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QuickBooks E-News
 for Small Business     Volume 6

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In this Issue:


Working with QuickBooks reports

As a QuickBooks seminar leader, what we feel is most important to convey to the attendees is the need to master the reports that give the information required to achieve business success and remain competitive. By working with the reports in QuickBooks you will achieve an understanding of  the difference between transaction and item types and how they work with accounts. It will bring light to errors and irregularities as well allow you to make good business decisions.  So we hope to shed some light on what you should be looking for.

The consistency principle is one of  the basic accounting concepts that enable managers to interpret business results and prevents the distortion of financial results. It states that the accounting procedures used should conform with the accounting procedures previously used for that activity. Such consistency allows data of different periods to be compared. Comparing business results from month to month, year to year, and actual versus budgeted will help the business manager move the business forward in a timely and prudent manner. 

But to make the right business decisions, reports must portray accurately the results of your operations.  Before you can depend on your reports, office procedures must be in place and followed to help weed out inconsistencies

To set up the office procedures that will work for your business, you will need to understand where, how, and why QuickBooks points data to specific reports.  We cannot convey this knowledge in one article, or one day, but it will come as you build, filter, save and review the same reports  month to month and year to year.  Take the time to work through this exercise in this article and those that appear in future articles and your expertise and understanding will mature.

In our last newsletter, we walked you through the exercise of creating a  checking account report by Quickzooming (double clicking) on the account balance on the balance sheet report.  Our instructions included adding columns, changing column locations, resorting the report, changing fonts, report headers,  modifying printing options, and memorizing the report for future use. 


QuickBooks Customization & Training
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Bookkeeping Links
Cash versus Accrual accounting
Chart of Accounts
Record Retention Periods
Accounting Basics


For each report you develop  that provides meaningful financial information,  save the report format by clicking on the 'memorize' button at the top of the reports window.  Memorized reports can be rerun from the Reports menu > Memorized reports.

By consistently applying business transactions to the same chart of accounts,  you can easily identify when an expenditure is running away with your profits.  Lets take an easy example. Has the cost for internet service been coded to the telephone account, or an account named computer services, or an outside service account? Any of these accounts will do. They are expense accounts and will have the same affect on business net income. 

But if you were to categorize some monthly internet expenses to office, and other months code internet expenses to computer, and occasionally select telephone as the account for your monthly bill, you would have a hard time determining if your expenses have gone up or down. 
By selecting one account and consistently applying this cost, you improve the comparability of monthly totals against prior month totals and against year to date average monthly totals. This comparison will red flag problems with income & expenses before its causes significant damage to profitability.

It may seem like an ongoing battle, remembering which account to choose, but it does not have to be. First, from the Edit menu > Select preferences > Click on General  in the left margin > Click on My Preferences tab and place a checkmark next to 'automatically recall last transaction for this name' > Click OK.  Next, modify the name of the accounts in your chart of accounts so that the name is more helpful in identifying what should be included in the account. For example, change 'office supplies' to 'office expenses' a broader category name that can include miscellaneous small expenses pertaining to running of an office.   For the above example change the account name of 'telephone' to ' telephone & internet'. To change an account name,  List Menu > Select Accounts > right click on the account to change and select edit > modify the account name.  It is very simple to run a report that will sort and subtotal the 'telephone & internet'  transactions by name .  From the Profit & Loss report, you could quickzoom (doubleclick) on the account ' telephone & internet' and at the top of the report window, from the option box labeled 'Total By'  select 'Payee', producing the detailed information you seek.

For  reporting techniques and a report that will help you find errors and inconsistencies each month - click to read more

In each newsletter, we will add another report that will help you spot errors and irregularities. We specialize in helping small business owners correct and understand their reports. And we help them customize QuickBooks to reduce future errors. If you need assistance, give us a call
800-216-0763 and allow us to demonstrate how our support works.

Department of Labor - Overtime Regulations


Employees must meet both the minimum salary requirements plus meet specific job duties to be considered exempt from overtime payment regulations.  Job titles will not determine exempt status.
In order to be exempt the employee must meet certain tests regarding their job duties  as executive, administrative, professional (learned and creative professionals), and outside sales
employees, and computer professionals.

The following website, has 4 free online video seminars discussing each of the exemptions:

Below is summary of important points from the seminar

QuickBooks User Question:
I record deposits from customers by coding the deposit  to the liability account named 'customer deposits'. When I generate the final invoice I charge the full amount for the item sold and on the same invoice, I add the item (other charge) named 'deposits received' (points to the 'customer deposit' liability account) and enter the deposit amount as a negative to reduce the amount owed by the customer.  How can I tell which customers have not had their deposits applied to an invoice yet?

Open the register for the customer deposit account.
From the List menu > Chart of accounts > Double click on the customer deposit account > Manually reconcile the completed transactions (both the original customer deposit with the application to the invoice) by double clicking (placing a checkmark) in the column labeled with a check > Click the record button after placing a checkmark to record the change.  Close the register.

From the chart of accounts > Right click on the account 'Customer Deposits' and run a quick report > Under the dates option select 'All' > Click 'modify' and click on the 'Filter Tab' > in the filter box, scroll 1/2 and click on the filter 'Cleared' > Select the radial button 'no' > Click on the header tab and change the title to 'Open Customer Deposits'.

Tip: Use this same procedure to clear balances in the employee loans account when the loan is fully repaid. It also works well for expenses paid on behalf of a customer by an attorney's office.

QuickBooks Icon bar - make it work for you

Do you use the shortcut bar (icon bar) that appears just below the menu selection? You can modify this bar  to include the forms and reports you use most frequently in just a few easy steps.
Learn how

Example of a customized icon bar that might work well for you.
Tax and accounting regulations mentioned herewith or at the QBalance website are intended for businesses or individuals residing in the United States.  Tax and accounting regulations can be complex. Exceptions and circumstances will impact how a regulation applies to your unique situation.  Therefore information presented should not be relied upon without seeking professional advise from your accountant or attorney.

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