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Creating and Using Memorized Invoices

Customize QuickBooks to do Everything on Your List

by Allan A. Krist

You can use QuickBooks to help you with some of your invoicing tasks, especially those invoices that are recurring and don't change much from one-time to the next. The memorization feature is not limited to the invoicing process, but it is most easily explained and demonstrated with that facet of a business. This post applies to the desktop versions of QuickBooks(including the Macintosh), but the same feature exists in the on-line versions of QuickBooks referred to as a recurring transaction. An example of a memorized invoice is an invoice that is sent to a customer weekly or monthly for a similar service or item.

A landscaping business might send a similar(or even identical) invoice to each of their customers from month-to-month for the services they provide. Rather than starting from "scratch" each time you need to generate the invoice, a memorized version of it can be recalled, relevant changes made, and the invoice then mailed or sent via e-mail. Here's how you can do this:

First, the user generates or displays the invoice on the screen. The intention is not necessarily to send it, but to memorize it so it can be re-used in the future. On fields that may change each time you re-use the invoice in the future, you may leave these fields blank with the intention of filling them in later when the invoice is to be sent. This might be the bill-to information, or the date - it can be any field that you expect to customize each time you re-use the invoice in the future. Then, before filing or sending it, the user clicks the "Edit" menu(on the main QuickBooks window); and chooses the "Memorize Invoice" option:

Memorize Transaction QuickBooks Training and Support

The above dialog box is displayed. The user first types in the "Name" box any description(up to 31 characters) that will facilitate the recognition of the invoice when its name is displayed in a list of all memorized transactions. My recommendation is that the description that is entered for all invoices start with the words "Invoice for" so there can be no doubt when a list of all memorized transactions is displayed as to the purpose of the memorized transaction. The user then clicks one of the three categories that appear on the dialog box: 1) add to my reminders list; 2) do not remind me; or 3) automate transaction entry. These three choices are exclusive, the user can only select one of them.

The reminders list is displayed by QuickBooks on the "Home" screen, the reminder entry will appear according to the frequency and the date the user enters in the "How Often" and "Next Date" boxes. If the invoice to be memorized has all the fields filled-in, then the user can request QuickBooks" to actually issue it according to the values entered in the "how often", "next date", "number remaining", and "days in advance to enter" boxes. The "add to group" line is also mutually exclusive of the three lines that appear above it, it provides a way to organize memorized transaction list so that the user can choose to have certain transactions appear together on the memorized transaction list. The user can then click the OK button to cause the invoice to be added to the memorized transaction list so it can be used for generation purposes in the future.

What happens next can be confusing. It is important to understand that QuickBooks does not create an invoice at that time, it only creates an entry in the memorized transaction list that will be used later to create an invoice. QuickBooks simply returns the user back to the invoice at the same point that the user was at prior to clicking the "memorize invoice" option. It is up to the user to continue to generate the invoice if that is desired, or to "Re-set" or to "Revert" and exit the form entry if an invoice is not desired.

To have QuickBooks generate the invoice at a later date click the "Lists" menu, and then click "Memorized Transaction List". Next appears the dialog box that displays the list of all your memorized transactions(they may not all be invoices):

Memorize Transaction List QuickBooks Training and Support

Note it is not necessary to have a blank invoice form on the screen prior to retrieving this list, the memorized transaction will supply the template that the transaction was memorized with. You simply double-click on the line in the list that you want to use, and QuickBooks opens that transaction and displays it on the screen. You can then make any changes to it that are necessary for this use, and print or send it. Be aware that none of these changes affect the memorized copy of the transaction, it remains in the list in its original condition. To change and replace it, you must re-memorize it exactly as you did originally.

If you would like more information about this feature, call me at 440-590-2553 to see if I can't answer your questions. We can make this happen for your business!

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