The Overview Tab
QuickBooks Online for Accountants: The Overview Tab
Look What I Found!
This technique is for the QuickBooks Online for Accountants version, as well as QuickBooks Online Advanced. If you’re a business owner using QBO Simple Start, Essentials, or Plus…move along, nothing to see here….
When bookkeepers log into a client’s file, don’t overlook the new Overview tab in the upper left corner of the navigation bar. It contains a wealth of information that will be useful to you to determine:
- Is it healthy? How much cleanup will you have to do on a file?
- 2How complex is the company workflow? Are they high-volume, or relatively small?
Both of these elements are extremely useful when you’re looking at a QBO file to determine how much you should charge a client. This information helps you define your scope for initial cleanup as well as ongoing maintenance.
Each section opens and collapses by clicking on the > symbol. Each item also has a hyperlink to take you to the associated Report.
Look at the Company Setup section to determine what level of QBO the client subscribes to.
Are they using QuickBooks Payroll? If not, you’ll still need to determine if they have outside payroll, like Gusto or ADP.
Are they using the QBO Sales Tax Center?
What app integrations do they have? This will either tell you “Yay! They have automated a lot of the data entry!”, or “Uh, oh, they have complex e-commerce/inventory/3rd party workflows.”
Here you’ll find the status of all the Balance Sheet accounts.
- The Bank balance, at least as of the last time anyone clicked the Update button.
- QuickBooks’s account balance. Is it relatively close to the Bank balance, or is it wildly off?
- How many Unaccepted transactions are in the Banking Feed. If the number is high, allot time for catch-up work.
- Are there a lot of Unreconciled transactions? Consider this along with…
- The date of the last Reconciliation.
If there are a lot of Unreconciled transactions, but the account has never been reconciled or it’s been quite a long time, allot time to get caught up.
If there are a lot of Unreconciled transactions, and the account was recently reconciled, this tells you one of two things. The account may be high-volume, with hundreds of transactions a month. When you’re planning your scope, allow additional time.
Or, perhaps the account wasn’t Reconciled, it was “Reconciled,” where the business owner checked off all the transactions that matched the statement, but left all the duplicate transactions instead of hunting them down. Now you know you have a lot of cleanup work to do!
Look here to uncover problems with QBO’s Banking Feeds, setup, and asset and liability accounts.
1) Undeposited Funds
Are these all current and waiting for deposit? Or are they signs of duplicated income? While you could click on the hyperlink, I don’t like looking at the Undeposited Funds register because it contains all the in-and-out transactions. Instead, head to the + > Bank Deposit screen.
Are the transactions there current and pending a trip to the bank or clearing merchant services? No worries!
Are they older than the most recent reconciliation? That’s a sign of duplicated income. It’s likely the business owner Added deposits through the Banking Feed instead of matching them to existing transactions in Undeposited Funds. Also look to see if duplicated Sales Receipts and Invoice Payments went directly to the Checking account instead of UF.
2) Uncategorized Assets
These are Transfers that were pulled in through the Banking Feed. Somewhere there’s a second transaction for the same amount.
The easiest fix is to delete these. They’ll wind up on the Banking Feed again. At that point they will either correctly match the other existing transaction, or (if the transaction was already reconciled), you can just Exclude it.
3) Uncategorized Income
These are Deposits added through the Banking Feed instead of Matched to existing Sales Receipts and Payments. When you Edit the transaction, you’ll see an extra entry down at the bottom instead of transactions checked off at the top.
Simply check off the individual transactions that make up that deposit in the top section, and click the trash can icon on the far right of the extra line to delete it. Your total deposit will remain the same, and your Undeposited Funds will decrease.
4) Uncategorized Expenses
These Expenses were pulled in through the Banking Feed without anyone clicking on them to add categories. To fix them, click on your Accountants Briefcase and select Reclassify Transactions.
Click on Uncategorized Expenses at the bottom, and Reclassify them to sort them into their correct categories.
5) Opening Balance Equity
This balance should be $0. Opening Balance Equity (OBE) transactions are created when setting up your QBO, or when you add Inventory without an Expense or Bill.
Open the OBE register. Make an Adjusting Journal Entry to transfer the money to Retained Earnings. Retained Earnings represents the money the company had at the start of the year, so it’s the perfect place to store this total.
6) Negative Asset and Liability Accounts
The accounts listed here are negative when they should be positive, and positive when they should be negative. Take a look at each register to determine why the balance is the opposite of what it should be.
This handy window clues you in to how much time the client will consume.
Use the dropdown to examine transaction totals by month, quarter, and year.
If the numbers are high, schedule more time to do the bookkeeping. If they’re low, there won’t be much to do.
If there are a high number of Bills but a low number of Bill Payments, they may have cash flow problems. Or, they’re creating Bills but cutting Checks instead of creating Bill Payments, which you’ll need to clean up (simply open the Check or Expense and add the open Bill from the drawer on the right).
As you can see, the Overview is a great place to start when examining a client file. You’ll be able to analyze the file’s health, determine how much catch-up work or cleanup work you’ll need to do, and get an estimate of how much time maintenance will take.
This is a welcome summary screen, and a great tool for every bookkeeper and accountant.
QuickBooks Payments and the New Deposits Tab
Look what I found!
If you use QuickBooks Payments for your QuickBooks Online (QBO) merchant services, you're in for a treat. Now there's an easy way to monitor your QB Payments deposits, and access your Statements.
When a deposit shows up in your Banking Feed, but you're not sure exactly which transactions it was for...and for some reason it didn't automatch*...you've always been able to go to http://merchantcenter.intuit.com to view your merchant services batches and see the transactions. But it was a drag to have to look in another website to get that info.
Now your QuickBooks Payments reports are at your fingertips, right in QBO!
Click on Sales in the left navigation bar, then on Deposits. Here you'll see each day's credit card transactions, grouped by deposit date and total.
If the deposit happened in the past, click on the row to see the Payee names, dollar amounts, and fees.
If your deposit hasn't hit the bank yet, you'll see the estimated date when you can expect it!
If you haven't already signed up for QB Payments, here's another tip: if the business owner clicks the Learn More button from inside their Gear > Account and Settings > Payments tab, they will pay retail fee rates. If the bookkeeper clicks the button, they get discounted rates because QBO for Accountants recognizes their role as a ProAdvisor. Bookkeepers, be sure to do this for your clients!!
Even better, click here and go to my QuickBooks Payments registration link. As a member of Complete Business Group, an Intuit Reseller Program, my prices are even lower (and bookkeepers, sign up with Carrie Kahn and you too can offer this discount to your clients!).
As you can see, the transparency and convenience of QuickBooks Payments makes it the easy choice for merchant services for your company!
*Are your QuickBooks Payments not batching automatically? That happens when you take both swipe payments and receive email invoice payments, both in one day. When you view + > Bank Deposits, you can see your manual swipes up at the top, and the Invoice Payments show under the QuickBooks Payments section (you may have to click the dropdown arrow to see them). In this case, QBO can't figure out the batch combination, and you have to check off the transactions from the top and bottom sections manually.
But at least you have the Deposits window to show you which transactions to combine!
It's also easy to see your monthly Statements. Click on Gear > Account and Settings > Payments. You can now see up to two years' worth of monthly statements!
My favorite part is the Aggregated Fee Percentage. It averages all your different rates for swipes, invoices, and ACH, including fees, and gives you the true percentage of income. That gives you an apples-to-apples comparison to other merchant service solutions, like Square.
QBO: Troubleshooting Payroll: Paid from the wrong account
If you have two Checking accounts, and you run Payroll out of the wrong account, it's tricky to fix.
You can tell this happened when you see Payroll transactions in both Checking accounts: QB Payroll ran it out of one account, but the checks really were cashed out of the other. You will also notice that your Payroll Expense has been doubled for the month.
Once you run Payroll, QBO doesn't let you edit the source account, so there's no way to move the paychecks from one account to the other. But here is the fix!
- Fix your Payroll Settings so that moving forward, the checks are written out of the correct account.
- In the account where the checks were paid from in real life, open each paycheck and change the Account Category so that instead of Wages, it points to the Checking account QBO THINKS the checks were paid from.
- This reduces the Payroll Expense.
- It also puts the money back in the account QBO thinks the checks were paid from.
- When you reconcile the "THINKS" account, you'll see offsetting entries for the erroneous charge and the money put back in. Check off both to equal $0.
Now the payroll dollar amount is still correct, and even though it was debited from the wrong account, the expense came from the correct account.
QBO's New Receipt Capture
QBO’s New Receipt Capture!
Look What I Found!
You’ve long been able to use the QBO app on your smartphone to take pictures of receipts to add them to your QuickBooks Online file, but you had to type in all the information with your thumbs. That was time-consuming and cumbersome.
I recently had the privilege of beta-testing QBO’s new Receipts Capture, and I’m excited to see it rolling out to my clients’ files. Click on Banking and look for the Receipts tab at the top. If you don’t see it yet, you will soon!
Let’s check it out!
How to submit receipts
There are three ways to add your paper receipts to QBO.
First, you can simply drag-and-drop a .jpg or PDF file onto the main box (1). You can also click on the box to navigate to the image on your computer and select it that way.
Second, if you use the QBO app on your phone, there's a new option for Receipt Capture under the +. With it, snap a picture of the receipt and save it for scanning. It couldn't be easier!
Last, it’s now possible to email your receipts straight into QBO (2)! Click on the Manage Senders link on the upper right.
Click Add new sender. The email address must be for a QBO user who has at least Standard user permissions, with access to Vendor transactions.
Note that this limits bookkeepers for adding receipts via email, because one email address can only be associated with one file. If you work with more than one QBO file, you will need to use a different email address per client…or just use the drag-and-drop method from your computer.
Once the Senders have been added, they can now send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org, and the attachment will be forwarded to the correct QBO account.
You can even submit multiple receipts in one email message!
My only concern is that pictures of the receipts stay on the cell phones. If you implement this system with your employees, you may need to decide if that is a security breach. At a minimum, train them to delete the images once you have confirmed that the workflow is finished.
We use Receipt Forwarding successfully at Royalwise, using all three methods. My favorite is the in-app camera.
Once you’ve sent in or added your Receipts, you’ll see them in Processing (3). It may take a few minutes for the OCR (optical character recognition) to finish working its magic.
There are two workflows for categorizing your Payees and Accounts. One is to do the work in Receipts and Match it in Banking. The other is to do the work in Banking and Match it to the Receipt!
Entering the Receipt First
If the expense is straightforward, click on the entry at the bottom of the screen (4).
Note that the OCR may have entered best guesses that have little to do with reality. Just like with the Banking Feed, the artificial intelligence will learn as you use it. The first time you add a receipt from a particular Vendor, it will probably make up random Payees and Account/Categories. Just go ahead and enter the correct information. The next time you send in a receipt for that Vendor, it will fill in the information you entered last time, and you can modify it again as needed.
If you open up the new Expense transaction, you’ll see the info you entered, and the Attachment in the bottom left corner (scroll down).
After you’ve completed this step, head over to your Banking. You’ll see the expense on the list now has a green Match icon! Click Match to accept it.
Using Banking First
Notice that Receipts form doesn’t allow for Splits or Job Costing. To enter a Split, assign the transaction to a Customer, or make it Billable, head over to the Banking Feed first. Once you have entered that information, head back to Receipts. You’ll see a Match here, which adds this receipt to the existing transaction.
If you’re tired of chasing down your employees to submit their receipts, and it’s overkill for you to pay for a more robust receipt management solution like Receipt Bank, Hubdoc, or AutoEntry, QBO’s new Receipt Capture is a welcome addition to solve this pain point.
Was this tip helpful? Take a look at our QBO Knowledge Base, our ever-evolving collection of QuickBooks Online training videos.
QuickBooks Online (QBO) Keyboard Shortcuts
Look What I Found!
Even though QuickBooks Online is browser-based, it has a robust set of keyboard shortcuts so that you don't have to take your fingers off the keyboard.
Every time you use these tips and tricks to enter dates, those seconds add up and you can get that much more work done.
Keyboard shortcuts speed up your navigation and data entry in QuickBooks Online, even though you’re working in a browser.
Moving Around Forms
- Press the Tab key to move from box to box
- Press Shift+Tab to go back again
- Press the Space Bar to check a check box field
- Press Alt + down arrow to open a drop-down list, or the pop-up calendar icon to the right of any date field
Hold down the Ctrl and Alt (or Option on a Mac) and type the ?/ key on your keyboard. A window will open up with your Company ID as well as a master list of keyboard shortcuts. Hold down Ctrl+Alt and press letters in the list below to open those windows.
When entering dates, you don’t need 0s or the current year. Typing 2/1, Tab will resolve to 02/01/18.
Click in any Date field and tap these letters to jump to a key date without typing:
Tomorrow, next day
First day of the Month (1st)
Yesterday, previous day
Last day of the Month (28th, 30th, 31st)
First day of the Year (1/1)
First day of the Week (last Sun)
Last day of the Year (12/31)
Last day of the Week (next Sat)
There is no need to pull out your calculator! In every Quantity, Rate , and Amount field, you can use +, -, *, /, and () to do instant math. Press Tab to calculate the result.
You don’t have to click on every drop-down arrow and scroll through long lists to find what you want.
Start typing the entry you’re looking for, and your list will instantly reduce itself to matching items. Indented items show that they are subaccounts.
Press up arrow or down arrow to move through the items in the list.
Press Tab to select the item you want and move to the next field.
If you don’t want to open the whole list, but just want to scroll through the items in the text box, press Ctrl + down arrow or Ctrl + up arrow .
Search for text on a page
This trick uses a feature of your browser, not QuickBooks Online. The browser’s Search, CTRL+F, searches all the content of the screen you’re looking at. Use it to find for anything on a page instantly, without wasting time scrolling around scanning for it. Use the Find field’s < > arrows to jump from instance to instance of matching text.
Was this tip helpful? Take a look at our QBO Knowledge Base, our ever-evolving collection of QuickBooks Online training videos.
Managing Corporate Credit Cards
Businesses who track their credit card expenses QuickBooks Online (QBO) have a challenge.
Corporate credit card accounts like Chase, AmEx, and Bank of America have multiple cards for each employee. In QuickBooks Online, these sub cards need to be treated as sub accounts.
Here is how to set up corporate credit card accounts in QBO, from the Chart of Accounts to the Banking Feed to Reconciling.
This video even shows how to zero out the cards every month so your Balance Sheet shows exactly what is owed!
QBO's Price Rules
Look what I found!
In QBO, if you charge different prices to different types of Customers, you no longer have to track who gets what pricing by using the Notes, or an external document. Instead, turn on Price Rules!
This flexible tool allows you to:
- Charge different prices for Retail, Wholesale, Manufacturing, and Friends & Family
- Apply discounts to various products
- Put specific items on sale for a designated time
- Customers can be assigned a default Price Rule.
- If you’re having a sale, use a Price Rule with a Start date and End date.
- Assign Price Rules to Customers individually, or by Type.
- Assign Prices to Products individually, by type of Product, or by Category.
- Adjust the prices either by Percentage or Fixed Rate. You can increase or decrease the prices, and Round up or down.
- Click Apply to see all the prices adjust at once.