Sage introduced Sage Live in 2015. Sage Live represents a joint development effort between Sage and Salesforce.com. The product sits on the Force.com platform. By design, Sage states they have no plans to expand Sage Live outside of accounting. This decision is purposeful allowing third parties to develop and integrate best of breed applications on top of Sage Live for various industry segments and specialized business requirements. The accounting itself features tight integration to Salesforce.com’s CRM.
One of the most unique points to Sage Live is that it is the only Sage product that can run entirely on a mobile device or any device via a web browser.
While it’s relatively early in its lifecycle, Sage Live is garnering a lot of positive reviews and developers are indeed building integrations to expand on its core features. There are currently about 20 apps available on the Sage Marketplace and Salesforce’s AppExchange that integrate with Sage Live including two manufacturing applications – KeyedIn and Rootstock. Kimble PSA is available for project accounting and professional services automation and Epos Now integrates for cloud-based retail point of sale management.
Sage Live is available in three editions – Essentials starting at $120 per month with 2 full users and 5 business users (limited to 1 company); Standard starting at $170 per month (same as Essentials but supports up to 10 companies), and Premium starting at $275 per month (with up to 100 companies). Additional full and business user licenses may be purchased for any of the aforementioned editions. While this is significantly more than the true entry-level accounting applications on the market (like Intuit QuickBooks, Xero, Sage One, etc.), Sage Live is still a very cost-effective option for companies – especially those who need a strong integration to Salesforce.com CRM with just under $1,500 annually for a basic configuration.
Sage announced a non-profit solution for Sage Live at Dreamforce 2016 with fund accounting features including fund management, donations, and grant management. Sage also announced plans to expand Sage Live outside the US and UK markets to France, Germany, and Spain reinforcing their commitment to the product and the platform.
Another interesting announcement on Sage Live relates to an announcement stating that Sage is working on a new version of Sage Live that will run exclusively on Apple’s IOS devices (iPad, iPhone, and yes – even Apple Watch)!
The technology world is ever changing and it’s fun to watch Sage partner with other technology giants to leverage all the great advancements in technology to improve business and operations.
Our opinion – Sage Live is pretty darn cool and has a lot more to offer than Sage One and other entry-level accounting applications. We believe that any small business that needs more than a basic accounting system may want to consider Sage Live as a potential platform for their business if they can find the necessary add-ons available to round out their industry needs.
Sage Live is interesting because it wasn’t the first accounting application available on Force.com and it’s still not the most popular. FinancialForce.com is likely the most functional light ERP product available on Force.com with a very long history with the CRM vendor dating back about a decade to 2007 when long-time accounting ERP vendor Unit4 announced CODA 2go, the precursor to FinancialForce which was founded in 2009 as an independent business unit. FinancialForce.com goes further than Sage Live (for now) offering financials with a full professional services automation suite and a wholly-owned human resources suite. They also offer light inventory, something that few cloud-based accounting vendors can claim.