QB Enterprise with Advanced Inventory Can Aid Your Business if a Recall Occurs

Issues with Lot Controls

On the surface, these processes and report tracking make sense, but there are several weaknesses in the setup which could hamper the recall notification process.

First, both the reporting processes above only list the customers’ names of who purchased the product. The contact information is back in the customer record. The Transaction List by Lot Number report cannot be displayed to include a phone number or email address. The company is left looking up the contact information individually.

Second, notice that we sold one unit on a Sales Receipt in the report. Sales Receipts, since they are typically set up to be used for retail, do not require a customer name. Therefore, the company cannot reach the customers they sold to, and will need to broadcast a press release to the public in hopes of reaching their consumers.

Also, the lot number information itself may not be complete. Notice that back in the Serial/Lot Numbers tab of the Advanced Inventory settings window, under the default settings, there are only two options for being notified if lot numbers are left out or do not exist in inventory. These options are Warn me and Don’t warn me. There is no option for requiring the user to enter a lot number before saving a purchase or sales transaction.

Warning Settings

Figure 14: AI warning setting for Lots

We see this problem crop up when the total quantity on hand doesn’t match the total quantity of items with lot numbers because they were left out. And going back to research it is difficult. Even if you found the records, you may have to open up transactions from closed periods to enter the information. Here, simple training combined with frequent checking and follow-up of the data entry is necessary.

Preparation Is Critical

If you or your client are in the food or pharmaceutical industries, you should practice for the possibility of having a recall. Just like an unexpected accident, you don’t want to wait until you’re confronted with the situation to figure out what to do.

At the time of a recall, you want to make sure you can account for all of the products. Open the Quantity on Hand by Lot Number window and compare the total to the total in the Inventory Information window. This is how many you have remaining in the warehouse.

Inventory Information

Figure 15: Open Quantity on Hand by Lot Number window with Inventory Information window comparison.

If that matches, then you can turn to the Transaction List by Lot Number report or the global search to find the list of customers you sold to, so that you can personally notify them of a recall. You’ll want to notify your supplier who may have sold that lot to other customers.

It’s also helpful to have a prepared press release handy to use as a template should the need arise. You’ll need an explanation to the public about what’s going on, with a list of the affected lots, and a process for returning recalled items.

Improvements Needed

Intuit could make some changes to make the recall process easier for the QuickBooks owner. These include a report of the lot numbers with contact information to make notification quicker and easier. Programmers could also force the end user to be required to enter lot numbers for tighter control. And finally, require customer names on Sales Receipts when selling lot items.

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About the author

Tim Grant

Tim Grant, MBA, is the President of Business Solution Providers in San Francisco, California. BSP specializes in third-party inventory and manufacturing software products that integrate with QuickBooks. The company provides Needs Assessments to businesses looking for an inventory or manufacturing software solution. Once a choice is made, the BSP team can provide setup, training and implementation services to sync the company’s goals with the capabilities of software.

Tim has practiced public and private accounting for over twenty years in the service and manufacturing industries. He is an advanced-certified QuickBooks Pro Advisor, and a member of the Institute of Management Accountants, the National Advisor Network and The Sleeter Group.


  • Well written and researched article. Worth reading & sharing. QuickBooks Enterprise helps to manage inventory across our business right in QuickBooks. I agree with your point that Enterprise with the module Advanced Inventory is the only tool in the QuickBooks family of products that tracks “batches” or lot numbers of the products in stock, as well as transactions where those lots are used

  • Nice article. QuickBooks advance inventory is a great feature particularly for manufacturing business. I have implemented it in pharmaceutical companies, production, restaurant, construction and results are awesome. Everything can be tracked at micro level. Further FIFO costing, lot, and batches can be tracked. Bar code is an other important element to record transactions errorless.

      • QuickBooks itself has no feature for expiry date. I I have implemented quickbooks in Pakistan particularly in pharmaceutical companies and always used custom field and serial or lot number to be printed on invoice or vouchers. The said custom field can also be shown on reports. Use quickbooks advance inventory or quickbooks point sale in your pharmacy to handle inventory, print thermal printer receipt and that is the only way in QuickBooks.

        • Sorry i type it wrong actually i also talk about pharmacy company in Lahore Pakistan and they need expiry date so i will use a other and one more favor they want a invoice with sales tax at each line item rather than at end

          • Yes. I understand requirement of sales tax invoice in Pakistan and multi column invoice to be issued to customers as well as other voucher like Bank Payment Voucher, Cash payment Voucher, BRV, CRV and JV etc. This is possible in quickbooks. When I implement quickbooks in pharmaceutical companies I design all required vouchers to be printed from quickbooks. I can send you template my email is [email protected].
            If you are using quickbook enterprise you will have to use integrate ms access/crystal report with quickbooks. When integration is completed. All quickbooks tables/data will be live in Ms Access/Crystal Report/Excel where all type of queries and reports as per your requirements can be managed.

  • QuickBooks Enterprise is a good software but I have some problem:
    (1) I paid cash to vendors not paid by checks ,The problem is QB don’t allow cash payment just checks payment !
    (2) The features of Inventory is great but can any one tell me about storekeeper’s documents as like received (stock-in) & issued (stock-out) this’s very important documents for storekeeper so how can he used QB if it not support these documents ? is that mean I must add (Fishbowl warehouse) to solve this problem ?
    Best Regards

    • Your cash payment should come out of some account. It could be a “petty cash” account, or a bank account. It has to exist somewhere. If you have a petty cash account of some sort, you make that account a “bank” account in QuickBooks. Then when you pay someone in cash, you “write a check” from that account. You aren’t going to physically print it, just enter it in QuickBooks. That “check” serves as your cash payment ticket for accounting purposes. That works very simply. It also works for use of debit cards for payments, as well.

      For the reports, every type of inventory-related business is looking for something different. For the most part, when I want to look at transactions related to inventory, I will select the “Transaction Detail Report” (under “Custom Reports”) and set filters for the kinds of transactions that I’m looking for. There are also reports like the “Sales by Item Detail” and “Purchases by Item Detail” reports that may help. If you aren’t satisfied with any of these options, I would recommend using QQube (www.clearify.com) for creating custom reports – it is the best report generator program for QuickBooks desktop.

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