What is the correct way to Order Transactions on the Bank or Payments Tab

I presume that if I have three transactions today and I want the order in Manager to be shown in the same order as on my bank statement, I need to use Reference numbers in the payments/receipts form and have 1 for first transaction, 2 for second etc. I can do this, because I don’t use the payment/receipts reference number for anything else as the invoice reference (which is the only thing I am interested in) shows in the transaction field.

The reason that I ask is because the guides indicate that the payment reference number is used for cheque numbers, bank confirmation numbers and things like that. None of which is of any interest to me.

Also some Manager users use the reference field for recording a payment for multiple invoices to a supplier so they might put payment reference 10 and then on five invoices to that supplier, they have payment reference 10 which makes it easier for them to find the payment. I suppose because I don’t have a lot of transactions, its not hard for me to find a payment/receipt for a particular sales/purchase invoice should I need to find it for any reason.

I am concerned that I might end up wanting to use the Payments/Receipts Reference for matching payment transactions to Purchase Invoices or have some other use for the Reference field, which means I don’t know how to Order Transactions in Manager so that transactions on the same day are in the same order as on my bank statements, because currently they are never in the same order.

What is the best way to address this.

I don’t think there is a reliable method, because there is no guarantee how your bank will process, order, and list them.

Perhaps the question I should be asking is how could Manager be improved to address this issue because I don’t think using the payment/receipts reference number is the appropriate way to deal with this issue. Howe the bank itself handles it is irrelevant, the issue would be how to get Manager to change the sort order.

I would recommend having the ability to move transactions up and down in the bank statements exactly how you can move transactions up and down in order on quotes, orders and invoices.

Unless you can think of a better way. I am reluctant to use the reference number to do this because I suspect that in the future as the business grows more, I may want to use the reference number to keep track of one payment/receipt and multiple invoices or use the reference number for something else.

when there is a considerable amount of transactions happening in a large business, it is better to use the Reference field to enter the transaction reference number provided by your bank. this is because your customer/supplier has only this information along with the amount provided by their bank. if an issue arises and you need to check and verify an old transaction it would be easier then. you may also cross-reference with the amount but that would not be helpful in most cases when you are receiving or paying for multiple invoices in a single bank transaction.

i had already suggested on the forum to have timestamps. but that got lost in the crowd just like many other suggestions.

a response from @lubos back in 2014 indicates he had plans for the same but am not sure if its still being considered.

Timestamps would be a very good way to resolve the problem. In one way probably better than my suggestion of moving the transaction row up and down like you can do in quotes, orders and invoices as I can foresee problems with people accidentally moving things around.

I will make a request for this again as it’s a really simple issue to fix - either your option or mine.

I am in full agreement with you. I don’t think the reference field should be used for this purpose as it is intended for other users such as the one you mentioned.


I have just had a look at your posts in the two topics linked and I am seeing a problem with your timestamp idea. I might place three orders today and create the payments in Manager in that order. But the bank will not process the payments in that order necessarily so the timestamps won’t help me. I may also not enter all payments for a day when I should with the result that later transactions are entered first in Manager. Lastly, when I am doing reconciliation I am interested in the cleared dates and I have no idea when my bank will clear transactions. I will recommend my method instead or perhaps a combination of the two ideas.

@dalacor, it seems unlikely that resources will be expended to support manual reconciliation desires when the program already includes automatic reconciliation. Every user who wants to make a manual examination of records will probably do it a different way. The program already includes the ability to search and sort any column in any tab. So you can compare Manager’s records to whatever source you are looking at by transaction date, clearance date, customer/supplier, amount, reference number, description, etc. To me, that seems quite flexible already. And if you are already doing automatic reconciliations on a regular basis, I’m not sure what you’d be looking for.

I will review how automatic reconciliation works as I have never used it. I am assuming that you are talking about importing bank statements in the bank tab as I am not seeing any automatic reconciliation anyway else

The key question I would have is how importing the bank statements addresses the order of bank transactions already in Manager. Does it re-arrange the order to match what is on the bank statement. If not, then when you are manually going through your bank transactions troubleshooting an issue, it takes longer to compare because of the sort order.

Regardless of whether reconciliations is done manually or automatically, the transactions need to be in the same order as on the bank statements as it makes it much easier for tax auditers or anyone else to compare things.

The automatic reconciliation occurs when you create a bank reconciliation. If you have a problem, the program guides you through correcting it. The point is you don’t have to compare anything manually. Order of presentation is immaterial.

Is there a guide for this. All I can see is that you click on Bank Reconciliations, create new bank reconciliation and I can put in date, bank account and balance. If it’s wrong, it just tells me actual balance, pending deposits and withdrawals, cleared balance and discrepancy. Nowhere can I see where to find the missing transactions as usually there is more than one.

When I am talking about reconciliation, I am not actually talking about getting the bank statement and Manager’s bank balance to match - I am actually wanting to ensure that all the transactions on my bank statement are present in Manager.

Yes, there is a Guide. But understand that the program cannot find missing transactions. You need to find those yourself. But the sort and search functions make that straightforward.

Manager doesn’t support simultaneously using manually generated transactions and bank statement importing. Adding that functionality is what was suggested in Idea: Enhanced Bank import / Bank reconciliation but I suspect is beyond Manager’s current resources.

I agree Manager’s approach to bank reconciliation / transactions is appropriate when bank balances are entered by hand from a paper or PDF document. When all bank transactions and running balance is available electronically, then it could do significantly better.

what do you mean by this. What is a manually generated transaction in the context we are talking about. Is that when I click new payment in Payments and Receipts Tab?

Bank transaction can be entered by typing them in (manually) or by importing them.
Manager supports doing it either way but not part of both.

Are you saying that if you want to import bank statements, you should never pay your invoices in Manager? Just import the bank statements? Then how does the system know that £10 000 received on one day is from clients A, B and C? Is that where the Bank Rules come into play?

I think that is going to be way too confusing for me, so I will just stick with paying and receiving in Manager as I have been doing for years and just reconcile every month using the reconciliation tab. The bank import method would really mess up my cashflow view if I was only importing the bank statements once a month and it’s overkill to do it every week for the number of transactions I get.

So this brings me back to the original bloody question - of getting transactions on the same day in the same order so that if there is a discrepancy between the balances, it’s easy to tick off the transactions on the bank statement against Manager if they are all in the same order.

I think time stamps and moving transactions up and down will probably be the end result solution as Lubos himself said he wants to address this issue.

I was getting confused with people talking about automatic reconciliation (as there isn’t an automatic reconciliation - just the Reconciliation Tab which is a manual process) which I have been using and people talking about importing bank statements which I have never done. I don’t think that importing bank statements would work for me.

Yes, especially if you are using online banking one payment at a time, however if you are doing online group payments, only one statement amount, then you need to edit the imported transaction.

This really depends, is this a single deposit (3 cheques) so one amount (10,000) on the bank statement or individual deposits.

If one deposit, therefore 3 cheques, then you need to do either manual entry or edit the imported entry…

I find this statement somewhat contradictory. You have “so few” transactions that weekly importation is a overkill but doing a monthly importation (so few x 4) would really mess up your cashflow. Therefore do fortnightly imports.

Can I suggest that you reverse the order, use the Manager screen order to tick off against the bank statement. Yes, you might jump back and forth on the statement but that’s easy as it’s a static document, whereas the manager screen is a fixed order and jumping back and forth is not practical.

Why don’t you do a backup of the business today, then at Dec 31, import that backup as a separate business and do a bank statement import as a play around. A New Year’s Day hangover cure.

For myself, entering transactions manually would take over a day each month, but importing transactions with all the bank rules setup takes less than an hour for 7 bank / credit card accounts and I haven’t done a reconciliation for years.

@Brucanna I will have a look into bank imports over Christmas and see.

The key issue is Manager documentation has always said to pay an invoice you use payments - it never says don’t pay your invoices - use bank import. So this is the reason why people have never used Bank Import. When I was learning about Manager, it was never suggested no don’t pay your invoice, just import bank statements.

In my example I am talking about three cheques in one deposit. They could be from the same client or three different clients. It would have to be edited as its very random.

Some weeks I have zero transactions and other weeks I might buy a lot or receive a lot of money so I kind of want to do the payments/receipts as they come in go out so I can keep track of my cashflow. Weekly importing would make no sense as I may have one transaction or none that week. But by the end of the month (i.e. 4 weeks my balances could be thousands out.

I could reverse the order - Use Manager to tick off against the bank statement. But I am at a complete loss to understand why Manager can’t be updated to handle transaction order better using time stamps or something. There are many reasons why you might want things in the same order as the bank statement.

Do you use Purchase Invoices. I assume the bank rules handles how to allocate payments to invoices. I wouldn’t spend a day a month for my transactions. I have very little, probably 30 or less a month - but many of them on the same day hence my question.

I might still stick with reconciliation because what I am doing is attaching the monthly bank statement from the bank to the monthly reconciliation transaction in the Reconciliation Tab. I like Manager’s attachment functionality - it really does help to ensure that you have all the paperwork like suppliers invoices, bank statements etc all linked up. So this is the reason I am focusing on Bank Reconcilation - for attaching my bank statements.

A bank import creates payments that are exactly the same as manually created ones. Whichever method you use, you are recording payments. The only difference is that with imports, they have already cleared.

During the import process, edit the transaction to add lines and break the single bank deposit into multiple lines, one for each invoice being paid. This is exactly what you would do if you took a stack of cheques to the counter at the bank and got one voucher back.

What would be the benefit? To reorder Manager to match the bank statement, you would need to compare the two against one another, transaction by transaction. Having done that, you would have verified the presence or absence of every transaction, as well as the accuracy of recording. Why do that if the process of generating a bank reconciliation does not care about order? Think about how you look up transactions when there is a problem. Do you get out the bank statement to see what position things are in? Probably not. You look at either the date the transaction was made or the date it cleared the bank. Neither requires other transactions to match the order on a bank statement.

Not quite. You can set up a bank rule for a customer, but not a specific invoice. What would be the point, as it will probably never be repeated?

What I mean with Manager documentation is that the instructions show you how to pay the invoice manually. I never actually realised until now that importing bank statements did the same thing. I always assumed that you paid manually in Manager and the bank import did some kind of reconciliation. I am probably not alone in that thinking which would explain why so many manager users never use bank imports.

When I am doing my reconciliation at the end of the month and the balances don’t match, I have to tick off what is in Manager and the bank account to see what transactions are in Manager and not in the bank account and vice versa to get the balances to match. If transactions were in the same order, this would be a lot easier.

Sorry I don’t mean bank rules allocate to invoices but more that the bank import marks invoice from supplier abc as paid when I import an amount equalling that invoice. What I was asking about was how the bank import knows which invoices to pay essentially. I might call the supplier Webroot but the bank statement might call that supplier Webroot GMBH or something.

I’m not sure why you think this. There are, in fact, no metrics. But question volume on the forum suggests the strong possibility that more import than do it manually.

The program does not know which invoice to pay. But if you set up a bank rule to post withdrawals containing the string “Webroot” to Accounts payable >> Webroot, the program would post such a payment whether the description was “Webroot” or Webroot GMBH." Like all searches, it is a matter of considering what constitutes a sufficiently unique criterion without over-specifying. Once posted to the account, the payment would be applied to the unpaid invoice with the oldest due date, just as when you enter a payment manually without designating the invoice.

Once again, you need to think of bank statement imports as just another path for creating receipts and payments that behave exactly like the ones you create manually.

Well I will definitely have a look at bank imports over Christmas and see how it works now that I understand the process better.

I don’t have any measurement of whether people use bank imports or create payments manually but I suspect most people use the manual method as it’s easy to understand what you are doing. This is probably why you get more questions on bank imports as its more complex than paying manually.

Thank you for all the help. I understand bank imports, reconciliation and manual entries in Manager far better. Still need to play with bank imports to get my head round how it works with bank rules etc.