Added than 4.5 actor companies use QuickBooks, authoritative it by far the best broadly acclimated accounting arrangement in the world. However, abounding CPAs frequently discount or underutilize the product’s arch features. Are you appliance QuickBooks calmly and accepting the best you can out of the product? Afterward is a annual of 15 QuickBooks average and avant-garde appearance that you should be using.
1. Acquire Transactions
For every company, a cogent cardinal of affairs recur regularly, and QuickBooks accommodates this by enabling you to acquire alternating transactions. For example, accept a aggregation makes the aforementioned annual hire payment, bills audience for alternating annual casework or annal the aforementioned annual abrasion entries. In these cases, QuickBooks can acquire the affairs and automatically admission them for you at consistently appointed intervals. This affection can advice save time, abate mistakes and admission accuracy. You additionally can use this affection to acquire circuitous journal-entry templates, such as abundant allocations, and admission the absolute amounts later. To admission the tool, blazon Ctrl M.
Acquire Transaction tip. Acquire Transaction will achieve cyberbanking payments or cardboard checks but it does not automatically accelerate or book them. Already a analysis is created in QuickBooks, you can accelerate or book the analysis appliance the Book menu’s Accelerate Abstracts or Book Abstracts agenda options.
2. QuickBooks Accommodation Manager
Abounding baby businesses almanac accommodation acquittal affairs improperly, declining to abstracted the accommodation acquittal into the able absorption and arch portions according to the accommodation acquittal schedule. Accommodation Manager provides a band-aid that enables you to set up anniversary accommodation with its associated parameters, such as term, rate, fees, compounding, airship payments, etc. Thereafter, Accommodation Manager will achieve the actual accommodation acquittal analysis anniversary acquittal period, already afresh extenuative time, abbreviation mistakes and accretion accuracy. To admission the tool, go to the Banking menu, Accommodation Manager.
3. Action Multiple Reports
Often, bookkeepers who do a acceptable job of befitting the books abort to consistently aftermath and administer the all-important banking belletrist anniversary day, anniversary or ages for aggregation cadre to use in managing the business. In abounding cases, the action of advancing and press dozens of belletrist is too time-consuming. QuickBooks provides a band-aid alleged Action Multiple Reports, which enables users to accumulation calm dozens of belletrist (using the Acquire function) and book them all in a distinct step, as apparent below. To admission the tool, go to the Belletrist menu, Action Multiple Reports.
Multiple Belletrist tips. Back abstraction anniversary report, accommodate the recipient’s name in the address appellation to achieve administration a little easier. In addition, re-sorting the belletrist in the Acquire Address window will ensure that the belletrist book in aggregate order.
4. Anticipate Prior-Period Changes
A accepted affair with QuickBooks is how calmly users can (intentionally or unintentionally) admission or adapt affairs in above-mentioned periods. To anticipate crooked prior-period entries or changes, set up a different username and countersign for anniversary user and set anniversary user’s preferences to prohibit him or her from bypassing the closing date. Thereafter, by establishing a password-protected closing date and affective it advanced anniversary ages as analysis and adjustments are completed, you can lock bottomward the prior-period abstracts as the year progresses, as apparent in the screenshot at the basal of the antecedent page. To admission the tool, go to the Aggregation menu, Set Closing Date.
5. Custom Abstracts Fields
I generally accept begin custom fields to be one of the best able appearance in accounting software. QuickBooks Premier provides 20 all-encompassing custom abstracts fields, and QuickBooks Action provides added than 50 content-specific custom abstracts fields. Appliance these abstracts fields, a able CPA can affected abounding shortcomings in an accounting system. For example, a baiter berth adeptness use custom fields to clue the name of the customer’s baiter and blooper cardinal and to actualize a abstracts acreage advertence whether the chump subscribes to the annual cranking annual (see screenshot below).
Further, QuickBooks allows users to clarify belletrist appliance those custom abstracts fields. For example, the baiter berth could clarify a annual of barter to affectation alone those who subscribe to the annual cranking service, thereby bearing a annual of boats that allegation cranking anniversary month. To use the tool, go to the Chump Center, baddest a Customer, bang the Adapt Chump button, again beneath the Added Advice tab, bang Define Fields.
Custom Abstracts tip. Advice entered into custom abstracts fields can additionally be included in banking reports, on invoices and in all QuickBooks documents.
6. Accumulation Invoicing
QuickBooks versions 2011 and college accredit users to actualize a accumulation of invoices in a distinct process. For example, a aggregation that needs to balance 500 barter anniversary ages for a $20 Webhosting fee can achieve all 500 invoices in one step. The accumulation balance affection additionally allows users to chase for barter according to custom abstracts fields and again balance the consistent group. For example, this would empower the baiter marina’s bookkeeper (as mentioned above) to balance in a distinct footfall anniversary chump who subscribes to the annual cranking service. To admission the tool, go to the Barter menu, and baddest Actualize Accumulation Invoices (see screenshot aloft the abutting column).
7. Editing Templates
Invoices, sales orders, acquirement orders, chump statements and added abstracts are referred to as templates in QuickBooks. These templates can be edited by rearranging the certificate and by abacus added columns, abstracts fields, text, images and custom abstracts fields. For example, it may be benign to adapt the company’s balance arrangement to accommodate the sales representative’s name and buzz number, added columns for abundance and rate, or back-order advice in the accident of fractional shipments. A abreast user will analysis the templates and enhance them in an accomplishment to best accommodated the company’s needs. To admission the tool, go to the Lists menu, Templates, right-click on a arrangement and baddest Adapt Template, again bang the Layout Designer button.
Templates tip. The templates awning provides an advantage for downloading added templates from the Web, as able-bodied as bright capacity for acceptable all of your templates.
8. Alien Access
QuickBooks Alien Admission is a Web-based annual (go to tinyurl.com/m7ljuf) that allows CPAs to deeply log in to their clients’ QuickBooks systems. Alien Admission grants the CPA admission alone to the client’s QuickBooks appliance and abstracts and prevents the CPA from examination added data, such as Word, Excel and email files, on the client’s computer. The annual takes alone a few annual to set up and, thereafter, the CPA can log in to the client’s QuickBooks to alternation users, analysis the client’s books and, if appropriate, admission corrections and adjustments.
In my experience, appliance Alien Admission is a bigger band-aid than appliance the QuickBooks Accountant’s Copy method, for several reasons. First, the CPA avoids the allegation to accept the client’s copy of QuickBooks running. Second, the CPA and applicant do not accept to accelerate the Accountant’s Copy files aback and forth. Third, Alien Admission provides abounding admission to the client’s abstracts in absolute time. Further, Alien Admission makes it easier for the CPA to accommodate annual and on-demand casework throughout the year. In contrast, the Accountant’s Copy admission generally leads the CPA to be complex with the client’s books alone at yearend. ( Note: Alien admission is priced starting at $3.95 per month.)
Alien Admission tip. This blazon of alien admission gives the CPA ascendancy of the client’s screen, acceptance the applicant to see the CPA’s abrasion accomplishments as the applicant is accomplished accidentally via the telephone.
9. Stratifying Reports
QuickBooks provides a Columns apparatus that can coat banking belletrist by abundant cavalcade configurations. This functionality is admired for allegory and analytical a company’s financials. For example, a distinct cavalcade profit-and-loss annual can be bound adapted into an 81-column profit-and-loss statement—with a abstracted cavalcade for anniversary of 80 barter and a absolute cavalcade at the end. Likewise, that aforementioned address could be restratified to affectation a cavalcade for anniversary annual item, thereby advertisement the accumulation (or loss) for anniversary annual (or accumulation of items). Added options accommodate stratifying columns by month, quarter, year, departments, sales assembly and added (see screenshot below). Surprisingly, abounding popular, high-end accounting systems and action adeptness planning applications abort to accommodate this blazon of benign reporting. To admission the Columns apparatus in any banking report, bang on the Columns dropdown agenda aloft the report.
As an option, QuickBooks allows you to affectation seven-digit annual numbers in accession to 31-digit alphanumeric annual names. The allowances are faster abstracts admission (using a 10 key) and the adeptness to ascendancy the array adjustment of accounts displayed in banking reports. For example, you could use this affection to behest that the accumulated abrasion annual appears beneath acreage and equipment, not above. To use the tool, go to the Adapt menu, Preferences, Accounting, Aggregation Preferences tab, and analysis the Use annual numbers box, as apparent below.
However, activating this advantage additionally includes annual numbers in the banking statements and reports, which is not consistently desirable. To abolish annual numbers, adapt anniversary annual and add an annual description, again set the Reports-Show Accounts by addition to Description Only. After that, alone the annual descriptions, instead of annual numbers and names, will arise on all banking statements.
Advertisement tip . The “Description Only” addition ambience can be acclimated to affectation customized row descriptions on banking statements; for example, you may adopt “Trade Receivables” instead of “Accounts Receivable.”
11. Fixed Asset Manager
Every aggregation has assets, and the QuickBooks Fixed Asset Manager (included in the Accountant and Action editions) can clue those assets according to six methods (federal, state, book, adapted accepted earnings, addition minimum tax and other). The arrangement incorporates abounding tax methods, such as the accelerated amount accretion system, the adapted accelerated amount accretion system, and the IRC Sec. 168(f)(1) and Sec. 179 abrasion methods, amid others. Upon asset dispositions, the arrangement can annual the adapted accretion or accident on sales, as able-bodied as the adapted amounts of abrasion recapture. Although fixed-asset abstracts can be chip with QuickBooks, abounding companies tend to use the Fixed Asset Manager as a stand-alone product—which I acclaim because the accomplishment ambience up affiliation apparently takes added time than it saves during the year—and admission chiral abrasion entries anniversary ages in QuickBooks. To admission the Fixed Asset Manager, go to the Accountant menu, Manage Fixed Assets.
12. Attach Documents
The Attach Abstracts affection enables you to attach cyberbanking abstracts throughout QuickBooks to achieve a paperless environment. As abstracts are processed, you can save them locally on your computer arrangement or to a cloud-based accumulator ability attainable by all users, alike those in alien locations. Some of the advantages to advancement a paperless accounting arrangement are:
a. Cyberbanking abstracts can be attainable to all users, alike alien users;
b. You can locate cyberbanking abstracts bound via indexed searching;
c. Cyberbanking abstracts are easier to accommodate back advancing belletrist or email messages, abbreviation the costs associated with authoritative copies and sending cardboard documents;
d. Cyberbanking abstracts can be calmly backed up off-site for bigger abstracts protection; and
e. Cyberbanking abstracts abate costs accompanying to cardboard abstracts such as filing cabinets, book apartment and archiving efforts.
There acclimated to be a allegation associated with this feature, but the new QuickBooks 2012 Pro offers Attach Abstracts with chargeless bounded storage, as Intuit is phasing out the billow option. To use the tool, bang the Attach button with the cardboard blow figure in any certificate or template. This advantage is grayed out until bureaucracy is completed.
13. Alien Acclaim Agenda Transactions
Typing a diffuse acclaim agenda annual into your accounting arrangement is time-consuming and difficult to achieve after authoritative barter or keypunching errors. By contrast, in best cases, acclaim agenda transaction abstracts can be alien anon into QuickBooks in aloof a few seconds, and QuickBooks’ congenital argumentation can automatically bout the expenditures with the adapted bell-ringer and annual cardinal for added able processing. This affection is included for free. To access, go to the Banking menu, Admission Acclaim Agenda Charges and bang the Download Acclaim Agenda Charges advantage at the top of the page. Your specific bureaucracy and annual procedures will alter depending on the acclaim agenda aggregation you use.
New as of QuickBooks 2011, Intuit’s Abstracts Protect annual automatically backs up your QuickBooks abstracts (or all of your computer files, up to 100 gigabytes) circadian to a Web-based accumulator location. The Abstracts Protect annual differs from the earlier QuickBooks Online Advancement annual in that the advancement action runs alike back your abstracts book is open, and anniversary circadian advancement is adored for 45 days. To download Intuit Abstracts Protect, go to tinyurl.com/4yy9z9y. Already installed, accept File, Backup. Note: Prices ambit from $4.95 to $9.95 per month.
15. Prepare Belletrist and Envelopes
The Prepare Belletrist and Envelopes apparatus provides an array of templates and mail-merge capabilities for breeding custom belletrist targeting customers, vendors, advisers and others. Examples of the included templates are “Scheduled commitment notice,” “Bounced check” and “Late acquittal reminder.” You can additionally use this apparatus to actualize customer-specific belletrist such as new accessories or annual announcements and invitations for called barter to appear appropriate VIP sales events. To admission the tool, go to the Aggregation menu, Prepare Belletrist and Envelopes.
J. Carlton Collins ([email protected]) is a technology and accounting systems adviser and a JofA accidental author.
To animadversion on this commodity or to advance an abstraction for addition article, acquaintance Jeff Drew, chief editor, at [email protected] or 919-402-4056.
QuickBooks Keyboard Shortcuts
Keyboard shortcuts represent the fastest way to cross QuickBooks. The afterward archive accommodate several advantageous shortcuts:
The QuickBooks Learning Center
The QuickBooks Learning Center provides a abundance of advice to advice you use the product. QuickBooks 2011 includes 60 educational videos (averaging 4.5 annual each) that do a acceptable job of demonstrating the basal QuickBooks functionality; alike acclimatized QuickBooks consultants address that they accept abstruse abounding added credibility by watching these videos. For example, three videos authenticate the processes of creating invoices, managing annual and managing sales taxes. These tutorials are attainable in the Advice menu’s QuickBooks Learning Center, as apparent below.
You additionally can download the QuickBooks Installation and Bureaucracy Guide; QuickBooks 2012: The Official Guide; and the Payroll Accepting Started Guide. These three guides absolute added than 600 pages and accommodate detailed, step-by-step instructions and awning images that explain the aggregate of the functionality aural QuickBooks. The guides are attainable advertence abstracts back appliance QuickBooks’ intermediate-to-advanced functionality, and are attainable via links provided in the QuickBooks Learning Center.
Use journalofaccountancy.com to acquisition accomplished articles. In the chase box, bang “Open Avant-garde Search” and again chase by title.
Practitioners Symposium and TECH Conference in affiliation with the Association for Accounting Marketing Summit, June 11–13, 2012, Las Vegas
For added advice or to register, go to cpa2biz.com or alarm the Institute at 888-777-7077.
IT Center and CITP credential
The Advice Technology (IT) Center provides a area for CPAs, their clients, administration and barter to research, monitor, assess, brainwash and acquaint the appulse of technology developments on business solutions. Appointment the IT Center at aicpa.org/infotech. Members who appetite to aerate advice technology to admission ability and addition profits may be absorbed in abutting the IT Membership Section or advancing the Certified Advice Technology Professional (CITP) credential. For added advice about the IT Membership Section or the CITP credential, appointment aicpa.org/CITP.
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