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QuickBook Tips for Novices

quickbooks_zps1b309b5fQuickBooks is an accounting software package developed and marketed by Intuit.  Small business owners can manage payroll, inventory and sales through this multifaceted software. Finances such as: monitoring expenses, creating invoices, tracking orders, keeping track of vendors/customers/employees and inventory becomes fairly simple with this program.  If you have just bought or downloaded QuickBooks and are a novice at accounting software, you may need some tips for getting started in the right direction.  There are hundreds (if not thousands) of Tips and Tricks pages on the internet.  It can get a bit overwhelming.  Here are some of the best pieces of advice we have found after analyzing many “How-To” sites.

  • Take a mental business inventory – Before starting to use QuickBooks write down all the things you will need such as payroll, vendor lists,  and invoices.  Having a good idea of the scope of your needs will help you when it comes time to start inputting your information.  Once you have determined the basic needs and volume of your business bookkeeping, then choose your QuickBooks program. (In our next blog we will be discussing the varied options and different QuickBook versions from which to choose.)
  • Learn how to use QuickBooks – QuickBooks has an excellent “interview” process for setting up a new company when you first start your software. There are also QuickBook tutorials and video lessons that you may want to partake in before you begin the program.  Even if you are fairly comfortable with bookkeeping, you may want to follow one of these lessons just to be sure you are setting up your company page, vendor pages, and employees pages correctly.  YouTube and Google have many to choose from including help for beginners all the way up to expert tips.  For quick and common questions as you are using QuickBooks, try using the Help Feature on the menu bar.  For more complicated problems you may want to contact a QuickBooks professional.
  • Learn the shortcuts – Every program has shortcuts that can make bookkeeping so much easier.  Here is a quick list of some favorites. Ctrl-I     Create invoice
    Ctrl-E     Edit transaction selected in register
    Ctrl-F     Find transaction
    Ctrl-J     Open Customer Center
    Ctrl-M     Memorize transaction or report
    Ctrl-N     New invoice, bill, check, or list item in context
    Ctrl-Q     QuickReport on transaction or list item
    Ctrl-T     Open memorized transaction list
    Ctrl-W     Write new check
  • Customize the Tool Bar and Right Click options – While QuickBooks comes with a default icon bar at the top of the screen, users can add, remove, or modify the icons to better suit work needs. In addition, QuickBooks makes extensive use of right-click menus everywhere in the program. Try right clicking instead of heading right for the toolbar icons and menus.
  • Use “Classes” and Exporting Tools – When you’re working with Preferences, make sure Classes is turned on (Edit | Preferences | Accounting | Company Preferences | Use class tracking). Additionally, Classes are your own way of categorizing elements of a business. Exporting  QuickBooks’ reports are highly customizable, but they don’t have Excel’s power to manipulate and format data and to run what-if scenarios. Users can easily export QuickBooks reports to Excel.

QuickBooks can be such a time saver and get your business finances organized, but you will need to take the time to learn the ins and outs of the software in order to use it efficiently. Here are some quick Resources to get you started.

25 Tips on Using QuickBooks Effectively

BrightHub – Learning QuickBooks

About Mike Sperling

Mike is the Founder and Director of Sperling Interactive. Mike’s keen eye for photography, extensive technology skills and innovative marketing ideas make Mike a leader in the website design and management field. He is proficient in html, css, php, javascript, MySQL and the Adobe Design Suite. Before founding Sperling Interactive, Mike worked his way up from staff photographer at the Eagle Tribune Publishing Company to the lead operator and manager of multiple websites for daily and weekly publications. Known as the “media guru”, Mike gathered years of experience before making the leap to start his own business. He graduated from Rochester Institute of Technology with a BFA in Photojournalism and a minor in Mass Communications. When Mike is not meeting with clients or designing new websites he enjoys spending time with his wife, Jodi, daughter Zoey, and son Camden. Mike enjoys hiking, geocaching, traveling, movies, the Baltimore Orioles & Ravens.