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CAMP Class Discussion with Julie L

Julie handles the books for a construction company – and she recently met with our CAMP Counselor, Raquel. During that meeting, Raquel asked about her CAMP experience. Julie shared the following…

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Question: Before you started using CAMP, did you have any preconceived notions about using an online training program?

Julie: I guess I would say – when I look at education, and there's X amount per month for "Here's everything", I would always feel like, "Oh, but I want a little bit at a time and not pay so much!"

To be honest, I would say that would be my only hesitation too. Because then I feel pressured to really get in there because I'm paying, maybe more than whatever I think it should be.

But I've got to say the value for what you guys offered was huge. I mean, once I got in there and got going, it was totally worth it.

Question: So it sounds like you had a little hesitancy, but once you got in, you felt a little more confident that it was worth the value?

Julie: Yes, absolutely. Yes. Because then it's nice too, to have it in that way because I can do it at my own pace when I need to, and when I want to. I like the way she has it set up where there are notes you can follow along with. And the video was good, even though it's older content, it was still very, very relevant to the version that I had.

Obviously, the concepts and the education – is applicable, it's just some of those little details about the software have changed a little. It was kind of surprising, though, how much hasn't [changed].

I did have to ask her about one feature. I couldn't find it anywhere.

I think it wasn't even available to me based on what I had.

Question: In the beginning, what was your original reason for coming to us?

Julie: Just more education, being able to more fully use QuickBooks – more than just your Chart of Accounts, and your checkbook, and paying bills. And I wanted to enhance the job costing, know how to get in there and, and know how... Two-fold:

  1. One, how to job cost better.
  2. And two, how to dig in deeper and use more of QuickBooks features for the job costing (which, of course, she's a genius at.)

Question: It sounds like the solution was being in CAMP, you were able to find some of those things to help you better job-cost.

Julie: Oh yes, absolutely. And I really liked (I mean granted - she went into a lot of details about setup and stuff like that), and I didn't really need that because I've been in QuickBooks for - we've been in business for 20 years. So I've been in it a very long time. So I knew that type of thing, and I was already set up, but I really liked the detail of setting up the Chart of Accounts, setting up all the different lists and stuff in there that are helpful.

I actually haven't even gotten to customizing reports and stuff, so I look forward to doing that in the future but just getting these things – not the QuickBooks setup, but the Chart of Accounts and the lists and setting things up to work properly to do the job costing – that was super. I had to do a lot of work there to change and get that set up good.

Question: Thinking about the reason you came to us initially – how do you feel about your Chart of Accounts and using the job-costing features?

Julie: Really good. It still feels a little clunky, only in that I'm not used to it. I was used to my Chart of Accounts being the way I put it. And I was like I said, I've been doing this for twenty years. And so, I was used to the way I had it, and granted – everything, all the content is the same – she just arranges it differently.

I really like how the Chart of Accounts is set up where it's got headings and then subheadings and then subs under that. The only thing I would complain about, I guess (I'd say it's not even Diane) it's QuickBooks. It's that now – because of the heading and the subheading – and then it being three or four layers deep – when I go to choose an Item, I can't see it because there are too many layers.

It shows the main thing that it's in – but I can't necessarily see the Item exactly. Like in the dropdown, when I'm going to choose an item, it's so long – because it's got those layers – it's so long I can't always see what I'm choosing, especially now I'm using "QuickBooks Time" and doing schedules and estimates in there. They really need to work on that. And again, that's not Diane, that's QuickBooks – but I'm really struggling with that.

But as far as setting up the Chart of Accounts, I really like the reports I'm getting with it set up the way she said to do it. That's something I did not know about - when you do a subhead, and it does subtotals in the reports for these specific areas.

So the reports I'm getting – because I am still doing a little bit of spreadsheet job-costing – when I'm looking at the reports in QuickBooks to put those numbers in the spreadsheet, it's totaling what I want better.

It's arranging it in a really nice way for me to see what I need to see.

Question: How user-friendly did you find CAMP to be?

Julie: Oh, very! Extremely! It was very easy. Yes. Very easy to use. It made sense. Everything was right there to download the notes. And I really liked the spreadsheet that has all the content in it. So you can check off who did what (the Workshop sheet.) Yes, very nice.

It was only me in there, but if I had a team, I said, "Oh, this would be very helpful to know, or even assign it to somebody."

I liked that a lot.

Question: So you mentioned that you reached out to Diane to ask a couple of questions. How was the response time?

Julie: Very quick. Definitely within the same day – if not within an hour or two. I mean, very quick, very quick.

She went over and above, helping me with a payroll issue as well. I wasn't sure where that line was. Like, how much do you answer basically free, and when do we need to charge? And she went over and above with some questions before that.

Question: Do you feel that all your questions have now been taken care of?

Julie: Yes. I just have to follow through and take care of them. One of them, I have to contact QuickBooks about it – it's pulling from the wrong checkbook for the payroll. I just have to change it manually, but Diane did help me find where it is that it has to be changed. And I couldn't do that myself. So, yes, I just need to follow through with it.

Question: Has CAMP helped you in your business in any way?

Julie: I guess I would say the biggest thing is [that] I feel more organized. I like to feel confident about the information that I have in QuickBooks – to be able to find it quickly and easily. And I feel like having it organized – although it was organized before and I could find things – just the way Diane did it is more logical. I don't know if that covers it or not, but I feel more confident that it's correct.

And I feel like it's very, very well organized. So then I'm better prepared to provide then, reports again, make some job-costing to the guys about, "Okay, here's what it costs."

I'm trying to think – Estimates versus Actuals – I feel like I did some of that before.

But again, just more details and more organized – I think is the main thing that she helped us with.

Question: If you were talking to another business owner or bookkeeper, what would you tell them about the value of CAMP?

Julie: I highly recommend it. I've actually talked to a couple of different people about it already. I don't know if they have signed up, but – yes – if anybody even remotely needs or wants help, she's definitely the one I would recommend, for sure. I definitely recommend CAMP for the best QuickBooks education I've ever seen for construction job costing, for this industry. Definitely. By far.