QuickBooks continues to be the premier, best selling accounting software for small businesses. Intuit is constantly improving their software with features that make it easy for accountants to access and work with the data at tax time.

Although QuickBooks is very intuitive and easy to use, because of the complexity of the program, clients without an accounting or bookkeeping training can easily setup the program incorrectly and make mistakes in data entry. A small investment up front to install the program correctly and make sure that staff are using it properly will pay off later in greatly reduced bills from the tax accountant and in accurate financial data for good decision making.

Just as maintaining your physical health is important to your own well being and survival, the health of your company’s financial data is important to the survival of your business. Healthy financial data allows business owners to plan for the future, identify and correct current problems, judge the effect of changes in strategy, and deliver accurate tax information to their tax preparer.

Healthy financial data means that the data file has been set up properly and is free from corruption. Transaction entry is accurate, and follows standard accounting principles and best software practices. Important reports like financial statements and customer account balance reports are accurate because the underlying data is correct.

Many times the person responsible for maintaining the books at a small company or not-for-profit has limited or non-existent accounting or bookkeeping training. Often it is the owner or a relative who enters invoices, pays bills, records deposits and reconciles the bank statement.

While use of software such as QuickBooks simplifies and speeds up these tasks, it is still possible to make mistakes. Many owners or their assistants are rushed, don’t understand the software fully or lack understanding of basic accounting principles. Even when a competent part-time bookkeeper has been hired, a complex issue may arise that requires specialized knowledge of QuickBooks and accounting.

Correct installation, use and periodic review of the books by a CPA who is also a QuickBooks certified ProAdvisor can significantly improve the health of your financial data while keeping costs down. You can continue to use the same people for your regular bookkeeping and enlist help and support as you need it.