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Industries other than concrete production may manufacture the goods they sell, but few supply the raw materials and deliver the finished goods, too. Therefore, the concrete producer's accounting requirements are different from those of managers in other industries. Still, producers often attempt to fit the square peg of some accounting software that has no capability of handling the nuances of our industry into the round hole of their operations. Many believe that the basic principles of accounting are the same across all business sectors and, to an extent, they are right. However, the data handled by software systems are unique to certain industries. While this probably has little bearing on accounting principles, it has a huge impact on your customer service.

Not all accounting packages allow you to handle accounts receivable inquiries by drilling down to the delivery ticket level so that you can answer collections questions. Nor do they allow you to invoice by job, plant, or project. It is also difficult to find a package that can handle a multitiered taxing matrix common to an industry that offers both manufacturing and transportation.

You probably won't find a non-industry-specific package that can turn an aggregate delivery ticket into a hauler payable. Also, you probably won't find one with the ability to report profitability by job, plant, division (concrete or aggregate), or company. Specialized industry requirements call for specialized tools.

Several requirements in the data handling and accounting practices in the concrete and aggregates industries make them different from any other business sector. The article focuses on four of them: the delivery ticket, the price matrix, specialized invoicing, and sales taxes.