Attach Bank and Credit Card Statements in QuickBooks Online

Attach Bank and Credit Card Statements in QuickBooks Online

A recent conversation in my Facebook group was all about how to attach bank and credit card statements in QuickBooks Online. I thought it would be a great to show the two methods of doing this.

Using zero dollar transactions to attach bank and credit card statements in QuickBooks Online

The first way to attach bank and credit card statements in QuickBooks Online  is a bit more “old school” method, and my preferred way of doing this, because you can create custom reports that make it easy for users to find statements for any account in one place.

Similar to my method of attaching sales tax & payment tax returns and payment confirmations, this method also uses the zero dollar transaction.

First, create a new vendor that corresponds to the account: in this case, we’ll add “Amex 30018 Statements” to our vendor list:

 

Vendor Center > New Vendor

 

Next, you’ll navigate to the Amex register and create a transaction that posts to/from the Amex account, and has the same ending date shown on the statement:

Quick Create > Expense

 

Do the same for all of the accounts that you’d like to attach bank and credit card statements in QuickBooks Online: PNC, Bank of America, even PayPal.

 

Now you can create a report that will list all transactions to which attach bank and credit card statements in QuickBooks Online. We’ll set the filter to just show transactions for the current year, and selected vendors:

Reports > All reports > Transaction List By Vendor > Customize

 

Sharing the report for other users makes it very easy for everyone to access the bank statements. They simply open the report (or bookmark it for easy access) and click on each transaction to find the statement attached.

 

Using the vendor detail page to attach bank and credit card statements in QuickBooks Online.

The second method is much more simple, but doesn’t allow for the ability to see all statements in one list or report.

As in the first method, you create a new vendor.

Next, you simply navigate to the vendor detail page, click on the attachments tab, and drag and drop the statement.

Vendor List > Edit Vendor

 

Either way works, you just need to decide what method works for user needs, when you attach bank and credit card statements in QuickBooks Online.

Hope this little how-to was helpful!

Busy season is over, now what will you do?

Busy season is over, now what will you do?

Another one down, and a big shout out to too all of my fellow accounting professionals! My question to you is: Busy season is over, now what will you do?

As a bookkeeping firm, our business starts around Thanksgiving, and finishes around the end of May. We start during the holidays getting our existing clients year end prepared, so that once December 31 comes around, things go as smoothly as possible. We get many new clients that need data entry completed before they can get their returns done. Some just want a QuickReview to make sure the books they have are clean and ready.

I know many tax preparers will take (well deserved) time off, but the question remains when you return from that vacation: Now that busy season is over, what will you do?

For Kildal Services, this is a question that I start thinking about as soon as our busy starts. At the end of each year, we set goals related to revenue, clients and team members. Having these goals in place helps us plan when busy season is over – what sort of marketing will we do? To whom will be market? What sort of budget are we going to have to work with?

Busy season is over, now what will you do?

 

Our plan this year is simple:

  1. Get more active in local activities. Now that busy season is over, I’ve already participated by co-sponsoring a TGIF Coffee for the Highland White Lake Business Association, and am scheduled to have a table at the local high school Career Day.
  2. Try out a new marketing approach: custom landing pages, combined with Facebook, LinkedIn and Google Ads
  3. Stick to the types of clients we love (photographers, auto repair, landscaping, PR/marketing & consultants), and the services (technology consulting, QBO conversions,  QuickReview™ and of course, bookkeeping) we do best.
  4. Cleaning up our website, to add more consistency and calls to action.

 

Now that busy season is over, we’ll also be revamping content for Weeks 1 & 4 in StacyKAcademy.com, and revamping the entire site to make it easier to navigate.

I’d love to hear from you:

Busy season is over, what are your plans for 2017?

Mount St. Laundry & Breaking Down a Process

Mount St. Laundry & Breaking Down a Process

This week on QBO Show, our guest was Joe Woodard, and we discussed the upcoming Scaling New Heights conference, and it got me thinking about Mount St. Laundry and the entire idea of breaking down a process – whatever that process might be.

As he was explaining the theme behind this year’s conference, it dawned on me that it was similar to what I teach in StacyK Academy. It’s a variation of what I first referred to as Mount St. Laundry, way back in 2011, what I’ve talked about many times on previous shows, and brought up recently on my own blog, as well as Intuit’s Firm of the Future site.

This Mount St. Laundry idea (you can listen to me explain it here, start around the 16:40 mark, it finishes around 20:15), is what prompted me to begin planning StacyK Academy in 2014, and launch it the summer of 2015.

The Mount St. Laundry theory is breaking down a process and tackling each part, one at a time.

 

If you don’t want to listen to that part of the show, the TL;DR is this: managing a certain part your business is like dealing with a pile of laundry. It looms over you and can seem overwhelming, until you divide it up – whites, darks, reds, etc – and take on each small load. It’s all about breaking down a process and taking on each part of it, one step at a time.

Breaking down a process = sorting laundry

Breaking down a process, like sorting a giant pile of laundry, makes it easier to manage

Here are just a few steps in the path to tackle your Mount St. Laundry (or your client’s) and begin breaking down a process. We’ll use a common one I hear in the accounting community: “How do I grow my practice?”.

  1. Identifying why it needs to be addressed. Is this internal pressure, or external? Internal pressure may be that you have a goal to build a business that you can sell, or you’re at a tipping point and can’t take on any more clients without hiring. External pressure might be that you’re being told you need to grow, or your clients are asking for additional services.
  2. Examining what you’re doing. Take a look at the types of clients you have, compared to what you’d like to have. What about your team members? What’s working? What isn’t?
  3. Defining the desired outcome. I’ve found that many times, it’s easier to work backwards from what you’re looking to accomplish. For this use case, you should figure out what “grow” means. Does it mean more clients? More staff or team members? More revenue? It could even be something as simple as you personally want to work less hours. It could even be all of the above.
  4. Breaking down a process. Working backwards from your goal in growing, break that down into smaller parts to take on. Clients, staff, revenue. For clients, let go of the ones that won’t help you reach the goal, and come up with a marketing plan to acquire those that will. For staff, start documenting workflow so they have the 3 aspects I teach in StacyK Academy: repeatable, trainable & scalable; this will make it easier for existing team members and any new hires to be on the same page. For revenue, you can evaluate current services and look for ways to streamline, look at additional services to add to your offerings, and examine current pricing to ensure you’re charging enough to cover your costs and that it can scale with your business.

I’ve been trying to help fellow accounting professionals with this for quite a few years now. In 2013, it was providing them with an action plan to move their practice online while presenting Intuit’s Find Freedom in the Cloud. These days it’s providing a checklist for new ProAdvisors, or via StacyK Academy by providing training and tools for managing their practice.My point here isn’t “I’ve been doing this forever”; I’m trying to say that this is an issue that any type of business will continue to encounter. I’m so glad to see the Scaling New Heights conference this summer taking on this theme as well! 

My last piece of advice for this: relax. Don’t feel pressure to grow just because. Right now might not be the best time to do this, for a variety of reasons. Take your time to plan your growth; you don’t want to be stressed out, you don’t want to lose good team members, and you want to be able to provide stellar customer service. Be realistic about expectations; you probably won’t double your revenue in the next 12 months. I think this might always be an issue, for many people: taking on the Mount St. Laundry and breaking down a process, whatever that process might be.

By breaking down a process into actionable steps, we can achieve business goals

 

If we look at each small load of clothes we can put in the washer, rather than just staring at the intimidating Mount St. Laundry… if we look at breaking down a process into actionable steps, we can achieve business goals – heck, life goal in general – with a plan, and so much less stress. In the end, we’ll all end up smelling like a mountain breeze, right?

Bookkeepers: What to do when Clients Don’t Value Services Part 1

Bookkeepers: What to do when Clients Don’t Value Services Part 1

I hear pretty frequently: conversations I have when I’m doing an Intuit training to posts in my Facebook group: clients don’t value services.

Here’s what you can do if you suspect clients don’t value services

 

That lack of value shows up in various ways. When clients don’t get you the information you need, when they look for cheaper services, when they question your knowledge, etc.

For a long time, we were plagued by this problem. It seemed like our clients were always demanding—no expecting—us to drop everything to attend to their current issue right that minute. It left us frustrated and was one of the catalysts for revamping the way we run my Kildal Services.

The answer I found to becoming an essential partner and advisor to your clients is two-pronged:

  1. Continually show value.
  2. Find better clients.

Let me explain.

Avoid a situation where clients don’t value service by continuing to show that value in various ways

 

Continually Show Value

I’ll admit this topic was a bit frustrating to me at first. I want the people we work with to trust us, know that we know what we’re doing, and have their best interest in mind, without having to do anything. Luckily, I’ve learned a few tricks through the years, like:

    1. Set goals together. When you engage with a client, ensure you know their goals for hiring a bookkeeper. Set your processes based on those goals. For example, if they want a handle on their expenses, figure out a process for communicating what’s going on with their expenses so you can help them.
    2. Deliver on your promises. Consistently do what you say you are going to do when you said you were going to do it. If you screw up, take action. Here’s a blog I wrote about handling screw ups.
    3. Manage expectations. For example, I make it clear to clients that I prefer email and text to communicate. I also let them know there are no bookkeeping emergencies. While saying this, I also reassure them that I am responsive, that I truly care about their success and that I value working with them. Letting them know this upfront solves a lot of problems down the line.
    4. Provide expertise. This is easier at the beginning of an engagement when you have the opportunity to impact their processes and recommend apps that will make their life easier. Make a point to check in with clients regularly to see how things are working so you can offer additional workflow suggestions.
    5. Be proactive. I have a landscaping client that’s business fluctuates seasonally. I noticed this cash flow reflected in their books, so I recommended we decrease our services during their slow time. This helps them manage cash flow and built loyalty because they know I have their best interest at heart.
    6. Be a resource. Let them know you are available to answer their bookkeeping and accounting questions. If you don’t have an answer, I know you can find it!
    7. Celebrate their success. When you see a client adding more revenue, getting more clients or just doing something great, congratulate them.

It helps when I remember what clients care the most about. Their own success. When I remember that, it always puts things in perspective.

In my next blog, I’ll expand upon how having the right clients makes a difference.

My Checklist vs Their Checklist: One Size Probably Doesn’t Fit All

My Checklist vs Their Checklist: One Size Probably Doesn’t Fit All

I get a lot of requests asking me to share task checklists. And here’s the thing: I don’t quite get while folks would want my checklist vs their checklist. So, I brought the question up during my recent StacyK Academy office hours. Office Hours is time I spend each week with my current (and sometimes former) students to answer questions and facilitate discussion.

I said: “I don’t get it.”

“I don’t get how my checklist will work for someone else.”

Why? Because there are a lot of variables to an individual bookkeeping practice checklist, like:

  • What services do you provide that client? AR, AP, payroll?
  • How do you like to work? One client at a time or one task at a time?
  • Do you have a team working or are you on your own?

There are so many variables.

I don’t know if  my checklist would work for anyone else.

So instead of sharing my client checklist, I’ll share some of the project management tools we ended discussed during that Friday meeting. These are tools designed to keep people on track, like:

  • My ChecklistGoogle drive/sheets/forms docs. I’ve talked about I use GSuite to run my business. (Did I mention I love Google forms?) Did you know that NOT ONLY can you create, store and share documents with GDrive, but you can ALSO use Google sheets as a project management tool, even assigning tasks. Learn more from this hand article (not mine).
  • Gqueues. Several of my students use this handy tool to organize their workflow. Have you tried
  • Slack. I’ve mentioned before my love of Slack. This tool allows me to communicate with my business partner, Shannon, and keep things out of email. It’s searchable. It allows for file storage, reminders for recurring taaks and you can create checklists. You can also integrate other apps like Google Drive, Dropbox, Zoom or use webhooks to help work better, faster, smarter.
  • Email. I know, I know! You’re not “supposed” to use your email as a To Do List. But I say this: if it works for you, then go for it. I leave things in my inbox until I’m at place or have time to take care of them. I use it, with Boomerang for Gmail, to manage prospect follow up. If you haven’t heard my #inboxzero pitch, you probably won’t understand my love and obsession with Boomerang.

 

Bottom line here is that my checklist(s) may not work for what others are doing – the best bet is to work with someone to help you document the processes and tasks for which you need a checklist – what works for some doesn’t work for others!

There is no right or wrong tool—only things that work better for each individual person or firm.

I’d love to hear your favorite project management tools! Share them here.

Intuit’s Crystal Ball

Image courtesy of Nutdanai Apikhomboonwaroot at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of Nutdanai Apikhomboonwaroot at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

My friend Kim Amsbaugh’s recent blog recaps the 2013 Future of Accountancy Report. The latest and greatest report will be unveiled at QuickBooks Connect in October.

When I re-read the report, I realize it ties directly into why I started StacyK Academy.

Specifically, these predictions:

2013 Prediction: Accounting Profession’s Shifting Business Conditions Creates Threats and Opportunities.

StacyK response: Find your jam, man! Intuit recommends differentiating yourself to make sure you’re working in your sweet spot and to make it easier for clients to find you. Week 1 of Build Your Kickass Practice goes into detail on how to find your jam. Our S’Marketing class takes it to the next level, helping you determine how to use your jam to differentiate yourself AND identify the right folks to work with.

2013 Prediction: Online, Mobile, Social Technologies.

StacyK response: As a technology geek, I love finding the right apps for my practice and to help my clients succeed. I share my favorite apps during Building Your Kickass Practice, via my Appasaurus Rex webinars and on the Between Wall and Main/Appasaurus Rex Facebook Group. You can also use apps to help differentiate yourself and your practice and just make life easier!

2013: Demographic Shifts

StacyK response: Intuit says millennials are looking for careers that provide work-life balance and flexibility. If you know anything about my approach to business, you know I’m all about building a practice that works for your life. I’ve done a couple of webinars that may help you: Work/Life Balance and Setting Client Boundaries webinar outline my #nobookkeepingemergencies approach to life.

We’ll see what Intuit’s 2016 report reveals when they share the results at QuickBooks Connect. As for the latest StacyK response, I’ll be offering short courses and webinars to help answer your questions on a variety of topics like Apps, processes, how to use QuickBooks, growing your business. These “quick hits” will be taught by me as well as my trusted advisors. We’re in the planning phases, but will let you know what we have coming up soon.

In the meantime, I’m on the road again for Intuit, teaching QuickBooks Online around the country. Join me if you live near any of these locations:

Learn more or register today.

 

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