AccountRight tech tips

Add a message to your invoices: November 2017

Whether it’s “Merry Christmas!”, “Happy Holidays!” or “We’re closed over the holiday period”, why not add a personal message to your end of year invoices? It’s a great way to spread some cheer or announce business changes.

There’s a set of default comments that come with AccountRight. You can modify these or add some more. Access the comments from the Lists menu > Sales & Purchases Information > Comments.

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When you’re entering an invoice, select your comment.

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You can learn more about adding comments to your invoices here.

 

Wage advances: October 2017

“I want it, and I want it now!”

So said a certain little girl when visiting a chocolate factory. But she’s not alone. Some employees may request future wages paid in advance – particularly as the silly season approaches.

AccountRight makes it easy to pay a wage advance, then withhold the amount from a future pay to ‘repay’ the advance.

All you need to do is set up is an asset account, a wage category, and a deduction category. You’ll also be able to keep track of what’s been paid in advance and how much has been repaid.

For all the details, see this AccountRight help tip.

A wage advance might not be a golden ticket, but it’s a sweet deal for you and your employees.

Back up and relax — September 2017

It’s not uncommon to think about backing up your company file when it’s too late. But there’s no going back if there’s nothing to go back to.

Even if you company file is online where your data is safe in the cloud, backing up regularly and at important times (like the end of financial year) makes good business sense.

Backups are point-in-time snapshots of your company file, and they provide a way of accessing historical data. They can also be a lifeline if you need to roll back some unwanted changes.

Backing up couldn’t be easier: File menu > Back Up. Two easy clicks which provide peace of mind, and potentially save you a lot of grief.

See the AccountRight help for details on backing up and restoring company files

Using AccountRight v19? Your help is here

Preventing credit card fraud — August 2017

Whether you trade online or offline, your business is always at risk of fraudulent transactions resulting from stolen credit cards or other buyer scams.

But don’t worry – here are a few things to look out for to protect your business and minimise the risk of customer disputes and chargebacks.

  • Is the customer placing an unusually large order, or large quantities of orders in a short period of time?
  • Is the order being paid for using multiple cards? This could suggest the buyer is trying to avoid card limits.
  • Do you have an order where the shipping address is different to the billing address?
  • Are you receiving multiple orders to different customers at the same address, or is the address from an unusual location?
  • Is it a large order or expensive goods where the customer requests next-day or expedited shipping?
  • Can’t contact the customer via phone or email?
  • Has the customer asked you to pay for freight which they’ll reimburse later?

While these activities won’t always be fraudulent, if it seems suspicious it’s worth taking the time to check.

Learn more about protecting your business

Amending payment summaries in AccountRight — July 2017

Made a mistake on your payment summaries? Left something out? No problem – you can run the Payment Summary Assistant again to generate updated payment summaries to provide to your employees.

If you’ve closed the payroll year that the amendments relate to, you need to restore the backup made before closing the payroll year and prepare the amendments using that file.

What about the EMPDUPE file?

If you haven’t submitted the EMPDUPE file to the ATO, running the Payment Summary Assistant again will generate a new EMPDUPE file which you can lodge electronically with the ATO.

If you’ve already submitted the EMPDUPE file to the ATO, what you need to do depends on your AccountRight version.

If you’re using… Do this…
AccountRight 2017 1.      Start the Payment Summary Assistant and work through it as you did previously, correcting or adding any information that was previously incorrect or missing.2.      When you reach step 7 of the assistant, select the Yes, these are amendments option.3.      Select the employees who require amended summaries in the list of employees, and then click the arrows to review the information that’ll be reported.4.      Print or email the payment summaries. The payment summary will indicate that it’s an amended form.5.      Continue to step 9 of the assistant, and create the Payment Summary Annual Report file (EMPDUPE file). The file will contain the amended payment summary information, so you can submit it again using the ATO’s Business Portal.
AccountRight v19 AccountRight v19 can’t generate amended EMPDUPE files. Instead, you’ll need to complete a manual payment summary form (available from the ATO) to lodge the updated information. On this form you’ll need to place an X in the box indicating it’s an amended payment summary.tech_tip1

For more information on correcting a mistake on a payment summary, visit the ATO website.

A Super tip

Process your next super guarantee early (before June 30), to qualify for a tax deduction in the 2016/17 year! To do this, simply submit your super payments via PaySuper, or MYOB’s super portal by MYOB’s processing deadline of 25 June.

EOFY Refresher – The Common Questions!

EOFY is a busy time for most businesses, so it’s no surprise that every year in Tech Support we get asked lots of payroll questions. Here’s some of the common questions we get asked.

When should I report a pay that spans financial years?

It’s the payment date (the date you process the pay) that determines the year a pay should be reported in a payment summary. If a wage is paid to an employee in June, it’s reported in your 2017 summaries. This is the case even if the pay period includes dates in July.

I haven’t completed my payment summaries…how do I process my first pay in the new payroll year?

Before you can process pays in the new year, you need to have processed payment summaries for your employees. If you don’t have time to do this before your first pay, you’ll need to take a backup of your company file and restore it later to prepare the payment summaries. Note that you only use this file to prepare summaries, don’t use it to record transactions.

How do I set up my payment summary fields?

You need to match the payroll categories in AccountRight (the ones you use to pay wages), with the fields which will appear on the payment summaries you give to your employees.

If you have a simple payroll, you may only need to set up the gross wages fields such as base salary, overtime and holiday pay (the PAYG withholding field is set by default). It gets trickier if you pay allowances, have salary sacrifice deductions or have had staff leave during the year. Watch our Preparing payment summaries year video which goes into some detail on how to set them up. But not every business is the same. If you’re not sure what categories match to each field, contact your advisor or see the ATO guidelines.

Note that AccountRight remembers your settings, so if this isn’t your first it’s always worth checking them, just in case you’ve set up new categories.

How do I amend a payment summary?

If you lodge a payment summary, and later realise there was an error or you forgot to include some required information, you can now prepare an amended payment summary using AccountRight, and create an EMPDUPE file that’s lodged using the ATO’s Business Portal. No more paper forms for amended payment summaries.

To create an amendment, run the Payment Summary Assistant to prepare correct payment summaries. At the Review the Payment Summaries step, select Yes or No depending on whether or not you’ve already lodged payment summaries with the ATO. Complete the payment summary process and provide copies to your employees and lodge the Payment Summary Annual Report with the ATO.

What if I pay working holiday makers?

If you employ working holiday makers who are in Australia on a 417 or 462 visa, you’ll need to assign them the Working Holiday Maker tax table (available in AccountRight 2017.1 and later). This will ensure the correct tax is withheld from their pay and the Gross Wages field on their payment summary will show the H income code (a new ATO requirement for 2017).

For more details, watch our working holiday maker video or see the AccountRight help.

MAY TIP

Tips for quicker searching

The latest AccountRight version has some great searching smarts to help you find things faster.

Looking for a specific invoice? The Search field in the Sales Register searches across all columns.

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To search a single column, type the column name and a colon then your search term.

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Finding stock items in the Items List has never been easier. The filter row at the top of each column lets you find items starting with your search term.

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Not sure what the item name begins with? Use an asterisk (*) in front of your search to find any instance of that term in the column.

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Learn more about searching and filtering in AccountRight.

Fixing import issues

Having trouble importing into AccountRight? Here are a few tips:

If you’re not sure what data you can import into AccountRight, open the Import and Export Assistant in AccountRight (File menu > Import/Export Assistant), choose Import data, and then scroll through the list to see what you can import.

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If you’re importing data from another AccountRight company file, the import file will be in the required format so you shouldn’t have any trouble.

However, if you’re importing from another program, AccountRight may not recognise the import file format.

The best way to get the import file format right is to use an import template.

You can create a template by exporting similar data from AccountRight and using the export file as your template.

For example, if you need to import customer details, start by exporting customer details from AccountRight. You can use the AccountRight sample company file (Clearwater) to do this.

Then, open the export file in Excel.

The columns in the file represent the customer details. Simply replace the Clearwater customer details with your customer details.

Don’t add, remove or change the column headings – AccountRight needs these to understand what’s what in the file.

After importing into AccountRight, a conclusion window shows how the import went.

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If there are any errors, warnings, or skipped records, check the import log for details.

The “click here” link on the conclusion window opens the import log which gives details of where things went wrong.

Check this help topic for information on finding, opening and understanding your import log file.

If you’re still stuck with an import issue, there are a lot of experts on the community forum who are happy to share their knowledge and help you find a solution.

Stay on top of updates

Keeping AccountRight up to date gives you access to the latest and greatest features. Updates also provide performance and stability enhancements. So the latest AccountRight is the best AccountRight.

Check the AccountRight blog to learn more about what’s in the latest version.

If you have a support subscription, AccountRight lets you know when an update is available.

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If your file is online and you don’t update for a while, you might not be able to open your company file. Learn more about updates and working online.

After installing an update, there might be a new AccountRight icon on your desktop. Remember to use this, and not an old AccountRight icon, to start the program.

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Need more info? Learn more about getting the latest AccountRight version.

Backpacker Tax and AccountRight

From 1 January 2017, tax rates changed for working holiday makers who are in Australia on a 417 or 462 visa. This new tax rate is commonly known as the ‘backpacker tax’.

To use this new tax rate, you needed to register with the ATO by January 31. If you didn’t register but need to pay working holiday makers, you’ll need to assign them the applicable Foreign Resident tax table. If you’re not sure which tax table to use, check with the ATO.

We’ll be releasing an update later this year to cater for the new tax rate. Until then you can pay working holiday makers using the Withholding Variation tax table set to the applicable rate.

For all the details on setting this up, see our help topic Withholding the ‘backpacker tax’ in AccountRight.