The Answer Company & Sage 300: Part of a History of Success for Flying Dust First Nation

The Flying Dust First Nation is a Cree First Nation band government located in Meadow Lake, Saskatchewan. Over its long history, Flying Dust Nation has developed a reputation as a progressive and strong community with a school, health clinic, bank, radio station, hockey arena, and fuel station. In addition, Flying Dust First Nation has entered various strategic partnerships, growing its portfolios to include property development, farming, and a sand and gravel operation. With such diversified operations, Flying Dust First Nation requires a highly flexible, broad, and robust business management solution. For many years, that solution has been Sage 300, backed by the professional consulting team at The Answer Company.

It’s Worked So Well For So Long

“We actually started with the predecessors to Sage 300 back around 1980,” recalls Gerald Durocher, Finance Manager for Flying Dust First Nation. “We’ve stayed with it for the simple reason that it continues to work for us. Through all our growth and new initiatives, Sage 300 has grown and improved to accommodate us. We’re able to successfully run all of our different enterprises with it.”

The brand loyalty continues to the organization’s business partner. We’ve been with The Answer Company the whole time,” Durocher notes. “Sure, the personnel have changed along the way, but through consistent leadership they still provide valuable support to us. We can see that they are as committed to our success as we are.”

Business-Critical Accessibility

One feature of Sage 300 that has recently proven invaluable to is the solution’s remote access capabilities. “When the coronavirus hit, we closed our offices, yet our people were all able to work remotely, accessing the Sage 300 functions they needed,” explains Durocher. “We’re keeping the businesses running while keeping our people and their families safe.”

Driving Efficiencies

Over the years The Answer Company has helped Flying Dust First Nation realize a number of efficiencies with Sage 300. One of those efficiencies is Electronic Funds Transfer, or EFT. EFT processing transfers Sage 300 payments electronically to vendors through the electronic funds transfer functionality of the organization’s banking software. “Using EFT helps us lower transaction costs, improve security, and shorten processing times,” says Durocher.

In addition, Sage 300 allows Flying Dust First Nation to automatically download their bank statements directly into the Bank Reconciliation module in Sage 300. “We have many bank accounts so this feature is a huge time saver for us,” Durocher says. “It also allows us to have a daily picture of our accounts and cash flow, which is very important to our operations.

Adapting to Changing Needs

Currently, Flying Dust First Nation is working with The Answer Company to implement Sage HRMS. “We’ve grown from 20 employees a few years ago to over 200 now,” explains Durocher. “Our manual system of tracking paid time off and other benefits has become unsustainable. We already use the Sage 300. Payroll module, but by adding Sage HRMS we’ll have a comprehensive and integrated solution to help manage our growing team.

Success Then, Now, and Tomorrow

An average company switches its business management software every five to seven years. But neither Flying Dust First Nation nor Sage 300 are average. The combination of a vibrant, innovative organization backed by their skilled, knowledgeable business partner, and equipped with a scalable and full-featured software application ensure that Flying Dust First Nation will continue its decades of success well into the future.

We sometimes joke and refer to our long-standing relationship with The Answer Company as a marriage,” Durocher concludes. “We’ve worked well together for a very long time. The Answer Company provides us with tools and advice that help us continue to get the most value out of Sage 300.”

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