By Monica Mitchell Muir
Let’s face it -- you’re busy, you have information you need to see, but don’t want to spend all day getting it. Especially during your busy season!
First, decide what information you want to see. Such as accounts receivable, accounts payable, bank balances, profit and loss, balance sheet, job costs, payroll... If you customize, by all means memorize the report so you don’t have to keep customizing every time you run the report.
Second, how often do you need to see the report(s) -- daily, weekly, monthly quarterly, after project, during project?
Here are 6 ways you can view multiple reports quickly.
1. The Company Snapshot -- Still one of my favorite features in QuickBooks. You can check on payables, receivables, account balances, see trends in income and expenses, reminders and much more -- all in one place. You can choose from 12 possible reports, organize them any way you want and choose the time frame from the drop-down menu (no custom dates). Past due invoices and bills show up in red, making it easy to pick them out. You can even print the snapshot.
2. Trackers -- While I love the Company Snapshot, Intuit has been putting its energies into the trackers.
a. Income Tracker -- What I like about the Income Tracker is the ability to see open Estimates and Sales Orders in addition to Open Invoices and Overdue Invoices -- all with total dollar amounts! Starting with 2015, they added unbilled time and expenses. Seeing those numbers will get some people moving! Here’s more information on how to work with it.
b. Bill Tracker -- New in 2016 was the Bill Tracker. Like the Income Tracker, it allows you to do one action on multiple transactions at one time.
3. Run a Group of reports. This is definitely a very powerful time saver in two ways. First you save time because you simply double-click on the Group to run a whole bunch of reports instead of individual reports one at a time (Reports>Memorized Report list).
Second, Groups help you organize your reports so you can find reports more easily. How many of you have a ton of reports, all with similar names, and you don’t know which one you need to use, so you create another?
When you run/create a report, save the report to a Group. Some Group ideas could be weekly, monthly, quarterly, during a project/job, after a job, open orders ... you get the idea.
4. Put your report(s) on your toolbar. While I’m a firm believer that all QuickBooks users should have their own login information for security reasons, another benefit is that you can customize QuickBooks to suit your personal preferences -- including what’s on the toolbar. So if you have a report you want to see frequently, click on View>Add (and it will list the name of the report), then give it a name (I recommend keeping the name short). Next time you want to review that information, it’s simply a click away!
5. If you have multiple companies and use QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions, Combine Reports from Multiple Companies (Reports>Combine Reports from Multiple Companies). Then select the company files, the reports, date range, etc. Your reports will appear in Excel with columns for each company. Since the chart of accounts is often different between the two companies, having the software create the spreadsheet for you is a huge time saver.
So don’t spend more time than you need to see your reporting. Get the information you need so you stay on top of your business, sales, jobs and head out the door sooner, be it for work or fun!
Monica Mitchell Muir is president of Muir & Associates, a firm providing QuickBooks support to landscape and construction contractors through consulting, training, troubleshooting and the sale of Intuit products. She has presented two QuickBooks-related webinars in NYSNLA's "Work Smarter, Not Harder" webinar series.