Get full Time Activity data from QuickBooks into Power BI

Problem

As per the time of writing, the native QuickBooks connector in Power BI has some shortcomings for the Time Activity-data: It will not return employee details (so you will not know who did the hours) and it will not return hours (if they haven’t been entered by start- and end-date).

Solution

But fortunately the connector has 2 functions, who can return the full data that the QBO-API has to offer. At the end of the list in the navigation pane there are the functions “Entity” and “Report”:

QuickBooks Time Activity Navigation Pane

Choose “Entity” and a window will pop up where you enter “select * from TimeActivity” into the first field (“query”):

QuickBooks Function Dialogue

Click invoke and you might be prompted with the sign-in-dialogue. Sign in and continue will return a table like this:

QuickBooks Time Activity Result Table with Records

Click the expand-arrows (1) -> disable prefixes (2) -> Load more (3) -> Select All Columns -> OK -> dance the happy dance:

QuickBooks Results Time Activity

Employee data in a record that you can expand as you like:

QuickBooks Time Activity Employee data

And at the end of the table you’ll find the hours and minutes for the entries who didn’t use start- and end date:

QuickBooks Hours

Bonus

According to the manual, you can also pass parameters to this function call. I’ve created a handy function with an optional parameter that allows you to pass in a date after which the time entries shall be returned. But you can use the function without this parameter as well and return all time entries by just adding open and close parenthesis like so: NameOfTheFunction()

This function also calculates the total duration from the 2 different capture methods.

Enjoy & stay queryious ūüėČ

Why Power BI isn’t suitable for Financial Statements (… currently … hopefully …)

!! This is a clickbait post to get your vote for some missing features in Power BI !!

Although this might not be what the inventors of Power BI had in mind, large lots of folks are trying to create classical financial statements in it. And putting aside the afford that might go into getting the numbers right, there is still a major drawback to swallow:

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1000..1090|1500|2000..2020

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The good folks from SumProduct have published a challenge for Excel that I find worth doing in Power Query instead:

The Challenge

Stretching or compressing a forecast so that the proportion of the original series will be maintained:

The Function

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As shown in my last part of the Easy P&L-series, Power BI unfortunately still lacks some fundamental formatting options like:

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So for the moment I choose between the following workaround-options:

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For both options the preparations are the same:

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A break-even analysis tells you at which value of the parameter in question your profit-calculation will turn positive (link). Here we need to sell at least 173 at a given price of 20 before we’ve recovered all our costs:

If your variable costs are constant, you can solve it by this formula:

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You’ll find tons of examples on how to do this in Excel like here .

Non-linear cost structure

But in real life, the variable costs often depend on certain quantities as you get discounts for purchasing large amounts. The following table shows a cost structure with fix costs in row 1. The 3rd column “FixOrQty” indicates if the cost item is fix or dependent on the quantity (Qty).¬†The 2nd row contains a variable cost that is constant with 2¬†for all quantities. Row 3&4 show a variable cost of 8 for quantities up to¬†100 and if you purchase more than 100 the costs will be lowered to 2 for all additional¬†quantities. Row 5-7 have a similar structure, but with 3 quantity ranges:

 Solve with goal-seek algorithm

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