Sunday, February 28, 2016

Tracking Finances with Reports and Graphs

QuickBooks comes with loads of built-in reports that show what’s going on with your company’s finances. But having a dozen report categories with several reports tucked into each one presents a few challenges, particularly if you’re new to both business and QuickBooks.

The first challenge is knowing what type of report tells you what you need to know. For example, a profit and loss (P&L) report shows how much income and expense you had over a
given time period, but a balance sheet tells you how much your company is worth.
The second challenge is finding the report you want within the different report categories. After deciding you want to compare the profit of the items you sell, for example, do you look for the corresponding QuickBooks report in the Customers & Receivables category; Sales category; Inventory category; or Jobs, Time & Mileage category? (If you guessed Jobs, Time & Mileage, you’re right.)
The Report Center is a handy way to find the reports you want. But flipping through this book can be even faster, which is why each chapter describes the built-in reports that correspond to the bookkeeping tasks the chapter covers, what they’re good for, and where you can find them.

A third challenge—for even the most knowledgeable QuickBooks aficionado—is that the built-in reports might not do exactly what you want. A date range could be off, information that you don’t want might be included, or the data could be grouped in ways that don’t make sense for your business. After using QuickBooks for a while, most businesses tweak the program’s built-in reports. This chapter explains how to customize reports to get what you want. And there’s no point in letting that customization go to waste, so you’ll also learn how to memorize your customized reports, add them to QuickBooks’ menus for fast access, and even exchange particularly handy customized reports between company files.

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