by Sunburst Software Solutions, Inc.
Archives by Month

Payroll Tips

Payroll is one of the MOST critical pieces of your business.You need to:

pay your employees correctly and on time to keep them happy
pay your payroll taxes and other liabilities on time
be prepared for a payroll audit and know what records you have to keep for how long
deal with wage garnishments and employee loans

Most importantly, you NEED to get the payroll dollars into your QuickBooks® job costing reports!

1 2 3 8

Are Your QuickBooks Payroll & Certified Payroll Processes Efficient?

Ask any business owner how efficient he thinks his payroll and certified payroll processes are and I'm betting he'll either say "oh they are very efficient" or "they could be better". I attended a really great webinar called "A Tale of Two Payroll Processes" a couple of weeks ago, hosted by CPA Practice Advisor and presented by TSheets.  During this webinar I learned some alarming facts that immediately took me back about 15 years to a time when I was doing a ton of payroll and certified payroll processes manually and literally wanted to tear my hair out.
Continue reading

Employee Reimbursements-Accountable vs Non-Accountable Plans

The IRS has very strict rules about how a business should handle employee reimbursements. If you make the payment under an accountable plan, deduct it in the category of the expense paid.  If you make the payment under a non-accountable plan, deduct it as wages and include it in the employee’s Form W-2. Avoiding paying unnecessary taxes on employee reimbursements involves keeping detailed and accurate records separating out how much your business spends on different types of expenses.
Continue reading

Searching For the Right Time Tracking Add-On for QuickBooks?

Are you totally overwhelmed & confused in your search for “just the right” time tracking add-on for QuickBooks?  I certainly understand! When you go to the Intuit Marketplace (https://marketplace.intuit.com/ ) and click on the option to Search by Business Need and then click on Time Tracking, you’ll find yourself with 51 different time tracking add-on programs to choose from!  Little wonder you are overwhelmed and confused.  I get that way too. This article provides you with some questions to ask yourself when you are searching for "just the right" time tracking addon for QuickBooks, introduces you to a few of our favorites AND let's you know how you can see these products in action over the next few months.
Continue reading

QuickBooks at Year-End: Getting Ready for 1099’s

The end of the year is fast approaching and we are all getting geared up to issued 1099's to Vendors and W-2's to employees. Making sure that we issue 1099's to the appropriate Vendors is a task that we all need to pay attention to. This article talks about several reports that you can create in QuickBooks that will help you to make sure that your 1099 information is up to date by performing a self-audit of your records.
Continue reading

QuickBooks Year-End Tip – Tracking 1099 & W-9 Information

With the end of the year quickly coming – I thought it might be a good time to discuss how you can track Vendor/Subcontractor 1099 information in QuickBooks. While actually issuing 1099’s is only a once a year event – if you plan and prepare all year long you’ll be in good shape. Thankfully QuickBooks provides with the tools and ability to track 1099 payments to subcontractors as well as the ability to generate these forms at year end - but if you don't know about (or use) these tools; well you are in for a tough time.
Continue reading

How To Create a Payroll Deduction Authorization Form Using the QuickBooks Letters function

Payroll management isn't an easy task and certainly involves more than just getting paychecks distributed in a timely manner.   One area that businesses seem to have a hard time with is putting a plan in place to ensure payroll deduction authorization forms are properly collected and errors are prevented.  Payroll deduction authorization forms are a must if you are taking money out of an employees paycheck for anything other than required payroll taxes.  Yes, I know - more paperwork!  You can implement a simple system in which the authorization forms can be numbered as they come in and a log may be maintained to help keep track of the forms.  QuickBooks can help you to automate this process and even help you store this information electronically by attaching the authorization form to the employee record. Also, be sure to let employees know when the deductions will take effect. Generally, deductions would activate during the following payroll processing period after they were received.
Continue reading

Recording & Tracking Employee Personal Tool Purchases

Quite often, especially in the construction industry, an employee will purchase tools for their own personal use; either using a company credit card or through a tool vendor account.  While most employers don't mind an occasional purchase such as this, it's important for you (as the bookkeeper) to track this information and make sure that the employee actually pays the company back for these purchases.  This blog post will provide you with instructions on how to track this in QuickBooks and provide tips for handling this situation if you use an outside payroll service.
Continue reading

QuickBooks 2014 – Changes/Improvements to the Payroll Center

Color isn't everything that's new and better in QuickBooks 2014.  The Payroll Center got a long overdue overhaul as well.  It's new "tabbed" design splits out payroll tasks, such as Pay Employees, Pay Liabilities, and File Forms makes it neat, efficient and organized. Screenshots and words make the improvements difficult to explain, so I've put together a short YouTube video that actually shows you what's changed and why I think the changes are great.  Why don't you watch the video and let me know what you think!
Continue reading

How To Turn On and Use Manual Payroll in QuickBooks

How to turn on and use the manual payroll option in QuickBooks certainly feels like a highly guarded secret.  Intuit makes a lot of money selling payroll subscriptions and rightly so as keeping up with payroll tax laws and forms in each and every state is a lot of work! There are times when a company that uses QuickBooks for their day-to-day accounting has a need to record their payroll manually - without paying for an Intuit tax table subscription - one such instance is when the company has their payroll done by an outside payroll service, but need to record their payroll in detail for job costing purposes in QuickBooks. This article explains how to turn on and use the manual payroll function in QuickBooks.
Continue reading

QuickBooks Payroll Record Keeping Tips-How To Stay Organized

In order to be well prepared for a Wage & Hour audit that you need to keep your payroll records for the duration of EACH worker’s employment with your company PLUS 5 to 10 years! Most Human Resources and legal experts are suggesting this to ensure these records are available in the event a claim is filed,

Discover what records you need to have available for an audit and how to store that information without having to have a bunch of file cabinets in your office.

Continue reading

Payroll Recordkeeping – More Than Just Getting Employees Paid On Time

In the past couple of years there has been an increase in the number of Federal and/or State payroll wage audits resulting in the repayment of back wages, in all industries – not just construction, plus fines and penalties. In May and June of 2013 U. S. Department of Labor audits have resulted in the payment of $5,750,693.00 in back wages throughout the United States.

Are your payroll records accurate and up-to-date? They need to be - because inaccurate payroll records can cost emBeployers BIG bucks!

See this article for information on what you need to keep and how long you need to keep your payroll records.

Continue reading

I-9 Form Updated – Make Sure You’re Prepared

Government audits used to be rare, but that has changed under the Obama administration, which has investigated companies more aggressively, Shusterman said. Government audits of employer I-9 forms rose from 250 in fiscal 2007 to more than 3,000 last year, according to data from U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement cited by the Associated Press in December.

Mistakes or missing information, whether intentional or not and which might have nothing to do with a worker being in the country illegally, can lead to stiff penalties. Employers can be fined from $110 to $1,100 per violation for failing to comply with the form's requirements, according to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. Penalties can be even steeper, up to $6,500 per violation, for participating in document fraud, or up to $16,000 for knowingly hiring an unauthorized worker.

Continue reading
1 2 3 8
About Your Host:

Nancy Smyth, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor

Nancy Smyth, Sunburst Software Solutions, Inc.
QuickBooks Construction & Payroll Expert


I've been using and supporting QuickBooks products since the early 1990's. I've worked with thousands of contractors, assisting them with QuickBooks setup, Certified Payroll Reporting requirements, AIA Billing and Weighted-Average Overtime.


QuickBooks is a powerful product, but learning how to use it in your construction business can be difficult. I hope you find resources available here to be helpful.

Search our site
Stay updated!

Sign up to receive our latest QuickBooks Tips, Tricks & News via email:


Enter your email address:

Delivered by FeedBurner


We promise NOT to sell, rent, or otherwise distribute your name and email address!

FREE 30-Day Trials

Request FREE 30-day Trials of QuickBooks add-ons for Certified Payroll, AIA Billing & Payroll Wage Management. Save time and increase accuracy on time-consuming error prone tasks; so you get paid on time!

Free 30 day trials of QuickBooks integrated add-ons for certified payroll, aia billing and weighted-average overtime

Certified Payroll Training:
Learn how to complete a Certified Payroll (Prevailing Wage) Report and fulfill your reporting requirements - 2 hour recorded webinar - $99.99. Click here for more info.

certified payroll requirements webinar
QuickBooks Training

Frustrated with QuickBooks?

QuickBooks Premier ContractorLearn how to get the MAXIMUM possible results from QuickBooks in your construction business! Visit our new QuickBooks training website, Learn to use QuickBooks in your construction business.

QuickBooks Time Tracking

Save 10%/FREE 14-day trial!


QuickBooks Time Tracker