I am a big fan of building custom reports for my clients using QuickBooks® Desktop. I have to share with you 3 tips for custom reports:

Tip #1: When building a Custom Summary Report, try drawing the report in a blank piece of paper first, just to give you a visual idea of the components you want to see in the report and in which arrangement:

The drawing should always keep in mind 3 components: Rows (in this case is vendors), Columns (in this case is Months) and Body (In this case, there is an Account Filter for Cost of Sales). This drawing will then be used as a basis to build the reports:

Tip #2: Once the Report is constructed and you are ready to memorize (save it), spend a good amount of time thinking of the perfect title. This is especially true if a 3rd party is going to be used for this report, as a bad title will lead to a misunderstanding of the reports content.

For this example, I would call this report: Paid Direct Expenses by Vendor By Month. I am a strong believer that the report title should contain, within the title itself, all the filters and options from the reports:

Tip #3: For Transaction Detail Reports, the most important concept to keep in mind is the difference between the Source and the Destination data from with the transaction that ultimately makes up what will show in the report, for example, if you look at a check:


All the RED areas are part of the SOURCE, and all the GREEN areas are the DESTINATION. In a Transaction Detail report, you must specify if the data you want to pull is the SOURCE or the DESTINATION, and based on that decision, you will know what type of data you expect to see in the report:

If you like this topic, I strongly recommend you watch this video recording by clicking here, or clicking on the picture below. The video contains a step-by step guide on how to go through and setup reports using these tips.

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