Here’s an “efficiency” improvement added to the Accountant versions of QuickBooks (QuickBooks Accountant 2013 and QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions Accountant V13.0). The ability to enter a batch of transactions for checks, deposits, and credit card charges. If you want to enter a large number of these transactions quickly (perhaps from a spreadsheet) this feature could save you time.
Access this feature by selecting Accountant in the menu bar, then Batch Enter Transactions. You can select the transaction type and account to work with (credit card accounts will be listed if you select the credit card transaction type). Note that this is also available in QuickBooks Professional Bookkeeper in the Bookkeeper menu.
As you start entering the transactions the system will automatically increment the number (check number, in this example) for you. It is nice to note that Intuit is supporting the standard keyboard shortcuts for dates in the date field.
You can also paste information into this form from Excel, but it is important to get the columns in the right order and containing the correct information for this to work smoothly. Also, make sure you have clicked on the first column in the form before you do the paste, to get it to align correctly.
Information like “Payee” is going to have to be spelled correctly. That makes sense, you can’t expect to paste in “Slater” and expect it to be accepted for “Sleeter”.
For “Account”, even though I have account numbers showing in the window in my example, you can just use the account name without the number.
If there is an error, or a field left blank that QuickBooks fills in for you, it will be highlighted in red.
As with the Add/Edit Multiple List feature, there are a number of functions available to aid entry. Right click on a cell to see a popup menu – you’ll find the useful copy down, duplicate row and clear column functions (and more).
When you are are done entering data, click the Save Transactions button. The transactions are saved (if there are no errors) and you can find them in the appropriate register or transaction window.
The screen shots above show you the default selections of columns for a check. You can also customize this to show more columns. Here’s a compressed view of the check entry with all of the available columns added. Note that you can use items in place of an account.
Here’s the check that is created, and as you can see it properly puts the “item” on the items tab.
You can enter multiple lines (or “splits”) for the transaction by clicking on the Split button (or using ctrl-S).
Bugs? Sigh, Yes.
Yes, this is the R1 release, and I’m resigned to finding that there may be bugs. The key issue will be how many of these problems get fixed in the early updates, which we know are on the way soon.
At this point I have only found one bug, and for some people it might not be too bad. You do have some degree of control over this, I think.
I’m pasting a check from an Excel spreadsheet. You’ll notice in my screen shots that each time I paste it there are some small differences in the data – that is because I was trying different variables to try to pin this bug down. The variations in the data I used don’t affect the results.
Here’s my test post, a simple check with a check number.
I save this transaction, then go to the Write Checks window. Note that the Print Later box is checked, but my check number came through from the batch transaction.
Now, here is another check that I created later in a different set of data, posted again through the Batch feature. In this case, note that the Print Later box is NOT checked.
Third set of data, similar Batch entry. This time note that the Print Later box IS checked but the Check Number is “To Print”.
In the Batch Enter Transactions window I don’t see a way to control if the Print Later box is checked. Also, in each case, I entered a check number that should have carried through to the saved check. What is going on here?
As near as I can tell from a quick test, what happens in these two fields depends on the state of the last check written to this checking account. That is, if I create and save a check in the Write Checks window and save it with Print Later marked, then the imported checks will be marked Print Later. If I don’t have it marked, the imported checks will not have it marked. There is a similar interaction with the check number.
We need to be able to control this. If I’m entering a batch of checks that were already written, I need the Print Later box to not be checked. If I’m entering manual checks I need to have my manual check numbers carry into the transaction.
I guess the good news here is that I have some control over this by going into the Write Check window and saving a check the way I want it to be saved, then doing my batch import. However, we need better control over this.
I like this feature and from my initial testing it seems to work very cleanly OTHER than the problem I reported, which I hope will be fixed in an upcoming release. I can see many situations where an accounting professional can use this when working with client files. It can save a LOT of time and effort when doing bulk imports.
If you have a situation where you want to quickly enter information from a handwritten list, or paste in transactions from an Excel spreadsheet without having to purchase an add-on like the Transaction Pro Importer, this could be a useful feature.