Bookkeeping Tips

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2022

You may have already visited the Knowlegde Base to find answers to your questions or to troubleshoot, but have you met Ruby the Robot?

You can find Ruby when you're logged into FreeAgent by clicking on the blue 'Help' button in the bottom right-hand corner of the screen. From there, Ruby will pop up and offer her services to help answer questions and to search the Knowlegde Base for you.

If your question is outside Ruby's remit, contact our in-house software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith. 

I use Xero every day and for me by far, the best time saving feature is having more than one session open at time.

This is especially helpful if you have more than one screen set up - However it is quite accessible with only one screen as you can [ALT & ←] to skip between screens.

With two sessions open at a time - You can have the bank reconciliation screen open and the files option open.

This will enable you to load and enter the invoices and receipts and check and match the payments that have come out of your bank with a quick ‘click’ 

Keyboard shortcuts can help you save time and allow you to keep your hands on the keyboard when you enter information into QuickBooks Online. Use these keyboards shortcuts when working in a transaction window. Mac users can substitute Option for Alt in the following table.

There's also an easy way to access these common commands with a shortcut of its own. By hitting CTRL + ALT + ? for PC or CTRL + OPTION + MAC, a menu will pop up with these shortcuts, which are summarised below.

 

Function Keyboard Shortcut
Open the Expense window Ctrl+Alt+X
Open the Estimate window Ctrl+Alt+E
Open the Invoice Transaction window Ctrl+Alt+I
Open the receive Payment window Ctrl+Alt+R
Display Help Ctrl+Alt+H
Display the Lists page Ctrl+Alt+L
Display the Customers page Ctrl+Alt+C
Display the Vendors page Ctrl+Alt+V
Display the Chart of Accounts page Ctrl+Alt+A
Display the Search Transition page Ctrl+Alt+F
Display keyboard shortcuts Ctrl+Alt+/
Print the transaction Ctrl+Alt+P

Insights is an innovative feature that uses your data in FreeAgent to highlight certain aspects of your business' performance - as well as opportunites and potential issues - so that you make better informed decisions about your business and finances. At the moment there are four insights available:

  • Top customers - Insights highlights your top five customers from the last six months.
  • Upcoming VAT payment - this lets you know when you have an upcoming VAT payment to budget for.
  • Slowest-paying customers - this shows you your slowest-paying customers from the past 12 months and offers guidance to help you get paid faster.
  • Top spending catergories - this highlights your top five spending catergories from the last six months to give you a clearer picture of your outgoings.

Keen to check out your most recent insights? Navigate to the bell-shaped icon at the top right of your screen in FreeAgent and dive straight in!

If you have regular invoices to send or bills to pay, save yourself the trouble of having to repeat the same process again and again with this Xero trick. The repeating invoice function can be used by developing a template and Xero will automatically create an invoice or bill for you based on the frequency you specify. 
 
This function is really flexible - Xero will allow you to place the invoice in draft [so you can check the invoice before sending] or approve and send out to the customer straight away  - on the date you have specified in the template.
You can also use this feature for repeating ‘bills’ [ supplier invoices] by creating a repeating bill template in the same way as a Sales invoice template.
 
If you would like to learn how this amazing feature can save you valuable processing time – please do contact Anna Rowson-Smith.
I would advise that you should reconcile your bank account on a regular basis, weekly or monthly depending on the amount of transactions that are going through your bank.  

Most importantly before your VAT return is due.
A handy hint would be to complete a reconciliation in Quickbooks

  • Click on Accounting on the left hand side
  • Click on reconcile
  • Choose your account to reconcile
  • Add in the date and the balance of your actual bank at the date you have entered
  • The difference should be 0.00*
  • Click on the green button – finish now
  • *If there is a discrepancy – this will need to be investigated and rectified

2021

It happens to everyone: you’re in a groove, zooming through your bank feed and before you know it, you’ve incorrectly matched a transaction.

Xero’s “unreconcile” feature lets you fix this mistake quickly.

Since unreconcile keeps the account transaction and the bank statement line but removes the connection between them, this Xero tip will save you a ton of time and hassle.

Here is how to unreconcile an account transaction:

  • Click on the three little dots to the right of the account name on the Dashboard.
  • Go to account transactions under the find header.
  • Click the transaction you want to change to open it.
  • On the next screen, click options and then select unreconcile.
  • Click OK on the pop-up window to unreconcile the transaction.
  • After you’ve completed this process, you can now re-reconcile the bank statement line.

Are you are interested in having a bookkeeping review with our practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith?

What is involved in a bookkeeping review?

  • Bank reconciliations check
  • Category posting checks
  • VAT code checks
  • Duplicate transaction checks

If you are interested in a Bookkeeping review please contact Anna on annarowson-smith@ellis-uk.com  

Fees will apply.

In any business it’s important you know what’s going on with your hard-earned money.

In QuickBooks you can ensure your accounts always reconcile.

For example; when you receive a statement or a payment remittance, ensure it reconciles with your QuickBooks.

This covers all statements, including those for credit cards, loans and bank accounts.

It is important that the actual bank balance matches to the reconciled balance in QuickBooks, this is a common issue that we do come across when completing the year end accounts.

Are you are interested in having a bookkeeping review with our practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith?

What is involved in a bookkeeping review?

  • Bank reconciliations check
  • Category posting checks
  • VAT code checks
  • Duplicate transaction checks

If you are interested in a Bookkeeping review please contact Anna on annarowson-smith@ellis-uk.com  

Fees will apply.

Practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith, will be sharing her bookkeeping tips in every edition of our newsletter.

This month… FreeAgent… let Ruby help you!

FreeAgent has a new helper, meet Ruby the Robot.

If you need to troubleshoot or ask any questions whilst using FreeAgent click on the blue help button (bottom right hand corner) and Ruby will pop up.

Ruby will help answer any questions and if outside her remit she’ll put you in touch with a member of the FreeAgent team.

Are you are interested in having a bookkeeping review with our practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith?

What is involved in a bookkeeping review?

  • Bank reconciliations check
  • Category posting checks
  • VAT code checks
  • Duplicate transaction checks

If you are interested in a Bookkeeping review please contact Anna on annarowson-smith@ellis-uk.com  

Fees will apply.

Perform quick actions with ‘+’ button

On the top right hand you’ll see a small plus icon (+).

Click the icon to quickly access several different functions including creating a purchase order, invoice, or contact.

Are you are interested in having a bookkeeping review with our practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith?

What is involved in a bookkeeping review?

  • Bank reconciliations check
  • Category posting checks
  • VAT code checks
  • Duplicate transaction checks

If you are interested in a Bookkeeping review please contact Anna on annarowson-smith@ellis-uk.com  

Fees will apply.

Practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith shares her bookkeeping tips... 

This month… Quickbooks handy hint

You can open more than one Tab when using Quickbooks online

For a quick link, right click on any link in QuickBooks and click open link in new tab.

I find this useful if you are checking transactions when entering or wanting to check the account code for posting transactions.

Are you are interested in having a bookkeeping review with our practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith?

What is involved in a bookkeeping review?

  • Bank reconciliations check
  • Category posting checks
  • VAT code checks
  • Duplicate transaction checks

If you are interested in a Bookkeeping review please contact Anna on annarowson-smith@ellis-uk.com  

Fees will apply.

 

Practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith, shares her bookkeeping tips... 

This month… Xero multi-factor authentication (MFA).

Cyber-attacks have increased dramatically since the start of the pandemic.

The results of a cyber-attack can be devastating, in order to protect its users even further Xero will be introducing a mandatory multi-factor authentication (MFA).

This added security will be brought in from early April (2021), with users invited to opt into MFA and use an authentication app, such as Xero Verify.

Xero Verify will send out push notifications to ensure it is the user trying to log in, therefore preventing anyone else trying to access your account.

Xero will contact all users in early April.

Are you are interested in having a bookkeeping review with our practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith?

What is involved in a bookkeeping review?

  • Bank reconciliations check
  • Category posting checks
  • VAT code checks
  • Duplicate transaction checks

If you are interested in a Bookkeeping review please contact Anna on annarowson-smith@ellis-uk.com  

Fees will apply.

Practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith shares her bookkeeping tips... 

This month…Store your business files right inside FreeAgent

You probably have files and documents that you like to have to hand while you’re working on your business accounts, so why not bring them straight into FreeAgent?

Simply upload your docs to the 'Files' area of your account using the storing company files feature or email the documents directly to your FreeAgent account!

To find this click on the company name on the top right hand side /files.

Compose a new email in the email account that you use to log into FreeAgent, attach the files and then send the email to files@[yoursubdomain].freeagent.com.

(Here’s how to find your subdomain if you’re not sure.)

Once the email has been received, the files will automatically be uploaded to the Files area of your FreeAgent account.

Are you are interested in having a bookkeeping review with our practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith?

What is involved in a bookkeeping review?

  • Bank reconciliations check
  • Category posting checks
  • VAT code checks
  • Duplicate transaction checks

If you are interested in a Bookkeeping review please contact Anna on annarowson-smith@ellis-uk.com  

Fees will apply.

Xero has an inbuilt calculator that allows you to perform basic math functions directly in certain fields. Using this calculator decreases the chance of an entry error

The inbuilt calculator has addition, subtraction, multiplication, division and group functionality.

To use it, just type in an equation — like 15 * 1.12 — into a field. Press enter or tab and Xero calculates the result. You can use this calculator for transactions as well as manual journals. 

If you are interested in a Bookkeeping review please contact Anna on annarowson-smith@ellis-uk.com  

Fees will apply.

Practice bookkeeper and software specialist Anna Rowson-Smith shares her bookkeeping tips... 

To help you organise and easily find the reports you prefer and use on a regular basis.

 
Go to the reports section in Quickbooks on the left hand side - you can add the reports to your favourites list by simply clicking on to the Star next to the report heading.
Once the star is green it will be added to the ’quick view’ favourites section at the top of the reports screen.
 
You can also customise reports and add these to your favourites list

If you are interested in a Bookkeeping review please contact Anna on annarowson-smith@ellis-uk.com  

Fees will apply.