What’s In Your Top 20?

You’re probably familiar with the Pareto Principle, which states that 80% of your results come from 20% of your work. Have you ever stopped to look at the Top 20 in your business? You can identify the top 20% of your customers, types of customers, products/services, sales reps, expenses, etc. in QuickBooks.  While it won’t always be an 80/20, you can still see what floats to the top and bottom.

The company snapshot can at least begin to give you a visual. (Here’s a video if you aren’t familiar with it). But here are some reports/graphs that might be helpful.

  • Profit & Loss – Choose whatever date range you want, then select Customize Report. In the lower right- hand corner, you’ll see an option for % of income and % of Choose one or both – could be an eye-opener!

  • Sales by Customer Summary – Again, choose your date range then select Choose % of column and Sort by Total
  • Sales by Item Summary – Choose your date Percent of Sales is already an option. If you don’t want some of the other information, then select Modify and get rid of any columns you don’t want to see. In the report screen, you may also want to click on collapse if you have numerous subitems – it’s sometimes easier to read with fewer items listed.  If you just want to see % of Sales and Gross Margin, you’ll need to export to Excel and hide the unwanted columns
  • The Income and Expense graph can be customized (Reports>Co & Financial>)- you can look at account, customer or class, and choose income or On the right, you’ll see the percentages of income and expense plus a pie chart for a visual. As they say, sometimes a picture is worth a thousand words!
  • The Sales Graph can also be You can see sales by item, customer or sales rep and again you’ll see percentages and a pie chart.

Some of these reports don’t address actual profit from customers, i.e. perhaps sales were high, but so were expenses or perhaps you’ve invoiced, but have yet to be paid or paid in full. You can run a P & L by Job and customize so you just see Income and Job Costs (Cost of Goods) and use % of Income if you want to compare Profit Margins and % of Row if you want to see who brought in the most dollars.  This is a report you may decide to export to Excel so you can do more with the data.

So, with these tools, you can now focus 80% of your time on the 20% that is most productive and profitable for your business. You can email me if you have problems with these reports.

I would love to hear if there were surprises when you ran these reports.

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