Business Manager

Business Manager



Windows 7, Windows 8 and Windows 10 operating systems only.

Before you start the installation process

  1. Check your licence is up to date
  2. Take a backup of your data
  3. Close the program
  4. Have your Farmplan customer number to hand

For full details please read the Enhancement guide carefully which can be found under the Guides & manuals tab

Summary of changes

  • Searchcodes – add address details (to support future requirements of MTD)
  • Full TB audit – to export to spreadsheet to aid accountants at year end
  • VAT reconciliation reports
  • Rolling 12 month cashflow and profit reports (budgets as well as actuals)
  • Import statement details from Fram Farmers to speed up data entry
  • Bank Reconciliation – attach scanned/electronic image of statement
  • Auto-reverse journals – highlight pairs
  • Farmcode/secondary analysis code module added to all levels
  • Import simple cashflow budgets from a spreadsheet.
  • Advanced budget features now available at all levels of the program
  • Net Margin Allocator module made available to all levels
  • Batch print Purchase Invoices
Show summary of changes Hide summary of changes

Getting started guides

Enhancement guides


How do I backup my accounts data?

To backup your data click ‘File’ then ‘Backup’. There are 3 tab options:

Local Backup

This allows you to backup your data either on your computer or a removable device such as a memory stick.

  1. On the left hand side of the screen check that the correct business is displayed.
  2. On the right hand side of the screen browse to the desired backup location. To expand the tree view click on the +.
    (To create more folders right click the folder and select the option to create a new folder)
  3. Highlight the desired folder click Backup Now.
  4. Enter notes if desired (a date and time will be automatically added) then click OK.

Rotation of Backups

Keep a minimum of 2 backups at different stages in time on different sources. We suggest making sub-folders and use them to rotate your backups.
NEVER just rely on one backup – for example a single memory stick, which could get lost or broken.

Private Web Backups

This is the ability to back up your data to a remote web server across the internet. The backup can be restored to any computer with internet access regardless of its location, (providing it has been registered with your licence details and web access code – subject to your Farmplan licence agreement)

A password provides additional security.

NB – Farmplan do not have access to the password. If it is forgotten Farmplan will be unable to help.

You are provided with ten free Private Web slots which are available providing your support contract is up to date. (More slots are available – for more details please contact Farmplan on 01594 545000)

  1. On the left hand side of the screen check that the correct business is displayed.
  2. Select the tab called Private Web Backups.
  3. Highlight the slot that you wish to use (if there is more than one available).
  4. Password (optional) – Other users can only access your private backups if they are using a computer with exactly the same licence details. However, if you wish, you can also password protect your backups. Put a tick in the box ‘Use Password’ and enter the password in both boxes.
  5. Click on Backup Now.
  6. Enter notes if desired and click Confirm.
    NB – You are transferring data across the Internet so the time taken to make a backup will depend on the size of your data and the speed of your Internet connection.

Other Web Backups

This tab allows you to make Web backups which are available to Farmplan Support staff or authorised third party consultants.

Support Slot – You are allocated ONE free Support slot which can only be accessed by yourself or a member of Farmplan staff.

If you contact us with a query, we may ask you to backup a copy of your data to this slot so that we can restore it immediately for investigation.

  1. On the left hand side of the screen check that the correct business is displayed.
  2. Select the tab called Other Web Backups.
  3. Highlight the slot that you wish to use. (if there is more than one available).
  4. Password (optional) – Other users can only access your support backups if they are using a computer with exactly the same licence details – i.e other members of your organisation OR an employee of Farmplan. However, if you wish, you can also password protect your backups. Put a tick in the box ‘Use Password’ and enter the password in both boxes.
  5. Click on Backup Now.
  6. You may enter notes if desired. Don’t forget to tell any recipients the password if relevant.

Third Party Slots
Third Party Slots are also available. These can be used to supply a backup of your data to an outside consultant/accountant who wishes to interrogate it using Business Manager.

eg – your accountant may wish to have a copy of your data at the year end. His computer will have a different licence so he will not normally be able to see your backups.

To use this system you would make a backup to a 3rd party slot and provide your accountant/consultant with your Customer Number and a 3rd party access code – supplied by Farmplan. The 3rd party user enters these to restore your data. You can also use passwords for additional security.

Click here for a printable document which details the use of third party slots.

NB To speed up the backup process select Tools / Options / General and tick the ‘Minimise backup size’ box.

Data entry

Bank Reconciliation – video

How do I setup a budget (budget tutorial video)


How do I enter my VAT Payment from / Receipt to Revenue & Customs?

Click here for a printable document

How do I deal with a cash based VAT system?

For businesses using cash based VAT this printable Cash Accounting for VAT document contains useful information.

When processing my standing orders why are there are some missing?

If there are standing orders not available for processing there are two possible causes.

  1. If this is the first time they have been processed in the current financial year ensure that the enterprises have been created for the new year.
  2. What is the end date for the standing order? This can be viewed or amended by clicking ‘Edit’ from the process standing order screen or alternatively from the Setup menu.

How do I deal with Euro VAT?

Click here for a printable document.

How do I enter a harvest?

In Business Manager and Cash Manager you can enter a harvest. Go to Data Entry, Stock Movements, Produce.

Select the enterprise i.e Winter Wheat 2011 and click on Enter a harvest_enter button alongside Harvests

Enter a harvest_movements

Enter the harvest date and the quantity harvested.

If you would like to add more detail, take the tick out of Automatic Description.  You are then able to enter your own notes.

You can then enter a price per tonne against the harvest by clicking on Enter a harvest_price change.  Remember to give this price change the same date as the harvest.

This can be edited at any time by clicking on the Enter a harvest_question mark alongside Price Change.

If you haven’t done so already, you will probably want to create enterprises for next year’s harvest i.e Winter Wheat 2012 so that you can allocate costs such as seeds and fertilisers to them.

To create these, go to Setup, Enterprises, Setup Enterprises.

  • Click on the drop down box next to Farming Year and select 2012.
  • Double click on Crops and Land on the left hand side and this will show a list of available
  • Single click on each one in turn and on the right hand side you will see a ‘Create’ column.
    Tick this and save it.
  • If the column says ‘Exists’, then it has already been created.

Enter a harvest_setup enterprises

How do I record my subsidy money received in euros?

Click here for a printable document on Foreign Currency Transactions

How do I cancel an Inter Bank Transfer?

If an Inter Bank Transfer has been entered in error we recommend that the amount is edited to zero.

NB It is possible to edit Inter Bank transfers at any time unless they have been ticked on the bank reconciliation.

My customer is also a supplier. How do I deal with this?

In Business Manager you can contra a balance between a customer and a supplier.

A supplier and customer record may be linked to each other in Setup Suppliers/Customers.

Linking the supplier and customer record means you can produce a report to show their overall combined balance and can be used to journal between the traders i.e. write off the value of the lower balance on both ledgers.


Initially you will see any linked traders that both have a current balance.  However if you would like to see all two-way traders tick the box at the top of the screen.  You will be warned that you are not able to do a journal involving any trader with a zero balance.

To create an automatic journal enter a tick against the relevant lines and click on ‘Create Journals’.


You will be asked to enter the date for the journal.  When you are ready to create the journals click on OK. The journal will be created automatically and can be edited and viewed in the normal way within the General Purpose journal option.

NB this journal will have created an ‘on account’ balance against both the supplier and customer. Both the supplier and customer balances will be reduced by the value of the smallest balance – i.e. the balance of one trader will be reduced to zero and the other will be reduced by the same value.  It will not have cleared any outstanding invoices; you should now go to ledger payments/receipts and use the ‘clear’ button to use this ‘on account’ value to clear the invoices.

How do I enter a hire purchase agreement?

Click here for a printable document

How do I remove an unwanted invoice?

To remove a surplus invoice from Business Manager there are two options.

It may be cancelled providing that it is in an open account period and has not been fully or partially cleared, by clicking the Cancel button. An equal and opposite entry will be automatically created which will clear the original entry ie cancelling an invoice will create, and clear down, a corresponding credit note. NB If the VAT period has been closed then any VAT adjustment will be placed in the earliest open VAT period.

If the original invoice is not in a closed VAT period then full editing is available. (If it is see above). Therefore the supplier can be overwritten, as well as the heading code, enterprise, description, amount, and VAT status.

How do I deal with bad debts?

Click here for a printable document.


Import into the bank

A module is available which allows Business manager to create payment files which can be imported into the following banks. (If your bank is not listed please contact software support for further information.)



How do I use the Business Manager to Earnie Link?

Click here for a printable version.

How do I use the Business Manager to Gatekeeper link?

Click here for a printable version.


How do I export a report/document

Click here for a printable document

How do I get crop financial information?

Click here for a printable document which shows how to manage crop information, from using the crop growing valuation function to selling the product, including how this affects the financial reports.

The results of the items inspector are not in my preferred order. How can I change it?

Click the ‘Options’ button and select the desired order.

How do I show the full description on my audit reports?

Description on Audit Reports
In the picture of the Heading Code Items Audit report below the description has been truncated.

audit1To show the full description on the Audit reports click Tools / Options then the reporting tab and finally tick the ‘Show Full Description’ box.


The Audit reports will now show the full description for all items.
(NB The number of pages in this report is likely to increase substantially)



Opening a new Financial Year

Click here for a printable document.

Working with your accountant

How do I work with my accountant?

If your accountant does not have a copy of Business Manager the reports can be emailed or alternatively printed and then posted.

If your accountant does have the accountants copy of Business Manager then send a backup of your data.

(For further information about the  ‘Accountants pack’ version of Business Manager please call us on 01594 545000 or email

Year end

My cashflow report closing balance does not agree with my bank statement?

Click here for a printable document which provides guidance on reconciling a cashflow report with a bank statement.

What is the year end process?

The exact procedure at year end will differ for each business, however please see below for an overview along with some suggested reports.

  • New year – The new year can be opened before the previous one is closed. This is done in Setup | Open/Close Account periods. It is likely that enterprises will then need to be created, this is done in Setup | Enterprises | Setup Enterprises.
  • Period 13 – The last day of the financial year is referred to as period 13, this is often used for accountants adjustments only.
  • Bank reconciliation – ensure that all banks are fully reconciled.
  • Stock – ensure any stock values are correct
  • Update date – Before sourcing reports for the completed financial year ensure that this date is set for the last day of the required financial year.
  • Year end reports – Which reports are required will vary between businesses however we suggest the following which are in Reports | Report Library:
    1. Audit Trails – Heading Code Items Audit
    2. Trial Balance – Extended Trial Balance Detailed (Cashflow – Cash System Check detailed as at year start and year end for Cash Manager users)
    3. Balance Sheet – Movements – Detailed (Not available for Cash Manager users)
    4. Banks – Reconciliation report
    5. Banks – Statement Summary
    6. Suppliers/Customers – Supplier Balances and Customer Balances (Not available for Cash Manager users)

Click here for a downloadable document which gives information about successfully completing a financial year-end.