How to Get Your QuickBooks Questions Answered
May 31, 2007
A profitable business is nice; an organized and profitable venture is even nicer. My margins are high, expenses are low, and my income is becoming more regular but now I want to get a better overview of the big financial picture.
I purchased QuickBooks Pro for a great deal on eBay back in January but I haven’t been using its full potential. I tried to transfer all the income & expenses I’ve been tracking in Microsoft Excel into QuickBooks one day last weekend so I can have Profit/Loss, Cash Flow, and Balance Sheet reports at my fingertips. Unfortunately after almost a day of data entry and research I ended up with more questions than progress.
The first place I looked was QuickBooks Help, just hit the F1 key and up pops a searchable help screen. One thing I wanted to learn about was tracking inventory for my eBay sales inside of QuickBooks.
QuickBooks Help showed me how to turn on inventory tracking and set up Inventory Asset, Sales Income, and Cost of Goods Sold accounts. My main reason for wanting to enter inventory was so I could keep track of the cost of goods sold every time I made a sale.
I used both the Index and the Search tab in the help window. It seems the main difference is that the Index tab gives you only specific references to the word or term you enter but the Search tab will return topics specific to your keyword in addition to related topics.
QuickBooks Resources Online
Another question I had was the best way to keep track of the sales tax I paid when purchasing items for resale. I turned to trusty Google and ran across two websites full of information on QuickBooks matters.
The forum on QuickBooks Community helped me out with several questions. Forum users are knowledge because it’s frequented by Intuit employees and by Certified ProAdvisors.
According to Intuit, a Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor is someone who has “taken a 3-part QuickBooks Certification course and successfully completed comprehensive testing” so they typically know what they’re talking about.
The second site is Accountant.Intuit.com. The site title of “online resource for Accounting and QuickBooks Practitioners” is appropriate. It seems to be setup more as a reference for accountants using QuickBooks for other people’s taxes but I did find some useful QuickBook tips there.
Hire a QuickBooks Pro
If all else fails hire a professional. At the end of the day last weekend I had a somewhat functioning QuickBooks account but I knew it wasn’t setup “right” and still had unanswered questions. I was referred to a local QuickBooks ProAdvisor and talked to her on the phone today about a consultation next week.
She’s not cheap, $125 an hour with a two hour minimum but she is an expert that has trained hundreds of people on QuickBooks. After meeting with her I’ll have my questions answered, I’ll know that my account is setup correctly and I’ll know the best way to use it.
I see it kind of like learning to play golf. If you teach yourself you’ll pick up some quirky problems with your game that stick with you forever. If you learn from a pro you can hopefully avoid those mistakes in the first place and build off of a solid base instead of a swing with a nasty slice. Hopefully the consultation will be a hole in one. Has anyone else had experience with using a QuickBooks ProAdvisor?
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All posts by Ben Edwards