but also acts as a handy address book, too.
Additionally, VersaCheck's transaction register function allows you to review account activity in great detail. You can readily sort through or split transactions for checks containing multiple line items in different business expense categories. Other pertinent features allow you to schedule regular bill payments or set bill-payment reminders.
Because VersaCheck works seamlessly with most popular financial management applications, you can easily import and export transaction files from existing records. If you already have a merchant account (and most small businesses do), VersaCheck's built-in Virtual Terminal is also capable of processing credit cards in real time, as well as accepting credit card purchases made by phone, fax, or e-mail.
G7 offers more robust versions of the check processing application for more demanding business use. The SmartCheck 4000 Small Business edition features the same customizable design and print functions as the VersaCheck Home and Business edition, but it also capable of printing customizable deposit slips and business forms on demand. (That is, as long as your business happens to runs a use a Hewlett-Packard compatible laser printer like the PCL5 or 5e).
SmartCheck 4000 comes with a variety or pre-designed business forms, tax forms and check templates that are compatible with Quicken, QuickBooks, MS Money, Peachtree, DacEasy, MAS90 and other accounting systems. You can easily make changes to templates to customize the forms or design them from scratch with the help of a friendly wizard to guide you through the process.
In addition to printing checks individually or in batches complete with account holder and bank information, serial numbers and bank codes on the bottom of each check SmartCheck 4000 can also handle printing multi-part forms and is can route different pages of multi-page or multi-part forms to different printers on your computer network. This option allows you to create a high-speed print environment for your business, by using several printers at the same time. Once again, if time is money, further accounting efficiencies can be achieved.
If your business requires even faster check printing capabilities, you can boost print performance further with an optional Flash-Booster Module, which is included with the Performance Plus edition of the software for $249.99.
The module plugs into your printer's SIMM/DIMM slot and gives you a permanent and secure way to upgrade a laser printer. (No such storage options are available for ink jet printers). The module is capable of storing more than 200 custom checks, forms and the like, while reducing data traffic on your computer network. In other words, you don't have to stop transacting business in order to process your payroll.
Whether you opt to integrate other G7 business automation solutions at your business or not, the VersaCheck family of check processing applications are a low-cost, user-friendly place to start. Ultimately, the greatest gains are made in employee productivity and it's tough to put a price tag on efficiency. But if your current check-processing system puts the rest of your business temporarily out of business, then attaining a new level of network efficiency is priceless.