QuickBooks provides you with great tools to make tax preparation faster and easier. The advantages include fast data entry from receipts or manual records, the ability to quickly identify and correct accounting errors, and the ability to, with the click of a button, to import your QuickBooks records into tax preparation software like TurboTax. In this article, I’ll discuss how QuickBooks makes data entry fast.
To get an idea about how important fast data entry is, let’s talk about transactions per minute. If you know how to take advantage of QuickBooks data entry features, you can triple the speed at which you enter transactions. If you are paying someone to enter transactions you just achieved a 66% savings on the same work. It also means that person can now do three times the work in the same time. If you are entering transactions yourself, you now have a lot more time to do something you would rather be doing.
If you want to triple your speed, you will rarely use your mouse.
Use your Tab key to select the next field on a form and Shift Tab to move to the last field. Complete each field and press Tab to move to the next field. In it’s default setup, QuickBooks assumes that hitting the Enter key means you have completed the form and want to save it
When you move to a date field type the date in “mmddyy” format. QuickBooks will reformat the date to “mm/dd/yyyy” as you Tab to the next field.
When you move to a field with a dropdown menu, start typing the name of the menu item you want. As you type QuickBooks filters your selection list based on the characters you have typed. I have found that, in most cases, you only need to type three characters to select the menu item you want and depress Tab to move to the next field. If you have still not highlighted the menu item you want but see it on the screen, use your cursor keys, $#, to move the selection and depress Tab to move to the next field.
Adding Vendors, Customers, Accounts, etc. “On the Fly”
If you need to add a vendor, customer, or account, you can add them on the fly as you enter to your form. While you can select the top menu item in a dropdown list “Add New” to do this, it is faster to start typing the name. If the menu selection exists you hit tab and move to the next field. If it doesn’t exist continue typing the full name as you want it to appear in the master file and press Tab to move to the next field. You will be prompted to add your entry and, if necessary, select the appropriate master; vendor, customer, account, etc. You usually just need to hit your Enter key to select the “Quick Add” default and master file from these popup forms to continue entering to your form.