When you start working with a new client, usually there is some clean up work that needs to be done. Rarely do you get “fresh snow” client: Someone that is brand new, never used anything, and is open to anything you suggest. Usually there are some workflows in place, maybe some bookkeeping was performed, but usually you have a bit of a mess on your hands. One of the first things to determine is where do you begin, and usually that results in the following options:
- Start over from scratch
- Choosing a point in time and move forward from there
Starting over is the most thorough, but the most time consuming. Clients don’t have the time or the budget to have you recreate their business from scratch, and usually there can be an agreed upon point in time where you can make a “line in the sand” and move forward from there. Once you have that “Target” you can use our Trial Balance Adjustment Template to make the books agree.
The Last Filed Tax Return
This is the most common point in time to start from. If the taxes have been filed, there really isn’t any need to correct the books prior to that point. Doing so would cause the need for an amended return to be filed and that may or may not be a good thing for the business. If you have access the last filed tax return, you can utilize the template to make the adjustment to the books as of the year ending date of the return.
If you are copying your data from one platform to another, like Desktop to Online, or from one QBO subscription to another, some times certain data does not make the journey. Rather than digging deep and troubleshooting why the data didn’t make the journey, you can use this template to compare the two and make the adjustment needed for that moment in time and move on
Hang on….there’s things to consider
There are some things to consider before diving head first into a random adjustment. Let’s review them.
- Bank Balance/Reconciliation – If there’s transactions missing, you bank reconciliations (if they were made would be incorrect. You will want to ensure that anything prior to your adjustment date that will be cleared after that date is entered. You’ll need to reconcile up to that ending date, unchecking outstanding transactions and make a reconciliation adjustment to an equity account before using the template.
- Accounts Receivable/Accounts Payable – Open invoices and Bills that will be paid after the adjustment date will need to be entered.
- Inventory – Different verse same as the first. Making sure that Inventory is accurate as of the start date or you will be adjusting the adjustment.
How to use the Template
Now that you’ve determined a game plan, how do you use the template. Here are the basic steps.
- Download the template.
- Enter the company name and adjustment date on the Form Tab
- From the New file, export a trial balance as of the adjustment date
- In Excel Copy the account, debit, and credit columns
- Paste the values only into the white area of the template.
- Locate the source document (tax return, trail balance from old file)
- In the green area of the template, enter the balance from your source document for all the accounts you need to adjust
- On the output tab, remove any $0 accounts and ensure the date and number is the same for every row
- Save the file
- Import using Transaction Pro Importer pointing the import to the Output tab of the Template.
- Confirm the import was successful
The template file is designed to work with Transaction Pro Importer. The Output tab is formatted for the default mapping for importing a journal entry.
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