QuickBooks 2017 R4 Update

A Look Inside QuickBooks 2017 R4 Update

Intuit, the maker of QuickBooks accounting software, has recently released the R4 update for the US version of QuickBooks Desktop 2017.  Manually download the update from the QuickBooks support webpage.

The latest update of the popular accounting software includes a number of changes such as improvements in scheduled reports, 1099 tax filing, corrections to bank feeds and much more. Here we will look at some of the most valuable improvements in the latest update of QuickBooks Desktop 2017.

1. Additional Filters
The R4 update allows the users to specify different filters in reports. Also, the user can click on the blue hyperlink text to edit the selected filter. The last page on the printed report displays the filter descriptions.

2. Smart Search Option
Another great improvement in this latest update is the smart search feature. List names can be found quickly once the first few words are typed in the search box. For instance, if you type Family, the search box will display one or more matches to the keyword in the drop down box.

3. Improved Scheduled Reports
The scheduled reports feature is revamped in the latest update of QuickBooks Desktop 2014. You can select schedule reports by selecting them from the memorized report list. Also, you can schedule automatic delivery of the reports to other persons. The attachments are password protected and sent in the PDF format.

4. Credit Card Clear Status
Credit card clear status will be displayed after you apply the R4 update. The Cleared status word with a checkmark will appear whenever a credit payment has been reconciled to the merchant’s statement.

5. Copy and Paste Line Details in Time Sheets
The latest update of QuickBooks Desktop 2017 allows you to copy and paste line details in the weekly time sheet cards. This makes it easier for the accounting personnel to process time-in information of the employees.

The above are some of the new and improved features of the R4 QuickBooks 2017 update. Apart from introducing new features, the latest update also resolves some of the issues with the scheduled reports.

After you apply the R4 update to QuickBooks 2017, you no longer have to select ‘run as administer’ to create scheduled reports. Also, schedule reports even if you have an older version of QuickBooks installed on the PC.

In addition, QuickBooks informs you of any issues that must be resolved before you can run or create a schedule. The information is displayed before you start the scheduling process instead of after scheduling the tasks. Also, you don’t need to turn off the quick startup feature in order to schedule the reports.

The latest update of QuickBooks 2017 also introduced several changes that improved performance and stability of the accounting software. Contact your friendly neighborhood QuickBooks Pro Advisor if you want to learn more about the R4 QuickBooks Desktop update.

How to Avoid Common Mistakes New QuickBooks Users Make

If you are a small business owner, now is the time to start QuickBooks off on the right foot. You may be putting in too many extra hours using QuickBooks. You can streamline the processes behind managing and recording your income and expenses by following a few simple steps and avoiding a few mistakes that many people make when using QuickBooks.

Here are some common mistakes you should be sure to avoid when using QuickBooks so that you and your business can benefit and get the most out of it.

Avoid Using Your Bank Account in the ‘Expense Account’ Field When Writing a Check
When using ‘Write Checks’, most users fails to realize that the checks are already affecting their bank account, therefore, they set the checking account as the expense account. This can result in the money going out and instantly back into your checking account. To keep this from happening, specify one of the expense accounts that was setup, such as office supplies or utilities.

Avoid Assigning Items to the Wrong Accounts
QuickBooks defines items as anything your company sels or buys, like products, or services, or discounts. To have a better understanding of items, think of them as the lines on an invoice. To ensure that your records are accurate, you need to associate every item with a logical account type.

Don’t Forget To Apply Check Payments to Bills
Using QuickBooks, you can pay your bills easily, depending on how you wish to track your bills and payments. Once you have chosen a certain method, stick with it. If you fail to do so, you could end up paying your bills twice.

  • To track your bills, ALWAYS use ‘Enter Bills’ in QB Desktop or ‘Bill’ in QB Online to enter bills under the Vendor tab.
  • Use ‘Pay Bills’ to make payments for the bills you are tracking.
  • If you prefer not to track your bills, you can go to ‘Write Checks’ or ‘Enter Credit Card Charges’ window.
  • Avoid using ‘Pay Bills’ if you have already used the ‘Enter Credit Card Charges’ or ‘Write Checks’.

Avoid Using the Sample Companies as Your Actual Company File
QuickBooks is filled with sample company files that you can as examples when using QuickBooks to manage your own data. However, be sure to not to use these files as your original data records, they are only samples and not templates. They include some of the most commonly used items, services, and products used by most businesses. Avoid using these files as templates for handling real data; they are not made for that purpose.

Avoid Entering Invoices and Making Deposits Without Going Through Receive Payments
If you need to record sales, be sure to use the ‘Receive Payments’ screen or link, to apply the payments against the invoices. More than often not, people make the mistake of skipping that step.

Make sure you avoid these common mistakes when using QuickBooks to manage accounting and bookkeeping tasks. This will help you utilize QuickBooks to the max, resulting in streamlined procedures, time saved, and increased productivity.

Choosing the Right Bookkeeper for Your Business

There may come a time when your business grows to a point where it becomes difficult for you to manage one of the most critical aspects of your business on your own. As your business expands, you may need to hire qualified personnel to manage some of the most important segments of your business, including accounting and finances.

I will highlight some of the things that you must pay attention to when selecting a bookkeeper, whether in-house or remote, to look after your finances.

It is generally thought that a person with ‘little’ experience in accounting will suffice for a small business. This is far from the truth. Accounting is instrumental when it comes to the growth of your business, and proper tracking and management of income and expenses can increase your business’s profits.

You should find a person with as much experience as you can afford to pay for, but do not look for any shortcuts here! As I often remind you, you get what you pay for.

The individual whom you select to look after your business’s finances must have received some kind of formal education in the disciplines of accounting, finance, and taxes. Without this person having the proper background knowledge, you may find it difficult to simply handover your company’s books to them with confidence.

A good bookkeeper will have the ability to think a few steps ahead in order to warn you of any pending problems. They can often help you prevent complications in the first place. Accounting education will empower them to fully understand policies, procedures, strategies as well as ethical values.

Banking Technology
E-Commerce has become a necessity these days, rather than a luxury. You will have to work with your bank and other companies online in order to streamline your work and save time. Tasks such as paying bills, receiving payments, and making deposits can be easily performed right from your office.

You should choose a person who is able to conduct business online in a safe, secure, and efficient manner.

Bookkeeping Software

If you’re still writing checks to pay your vendors, employers or any other third parties, then you really need to upgrade. There are accounting software choices out there that have been specifically designed for small businesses to help them keep a track on and manage their expenditures. For example, QuickBooks®, Xero, and Wave are really powerful accounting software tools that are very popular among small business owners.

If you already use this software, then you will should to find a person who is fully capable of working with these tools. These tools have certification programs, which will help to ensure that the person you choose knows how to work well with these tools. They know the ins and outs of the software, which will convert to savings for you because they know the shortcuts to keep costs down. They can also manage your bookkeeping and accounting, without having to learn the software from scratch like in-house staff might.

Accounting Policies
To ensure smooth and uninterrupted work in your accounting department, you should establish some policies and procedures that will be used to determine how bookkeeping is done within your company. For instance, a procedure for the payment of bills, a policy for refunds, and so on.

Your new bookkeeper should be given time to familiarize themselves with your company’s policies and procedures so that everything works as it’s supposed to do.

Remember, shortcutting in this area could come back to bite you in the long run. Outsourcing to a firm or person may make hiring an accounting professional more feasible. This will allow you to pay for services without having the concerns of paying for benefits and training.

Troubleshooting: Can’t open a company file

If you cannot open your company file in QuickBooks don’t panic! There are several possibilities as to why the file is not opening. It could be that you are simply not using the correct version of QuickBooks, however more troubling issues such as data corruption could be the cause. First, lets look at the error message you’re getting.

  •   6000 series (i.e. 6123 or 6189)
  •   HX0X errors (i.e. H202 or H505), can typically be fixed by using the QuickBooks File Doctor
  •   C= messages (i.e. C=423)
  •   A warning that QuickBooks cannot open the file because it is a Read-Only file
  •   Unrecoverable Error

If any of these are the error message you see when attempting to open your company file than try the following trouble shooting tips below. These procedures are meant to be attempted in the order shown. So, before using the QuicksBooks File Doctor to automatically diagnose and repair your file go down this list.

  1. Make sure the file is the problem, not the program. Hold down the Control (Ctrl) key and simultaneously double click the QuickBooks icon. If the program does not open while holding Ctrl, than QuickBooks is not starting. If this is not your issue than continue down the list!
  2. Make sure QuickBooks is updated to the latest release.
  3. Try opening the file with the same version of QuickBooks that previously opened it. To do this, in Windows, find your company file on your computer, then, right click the file and select properties. In the properties window, select the QuickBooks tab. You should see a box that indicates the last used version.
  4. Open the file directly from QuickBooks by opening QuickBooks, clicking the file button and then selecting open or restore company file. From here you will need to choose the button that corresponds with the type of file your using (i.e. company file, back-up file, etc.), then you need to browse and select the file and follow any steps needed to restore the file.
  5. Prevent reports and other windows from opening by holding the Alt key down while you open the file. You may need to release the Alt key and enter your login information, but be sure to hold the Alt key down while clicking ok and until the file opens or and error pops up.
  6. Try opening a sample company file. If the sample company doesn’t open than there is an issue with your QuickBooks installation.
  7. Move the company file to another location.
  8. Check the file’s properties. Right click the file in windows explorer and select properties. Check that the file size is 7mb and that it IS NOT compressed or encrypted (both boxes should be unchecked).
  9. Rename the file.
  10. Turn off multi-user access. You can turn off multi user access by clicking the utilities button under the file menu.

If these solutions don’t help, you can try trouble shooting your QuickBooks install or seeking additional help! For more information contact the Brilliant Solutions Group today!