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5. Setting Up Items

Bonnie Biafore O'Reilly Media ePub

Whether you build houses, sell gardening tools, or tell fortunes on the Internet, youll probably use items in QuickBooks to represent the products and services you sell. But to QuickBooks, things like subtotals, discounts, and sales tax are items, too. In fact, nothing appears in the body of a QuickBooks sales form (such as an invoice) unless its an item.

Put another way, to create invoices (which youll learn how to do in Chapter10), sales receipts, or other sales forms in QuickBooks, you need customers and items. So, now that youve got your chart of accounts and customers set up in QuickBooks, its time to dive into items.

This chapter begins by helping you decide whether your business is one of the few that doesnt need items at all. But if your organization is like most and uses business forms like invoices, sales receipts, and so on, the rest of the chapter will teach you how to create, name, edit, and manage the items you add to forms. Youll learn how to use items in invoices and other forms in the remaining chapters of this book.

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19. Exchanging Data Between Programs

Bonnie Biafore O'Reilly Media ePub

Managing projects is much more about communicating with people than tweaking Gantt Charts. Project planning is a collaborative effort among you, the stakeholders, and the rest of the project team. For the duration of the project, people communicate continuously as they complete work, identify and resolve problems, and report statuses.

As youve already seen, Microsoft Project isnt the only program you need for managing projects, especially when it comes to communicating about aspects of your projects: Word documents, Excel spreadsheets, PowerPoint presentations, and other types of files often have better tools. For example, tracking issues and risks is easier in a spreadsheet or a database. (Project Server and Project Online have built-in features for tracking issues and risks.) And PowerPoint is ideal for presenting different views of project information at a status meeting.

Information flows in both directionsfrom other programs to Project and vice versa. For example, after you hammer out costs and estimates in Excel, you can bring them into your Project schedule. Similarly, looking at change request documents, specifications, or quality control graphs from within Project can save the time it takes to open other files in other programs.

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3. Invest with Open Eyes

Bonnie Biafore O'Reilly Media ePub

What’s the biggest obstacle to reaching your financial goals? You. Because you’re human, you have hard-wired idiosyncrasies that push you to make mistakes with your money. This chapter explains those traps and helps you avoid them.

First, you’ll learn how to clean up your finances so you’re ready to invest. Debt has become more of an American habit than eating hotdogs, so you’ll learn which debt is good and which is loaded with nitrates. Then, you’ll find some quick fixes to investment choices you’ve already made. Next, you’ll learn how to control Americans’ second passion, overspending. Finally, this chapter identifies common psychological pitfalls that many people fall into when they invest and shows you how to avoid them—whether that means writing in an investment journal or simply turning off the TV. Consider it your “12-step program” to smart investing.

How you borrow money is as important to financial success as how you save and invest it. Debt is good when you borrow money to achieve an important goal, like buying a house, going to college, starting a business, or buying a car to get to work. Borrowing to buy lots of goods you want but don’t truly have the money for isn’t good money management. And if you pay a high interest rate on that debt (like the rates credit cards typically charge), you’re on your way to financial ruin.

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19. Managing Inventory

Bonnie Biafore O'Reilly Media ePub

As you record inventory purchases and sales in QuickBooks, the program keeps track of your inventory behind the scenes, just as the point-of-service systems at the grocery stores do when a cashier scans the items you buy. The seemingly automatic tracking in QuickBooks isn't truly automatic. This chapter begins by reviewing the setup tasks that make the program work its magic.

Good inventory management means more than updating the number of items that QuickBooks thinks you have on hand. To keep the right number of items in stock, you also need to know how many you've sold and how many are on order. To make decisions like how much to charge or which vendor to use, you have to evaluate your purchases and the prices you pay for your inventory. In this chapter, you'll learn how to make the most of the inventory reports that QuickBooks provides.

Another important yet challenging aspect of inventory is keeping your QuickBooks records in sync with what's sitting on the shelves in your warehouse. Inventory can go missing due to theft and damage of all kinds, so you might not have as many products in stock as you think you do. QuickBooks can't help much with the dusty business of rifling through boxes and counting carafes, coffee mugs, and the occasional centipede. But after the counting is complete, QuickBooks can help you adjust its records to match the reality in your warehouse. Adjusting inventory works for more than inventory counts. You can use this process to write off inventory that you have in your warehouse but can't sell because it's dented, dirty, or too darned ugly.

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22. Customizing the Ribbon and Quick Access Toolbar

Bonnie Biafore O'Reilly Media ePub

Project 2013s ribbon comes with built-in tabs, each organized in a way that makes project-management tasks easier for most people. After using the program for a while, you may discover that some commands get a lot of exercise, that some starve for attention, and that a few you of your favorites are nowhere to be found. For example, may never click any of the Gantt Chart Style buttons to change the color scheme of your task bars, or you might rather see the Format Painter command on the Format tab. And you frequently use the Edit Links command to update the connections to files you link to your Project schedule, but its not available as a button on the ribbon. Fortunately, you can customize which commands you see and where theyre located.

The Quick Access toolbar sits above the left side of the ribbon. Its always visible and doesnt take up much room, so its an ideal home for your all-time favorite commands. As the following section explains, adding commands to it is a breeze.

You can also customize the ribbon to suit your needs. You can turn tabs on or off, create your own tabs and groups, add commands to groups, and rearrange the order of elements on the ribbon (tabs, groups, and commands). This chapter shows you how to do all these things. After you get the Quick Access toolbar and the ribbon the way you want, why keep them to yourself? This chapter wraps up by showing you how to share your customizing with your colleagues.

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