News and tips for Sage 50 (formerly Peachtree), Excel, and whatever other general nerd knowledge I think will help computer users be more productive.

IQ Accounting Solutions LLC

February 2021 News & Tips

February Software Sale   What to do if salaried employee's pay types don't show in Payroll Entry.   Calculating the Difference Between Two Dates in Excel


February Software Sale!: If you are not on a current version of Sage 50 and not on a maintenance plan now is a great time to upgrade! In addition to taking 20% off the price, I'm offering free installation and data conversion from old versions. This offer is good through February 26th and is limited to the first 5 people who respond. Contact me directly for pricing and mention this email.

Steve Collins
IQ Accounting Solutions LLC

A complete archive of these tips is available at

Sage 50/Peachtree Tip - What To Do If No Pay Types Show in Payroll Entry

I've had several calls recently from people trying to do payroll, but for some employees there are no pay fields showing in Payroll Entry. As a result there's nowhere to enter the employee's pay. The solution is simple, but far from obvious so I thought it would be a good topic to cover here.

In certain situations this happens after installing the latest Sage 50 update (version 2021.1.01) and is related to enhancements that were made to payroll in this release. It occurs when you have a salaried employee with their salary set to 0.00. This would be common with a commissioned employee. Since the commission will change every pay period there's no point in entering a standard amount in Maintain Employees.

How do you fix it?
Obviously one solution is to enter a salary amount in Maintain Employees. But if you wanted that, you probably would have done it already and never experienced this problem. So the better, but not so obvious solution, is to bring up that employee in Maintain Employees, go to the Pay Info tab, and clear the checkbox in the Use Defaults column for the pay types that you want to have available in Payroll Entry.

Why is this happening?
Sage 50 payroll has always been limited to 20 hourly and 20 salary pay types. But when the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) mandated that many employers had to provide emergency medical leave, the best way to track that was with additional pay fields. The problem was that many Sage 50 users were already using all of the available pay types. So with version 2021.1 Sage added the ability to have an unlimited number of pay types (each employee is still limited to 20). In order to keep a huge number of pay fields from suddenly showing up in Payroll Entry, the side effect of this enhancement was that salary pay types now only appear in Payroll Entry if the employee has an amount assigned to that pay type, or if the Use Defaults box is unchecked.

If you haven't installed the Sage 50 2021.1.01 update yet, but sure to watch for this issue after upgrading.


Excel Tip - Calculating the Difference Between Two Dates in Excel

If need to know the number of days between two dates, that is very easy to do in Excel. Just subtract one date from the other. For example if cell A2 has an invoice date in it of 1/1/2015 and cell B2 has a date paid of 1/30/2015, then you could enter use the formula =B2-A2 to get the number of days between the two dates, or 29. Excel may automatically format the cell with the formula in it as a date, which means instead of seeing 29, you’ll see 1/29/1900. But all you have to do is set the formatting for that cell to General or to any number format (right-click > choose Formatting) to make the result show as 29.

If you want to know the number of months or years between two dates, things get trickier. The best way is to use the DATEDIF() function. You won’t find this one in the function wizard so you will have to remember how to type it in yourself. The explanation I heard for this is that it isn’t a standard Excel function, it is only included for backward compatibility with Lotus 1-2-3.

The format for the function is DATEDIF(start date,end date,unit).

Start date and end date are self explanatory. Unit meaning the unit of measure, can be “D”, “M”, or “Y” for day, months, or years respectively. There are 3 additional more unusual options that are explained in the example below.

The table below shows sample formulas using each of the unit options. Column D shows the formula that was actually used in column C to get the result shown in column C. Note that the answer only shows complete units. For example the formula on row 4 shows 5 years, even though the two dates are a little more than 5 years apart. The function does not round. So if the two dates had been 5 years and 364 days apart, the answer would still be 5.

  A B C D E
2 01/01/2010 02/18/2015 1874 =DATEDIF(A2,B2,”D”) Days (gives same result as =B2-A2)
3     61 =DATEDIF(A2,B2,”M”) Months
4     5 =DATEDIF(A2,B2,”Y”) Years
5     17 =DATEDIF(A2,B2,”MD”) Days, ignoring month and year (days from 1st to 18th)
6     1 =DATEDIF(A2,B2,”YM”) months, ignoring year (months from Jan to Feb)
7     48 =DATEDIF(A2,B2,”YD”) days, ignoring year (days from 1/1 to 2/18)


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Steve Collins
IQ Accounting Solutions LLC
10611 E 17th Place
Tulsa, OK 74128
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