Financial Statement Reporter - Preliminary Analysis - Accounting Software Secrets
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Financial Statement Reporter – Preliminary Analysis

Financial Statement Reporter – Preliminary Analysis

Financial Statement Reporter – Preliminary Analysis

After attending a July 2003 webinar with Steve Brummet from Intuit on the new financial statement reporter add on released last month, the following features were discovered that you may find interesting.

First, regarding annual updates, Steve stated that it will probably have an annual update fee to work with the latest version going forward; however, the current product will work with both Version 2003 Premier Accountant Edition and 2004.

Second there are several nice formatting and printing options not easily available when issuing financial statements in any other way. When editing a report template, choose page set up to change the margins (top, bottom, left or right) or to change the orientation from portrait to landscape. It is also possible to change the fonts globally by right clicking on the report with the template open then choose font. To add supporting schedules (for example the total shows on the face of the statement but the sub-account detail will be a supplemental schedule) click on the account name (you can tell that you are on the correct line by the small triangles on each side) then choose tools and attach supporting schedule. Note that there is not any way to change any of the formatting on the supplemental schedule. And finally, to print, check all the boxes for the reports to be included then on the print screen you have control over the order the reports will print so the page numbers will be correct.

There is a 60 day money back guarantee with the product but there is not a trial version available.

June 17, 2003

Here are a couple of updated tidbits of information about the Financial Statement Reporter add on available from Intuit based on questions we have received from the article last week.

The 5 uses before you register was confusing to some of you. I apologize. You can use it 5 times before you register, but there is not a trial version of the product available at this time.

There are specific report templates that can be customized, but I have not found a way to create the reports by class, nor do any of them include budget information to the best of my knowledge.

June 10, 2003

Intuit began shipping a new add on last week called Financial Statement Reporter.

Financial Statement Reporter: In May, 2003, Intuit released a new add on called the Financial Statement Reporter. It adds another choice to the reports pull down menu which will automatically launch the add-on. There is increased flexibility in report presentation including expanding only specific account groupings (while leaving others collapsed), addition of $ to the first and last line of the reports, control over the page numbers. In additional several report templates are available that are not possible in QuickBooks alone. The reports are still based on the chart of accounts for the basic structure; the add-on does permit changing the account type names description and the location of the accounts on the financials. There are also templates for the title page, accountant reports, and a blank template that can be used for creating the notes pages for the financial statements.

This add-on requires release 7 and QuickBooks Premier 2003. Without the release 7 update, the following error message will be received: Unable to attach to your QuickBooks data file.

Update: With the Financial Statement Reporter add on from Intuit, there are no reports by class or to compare budget versus actual. (6/17/03)

Update: The Financial Statement Reporter add on from Intuit does not work with an Accountants Copy of the data. The error message received says “Please obtain the original version of the company file to continue.” (6/24/03)

Update: The Financial Statement Reporter add on from Intuit has several nice formatting and printing options not mentioned above plus it will work with the 2004 Premier Accountants Edition too. (7/01/03)

May 27, 2003

Since we passed along the press release from Intuit last week about several new products, we have been flooded with questions about the Financial Statement Reporter. We will have a complete article on it in a few weeks, but we can share what we believe at this point.

Before discussing the specifics of this new product, it is helpful to understand what the other alternatives are for issuing financial statements. Aside from using some type of write up or bookkeeping software package that will import the QuickBooks data and provide report options, there are currently three alternatives when using QuickBooks.

1. Use the financial statements from QuickBooks directly. There are limited modifications available such as changing the report title, collapsing or expanding detail, and adding a footer. These changes can be memorized for future use.

2. Increase flexibility is available when using the Excel interface available in Pro and higher to make changes in the presentation. The disadvantage is that a template, pivotal table or macro is needed to automate the process for the future which is beyond the knowledge of many Excel users.

3. The solution provided by an Excel Add In called Smart Reports for Financial Statement Prep has the benefit of memorizing the reports by saving profiles while adding the flexibility and functionality of Excel.

My understanding is that the new add on Financial Statement Reporter from Intuit is all based on templates. This means it will provide a solution not available in the Smart Reports of the title page and comp letter, as well as the totals in a right column with the detail lines to the left. It appears to have addressed some of the formatting issues such as dollar sign presentation, but still is based on the chart of accounts in QuickBooks. The result is that you do not have the increased flexibility that the Smart Reports permits such as ” merging” several accounts (collapse some accounts and not others), moving accounts to different “sections” (such as undeposited funds to banking or Accounts Receivable into other current assets), merging similar reports such as a monthly budget versus actual and a year-to-date budget versus actual into one report (this feature is available for merging similar reports from different files with Enterprise Solution but not Basic, Pro or Premier).

More information on this topic

Financial Statement Reporter