REQUEST: more linkable items

How can you say the information is not there? Here is a purchase invoice with 2 payments attached.


If we need to know which other invoices that payment may have been applied to, we have to go elsewhere rather than just clicking there.


Here is a payment made to a supplier for a purchase invoice. What did we buy exactly? You have to write that invoice number down then go somewhere else to search for it.

The information is clearly there on both documents.

I say it because you personally wrote:

as well as:

In both cases, you referred to line items on a payment form. But the discussion was about lists, of which bank reconciliation transaction lists were one example. Look at @d3mad’s screen shots in his first post. No line items are displayed. The same would be true if you were looking at lists of sales invoices, receipts, or anything else.

And I’ve already explained why you cannot link from a View screen.

So I’m finished with this topic.

I have already pointed out once - this topic is NOT only about bank reconciliations and lists, but rather about many facets of Manager.

This is what the OP said. I have provided two more examples of where linking would be helpful, yet this still isn’t in the ideas category, because you do not agree. I wasn’t aware the ideas category was only for ideas you agree with.

I also said that I am confident in lubos’ development abilities to be able to strip links before sending to a customer, but again you totally ignored that.

Here is another useful spot mentioned by the OP. Audit Trail. It would be nice to be able to click on these entries to see which item was updated or created.

Maybe another moderator can help us get this into the ideas category for users to vote, unless I have misunderstood the purpose of that category.

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I honestly do not get the bank reconciliation situation, it is not about linking of transactions, it is about Manager.io suggesting possible reconciling items. The original post suggests there is a difference in the reco, in that case there is only two scenarios for each one of the “possible” reconciling items: (A) missing transaction(s); or (B) Duplicate/Incorrect record(s). Also, let us reexamine the purpose of bank reco which is to compare the internal records with reliable third-party records to identify temporary differences, duplication, omissions and errors and not to assume a certain error occurred and record plug entries to match the third party records. It may sound the same but it is not.Having said that, here are some of the problems of the system pointing you to suspect transactions for bank reco differences:

  • The example provided by @d3mad assumes an omission is the only case, what about if there was in error of $9 (say a payment of $99 recorded at $90 or a receipt of $90 recorded at $99)
  • What about when the difference is a temporary difference that will only be resolved in the future such as the supplier slept on depositing his check. Here the bank figure is least reliable, hence, companies rely on book-balance rather than bank-balance. We should not match the bank, instead we wait until the bank records catch up.
  • How about wrong transaction dates, this means the system must check all transactions (even reconciled ones an you will see why shortly)
  • It may be 1 transaction with the exact amount or a combination of 100s of transactions with vastly different amounts both Drs and Crs, in which case, there is no limit to how big the numbers are; $9 makes absolutely no sense here. In @d3mad case it was one, but in most cases it isn’t. so how could Manager.io, or anyone really, know the what amounts to look for.
  • Where should we stop the search, we already missed the payment/receipt, should we look in invoices and crn/drn. Or maybe since we already missed once, we may missed the invoice then we should look in orders or quotes or payslips and expense claims. There should be a line somewhere.
  • Maybe then we should just assign each transaction with an attribute “reconciled/not reconciled” in that case all transactions that are not payments and receipts can be partially reconciled or can be one-of-many parts in a single reconciled payment or receipt, in which case, we can only look into payments and receipts for reco … back to square 1.

The way I see it, either Manager.io considers all of the above in its suggestions (which is practically impossible or try like some other software to give false impressions that it is fine to over-simplify reconciliation and just spit out $9 transactions) which poses the risk of wrongly reconciling transactions until at one point the account is no longer reconcilable – which happens … like alot.

You can try to force manager to give you guesses (bad guesses, no sugar-coating the truth) or just import transactions from the bank and then assign them, this way you will always be reconciled, and it is easy and fast but does not give you a book-balance. You can also, choose a hybrid approach that will result in duplicates that you need to detect and delete manually or make sure to mention all relevant details in your bank instruction just to make the reconciliation a trivial task by working more on another area. Pick your poison, there is no escaping hard work. Just think about why you only see over simplified reco methods on low-end or simple accounting software and never on high-end software, there is always a reason.

On the other hand, I agree to the audit trial linkages, I think they should be linked. Also, maybe there is a method to view linked documents on the view tab instead of the edit – which there isn’t at the moment and I think there shouldn’t because you don’t want to miss around with a posted record in edit mode. I don’t know whether Manager.io uses a separate matching table, but I think it should be possible to have the links in view mode along with the attachments just with different icons.

This is already handled by use of the Pending/Cleared field in the transaction record.

Manager already raises all possibilities it can identify by including all transactions within the unreconcilable date range. The example given was a fairly simple one. These would include wrong dates, wrong amounts, multiple transactions, etc. And it warns you to look for missing transactions.

The fact is, reconciliation can be hard work. We probably all remember manual chequebook balancing. Maybe some of us still do it. (I do.) Sometimes you find the mistake quickly. Sometimes you puzzle over things much longer. I think, however, that if you follow Manager’s guided sequence, you will narrow down the possibilities and find the problem more quickly than if you start looking through all your transactions without a plan.

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Yep, that is the best way forward. But it needs to evolve from what is currently implemented for the reasons you list.

Edit
Response moved as it is of the OP topic, see Idea: Enhanced Bank import / Bank reconciliation

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A few people have suggested this, that I am asking Manager to guess, or that I want it to have AI built in. I don’t want manager to guess anything, in fact I’m exactly the opposite. I only want manager to link to links that already exist within it’s database structure. Nothing more.

In the reconciliation example I gave, I talk about a $9 credit from my account to which I cannot get to the associated purchase invoice.

Why do I suggest that I am not asking for any AI or guessing on the part of manager:

  • Well, I do not import bank reconciliations, instead I opt to painstakingly create every record in manager manually an assign payments and credits to and from my account, this way when it comes time to do my reconciliation there should be no more to add, however that is not usually the case
  • I create the relevant purchase or sales invoices and I subsequently enter a payment or a receipt which enters the appropriate bank transaction BASED UPON MY INITIAL INVOICE.
  • Hence, manager does not have to guess or assume ANYTHING. I created the bank transaction based upon an initial entry. In this reconciliation example, what I was referring to was in someway to get back to my original invoice without the need for creating a new tab and searching manually.
  • I NEVER create a direct bank transaction through “new payment” or “new receipt”, hence, any bank transaction recorded MUST ALREADY be linked to an invoice. The transaction does not (within my database) excist in isolation.

There’s no need to overthink it, or assume what it is I am doing wrong. I am obviously just working differently to you. I am only suggesting an interface to a link that already exists within the database.

And please do correct me if I’m wrong, but shouldn’t all bank transactions BE linked anyway to either an invoice or a chart of account or something? A bank transaction that isn’t linked to anything would go against the principles of double entry accounting, would it not?

That depends on what you mean by “linked.” The only requirement of double-entry accounting is that every credit and debit be balanced by offsetting debits and credits. Enter a receipt for a cash sale, with no invoice or other document involved, and there will still be two transactions in the general ledger: a debit to a cash/bank account and a credit to some income account. But there would nothing else to “link” to that wasn’t available by clicking the receipt’s Edit button.

Ok, and that’s a good point (but not how I use manager, as I have repeatedly stated).

Under that premise, if an entry is made via “new receipt” then (unless it’s unallocated/suspense) it will have an associated “linked” (via db entry, not hyperlink) income account, as per double entry accounting.

But as I explicitly stated,

hence

Note, I did mention chart of account which includes income accounts.

Let me rephrase it for more clarity then:

shouldn’t all of my bank transactions be linked to either an invoice or a chart of account or something?

It would be nice to be able to see (and traverse) that assigned (not guessed or assumed) link.


Since I like examples:

If I have an invoice, 2018-09-01 for $19999 for customer “Ebay” (fictitious), If I have a “new receipt” entry, the “edit” link takes me somewhere useful:

The second to last “edit” link takes me here:

the last edit link takes me here:

What would be handy is if that link (or a similarly placed link) could take you to a place that all elements of that transaction could be viewed. The current “edit” area is really not useful. What WOULD be more useful AND construct-able entirely from the information within that link, would be to go somewhere like:

Yes this is copied from the sales invoices screen, because that’s where this particular sale and receipt are linked. It could equally have been Purchase Invoices or something to do with inventories even (I think, I don’t se inventories, just me guessing there).

From here:

  • you could still enter into the receipt directly and change anything to do with it, the date, the amount, the allocation of the customer (via accounts receivable), etc, OR
  • you could enter into the invoice LINKED to that payment and make relevant changes to it instead.

Imagine if Sales Invoices didn’t take you to the area as depicted in my last screenshot? It would be annoying that if every time you wanted to find the sales receipt payment, you had to go fishing in bank accounts or elsewhere to marry them up. But you don’t need to, because the link is made for you and presented in a usable way.

I personally would see benefit if more entities that already have links, presented those links a productive and usable way instead of obfuscating or just ignoring them.

The worst example of not linking valuable data is the audit trail, but I’ve raised that before.

Databases are beautiful.

However, when you click the payment/receipt button within an invoice, that is exactly what you are doing - the button is just a shortcut to “new payment” or “new receipt”, you aren’t doing a different process.

Not necessarily, that is they are not tied together within the database. You have two independent (isolated) transactions which have a common factor - customer/supplier and the invoice number. So when you do a process within Manager, it acts via a data match. Without the actioning of a Manager process, the two transaction wouldn’t know of each others existence.

Do you understand how a database works? “a common form factor - customer/supplier and the invoice numberis exactly what I am talking about. That is what is more commonly referred to as a one-to-many or a many-to-many connection. That is precisely the linkage I am referring to.

You may regard the transactions as being independent (I don’t know why you would want to regard them as being independent, but that is irrelevant; my whole point is about them having a relationship). That relationship exists in the database and it exists by design.

And your “not necessarily” purposefully or carelessly disregards my multiple attempts at relaying exactly the opposite. The way I enter my payment, through the invoice, by default links to accounts payable or receivable and hence has that one-to-many or many-to-many relationship.

@Brucanna, How can you possibly say that the creation of a payment (or receipt) via an invoice that is tied to accounts receivable or payable “not necessarily” creates that link? If it has an accounts payable or receivable, how does it NOT create that link? That’s exactly what it is, a direct reference, a direct link, I am not talking about any other type of non-relationship payments.

I get from what you are saying here that you inovices and receipts payment are one-to-one, which is fantastic. You are very well organized.
So if you were asking for a link, then definitely yes, I think this would be nice.

ahhh, so I’m guessing by your reply that what I am doing is over the top? I have certainly hit a lot of negativity in this thread. I certainly don’t think I’m overly organised (I’m still in April’s reconciliation).

I have given this a lot of thought over the last few days, and I have realised that payments (and part payments) to invoices aside, the connectivity and links across areas in manager is quite poor. There are so many places in manager that reference something else but provide no way of directly navigating there, which is a real shame. Navigation could really use some love. Especially previous and next document/entity which has been on the drawing board for almost as long as i’ve been using it.

No, I genuinely commend you for that. I actually would like to see my clients do more of what you do. In my case, I always have to reconcile the messy customer and supplier accounts after I am done reconciling the bank for 20 clients * 30 accounts on average.

Enough being off topic.

If you want mho, I don’t think any software can help with reconciling bank more than a systematic approach to payment and receipt processing (Unless off-course you dish out an ungodly sum of quid customizing it). The simplest method is to do the following:

  • Keep your receipts and payments up to date
  • Make sure system and bank statement references match – you might need to add a custom field for bank reference

In my country, and I assume your country as well, you can have your own reference appear on the bank statement lines, this way you will have a unique key which you can trace back and forth.

From here reconciling the bank is all downhill, just do this:

  1. Backup your manager database
  2. Take a receipts and payments batch update copy
  3. Filter out cleared transactions and lookup BankClearDate in your update sheet from bank statement and vice versa (takes about 2 mins to do from scratch)
  4. Filter out lookups without errors and delete errors appearing on your update sheets which means the transactions were not cleared. (1 min)
  5. Clear the filter on error transactions made in step 4.
  6. Filter out uncleared transactions with no BankClearDate, set status to cleared and lookup their amounts as they appear in bank. (another 3 mins)
  7. Copy and paste values and complete your batch update
  8. Go back to your bank statement file and lookup the references. Errors appearing on your lookup column means that these transactions are not posted, batch create them, you can fill everything up or leave them as suspense but mention “period so and so bank so and so reco entries” in the description and classify them in Manager.io. (another 7 mins)
  9. Total time taken (~15-20 mins) this is almost constant regardless of the period of reconciliation.

From here you will have a successful reconciliation in Manager where you can start doing manager reconciliation procedures. You can also write a vba or python code to automate this process.

Try this and see if it helps.

I also suggest @Tut @lubos that this algorithm be used to reconcile banks automatically through Manager.io with the difference of requiring user intervention is step 6 – of course it will only work after a bank reference field is included as standard in Manager and then you will need proper referencing for this to work.

I am amazed that we have made it to 30 replies now and we still cannot up-vote the idea. Clearly there is interest in this added functionality.

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An example where links are provided and life is good:

If I go to the suppliers tab (and I have used a search term of “AG” just to shorten the list) I get all my suppliers. If I go across to the invoices column, I am taken to the “Purchase Invoices” for the relevant supplier and from here I have all my invoices and I can access the payments through the “Balance Due” column.


Now, I can also simply go to the Purchase Invoices tab and search for all invoices related to the particular supplier (certainly doable, messy, but doable. Having that shortcut is nice).

An example of where an added link would be of benefit:

– 1 –

Let’s go to Payments and Receipts, because I know I have an unallocated payment to be fixed (well, this is how I check, if there’s a better way to check, feel free to point that out, however, this is an example of where more links would be better, not a better way to do the task… just saying).

Viewing the payment will show me the invoice associated with the payment.
Editing the payment will allow me to change the invoice.
However, there is no way to navigate TO the invoice, I must create a whole new search to do this (ie, I have to go to Sales Invoices and search for the relevant invoice according to whatever specifiers I need).

In this example, I realise the “#” field is a reference to the payment and not the invoice, however an extra column could be presented in this table to explicitly link to the associated invoice. As with other unused columns in other tables, if the field is empty or not used, it does not need to be displayed (or optionally turned off?). One could argue The contact field is or is not necessary, or my receipt number custom field (a legacy from when manager didn’t have it’s own), to me, I personally would like to see a reference to where the payment relates.

In the Suppliers example above, I am given a handy shortcut to a supplier’s invoices avoiding doing my own unnecessary search within purchase invoices. However, here I am not. It would be nice if there was a way to navigate between the two.

That is just one example, let’s look at another:

– 2 –

In the very first screen cap above (in this post) we see a(n abridged) list of suppliers. On the right is a column for invoices, clicking that takes you to purchase invoices for only that supplier (already discussed). This is super handy and could be described thus:

Suppliers > invoices >> purchase invoices of the supplier

Looking AT purchase invoices, I think it would be handy if the reverse also happened and the “Supplier” field of the purchase invoice tab took you to a list of purchase invoices by that supplier.

Purchase Invoice > Supplier* >> (all) purchase invoices of the supplier

* currently it takes you nowhere, but often it’s in this screen I think about the last invoice before this one, or several invoices before this one. Right now, I have to go to suppliers and then invoices. What would be nice, is if in the above screenshot, that clicking “AGL” would take me to outstanding (or all) invoices of that supplier. eg:

@Tut because I know you will love to bring up “context”, let me preface this by saying, when looking at a list of all purchase invoices by all suppliers, clicking on a supplier name could (and I would argue, should) take you to purchase invoices of that supplier. I (for the sake of an argument) would not expect it to bring up the contact details of the supplier. I should already be able to see that in the “view” area. At any rate, please just accept these as examples of links I’d like to see implemented, and not as a discussion on how people think differently and would expect different contexts. That’s almost certainly a given and we could leave it to @lubos to make his own determination on what context is the most relevant.

That’s all I have time to add right now (I’ve spent too long on this), but I will add some other links I’d like to see later, and if anyone else has any other suggestions, please do add them here, otherwise it’s just looks like I’m the only one who really wants this sort of thing and I’m sure there are others out there who’d also like to see this.

BTW, these were just two quick off the cuff things as a result of things I’m doing today.

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Drill down on the Suspense account itself on the Summary page. You will see all transactions in it.

Since this is a generic “More linkable items” I don’t think either of these requires another post and may be listed elsewhere already:

Invoice Balances and customer balances It would be very helpful when posting a payment via receipts and payments to either auto populate or at least display the balance somewhere. I understand I can go to reports > customer statements (unpaid transactions) > (( customer name)) > copy to new receipt but when we are posting checks we have one or two customers paying multiple invoices. Also sometimes we have two individual customers having invoices paid by the same check and in that case the copy to new receipt option above does not work.

I also understand this can be done with multiple windows etc.

Inventory Counts on Orders / Invoices Similar to above, it would be helpful to know the current inventory count on invoices or orders. This could definitely be more complex than first meets the eye with committed quantities needing to be implemented but it would be helpful to see QTY on those documents so that we know when producing a quote or entering a sales order to know if we need to order the stock or if we have enough to fill the order.

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I had plumb forgotten about that field on the summary screen! I think part of my problem there is that there are some long term suspense items in there that I need to dispose of. Lol. I know it is italicised, I’d personally like it to be more highlighted.

Thanks for the prompt

I now understand fully what you meant by “linking” and I fully support your request.

I have cross posted this in:

I think your topic deserve some much needed revival.