Chapter 1. Using QuickBooks to Analyze Business Data

IN THIS CHAPTER

  • Advantages and Drawbacks to QuickBooks Reports

  • Excel as an Adjunct to Report Analysis

How did you happen to start using QuickBooks? If you're like most of us, you picked it up because you needed an inexpensive way to do bookkeeping. Maybe you saw an ad on TV or some Web site, or a friend told you about it, or your accountant recommended it.

However QuickBooks first appeared on your computer screen, you probably noticed a few of its characteristics before you bought:

  • And QuickBooks is not merely a bookkeeping application with some T-accounts and a P&L thrown into the mix. It really is an accounting package. Maybe it's not MAS 90, but you do get actual income statements, balance sheets, inventory histories, and so on: the records needed to back up tax returns and loan applications.

But does QuickBooks provide enough tools? That depends on how much you want to get from the application. If all you want or need is to record your revenues and costs so that your accountant can complete your company's tax filings, you're probably all set. There's not much else you need, and my first and only suggestion for you would be to put this book back on the bookstore shelf. (The top shelf would be nice. Thank you.) On the other hand ...

The first textbook on accounting I ever saw was Meigs and Meigs' Accounting. What really struck me about it was its subtitle: The Basis for Business Decisions. For me, that subtitle suddenly took the whole ...

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