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Figit Friends Newbies are the registered trademark of Mattel, Corporation.
These are my favorite Newbies in QuickBooks 2015....
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Intuit QuickBooks 2015
Enhanced 'more readable' look for reports in the 2015 versions of QuickBooks desktop products.
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Intuit QuickBooks 2015
New Feature for 2015: Add Comments to Reports
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Intuit QuickBooks 2015 - Send File to Accountant Feature
Set this folder as the default location and save time for future file sharing.
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Intuit QuickBooks 2015
Improvements to Income Tracker for 2015
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Intuit - QuickBooks Enterprise V15 - Prevent Negative Inventory Preference
Prevent Negative Inventory Preference 1
“Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens; Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens; Brown paper packages tied up with strings; These are a few of my favorite things”1
So did you really think that I would begin my 2015 version of what I like best in the new QuickBooks any different than last year? Of course not! These lyrics from the ‘Sound of Music’ are still the perfect way of thinking about my favorite things in the new versions of QuickBooks for 2015.
You all know that I am not like ‘the other guy’, and I am not going to give you 5000 words of details about every little step in the various changes, improvements, and enhancements Intuit has made in their products just released. Rather, I am going to give you the few of my favorites that I believe are most important, and why you should consider upgrading.
Not too long ago I wrote a blog asking Intuitive Accountant readers to let us know what new or expanded features they would like to see in QuickBooks for 2015; and as with 2014, hundreds of people have posted or replied with comments this year. Now this year when I wrote the blog, I had ‘nixed’ the idea of my own ‘wish list’, in part because I had already been involved in Alpha and Beta testing for the 2015 products. It’s pretty hard to develop wishes when you already have the scoop. It’s like asking Santa to bring you something, when you already know what Santa has in his bag for you. But what I can say is that one of my ‘QuickBooks wishes’ for years, has finally come true this year, and for me it is my very favorite ‘newbie’.
By the way, I didn’t use the same old picture of newbies I used last year either, this year’s newbies are entirely different ones…and I am not going to try to trick you with QuickBooks newbies that really aren’t so ‘newbie’ after all either.
I am not limiting my favorites to any one version of the 2015 product releases, so you will see some Pro/Premier features, some Enterprise features, and some Accountant version features within my choices for this year. So without further delay, counting down here are my favorite newbies for 2015:
Newbie Favorite # 5 - Reporting Enhancements: There are several improvements in reporting this year, but among them is a new feature that allows you to post comments on your reports. Not only are the reports easier to read with a refreshed clean design (shown in figure 2), but you can easily add comments in reports to share insights and give context to your data (figure 3). This footnoting makes interpreting reports easy. Even when you have spent hours laying out a variety of notations and then suddenly realized you need to add one more, simply insert it, QuickBooks will renumber and configure your prior work for you.
While I am certain that accountants performing ‘compilations’ and bookkeepers doing ‘write-up’ work will find this note feature beneficial, I think that many users will also realize that it will help them post comments to their reports that can be used by managerial staff, department team discussions, and keeping their shareholders, partners or owners aware of specific areas of performance.
Newbie favorite # 4 - Report filters for “Other 1” and “Other 2” columns on transactions:
For years Intuit offered QuickBooks users the ability to capture ‘other information’ on their transactions simply by adding the “Other 1” and “Other 2” columns in the form templates. These were similar to custom fields but they didn’t have to be pre-defined for item type data, they could be used for almost any purpose. There was one drawback, even though you could post data to these fields on transactions, and could display the information on a variety of reports, you had no way to filter reports by the “Other 1” or “Other 2” data sets.
New for 2015 you can now filter reports using the “Other 1” and/or “Other 2” data sets. To filter by these options simply click Customize Report, then in the Modify Report window, choose the Filters Tab. You will notice that the Filters list is now alphabetized by all the available filters (another new enhancement for 2015). You can select the “Other 1”, “Other 2”, or both filters and then enter the specific information you wish to filter from the data you have entered in these fields on your transactions.
I know this seems like a pretty simple new feature, so you may wonder why I find this important enough to include it in my Favorite Newbies. Well, I have 100’s of clients who started using the “Other 1” and “Other 2” transaction detail line data options to capture specific information long before we had the options of Item based custom fields. While 3rd party report tools could use this data to produce reports you weren’t able to do so within QuickBooks. Now you can, and in my way of thinking that is an excellent solution for a problem long in the need of fixing. Thanks Intuit for ‘finally’ getting this solved.
Newbie favorite # 3 - Send Copy to Accountant:
There have been a variety of ways to send copies of your data to your accountant or bookkeeper. For many users these have been overly complex in terms of selecting the right kind of copy to send, the right file, and the right method to send the data. New for 2015, you can send a copy of your company file to your accountant directly from QuickBooks by saving it on any Internet-based shared folder.
This new process is streamlined; simply pick Portable Company File from the Send Company File option under the File Menu. Next, tell QuickBooks which cloud storage service you routinely use to share information with your accountant. This might be your own file sharing service, or it might be your accountant’s file sharing service to which he has given you access. (shown in Figure 4) Best of all, once it has been set up the first time, simply click ‘Send’ in the future every time you need to send a file. (Note: You will find a companion article about this new feature in today’s Intuitive Accountant.)
Newbie favorite # 2 – Income Tracker v2:
I have been a fan of Income Tracker since it was first available. The Income Tracker is designed to simplify customer income tracking which I will always call ‘money-in’ for the rest of my life. I like that there is a graphic depiction of the state of all of your customer-related ‘money in’ transactions whether ‘invoiced’ or not. Of course it also shows you the payments you are behind in collecting and how good a job you have done at collecting in the last 30 days.
Income Tracker lets you drill down into various transaction types by simply clicking on the corresponding color blocks on the top visual bar. It also provides the option to ‘take action’ relative to the specific details you identify.
New for 2015 you can see your unbilled time and expenses, as well as control which unbilled details you want to have shown in the tracker. (Figure 5) You can easily convert ‘time and expense’ entries to invoices from the action button of any individual entry, or by selecting multiple entries and choosing the batch action option.
Intuit continues to improve the ‘graphical’ dashboard like features of QuickBooks, and this enhancement to Income Tracker for 2015 is another example of those improvements.
Newbie favorite # 1 - Prevent Negative Inventory:
QuickBooks has historically allowed you to sell more of an item than you had in stock. When this happened, the item's quantity went negative, and that had long-term ramifications on an item's average cost. New for 2015 QuickBooks Enterprise is a preference to prevent negative inventory quantities. With this new preference turned-on, QuickBooks will prevent posting transactions, such as invoices and sales receipts that would result in a negative quantity.
There are separate preferences for applying the new limitation to “all inventory”, (shown in figure 6) and for “inventory by site”, which applies only if you are using the Advanced Inventory add-on subscription feature for QuickBooks Enterprise.
Intuit has also provided a new Negative Item Listing Report to enable you to see which of your items currently have negative quantities.
Despite the fact that this new feature is only to be found in Enterprise for 2015, it is my most highly rated ‘newbie’ because of the potential effects this feature can have on users with significant inventories. The effects of ‘going negative’ with inventory upon an item’s average cost and thus the overall valuation of inventory are well known, and are a common source of serious clean-up issues that must be undertaken every time financials are prepared. I think this new preference is one of the most significant ‘accounting’ changes Intuit has made to QuickBooks in a very long time. (Note: You will find a companion article in today’s Intuitive Accountant about this new feature.)
There are 'a whole lot more' improvements, additions and enhancements in this years QuickBooks 2015. Are any of them really 'major'? Probably not in most people's estimates other than I think the Prevent Inventory Negatives is a major change for Enterprise users, and in my way of thinking well worth the price of upgrade. Additional 'nice changes' to reporting, the user interface displays, and visual alerts (like a revamp of the reminder window) are things that users have been asking for via the 'send feedback' option from the QuickBooks Help menu. In fact I would guess that 85-90% of the changes this year are the direct result of user requests; so if these changes are things you have asked for, you may just want to rush to get the new product as soon as you can.
Please remember that I wrote this article based upon pre-release versions of QuickBooks 2015, so it is possible that some of the newbies I described might be slightly different, or updated by the time the various QuickBooks 2015 versions are actually released.
Intuit apparently intends to begin distributing the 2015 products to QuickBooks ProAdvisors sometime this week. You can be among the very first to receive instruction on my favorite newbies, and all the new features to be found in the 2015 QuickBooks product line, by participating in the Intuit QuickBooks Accounting Virtual Conference to be held on September 22 and 23, 2014. See the website for more information or register here.
Over the next couple of weeks Intuitive Accountant will be reviewing more of the new features, functions and enhancements in the various versions of QuickBooks-2015. Feel free to use the ‘comments section’ of this article to tell us about your own favorite “newbie in QB” as soon as you get it running.
1-"My Favorite Things; Rodgers and Hammerstein musical The Sound of Music (1959).Composer Richard Rodgers and lyricist Oscar Hammerstein.
Figit Friends Newbies (as shown in this articles' headline) are the registered trademark of Mattel, Corporation.