Group vs. Inventory - Accounting Software Secrets
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Group vs. Inventory

Group vs. Inventory

Inventory Assembly Parts

With Premier Version 2003 there was a new type of item called inventory assembly.  The concept of this item is similar to a group (a way in current and previous versions of quickly entering several items at once, but reporting remains on the individual items); however, it is “built” from only inventory type items and tracked as a new inventory item (i.e. the average cost of all the individual components is transferred to the new inventory item). 

The help topic chart (shown below) is useful in comparing the inventory assembly and group type items.

Group item

Inventory assembly item

Can include combinations of different item types, such as inventory and service items

Can contain only inventory parts or other inventory assembly items

Note: To combine a service item with an assembly item, create a group and include both the assembly item and the service item in the group.

Allows you to print individual items contained in the group on sales forms

Prints only the assembly name, not component part names, on sales forms

No reports available specifically for groups

Will appear after inventory part items on standard inventory reports; pending build report will list builds in the pending state

Quantity on hand of each item included in the group is adjusted in inventory at the time of sale

Quantity on hand of component items is adjusted in inventory when the assembly is built

Sales tax is calculated by individual items included in the group item

One sales tax code applies to the entire assembly, even if component item tax codes differ

Can”t be included in another group (nested) or in an inventory assembly

Can be included (nested) in other inventory assembly items and included in group items

For groups of inventory parts, QuickBooks tracks inventory of items in the group, not the group itself

QuickBooks tracks assembly items in inventory

Price of a group item is the sum of the items in the group (although you can include an item in the group for a discount or additional charge to adjust the simple sum calculation)

Price of an assembly item can be anything you specify

Can be modified after being used in transactions

Can”t be modified after being used in transactions

Can include taxable and nontaxable items

Must be designated as taxable or nontaxable


TIP: If the items are usually custom-ordered, rather than stocked, or if the items are typically drop shipped (i.e. they are sold and invoiced prior to being purchased), it may be more appropriate to use non-inventory parts rather than inventory parts.  This means that the items are recorded as an expense as purchased and as income when sold rather than being recorded through inventory for matching purposes.  QuickBooks Pro or higher will be required to have the income and expense accounts coded appropriately for sales and purchases.

List Limits Expanded

For most QuickBooks users, the list limit for the QuickBooks Pro and Premier products of 14,500 is sufficient.  For some, however, that is not the case.  We have been seeing increased list size for a variety of reasons.  One of the most common is the increased number of customers as the result of web site sales.  For version 6 and prior, the list limit was doubled for the Enterprise Solutions Product.  New with version 7, the Enterprise Solutions limit has been removed.



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