We are about to embark on a journey of discovery about Fishbowl. We’ll ask a series of 14 questions, each starting with the words “Did You Know,” to inform you about many of the features, integrations, and other resources Fishbowl has to offer.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL INTEGRATES WITH XERO
QuickBooks is not the only accounting solution Fishbowl integrates with. Now we’ll explain how to set up the integration between Fishbowl and Xero.
Setting Up a Fishbowl-Xero Integration
Connecting Fishbowl to Xero is pretty straightforward. Simply go to the Accounting Integration module in Fishbowl, click the Configure tab, and click the “Connect to Xero” button.
Follow the instructions in the wizard that appears to get an Authorization code from Xero and then enter it into the empty text box. Then just select the Xero accounts you want Fishbowl to use for Accounts Receivable, Accounts Payable, Holding, and Undeposited Funds. If you don’t have applicable Xero accounts, you can make them by clicking the Create buttons.
Imports and Exports
This Xero integration lets information flow easily between these two solutions. You can perform Fishbowl imports and exports anytime you like by simply clicking the General tab in the Accounting Integration module and clicking a few other buttons.
This way, you keep your accounting and inventory records updated and on the same page every time you make changes in one or the other. This means no more double data entry and no more guesswork about which records are contained where.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL HAS AN AUSTRALIAN VERSION
Fishbowl isn’t just for companies in the United States. It has gone global because every country has inventory and warehouses they need to manage. That is why, since 2011, Fishbowl has been available Down Under with Fishbowl Australia.
Fishbowl Australia has pretty much all of the same software features that the U.S. version of Fishbowl has. But Australia and New Zealand have different tax laws, so that’s why Fishbowl needed an Australian version, which differs in three main ways from the U.S. version:
1. Taxing Line Items at Different Rates in Sales Orders
In the U.S. taxes are order-based while in Australia and New Zealand taxes are line item-based. So if a customer buys products that fall under more than one category, they must all be taxed in their own distinct way. Fishbowl Australia’s Sales Order module allows for this type of tax calculation.
2. Taxing Line Items at Different Rates in Purchase Orders
This is similar to the first feature. A purchase order is sent to a company spelling out what a customer wants to buy. By complying with Australian and New Zealand tax laws and showing how much each item will be taxed, this purchase order feature makes sure customers know exactly how much they’ll be charged in the end.
3. Integrating with QuickBooks Australia
It makes sense that Fishbowl Australia would integrate seamlessly with Intuit’s Australian accounting solution, QuickBooks Australia, given Fishbowl’s special relationship with QuickBooks in North America. In addition, both Fishbowl and Fishbowl Australia integrate with Reckon and the online accounting solution Xero.
Call Fishbowl Australia’s office at 1300 785 755 in Australia or 0800 785 755 in New Zealand or sign up for a free trial to learn more about this version of Fishbowl.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL HAS A CANADIAN VERSION
The good folks in the Great White North have their own Fishbowl version: Fishbowl Canada.
Like Fishbowl Australia, Fishbowl Canada is quite similar to Fishbowl in the U.S. Its differences lie mainly in its use of Fishbowl’s multi-currency feature.
Fishbowl allows Canadian companies to:
- Use the Canadian dollar as their home currency
- Convert all other currencies they receive into Canadian dollars
- Use the Canadian tax code
- Set different tax rates for line items on sales orders and purchase orders
- Integrate seamlessly with QuickBooks Canada
In addition to these key features, Fishbowl Canada lets companies create multi-level work orders and bill of materials, use production stages, manage multiple warehouses, set up automatic reorder points for products, pick, pack, and ship items, and much more.
Learn more about Fishbowl Canada and see how it can help your business thrive.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL IS UPS READY
UPS Ready signifies UPS has certified that a business solution integrates seamlessly with their shipping features.
Fishbowl was one of the first solutions to become UPS Ready certified. Since 2013, Fishbowl Manufacturing and Fishbowl Warehouse have had UPS features built into their interface. Users don’t have to leave Fishbowl and open a separate Web browser in order to access comprehensive UPS shipping information. They can do that within Fishbowl itself.
Fishbowl and UPS
What UPS shipping functions can you perform in Fishbowl? Check them out:
- Get cost estimates for different types of shipping, such as air, ground, and next day
- Print UPS shipping labels directly from Fishbowl
- Instantly send shipment notifications to UPS for pickup
- Automatically email customers their UPS packing lists and tracking after their packages get shipped
All of this makes it easier to manage your shipping from within Fishbowl. Fishbowl also works with other major shippers, including FedEx and USPS.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL MANUFACTURING USES PRODUCTION STAGES
Fishbowl Manufacturing uses production stages in the form of multilevel work orders. Work orders in Fishbowl can be devised in a way that maps out the order of steps that are needed in order to finish a product.
So you can’t move on step 6 until steps 1-5 are completed in order because trying to skip ahead simply wouldn’t work. Production stages work in manufacturers’ favor for the following reasons:
- It’s possible to estimate how much time it will take to finish each stage, as well as how much time it will take to generate the finished product.
- You can assign each production stage to a worker, so there’s a clear stewardship and you know who to approach if a step isn’t done on time.
- Scheduling the various stages that need to take place is fairly simple, ensuring nothing gets missed and that there’s a clear timetable.
- Production stages create order from chaos. All the data on production times, materials, and assigned workers is spelled out in Fishbowl’s interface.
Production stages are a huge help for manufacturers. If you have complex manufacturing jobs requiring multiple steps, Fishbowl Manufacturing is an ideal solution.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL HAS A FORECASTING FEATURE
Fishbowl has a Plugin module that lets users manage all of the plugins they currently have available. And one of those plugins is the Forecast module.
This is a useful feature, allowing you to use previous sales data to project future sales. This helps businesses plan for their upcoming inventory needs. So let’s talk about how to install the Forecast module and how to set it up to get the information you need.
It’s pretty easy to install the Forecast module. Just go into the Plugin module and click the Install button on the Forecast option. Then restart the Fishbowl Server and you should be able to find the Forecast module in the General module group.
It has a number of filters that let you focus on the information you want to measure:
Display Data: Sales, Cost, or Quantity
This is the most basic part. What do you want to measure – the total sales price or total cost of the inventory you’ve sold or the quantity of the inventory you’ve sold, scrapped, or consumed on work orders?
By selecting a single part, you can track only that part’s sales, costs, and quantities used over time. If you want to see changes in all of your inventory just leave this field blank.
To home in on a certain location group, simply select it in this field. Select <All> to look at all of your location groups, and click the Combine Location Groups box to group them all into a single graph instead of multiple ones.
There are three formulas you can use to graph the data:
1. Constant Average – This puts a flat line through the graph at the data’s mean average. This clearly shows you the historical average, which could prove useful if you don’t expect much growth in the future.
2. Linear Regression – This puts a slanted line through the middle of the data points to show what the future might hold if things continue as they have in the past.
3. Exponential Moving Average – This puts a line that keeps moving up or down to reflect trends from one data point to the next.
You can add a growth percentage to the forecast if you want to see not what the current trend is, but what you expect to happen as a result of an outside influence that the current data can’t predict.
This is pretty self-explanatory. Set the date range you want the chart to cover.
There are three chart types you can view the data in:
Line Graph – This has the data for each point represented by a dot, connected by a line, allowing you to compare each day, week, month, or year to each other.
Accumulation – This also connects the dots, but it keeps piling data on top of itself so the result is a chart that shows the overall sales that accumulate over time.
Scatter Plot – This is basically a line graph but without the line intersecting all of the data points.
This is pretty important. You can choose if you want the data to be displayed by day, week, month, or year. This affects how the information will be presented and how much detail you’ll be able to see.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL CAN DO MANY THINGS QUICKBOOKS CAN’T
QuickBooks isn’t meant to be a standalone manufacturing or warehouse management solution. It’s an accounting solution. Fishbowl Manufacturing and Fishbowl Warehouse pick up the slack and handle the inventory logistics that QuickBooks can’t. That’s why Fishbowl is so popular among QuickBooks users.
So let’s dive in and learn about 10 things Fishbowl can do that QuickBooks can’t.
10 Features Where Fishbowl Shines
Fishbowl allows its customers to use the following features in addition to what QuickBooks provides:
1. Create bills of materials for many types of jobs, not just for simple assembly.
2. Create work orders for simple and multistage assembly, disassembly, repair, and replacement jobs and group them together into manufacture orders.
3. Generate and print new barcodes and then scan them rather than only scanning existing barcodes.
4. Use Last In First Out (LIFO) and Standard Cost methods in addition to Average Cost and First In First Out (FIFO).
5. Combine several products into a kit and add that kit to a sales order.
6. In addition to lot numbers and serial numbers, Fishbowl can also track parts by revision levels and expiration dates. Plus, with its Custom Fields option, you can set up virtually any other tracking criteria you like.
7. Issue Return Merchandise Authorizations (RMA) for product returns, repairs, refunds, and replacements.
8. Use production stages in manufacturing to see how close products are to completion. To be fair, QuickBooks Enterprise does have this feature, but every other QuickBooks version does not.
9. Use transfer orders, rather than invoices, to move parts and products between warehouses and other locations.
10. Offer discounts on products with cost-plus pricing and group pricing in addition to a percent discount and dollar amount taken off the price.
Fishbowl and QuickBooks complement each other well. Click this link to learn more about Fishbowl’s integration with QuickBooks and how it benefits your business.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL CAN BE USED AS A STANDALONE ASSET TRACKING SOLUTION
Did you know Fishbowl isn’t just for businesses that sell products to customers? In addition, organizations that are looking to better monitor their assets can use Fishbowl just as well as businesses. In fact, quite a few already have.
Here are three big organizations that have put Fishbowl to the test and seen positive results:
NASA uses Fishbowl to track the food production for its astronauts on the International Space Station.
The Mississippi State Department of Health, in the wake of Hurricane Katrina, started using Fishbowl as a means of dispersing badly needed medical supplies across the state. It is now a model for other states to follow in its emergency preparedness.
The IT Network Division of Santa Barbara County, California, uses Fishbowl to manage warranties and other assets across more than 200 locations.
There are many advantages of using Fishbowl as a standalone asset tracking solution, which include:
- It’s much less expensive than larger ERPs and inventory management solutions.
- Fishbowl has all the features large organizations to track materials, shipments, and much more.
- Fishbowl can track assets in multiple locations and use reports to anticipate future needs.
- There are dozens of training videos and other tools to help workers get started with the software.
- Fishbowl has user rights that allow organizations to compartmentalize tasks and keep data secure.
- Fishbowl has an endless number of custom fields, which allow organizations to customize parts of the software to meet their unique needs.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL HAS AN ROI TOOL
Fishbowl’s inventory management features are designed to save companies time and money. In fact, there is an ROI tool that lets you calculate the savings you’ll receive by implementing Fishbowl and how long it will take for those savings to cover the initial cost of the software. You’ll most likely be pleasantly surprised by the results.
Check out the Fishbowl ROI Tool and start inputting the following bits of information into the text boxes to see your savings. These things are separated into five categories:
5 ROI Factors
1. Automation and acceleration
- Data entry
2. Increase revenue
- Picking, packing, and shipping
- Work orders and purchase orders
- Warehouse mapping
- Shipping and handling
- Product and service offerings
3. Communication and collaboration
- Collecting data
- Building reports
- Automated shipping
4. Workforce optimization
- Employee time savings
- Automated pricing rules
- Automated costing methods
Getting Your Return on Investment
Your return on investment depends all of the factors above, as well as the costs of software, hardware, and training. These costs, of course, depend on how many users you’ll need and what equipment and training will work best for your company.
When all is said and done, you’ll learn how long it will take for the Fishbowl software to pay for itself.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL HAS VIDEO CASE STUDIES
These are Fishbowl’s video case studies that show how different types of companies have benefited from using Fishbowl in their daily activities.
East Coast Defender
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL IS ACCESSIBLE ONLINE
Did you know the desktop Fishbowl software can be accessed via Web browser? This frees you from the desktop so you can do essential inventory management tasks in more places. And this is made possible by a product aptly named Fishbowl Anywhere.
What Is Fishbowl Anywhere?
Fishbowl Anywhere is a plugin, which means that it’s a separate product from the main Fishbowl software. But its function is to connect any device with Internet access to the main Fishbowl software. So even though Fishbowl Anywhere is distinct from Fishbowl Manufacturing and Fishbowl Warehouse, it allows you to open those solutions in a Web browser.
Imagine being able to manage your inventory in Fishbowl online! If you’re on vacation or otherwise preoccupied away from the office you can still easily open your Fishbowl file to check inventory quantities, place orders, check order statuses, and do anything else you can do on a desktop computer. The possibilities are mind-boggling.
Learn more about Fishbowl Anywhere and a number of ways it can help your company by opening the following PDFs:
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL HAS A REORDER POINT CALCULATOR
Fishbowl offers a reorder point calculator that anyone can access, free of charge. Isn’t that convenient?
Why a Reorder Point Calculator?
Reordering is important in the order management process. Companies need to plan ahead and maintain equilibrium on products going out and coming into their warehouses. That’s where a reorder point calculator comes in handy.
Fishbowl’s reorder point calculator helps companies in several ways:
- Knowing when they’re getting low on a certain item
- Avoiding unnecessary shortages
- Cutting down on carrying costs by not over-ordering
The Reorder Point Equation
The calculator uses the following equation to come up with a reorder point:
Reorder Point = (Lead Time + Safety Stock + Basic Stock) x Unit Sales Per Day
Want to know exactly what lead time, safety stock, and basic stock are? Click the link above and go to the Reorder Point Calculator page right now to get detailed descriptions of them. “Unit sales per day” is pretty self-explanatory, though.
You can use Fishbowl reorder point calculator as many times as you like for as many products as you like. This calculator is just one of the numerous manufacturing and warehouse management features you’ll find in the full Fishbowl software.
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL HAS AN ANNUAL DAY OF SERVICE
Since 2009, Fishbowl has dedicated one day every year purely to service. That’s a big deal for any company to take that much time off to focus on something other than business.
Fishbowl’s Day of Service is a sign of many things:
- The company is healthy enough financially to focus some of its efforts on charity.
- Fishbowl takes its social responsibility seriously.
- Fishbowl is the kind of company any community would want to have in it.
- Fishbowl’s employees don’t mind getting down and dirty to get the job done.
Days of Service
All of Fishbowl’s Utah employees, and even their family members, are invited to go out and help the local community. So far, they have helped the following organizations over the years:
- 2009: Cherry Creek Elementary in Springville
- 2010: Provo House of Hope
- 2011: Mountainland Head Start in Utah County
- 2012: Barnett Elementary School in Payson
- 2013: Lehi High School
- 2014: Central Utah Veterans Home in Payson
- 2015: Cascade Springs
- 2016: Theater in the Pines
- 2017: Utah Girls Love You
- 2018: Sleep in Heavenly Peace and Stitching Hearts Worldwide
DID YOU KNOW FISHBOWL HAS DOZENS OF SOFTWARE TRAINING VIDEOS
While Fishbowl’s core products and add-ons are designed to be user friendly, they can seem a little intimidating at first glance as you get started with them. That’s why our team has put together dozens of training videos to help you get started with the software and familiarize yourself with its many modules and features.
Here are Fishbowl’s software training videos, organized by topic:
Becoming a Master
Watching these videos will help you feel like a Fishbowl master before you even open the client for the first time. Or if you’ve been using Fishbowl for a while, you’ll find helpful tips to make even better use of the software.
NOW YOU KNOW
We have come to the end of this long journey of discovery. Now you know:
- Fishbowl integrates with Xero.
- Fishbowl has an Australian version.
- Fishbowl has a Canadian version.
- Fishbowl is UPS Ready.
- Fishbowl Manufacturing uses production stages.
- Fishbowl has a Forecasting feature.
- Fishbowl can do many things QuickBooks can’t.
- Fishbowl can be used as a standalone asset tracking solution.
- Fishbowl has an ROI tool.
- Fishbowl has video case studies.
- Fishbowl is accessible online.
- Fishbowl has a reorder point calculator.
- Fishbowl has an annual Day of Service.
- Fishbowl has dozens of software training videos.
Sign up for a free trial of Fishbowl to put this knowledge into practice!
Robert Lockard is a copywriter with Fishbowl. He writes for several blogs about inventory management, manufacturing, QuickBooks, and small business. Fishbowl is the #1-requested manufacturing and warehouse management software for QuickBooks users. Robert enjoys running, reading, writing, spending time with his wife and children, and watching movies.