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August Accounting Back-To-School Education Series: QuickBooks Tips

back to school accounting trainingThe beginning of August is always bittersweet. As we head into the final month of summer, we feel the urge to relish every last moment that waning summer days have to offer--while keeping one eye on the "back to school" vibe permeating the air around us. Even if you've been out of school for a while, the lure of clean notebooks and sharpened pencils (or, ahem, shiny iPads and wearable gadgets) is enough to bring you back to the moments in early September when all is fresh, new and inviting for education.

Perhaps it's just us--or our back-to-school nostalgia--but beginning today and for the entire month of August, we will be committing ourselves to improving accounting and bookkeeping education. From QuickBooks tips and tricks to how-tos for the latest software integrations, we will be bringing you everything you ever wanted to learn about accounting and bookkeeping! (We know, we know--we can hear your applause from here).

To get started, we're contributing a few of our go-to favorites to a Webucator Tips series, where students can for QuickBooks training. So without further ado, let's get Back To School!

AccountingDepartment.com Back To School Series Day 1: Making QuickBooks Work With You

Beginner Level: QuickBooks Keyboard Short Cuts

  • Control + A = brings up the Chart of Accounts
  • Space Bar = marks or un-marks items or boxes with check marks
  • Control + F = opens Find Transactions window
  • Control + Q = brings you a quick report of transactions for each item in a list you have highlighted (sale item, customer, vendor, etc.)
  • Alt + F4 = exits the QuickBooks software
  • Control + M = brings up the Memorize Transaction option
  • Control + Delete Key = deletes a line
  • Control + Insert Key = inserts a line
  • Alt + Down Arrow Key = displays list for a field
  • Control + E = lets you edit a transaction
  • Control + I = creates a customer invoice
  • Control + W = opens up Write Checks window

Intermediate Level: Customizing the QuickBooks Icon Bar

The QuickBooks Icon Bar can be customized for convenient access to your most frequently used QuickBooks windows. Shortcuts appearing on the Icon Bar by default can be removed, and shortcuts for any window in QuickBooks can be added.

Customize the Icon Bar by selecting View > Customize Icon Bar to open the “Customize Icon Bar” window. A list of shortcuts currently appearing on the Icon Bar appears under “Icon Bar Content”.

To remove a shortcut that is not needed, simply highlight the name of the shortcut in the list and click Delete. To add shortcuts from the pre-defined shortcut list to the Icon Bar, click the Add… button to open the “Add Icon Bar Item” window. Highlight the shortcut you wish to add and click OK to return to the “Customize Icon Bar” window.

To reorder the icons within the Icon Bar, click the diamond next to the item you wish to reposition and drag it up or down to the desired location.

Shortcuts for similar tasks can be grouped together on the Icon Bar using Separators, which appear as (space) in the “Icon Bar Content” list. Separators can be added, deleted, and reordered in the same way as shortcuts.

Display Options for the Icon Bar are set by default to “Show icons and text.” If desired, the Display Options can be changed to “Show icons only” to remove the text description from the shortcuts on the Icon Bar.

Shortcuts can be added to the Icon Bar for any window in QuickBooks, even if the shortcut does not appear in the pre-defined list. Begin by opening the window for the shortcut you wish to add. This can be a transaction (Make Journal Entry), a list (Memorized Report List), a register, or a specific report. With the window displayed on the screen, select View > Add “” to Icon Bar… to open the “Add Window to Icon Bar” window. Select an icon for your new shortcut from the list on the left. QuickBooks suggests a label for the shortcut in the Label field. You can either accept the suggested label or modify it as preferred. Click OK to add the new shortcut to your Icon Bar. Once added, the new shortcut can be reordered in the “Customize Icon Bar” window.

The QuickBooks Icon Bar is user-specific, so each user can customize the Icon Bar to suit his or her preferences.

Advanced Level: Customized Columns for Lists and Account Centers

The columns for Item Lists, Fixed Asset Item Lists, etc. can be customized to remove data fields that are not applicable or to add data fields that you frequently use, including custom data fields. This way you can view it at a glance, instead of having to open/edit the item to view data fields.

Open the Item List (Lists > Item List). Right click and select Customize Columns in the pop-up window. The Customize Columns box pops up (shown below).

example 1

You can add or remove data fields and move them up or down so that they appear in the desired order.

The columns in the Vendor and Customer Centers can also be customized to add or remove data fields. For example, you can add the Due Date or Open Balance columns. If you have a client that frequently pays partial amounts, the Open Balance column allows you to quickly see the unpaid amount of each bill, without having to run an Open Balance Report. Same for A/R customer partial payments of invoices.

When in the Vendor or Customer Center, right click (in the lower right section of the Vendor Information or Customer Information window, where the transactions are listed) and select Customize Columns in the pop-up window. The Customize Columns box pops up (shown below).

example 2

You can add or remove data fields and move them up or down so that they appear in the desired order when you look at vendor/customer records in the Vendor/Customer Center.

Looking for a professional outsourced bookkeeping or accounting service to take care of QuickBooks for you? Our full time, expert accounting professionals can help!

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