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September 2017

DentaLab NewsSeptember 2017  
from Mainstreet Systems & Software

FAQ  DentaLab News

 

Easy free education for you and your staff

As part of our user group support, we provide in-depth discussions in the Blog section of our website:  www.mainstreetsystems.net

Access to these is free to everyone who is interested in learning more about software and other aspects of computer technology for the dental lab.

To learn more about the basics, some of the topics are:

  • Case Scheduling
  • Business Intelligence is just a click or two away
  • Understanding Price Levels
  • Patient Safety Compliance for Dental Labs
  • Custom Fields in DentaLab for QuickBooks
  • The fast easy way to store and retrieve digital documents

To get up-to-date on cloud/mobile technology:

  • Coordinating the Desktop and the Cloud
  • MyQuickCloud to add the flexibility and mobility of cloud technology
  • Shelter from the dark side of the cloud

And in general...

  • If you want to be smart when selecting software
  • Learn from the best

When on the website, you can also browse through the other tabs to learn more about the latest offerings, our newsletters and quarterly releases, what other users are saying about their experiences with the software.

What is new in QuickBooks 2018

The focus of the latest QuickBooks Pro/Premier/Enterprise version for 2018 is on convenience and security. Here are a few of the convenience features we think you will enjoy:

  • Multi-monitor support for up to 3 screens:  Here at Mainstreet, our technical staff work with two monitors when developing and testing your software.  It is very easy to move back and forth between research, specifications, design, code and test results.   If you have personnel who not only enter information but also need to respond to customer requests, having more than one monitor in action can make their job much easier.
  • Ability to switch reports back and forth between cash and accrual basis on the report screen, rather than having to go to Edit/Preferences/Reports to make the switch:  This will be particularly useful for those who have established cash as their basis for their governmental reporting but prefer to look at their day-to-day sales and receivables on an accrual basis.
  • Option to have the computer stamp Past Due on invoices.

You can get the full list by going to www.quickbooks.com or www.intuit.com. 


Sales and Value-Added Taxation

Taxation on your dental lab sales occurs in QuickBooks.  When DentaLab for QuickBooks sends the invoice created from a case to QuickBooks, it is from the settings you establish that QuickBooks determines if the customer and the item are to be taxed and then calculates and adds the tax to the invoice.    Here are several steps to set up your records for taxation to let the program know your rates, taxing authority, when payment will be due, whether each customer and each item is taxed or not.   There are several ways to report on the details, the total, taxable and non-taxable sales, and the tax payable.

Most recently we have been told by our customers in Michigan and in Dubai that sales and value-added taxes are underway.   We have developed a white paper to help guide you through the taxation process.  Give us a call or send an email if you would like a copy of this.

      With the same look and feel of QuickBooks.

To answer your questions....

Q: We run into situations where we wanted to be reminded to follow-up in some way on a specific date.  What is available in our software to do this?

A:  In DQB, there are currently several ways to do this.  We can also consider adding a general to-do list by date, much like the one QuickBooks offers.   Here is what is currently available: 

When working with a case, you can enter an Action Required message.  Then you can request a report on all Action Required messages by date or date range.   These were originally designed for actions required by the dental office, but you can use them for your own actions. 

Also you can enter a Case Communication message and click the indicator to turn it into a Case Alert.  The alert will appear whenever you access the case. 

For customers,  you can enter a Customer Alert that will appear whenever you access the customer.   You can enter an expiration date and request a report by expiration date from the customer actions.   if the alert is to continue, you can change the expiration date.  You can also enter an Activity Log.  These record both the entry date and an alert date and you can request these by either date (or date range).  From the Customer Center, you can also request to see their Action Required messages.

One possibility for general follow-ups would be to provide a query on Activity Logs by alert date to provide a list covering all customers rather than just one. 

Let us have your suggestions for other possible spots within DQB and how you would like to handle your follow-ups.

Q: We've been told that the next Windows 10 Creator Update will soon be released.  Should we move ahead with this?

A: We would vote yes, with the caveat that you be sure that your programs and data are backed up first.  Typically these updates add higher levels of security, new features and code fixes whenever glitches or errors are detected in the prior release.

      With the same look and feel of QuickBooks.

Shelter from the dark side of the cloud

The internet is terrific in so many ways.  We use it almost every single day in many ways.  But we have come to know there are dangers in what has become known as cloud technology and it is wise to learn how to shelter from its dark side. 

The owner of a large dental lab contacted us recently asking about the possibilities for software to manage his cases and revenue.   He had succumbed to the appeal of "anytime, anywhere" access to his lab's information and said yes to one of the cloud-based offerings for dental labs.   As the months went by, entering and accessing his lab's information over the internet had diminished to an excruciatingly slow pace.  He had asked the company providing the software for better performance to no avail and the speed continued to go downhill.

He reminded them about their promise that he could always request a copy of his data.  He was then told that his information was not in a separate database but part of a large base of information for many  labs.  To access his own information he would need to take the time to copy it piece by piece into Excel spreadsheets.  He could, of course, continue to pay the monthly fee for the cloud-based service.....hopefully on their part, forever.

To shelter yourself from this type of entrapment and data breaches, there are questions you should ask and fulfillments you should require in writing before saying yes to turning your vital business information over to another company.   You should also take the time to explore the alternatives that modern technology provides for web access without giving up control of your core business information.

An in-depth discussion of this continues in the Blog section of our website:  www.mainstreetsystems.net

What's in the works for the  October release

The features in the upcoming release have all come from suggestions by bright minds in our user group.  Here are some of them:

Credit Memos in DQB:  From the case action list, you can create a credit memo based on a case in DQB, rather than having to go into QuickBooks to do this.   This action will first generate a credit based on the full value of the case, but you can then edit it.   Saving will create a credit memo in QuickBooks, add a credit transaction to invoice history, provide for viewing/printing of the credit memo in DQB. 

Contact Preference:  This is a new free-form field added to the customer record to note how they like to be contacted.  You can enter more than one preference such as "Email or phone" or be more specific such as "Takes calls from 11-12 daily" or any appropriate note to remind yourself how it is best to contact the customer.  This will be displayed in the customer record, in the Doctor frame in Case Entry, in the Customer Profile.

More Reporting by Rep:  For sales reporting by rep, we have added counts for customers and invoices, also added a rep column to the new customer group grid so that you can see which rep added each new customer.

Technician Productivity Units   For the labs that rely on technician productivity reports, some like the reports to be based on case entry units, some like to have these multiplied by the item's schedule factor.  Now, in Options/Case Settings/Technicians, you can indicate your choice on this.  You can also easily change the setting if you want to run your reports both ways.

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Customization is available for all products.

Contact us at 1-800-257-4535 or www.mainstreet-systems.com.

"DQB....best bang for the buck."

Joey Breaux
Breaux Dental Prosthetics
Texas, USA


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