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AMTdirect Blog

Cautionary Tale: How to Increase Revenue and Decrease Data Risk with Scenario Testing

This cautionary tale focuses on the risks that businesses face when they do not implement a sandbox environment to complement their lease accounting and administration software.

Cautionary Tale: Sandbox Environment

To stay relevant and competitive in the marketplace, all companies must be willing to adapt and evolve. This means searching for the newest ideas to take their business as far as it can go. The best place for creative exploration with no repercussions? The sandbox.

A sandbox is an environment for testing features of software applications that allows for experimentation before the features are deployed. 

Sandboxes have gained popularity due to their accessibility and flexibility as well as the significant savings captured by companies utilizing them. 

Sandboxes provide the perfect solution for balancing creative innovation with quality assurance and risk management. No matter the industry, a sandbox can tailor your lease accounting software to meet your specific needs. 

 

How NOT to Manage Your Leases

A real estate giant located in New York City was scaling faster than its business operations could handle. This company had 60 employees managing over 1,300 leases solely through paper documentation. 

Because of this paper trail system, the company’s managers struggled to find the documents needed to manage contract renewals quickly and accurately. 

Leases needed to be renewed, but no one was aware that contracts were ending until the week before the expiration date. This put the team in a scramble, writing the renewal contracts without weighing out different options to better understand the ROI on their property.

These renewal oversights were costing the real estate giant extra payroll, disgruntled tenants, and millions of dollars in lost revenue.

Enter: Lease Administration and Accounting Software

Knowing the hurdle in front of them, the real estate company began searching for a cloud-based solution that could increase efficiency and reduce costs. After an exhaustive effort to find the best vendor to fit their needs, this real estate giant chose AMTdirect for their lease administration and accounting needs.

The AMTdirect platform provided their managers access to critical information anytime, anywhere. 

Through the system’s proactive date tracking and custom reporting feature, automated notifications increased awareness and eliminated costly manual processes the company was facing. 

One of the more important pieces to this puzzle was that AMTdirect provided a testing environment — the AMT Sandbox — for the team to play out new contract scenarios without affecting their live data.

This environment also gave them an area to shift around their lease portfolio to better understand where they could be receiving more profits (along with providing an area to onboard team members). 

The AMT Sandbox became an essential feature for the team.

 

Benefits of Using a Sandbox Environment 

Utilizing an isolated environment provides several benefits to businesses. 

For example, a sandbox environment allows your company to understand the end-users’ point of view by testing new scenarios and how they’ll play out, whether you’re the lessee or lessor. It also provides a space for collecting valuable user feedback and ideas before launching your new process.

The sandbox improves collaboration and communication across all of your company departments by making data easily accessible, accurate, and consistent. Additionally, you can mitigate risk, protect your live data, and add a layer of security by testing new scenarios and onboarding team members in a controlled environment.

Perhaps most importantly to many companies, implementing a sandbox can result in significant cost savings for your business. With the implementation of AMTdirect, the real estate giant mentioned above was able to save over $20,000 and approximately 650 hours of manpower per quarter. 

 

How the AMT Sandbox Will Enhance Your Lease Administration and Accounting Software

AMTdirect offers your business the benefits of a sandbox to complement your lease administration and accounting software. It provides an isolated environment completely modeled after your software and includes all the same data and configurations. 

Additionally, the sandbox is continuously updated as new features are released for compatibility. This way you never have to worry about out-of-date functionality. 

AMTdirect’s lease accounting software will help bridge the gap between your company’s real estate and accounting departments. With AMTdirect, your company can create more fluid solutions to the following:  

  • Processing AP, AR, CPI, operating expenses, and allocations
  • Create monthly rental invoices by region, portfolio, or individual location 
  • Creating manual billings and adjustments and implementing approval workflows 
  • Calculating FASB ASC 842 or IFRS 16 schedules, rent tax, and percentage rent
  • Auto-calculating current CPI changes and future CPI increases 
  • Tracking all reconciliation activities by lease, by year, over the entire lifecycle of each lease, etc.
  • Using a sandbox environment to alleviate risk on your live data

AMTdirect makes it easy to optimize system setup for your exact needs without the high cost of custom development no matter what industry you’re in.

 

How AMTdirect Works for Any Industry

Every company should be asking themselves, “how does our end consumer experience our product or service?” If you do not know the answer, that’s a problem. 

Each company should proactively prepare for changes that will occur in their industry. Here are five examples to show how the AMT Sandbox and AMTdirect lease administration and accounting software solutions positively impact businesses across sectors. 

Retail 

For years, a real estate department managed its growing portfolio with manual processes, mostly leaning on spreadsheets. 

Due to the constraints of the in-house systems, the company’s ability to scale was limited. As its portfolio grew, the department decided they needed to manage their real estate investments more strategically with a scalable, cloud-based platform.

The quick implementation of AMTdirect lease administration software led to an immediate return on the company's investment. 

Streamlined communications between team members have resolved daily issues at different tenant locations. Real estate managers can now analyze their operations and find cost-effective solutions that support both store-level and corporate strategies. 

Healthcare 

One of the largest networks of dental care providers in the United States was facing several problems with their real estate management. 

Their team used spreadsheets to track lease data, which resulted in manual errors and omission of crucial information. The company had no way to match documents with lease records and there was limited access to location information. This resulted in missing critical dates. 

AMTdirect allowed the company to transition to strategic location management processes. 

The location information, reports, and critical dates are now set on autopilot. With online access to data 24/7, the team spends less time, energy, and money on managing its real estate assets and more time growing its business.

Hospitality 

The management company of retail locations, multi-tenant commercial properties, and a well-known restaurant relied heavily on spreadsheets to track information about leased and owned properties. This process of gathering information resulted in inconsistent and scattered documents in multiple locations. 

The team spent countless hours searching for files before being able to address the real estate issue.

These manual processes caused costly mistakes, such as missed lease deadlines and expiration dates. This company was searching for an automated, cloud-based solution. 

AMTdirect lease accounting software centralized the company’s portfolio data so it could be accessed anytime, anywhere. 

With the corrected discrepancies and resulting savings, the software paid for itself. The company’s portfolio management transformed from a reactive to a proactive operational process. 

Manufacturing 

The introduction of a new lease accounting standard, FASB ASC 842, forced a chemical manufacturing company to shift their current operations to ensure they were being compliant. 

Their first step toward success was identifying all of their leases and then choosing a software vendor. 

Stakeholders from across the organization gathered and laid out a list of must-have features for the lease accounting software. Besides being compliant with the new lease accounting standard, the team wanted robust reporting and an easily configurable interface. 

AMTdirect houses over 270 reports developed for various aspects of lease management and the FASB ASC 842 standard. The company found the software to be highly configurable without any additional cost or programming. 

AMTdirect helped a key player in the chemical manufacturing industry get ahead of lease accounting compliance. 

Higher Education 

The real estate team at a well-known university manages a complex portfolio of real estate including university, healthcare, administration, and laboratory space. 

Some of the locations are owned by the university, some are leased, and others involve leases and subleases that are internal to the university’s system. 

The university relies on the real estate team to provide critical information to drive the decision-making process, helping ensure optimal use of each asset. The team’s old on-premise software solution wasn’t meeting the university’s needs. 

With the AMTdirect lease accounting software, the university now boasts one unified, cloud-based solution that serves as a complete system of record for real estate information. The university's real estate team benefits from flexible reporting and the ability to forecast future needs from anywhere. 

The university's officials now have the information they need to make fast and accurate decisions.

All of the examples above continue to utilize the AMT Sandbox and software solutions to maintain a competitive edge in their industry. 

In an ever-changing society, sandboxing truly benefits your lease accounting and administration software without risking adverse changes in your production environment to keep your processes current. 

 

Sandboxing + Lease Administration and Accounting Software: A Perfect Match

Your business is not static, and you need a system that allows you to modify it to fit your needs without significant risk. Better performance is something every business strives to achieve. 

As your business changes over time, it is important to have the ability to experiment with new features, conduct project-level testing, ensure business-driven quality assurance, and train new team members. The AMT Sandbox will help your business meet the quality assurance needs of all your key stakeholders.  

Single Tenant vs. Multi-Tenant Database

At AMTdirect, we offer two main database frameworks for your sandbox environment — a single-tenant or multi-tenant database.

The single-tenant sandbox is designed to provide greater management control and higher levels of data isolation. 

Each company has its own server, which provides an additional layer of protection for the organization's proprietary data. Increased application reliability is an added benefit in a single-tenant sandbox because the performance of one user is not affected by the performance of another user.

A multi-tenant database is ideal for companies that have lower volumes of leases and less complex portfolios. Companies in this sandbox database environment have a desire for one but do not need to control when their refreshes are completed.

Test New Features in Your AMT Sandbox

A great benefit of using AMT Sandbox is the ability to test new features or different scenarios in your systems as AMTdirect releases them. 

This includes features that you are licensed for even if you have not implemented a specific feature in your current operations. You can test it out in the sandbox environment to see if it may be beneficial to your company in the future. Once you are satisfied with the results of the scenarios, you can simply replicate them in production. 

Your AMT Sandbox will be automatically updated as new features are released. With a sandbox environment, you will be given access to new features, enhancements to existing features, and bug fixes before they are released into the production environment. 

Our team also provides release notes as a framework for testing out the newly released features.  

Ready to Save Hundreds of Work Hours and Thousands of Dollars Per Year?

With the AMT Sandbox, your lease administration and accounting software can be tailored to your ever-changing needs in a risk-free environment. 

With over 20 years of experience, AMTdirect is laser-focused on helping your company by offering the right tools to help you tackle your lease accounting and administration problems head-on.

 

Reach out to our team today! 

 

Posted on 10/5/20 1:08 PM by Ata Khan in Lease Administration, in Lease Accounting

Ata Khan

Written by Ata Khan

As Vice President of Marketing at AMTdirect, Ata leads all aspects of the business' marketing efforts and strategy. As an industry expert, his goal is to bring AMTdirect to all businesses looking to harness the power of a lease accounting and administration software solution.

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