Businesses generally accept accounting as a way to communicate certain financial and management communications to the government as well as public users. To achieve this, every transaction must be faithfully documented through the use of ledgers and journals. Previously, all were scrupulously handwritten, with accounts receivable and accounts payable calculated by hand. While some business owners still cling to the old system, technology is moving on. A great part of that advance is led by QuickBooks and their interactive, online service.
What does QuickBooks do?
For those unfamiliar with desktop bookkeeping programs, QuickBooks is one of the most user-friendly interfaces on the market. It is intuitive, making it easy to understand for even the least tech savvy business owner, or for those that lack an accounting or financial background, and helps guide users through the program. In addition, it is easily integrated with other programs, which includes the ability to import Microsoft Excel spreadsheets into the QuickBooks interface.
Benefits of Using QuickBooks
While the switch from traditional accounting methods to QuickBooks can be tedious, there are some great benefits to using the program. In manual accounting, an employee is responsible for not only tracking each transaction, but also for calculating the trial balances, and creating financial statements on a routine basis. Not only is this a highly involved process, but it requires an extraordinary amount of time that could be used in other endeavors. Through the use of QuickBooks, a majority of this is automated, as it is customizable. It is specifically designed to be flexible and adapt to a variety of business models.
After initial set-up, QuickBooks saves time and money because many of the traditional bookkeeping tasks are automated. In addition, reports are easily generated that reflect the state of the business and can even help design a business plan to use when trying to secure a small business loan or line of credit to plan for the future. Finally, since information can be shared with over 100 internet-based apps, as well as Microsoft Excel, Word, and Outlook, typing and error-checking time is cut down as well.
Users are also able to customize the look and feel of their business documents, personalizing them with the company’s logo and information for a more professional appearance. In addition, QuickBooks has recently added customized accounting packages for Contractors, Retailers, Health Care Professionals, and Non-Profit Organizations, further offering programming that is completely tailored to the needs of each individual business.
Another wonderful advantage to using QuickBooks is its ability to create an accountant’s copy. While one of the most powerful features, it is also one of the least used. This feature allows a user, usually the client, to create a copy of their QuickBooks to send to their accountant which can then be edited, all the while still allowing the client the ability to continue using their QuickBooks. When the changes from the accountant are imported, none of the client’s information is deleted, allowing for a more collaborative effort in keeping the books straight.
Desktop vs. Online
There are two different ways users can take advantage of QuickBooks for their businesses – QuickBooks Desktop or QuickBooks Online. There are advantages to both versions, as well as disadvantages, so it is up to the business owner to decide which works best for their circumstances.
QuickBooks Desktop does have a wide variety of functionality, including tracking of sales and expenses, and creation of invoices but it’s biggest benefit is its ability to calculate and rebill job costs and calculate discounts by customer. It does require manual back-up and upgrades, which can be more costly, however the yearly upgrade fee is less than the monthly subscription required for the Online version.
For those that want to stay abreast of the most recent updates and want to save space on their computer, QuickBooks Online is the decided winner. With the exception of the calculation tools available in the desktop version, functionality is nearly identical. Online, however has the advantage of operating without the use of a traditional program and, because of that, has features not available in Desktop. While a monthly subscription is required to use the service, it includes not only instant updates and product support, but also automatic backup, the ability to be accessed from a variety of platforms, including mobile, automatic downloads of bank transactions, and the ability to connect to over 300 Cloud-based apps.
While QuickBooks is user-friendly and built for even a novice learner, there is still a decided learning curve in using its subtle nuances. There are multitudes of websites and videos offering tutorials, however, the best way to take advantage of all that QuickBooks has to offer is through the instruction of a QuickBooks Certified ProAdviser. These advisers are specially trained to leverage the different aspects of the program, including some of the more advanced features.
What Toyer, Dietrich & Associates can do for you
Since we have a Certified ProAdvisor on staff, we at Toyer, Dietrich & Associates are ready to assist you with this training. Our approach is completely hands-on, which allows us the flexibility of instructing you in our office or on-site at your place of business and we can schedule times that are convenient for you.
Training is scheduled as three (3) consecutive days of 2-3 hours each and consists of:
- Day 1 – Setting up your account and learning about the different interfaces available to you
- Day 2 – Operating the different packages available
- Day 3 – Answering any questions you may have. It is important to address items that are pertinent to you after you’ve had a chance to operate the software.
Your success is important to us, so your QuickBooks education is always tailored to your unique needs and requirements.