Take a minute to learn how QBO’s product and service records can boost your business productivity every day.
Repeated tasks are a major drain on business productivity. Sending similar emails, filling out the same business information on forms, entering contact information – anytime you find yourself doing the same thing again and again, you’re looking at an opportunity to streamline your business processes. Let’s take a look at how QuickBooks Online (QBO) can help you run your business faster and more easily.
One benefit of QBO – whether you sell products or services – is the way it automatically stores and fills in the information that you use repeatedly. QuickBooks Online eliminates duplicate data entry, saving time and reducing errors dramatically.
Once you create product and service records, completing sales and purchase forms will be an easy, accurate task. You’ll also have fast access to information about your inventory levels and the profit you make on items. You’ll know what’s selling and what’s not, and when it’s time to reorder.
Much of your accounting work probably consists of filling out forms. Whenever you create one of these invoices or sales receipts or purchase orders, you already know that you can open a drop-down list and select the name of a customer or vendor. QBO lets you enter data about what is being bought or sold in the same way.
To see how this works, open an invoice form and complete and/or verify the fields at the top (customer, date, terms, etc.). Click in the first PRODUCT/SERVICE field, and then click the down arrow to see the list of items and services you sell.
When you select an item, the description and price will fill in automatically. You’ll have to add the quantity and click in the box below the column labeled Tax (if applicable). QuickBooks Online will calculate the total cost of the product or service on that line.
If you need to enter additional sales, proceed to the PRODUCT/SERVICE field in the second line and repeat those actions until you’re done and can save the transaction.
Working with Items
What do you do when you need more information about a specific product than just its description and price? Do you have to return to its individual record?
No. QuickBooks Online includes a great tool that provides real-time updates on your inventory items and lets you work with them. Click the Sales tab in the left vertical menu, and then on the Products and Services tab at the top. The table that opens displays numbers for every item’s quantity on hand and reorder point. Look at the end of each line, and you’ll see a drop-down list labeled Edit.
You can take some of these actions on multiple items simultaneously. Click the down arrow in the Batch actions field above this Edit menu. Click the boxes in front of the products you want to work with and select the desired activity (unavailable ones will be grayed out in the list).
Note: Take extra care with the edit tool – inventory records need to be precise. Contact us if you have questions about making changes to your inventory.
QuickBooks Online’s Product and Services screen may be all you need in your daily work, but there will be times when you need more analytical assistance. You can turn to the site’s specialized reports for more in-depth scrutiny. Click the Reports tab in the left vertical pane. Make sure the All Reports list is active and select Manage Products and Inventory to see what’s available.
Reports are easy to run but can be difficult to customize correctly and interpret. If we’re not working with you already on the complex standard financial reports that should be reviewed monthly or quarterly, let’s talk. The more you understand about the financial status of your company, the better your decisions will be.
Joe Gibbons, CPA is managing partner of Gibbons & Gibbons, P.C., a Northern Virginia-based accounting and business advisory firm that specializes in working with law firms and other professional service providers.