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The Future of Billing Matters

LexisNexis has started sending out emails to customers regarding the future of Billing Matters.  I certainly don’t want to add to the rumors and disinformation that are already out there on this subject, so let me break this section into two parts.  The first will be what I know, and the second will be what I think.

What I know is that Billing Matters is not being discontinued outright.  It is being sunsetted.  This means that Billing Matters will continue to be supported by LexisNexis.  If you have an issue with the program, Lexis will support it and help you fix it.  However, it also means that, at some point, they will stop doing this.  At the same time, Lexis will not be offering new versions of Billing Matters or adding new Billing Matters customers.  There is a Billing Matters 10 but it is only included for customers who already used an earlier version of Billing Matters.  Because there are no new versions of Billing Matters, there will be no new features added to Billing Matters.

Here is what I think.  Billing Matters will sunsetted in 2012 or 2013.  At that time, you will no longer be able to receive support on the program.  Even then, the program will not stop working.  However, because a billing system is so critical to your business, it likely that you will want to move to a program that is supported.  I think this program will be PCLaw.  However, there is a lot that has to be done in that regard.  There is no easy conversion from Billing Matters to PCLaw, especially with regard to the General Ledger. Therefore, if Lexis wants to keep you as a customer (and they do) they will need to strengthen this conversion.  I suppose there is another possibility.  There might be a common program that combines the features of both PCLaw and Billing Matters and allows an easy conversion from either one.

What should you do?  Well, if you like Billing Matters, just stick with it for now.  There is no need to change.  There won’t be any new features but what new billing and accounting features do you need?  It is part of Time Matters, so as long as Time Matters evolves and stays compatible with new versions of Windows, Office, etc., so will Billing Matters.  By the time you need to switch, your options should be more clear as to whether you should switch to PCLaw or some other program.

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