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QuickBooks 2011: The Missing Manual by Bonnie Biafore

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Chapter 19. Managing Inventory

As you record inventory purchases and sales in QuickBooks, the program keeps track of your inventory behind the scenes, just as the point-of-service system at the grocery store does when a cashier scans the items you buy. The seemingly automatic tracking in QuickBooks isn’t truly automatic: this chapter begins by reviewing the setup tasks that make the program work its magic.

Good inventory management means more than just updating the number of items that QuickBooks thinks you have on hand. To keep the right number of items in stock, you also need to know how many you’ve sold and how many are on order. To make decisions like how much to charge or which vendor to use, you have to evaluate your purchases and the prices you pay for your inventory. QuickBooks’ inventory reports can help you do this; in this chapter, you’ll learn how to make the most of these reports.

Another important yet challenging aspect of inventory is keeping your QuickBooks records in sync with what’s sitting on the shelves in your warehouse. Inventory can go missing due to theft and damage of all kinds, so you might not have as many products in stock as you think you do. QuickBooks can’t help with the dusty business of rifling through boxes and counting carafes, coffee mugs, and the occasional centipede. But after the counting is complete, QuickBooks can help you adjust its records to match the reality in your warehouse. And adjusting inventory works for more than inventory counts. ...

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