There's only a few days left now until the end of the financial year, but a few tweaks to our favourite small business financial software could make your life easier.
While there are no major changes to QuickBooks’ user interface in this new version - for example, the program still opens with the familiar ‘flowchart’ diagram putting most everyday operations just a click away - there have been some useful changes. One example is the company snapshot, which is now more graphical and allows customised views of up a dozen key items such as income and expense trend, and customers who owe money. The items available are controlled by the user’s access permissions, but can be individually varied within those limits.
The global search feature still relies on Google Desktop, which not everybody wants on their computer, but the 2011/12 edition introduces partial searching in the customer and supplier centres. So a search for ‘Vic’ might match Vic Smith, VicRoads, or any entry where those three letters appeared consecutively in a physical or email address.
QuickBooks 2011/12 is the first version to hook into the Federal Government’s Small Business Reporting system, initially for BAS and IAS lodgement but with other transactions planned. It was not possible to test this GovConnect feature as it requires a valid AUSkey, but we witnessed a live demonstration and it seemed to work smoothly. Use of GovConnect beyond the first year requires a support and maintenance subscription.
The BAS generator still doesn’t know which tax categories should be included under each label. Irritating, but Reckon officials claim that doing so would constitute giving tax advice. That may also be the explanation for the Paid Parental Leave setup seeming unnecessarily complicated, but we would prefer a predefined payroll item for this purpose.
The QuickBooks 2011/12 family starts with EasyStart Lite at $49, rising to Premier (three licences) at $1599. Annual subscriptions are also offered.
The latest version has some useful improvements, and QuickBooks remains our preferred accounting program for small businesses.Available from Reckon, retailing for $960 (Pro version)
.APC rating: 8/10 (Highly Recommended)