March 2019 Meeting Notes

ALL STAR ACCOUNTING PROFESSIONALS, INC.

Meeting Minutes- Bullet Points

March 7, 2019

 

·        Vice President Melissa Barton opened the March meeting.  Participants introduced themselves and gave shout outs.

·        Today’s topic: QuickBooks and e-Commerce.  Speakers: Alicia Katz Pollock of RoyalWise Solutions and Melissa Barton of SimpleBooks.  One of the hallmarks of e-commerce is the use of electronic payments via website shopping carts.  Amazon and Etsy were mentioned as two retail marketplaces.  The use of third-party merchant processing allows connection to payment processing.  Options for third party processing include Stripe/Authorize and PayPal. 

·        There are pros and cons of integrating electronic payment processing with QuickBooks.  Advantages include reporting and data hub.  Disadvantages include setup, maintenance and redundancy.

·        In discussing sales tax features, shopping carts generally work better than QuickBooks due to the setup work involved. 

·        QuickBooks and clients with inventory-  drop shipment inventory sales, like that used with Amazon, come into QuickBooks monthly.  Third party inventory solutions, such as SOS Inventory or Locate were brought up as better alternatives than QuickBooks.

·        Recording sales into QuickBooks can occur in various ways.

A.      Import actual sales.  This works well for repeat customers because customer names are in QuickBooks.

B.     Import generic sales

C.     Manage as clearing accounts:  Zapier- links any 2 apps; Webgility – maps e-commerce to QuickBooks

D.     Manually enter totals via adjusting journal entries or monthly sales receipts

·        Lightspeed is a point of sale system that connects to QuickBooks.  It is a good value and can map sales.  Ship Station allows customer tracking and creates barcodes.  A core question is what level of mapping is available.  The web designer should be interviewed as to the level of mapping that is available before they provide services. ShareARefund.com tracks shipments and automates shipping refunds if an item has not shipped timely.

·        Software solutions for sales activity include Shopify, Cloud Cart Connector and Webgility.  Zapier can create sales receipts for many e-commerce websites.  Another choice is to not use software but to import from the bank and use the banking rule to automate transaction entries.

·        Roadblocks and problems: 

1.      Returns or credits can be tracked in up to three places – in the shopping cart, at the merchant processor level or in QuickBooks. 

2.      Reconciliations – clearing accounts may not have statements – Shopify doesn’t have a statement.  Also inventory likely needs adjusting with returns.

·        Many business owners like using Stripe but it is harder on bookkeepers. 

·        The next meeting will be April 4, 2019.  The meeting topic will be “Tax Season – What worked and what didn’t work”.

 

 

 

 

 

September 2018 Meeting Notes - Cyber Security-

September 6th Meeting Notes Bulleted

By Melissa Barton

 

Cyber Security           

September 6, 2018

President Kim Boaz opened the meeting with introductions.  She asked what the participants want to get from the group.  The primary responses were:  support, networking opportunities, education, referrals and to learn a variety of ways to do things. 

 

The topic was led by Kristy Cook, JD MPA.

Ms. Cook gave an overview of Cyber Security and ways we can all work on making our businesses more secure.

In this day and age of electronics, there is a good probability that our systems will be breeched sometime and we need to follow the best practices based on our needs and means to the best of our ability.

There are many steps that should be taken to help assure our systems are protected.

·       Take inventory of all assets that are storing information; both hardware and software.  Know where all the data is being stored, don’t forget paper storage.

·       Follow the 3-2-1 back-up system; have 3 backup copies off all sensitive data on 2 different types of media and at least 1 needs to be off-line and at a separate location.

·       Only collect information necessary to do your job, keep it safe and secure and only hold on to it as long as needed.

·       Limit access to all sensitive information.  Restrict who has access, dispose of data security (wipe hard drive and destroy it)

·       If you have an external hard drive make sure no one can easily take the hard drive.

·       Limit remote access to your system, only use for business with secure devices and limit what others can do and how long they can be in your system

·       Authenticate Users:  require strong, complex passwords, Store passwords security, don’t write them down or put into a spreadsheet or notes on your computer.  Guard against brute force attach by limiting how many times someone can try to access your computer before they are locked out

·       Encrypt Data – Keep data secure through its lifecycle.  Encrypt emails, Wi-Fi, remote access, make sure stored safely.

·       Segmenting – Only connect computers and enable file sharing when necessary

·       When working with vendors require them to have security systems in place.  For larger companies, include the right to audit their security protocols, have them list you as an additional insured on their cyber insurance, know where their cloud storage system is located.

·       Use industry standard methods for security

·       Monitor and Defend – Filter emails for spam and malware, use software programs to help detect issues and back up data

·       Train all employees on security protocols

·       Consider having cyber insurance

·       Have a disaster recovery plan

·       Include in engagement letter that their security is important and remind them not to send data via email or other un-encrypted method   If they do, delete the email as soon as you can.  Dropbox is a secure method of delivering data.

It was a good topic, reminding all of us need to be aware of the hazards out there and taking steps to protect ourselves, our business and our client’s data from cyber issues. 

·       Oct 4th meeting will be an open discussion on workflow. Come with questions/issues and ways of how you manage your business.  Meeting will be at Meals on Wheels located at 7710 SW 1st Ave., Portland, OR 97219.  11:30-1:00 pm and it is a bring your own lunch style meeting. 

·       Meet our Members Event scheduled for Oct. 25th 4:30-6:30 at Meals on Wheels.  This event is to invite CPAs, bookkeepers and accountants to learn about us. 

September 7th Meeting Notes - Data: Bring it in or leave it out?

Meeting Minutes Bullet Points September 7, 2017

  • The September 7 meeting was held at the Meals on Wheels location in SW Portland.
  • The speaker for the September 7 meeting was Melissa Barton. Melissa’s topic for the meeting was “Data – Bring it in or leave it Out?”  The high points of her presentation are stated below.
  1. What Kind of Data Could You Bring In?
    1. Databases, sales contracts, timesheets, fixed assets.
    2. Software to assist in bringing in data: Clio, Square, Lightspeed, Esty, Bill4Time, Gusto, MJ Freeway,  Biotrack, SalesForce.
  2. Why Should I Bring Data In?
    1. Balance Sheet may be incorrect without bringing in data
    2. Clients may be using outside systems that aren’t reconciled to your books.
  3. Why Shouldn’t I Bring Data In?
    1. Burden of bringing data in
    2. Too much data to bring in
    3. Not enough data to bring in
    4. Possibly inaccurate data
  4. How Should I Bring Data In?
    1. Sync
    2. Manual upload
    3. Run report and enter manually
    4. Enter adjusting journal entries
  5. How to Bring Information In?
    1. Mapping for integration
    2. Create a manual for yourself and client
  6. Make sure your system is maintainable
    1. Melissa uses Zoom meetings with clients. It is free if you stay under 50 minutes per meeting and is $15/month thereafter
  • Alicia mentioned that on October 5 she is doing a QBO tips and tricks presentation.
  • Our All Star Accounting Professional group will host a “Meet Our Members” event on October 26, 2017. The purpose is to invite other accounting professionals to grow our group and expand the expertise and collaboration of our members.  Kim will be emailing out an evite and RSVP for this event which will be held at the Meals on Wheels location at 7710 SW 31st Avenue, Portland 97219.
  • During the month of December, we get together for lunch and socialization in lieu of our regular meeting. We will post the date and location for our luncheon soon.  As a reminder, our group does not meet in January due to the heavy workload that month.
  • We will be launching an opportunity for members to give a two-minute commercial about their business and services in exchange for providing a $10 or $15 gift card during our monthly meetings.
  • If you are interested in joining our non-profit group, the first meeting is complimentary. Please complete an online application and pay the annual dues before the second meeting.  The application may be found at asappdx.com.
  • Next meeting is Thursday, October 5 at the Meals and Wheels location at 7710 SW 31st Avenue, Portland 97219.

February 2nd 2017 Meeting Minutes -QBO Tips and Tricks

ALL STAR ACCOUNTING PROFESSIONALS, INC. Meeting Minutes

February 2, 2017

Kim Boaz opened the February meeting asking each attendee to introduce themselves, provide shout outs to those members who helped them during the last month or so and allowing each member to state a goal they have for themselves for the year.

Our presenter today was Alicia Katz Pollock and she provided a slide presentation on QuickBooks Online.  Alicia is a QuickBooks trainer with Royalwise.  Training services offered include one-on-one, group, beginner, advanced and webinar classes.  She is in business with her husband, Jamie Pollock and they are Microsoft and Apple certified trainers.  She specializes in QuickBooks accounting setup and questions.

Alicia mentioned that QuickBooks Online (QBO) does many of the same functions as the desktop but in different places.  She explained that the QuickBooks Labs option, selected by clicking on the “gear” at the top right side of the screen, allows the user to turn on or off experimental features that QuickBooks is deciding whether to incorporate in future program releases.  The Audit Trail allows the user to see which prior user made changes, when the changes were made and the transaction before and after the change.  You can filter the changes as well to help locate specific information.  The Audit trail works best if each user has their own login.  You can also select the “More” button at the bottom of the computer screen to access the history of the transaction you are viewing.

The cost per month for QBO is $40 for the Plus version, $30 for Essentials and $15 for Simple Start.  Wholesale pricing for clients is available to bookkeepers and accountants, where the client pays you instead of Intuit.  Alicia provided a helpful tool for cleaning up errors in billable expenses.  Use QBO.intuit.com/app/managebillableexpense.  She also went over how to manage rules so that the software helps to classify transactions for Bank Feeds.

A common question asked is “Can QBO be backed up?”  Yes, but you must use Internet Explorer.  Select the “gear” icon, then export data.  It is also possible to convert QuickBooks Enterprise to QuickBooks Pro or Premier if none of the Enterprise features were used previously.   Use //royalwise.com/?p=9793 to help convert your file.   Alicia next explained several keyboard shortcuts including “Ctrl-Alt-?” for a shortcut list, +++ to advance the date, --- to reverse the date, “Y” to advance to beginning of Year, “R” to advance to end of Year, W/K for week and M/H for month within the date fields.  In addition, you can have the software be used as a calculator by doing a calculation in an amount field.

When working between different areas of QuickBooks, you can open multiple tabs by right clicking on the tab and duplicating a tab.  You may need to hit the refresh button if you make changes and want to see the results.  To see two different files, you would open two separate files, each one in a different browser, such as Chrome and Firefox.  Using Chrome incognito allows for a cleaner experience.  You can use your browser’s search function (Ctrl-F) to search within QBO as well.  To make a memorized transaction, select “recurring” on the bottom of the transaction.

Alicia’s contact information is as follows:  Alicia@royalwise.com; info@royalwise.com; 503-406-6550.  You may also sign up for their newsletter on the Royalwise website.  Thank you, Alicia, for a great presentation!

August 4, 2016 Meeting Minutes

MEETING MINUTES – Bullet Points (full text below)

  • Kim opened the meeting, which was held on the eastside of Portland at Kevin Minkoff’s new office.
  • Dan Yedinak from Eclat Technologically was the guest speaker and discussed google apps.  He has been the business owner of Eclat Technologically for 5 years and has over 24 years of experience in IT.  His email address is Dan@eclat.com.  His experience includes security, servers, data backup, and QuickBooks.  He is also familiar with both Macintosh and Windows environments.
  • Dan’s presentation discussed Google apps for business, which comes in both free and paid versions. You receive 15 gigabytes of free storage and can receive 1 terabyte for $30.  The paid version is HIPPA compliant.
  • The discussion included goggle drive, google docs, google sheets, slides, forms, gmail, calendar, hangouts and voice/talk.
  • One of the many benefits of google applications is real time collaboration. Google applications are also very accessible in multiple formats using any browser.  The learning curve for google drive sync is high.  It takes about 6 months of daily use to feel comfortable.
  • To use google hangouts, all you need is a browser. Google sheets uses zero data and saves information automatically.  You can share folders and sheets and can also lock down ranges or cells so only you have access to changes
  • Paid versions of google are available at $5 per user per month. Dropbox, Google Drive and Skydrive are ways to send files. Dan has noticed some downsides to use of dropbox.
  • If anyone is interested in having Dan assist them as a consultant, he is available for a five hour limit for a fee of $250.
  • The next meeting will be on the Westside of Portland at Tim Hess’ conference room on September 1, 2016 from 11:30 AM – 1 PM. The address is 9600 SW Oak Street, Portland 97223 and the conference room is on the 2nd floor.

FULL TEXT:

Kim opened the meeting, which was held on the eastside of Portland at Kevin Minkoff’s new office.  Introductions included stating our names, business and experience with Google apps.  Dan Yedinak from Eclat Technologically was the guest speaker.  He has been the business owner of Eclat Technologically for 5 years and has over 24 years of experience in IT.  His email address is Dan@eclat.com.  His experience includes security, servers, data backup, and QuickBooks.  He is also familiar with both Macintosh and Windows environments.

Dan’s presentation discussed Google apps for business, which comes in both free and paid versions.  You receive 15 gigabytes of free storage and can receive 1 terabyte for $30.  The paid version is HIPPA compliant.  The discussion then moved to discuss goggle drive, google docs, google sheets, slides, forms, gmail, calendar, hangouts and voice/talk.  A question came up as to whether multiple google accounts could be merged.  Dan stated this was possible.  One of the many benefits of google applications is real time collaboration.  Google applications are also very accessible in multiple formats using any browser.  You should use Google Chrome if you want to edit a document.  The learning curve for google drive sync is high.  It takes about 6 months of daily use to feel comfortable.  To use google hangouts, all you need is a browser.  Many schools and clubs use google sites.  Google sheets uses zero data and saves information automatically.  You can share folders and sheets and can also lock down ranges or cells so only you have access to changes.  One example of use of a google calendar is color coding business appointments one color and personal appointments another color.  Another nice feature is the ability to invite someone to an appointment through the google calendar.  An email can be sent to alert the user in advance as a reminder.  Permissions will allow customization of details.  Calendars have particular email addresses and each conference room can have a separate email.

Paid versions of google are available at $5 per user per month. Dropbox, Google Drive and Skydrive are ways to send files.  Dan has noticed some downsides to use of dropbox.

If anyone is interested in having Dan assist them as a consultant, he is available for a five hour limit for a fee of $250.

The meeting adjourned slightly after 1 PM.  The next meeting will be on the Westside of Portland at Tim Hess’ conference room on September 1, 2016 from 11:30 AM – 1 PM.  The address is 9600 SW Oak Street, Portland 97223 and the conference room is on the 2nd floor.

Meeting Minutes May 5, 2016

The meeting this month was held at the WeWork Offices in downtown Portland.  Kim introduced our group.  Renee Trump facilitated the meeting.  Renee’s first question for the group was “What has been your strategy to keep up with apps and technology?” Melissa mentioned that she reads “Leader Report”.  Other sources included Charlie Russell, Linked-In Groups, QBO Power Hour and Sleeter Group.  Kevin Minkoff reads the Technology Today Magazine.  Renee uses HubDoc – a bank feed version.  HubDoc doesn’t work with On Point but integrates with QuickBooks online. Receipt bank software was discussed.  The client helps describe the transaction and take a picture of the receipt with their phone.  Alicia stated that she uses T-Sheets.  It is an app that can assist classifying timesheets including employee’s time and phone calls.  It integrates with your desktop computer. Next Renee mentioned a quote from Mike Michalowicz’s book “Profit First”.  The theme of the quote related to the fact that software is changing so quickly that to survive, the accounting industry will need to be more consultative and less transactional.  Although it is true that software enables consumers more tools to do things previously relegated only to bookkeepers and accountants, proper use of the software requires skills and understanding not held by many consumers.

The next All Star Accounting Professional meeting will be held on June 2, 2016 at Kevin Minkoff’s office on the Eastside of Portland.  Diana Chung will facilitate the meeting.