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Comparative Job Reports in QBO

Reports on jobs or projects.

Any company dependent upon projects, jobs, legal matters, grants, or similar events wants to track the individual costs against the revenue.

Often, they want to track the actual costs against estimated costs as well.

This is easy in QuickBooks Desktop.

Use an estimate. Use items. Put the estimated costs as well as revenues on the estimate.

Run a Job Estimate vs. Actual report.

But how do you do that in QBO? There is no Job Estimate vs. Actual report.

The answer is budgets.

The Plus subscription level of QuickBooks Online (QBO) includes a budget feature. Budgets can be created company-wide, by class, and also by customer.

Jobs or projects are setup as sub-customers in QBO. For this example, we will create a sub-customer for Kristy Abercrombie. She wants her front yard renovated.

Once we have the sub-customer setup, we will create a budget for the project.

We’ve created a new budget. You can see the name in the field designated by the top arrow.

Since we specified to QBO that we wanted to track this budget by customer, there is a field designated to specify that customer. See the second arrow.

As the job proceeds, expenses are entered into the accounting system.

Just as with desktop, it is imperative to include the customer and/or sub-customer on each line of the transactions. You can see that information designated by the arrow in the above screenshot.

At any point we can run a report to see how our expenses are totaling up compared to our budget.

It’s time to invoice the customer. First we want to take a look at how our actual expenses compare to what we had planned.

We select the Reports section. A Budget vs. Actuals report is what we want.

Above is the report we need to compare our planned expenses for Kristy Abercrombie’s yard renovation compared to our actual expenses.

The expenses for the job came in just under budget. About 96% of budget to be exact.

There is no revenue for the job to compare to budget since we have not invoiced the customer yet.

This solution in QBO is based on accounts rather than items like the QB desktop job reports. This will make for a little less detail and longer account lists. But, using his method, QBO can be used to not only track the income and expense of a project, but to report on it as well.

Hector Garcia, CPA
Certified Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor
12401 Orange Drive #136
Davie, FL 33330

Hector Garcia

Hector Garcia

Hector Garcia is a CPA and QuickBooks Consultant.

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