The stereotype is well-established. Accountants are often portrayed in the media with glasses, a pocket calculator, and the personality of a rock. Prior to studying accounting, people warned me of it being the most boring profession there is. While I admit that doing accounting will never be on par with a trip to Disneyland, I’ve learned that accounting can be fun because of the people and the technology.
I work with people more than numbers. My days are full of meetings …
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While Xero has been converting QuickBooks files to its online accounting software platform for some time, it released a tool a few days ago allowing users to upload files themselves for conversion. I am quite happy with the result, but it wasn’t as simple as making a few clicks. When I converted a QuickBooks Online file to Xero, I discovered the following:
Subaccounts may cause problems. I got an error message after uploading my QuickBooks file, but it didn’t specify what …
Continue reading Fixing issues with the new QuickBooks to Xero conversion tool
In Spanish, people have often asked me the question, “¿A qué te dedicas?” While the question is commonly used to ask people what they do for work, the literal translation is “what do you dedicate yourself to?”
The question in Spanish is much more profound, going beyond asking what someone does just to pay the bills. It causes me to ponder what drives me to be dedicated and the deeper purpose of why I do what I do.
In one of my …
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People have different preferences for adding up a few numbers. Some seem to be born with the talent of doing difficult math in their heads. Some accountants love running a tape on a 10-key. Excel is the tool of choice for others.
Lately, I have experimented with using Siri as my calculator. Siri is a personal assistant on Apple devices that uses natural language to communicate (in case you didn’t know). We are getting closer to the future depicted in Star …
Continue reading Siri figures she is good at math
This month, I’ve pulled The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey off my bookshelf. Though I’ve read it a few times, each time I re-read it, I discover something new that inspires me. This time, I’ve given a lot of thought to the time management matrix which classifies activities by urgency and importance. Like many people, my time is consumed by urgent tasks, though not all may be important. Often neglected are less urgent, but deeply important …
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Someone recently told me that an accountant’s favorite number is zero. After spending approximately zero seconds pondering the statement, I asked why. Her response was that when reconciling an account in QuickBooks, if the difference line is $0.00, it is reconciled correctly and her work is done! I agree that it is a great feeling. (Just say “no” to reconciliation discrepancies, which is what happens if the difference line is not zero.)
Come to think of it, zero is a solid …
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Online and mobile banking offer quite a bit more than bill pay, PDF statements and a summary of recent activity. Some of the best time-saving features aren’t as well known, such as:
Alerts. It’s common knowledge that it’s a good idea to frequently monitor bank activity for errors and fraudulent activity. I have signed up for e-mail alerts whenever there are international, Internet, phone or mail order purchases made with my debit card, as well as when purchases and ATM withdrawals …
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When I was a young boy, I asked my dad about the origin of our last name. He wasn’t sure and guessed that it must have come from someone long ago who made wheels. That is about as uninteresting as me saying I’m an accountant who does taxes.
The actual origin is a little more exciting than what is often depicted as prehistoric man’s first invention. I did a Google* search for information about the Wheeler family and found “The Genealogical …
Continue reading The origin of the name Wheeler (it isn’t what you think)
Like many accountants, my mind thinks in debits and credits.* As a double entry accounting system, QuickBooks works in debits and credits, though it does a good job hiding it from non-accountant users with its use of items and user-friendly input screens such as a “write checks” window that looks like a paper check. Below is an example of an invoice entry screen. I might have a good guess about the debits and credits working behind the scenes of this …
Continue reading The QuickBooks shortcut every accountant should know
One of my favorite things about Xero, an online accounting software, is its ability to automatically categorize transactions based on a customized set of rules. While other accounting software have some built-in automation features (such as pre-filling information from the last entered transaction for a payee), Xero is unique in that it categorizes transactions when they match certain conditions for payees, amounts, references, etc.
While this automation can save a lot of time classifying transactions, it could also result in misclassifications if …
Continue reading Set amount thresholds in Xero bank rules so fixed assets aren’t expensed