Better way to Accept downloaded transactions?

When I download my credit card transactions, the process to Accept them seems painfully awkward and non-intuitive. I can sort them by Payee, but when I select one and hit enter to accept, instead of automatically highlighting the next one in the list as sorted, it seems to randomly jump somewhere else. This is frustrating! Some of my transactions need a little more attention (like I need to add split categories, etc.) but some of them I could just go through and accept with the tap of the enter key, except the way the highlighted transaction jumps around makes this really clunky. If I have a set of five transactions from my grocery store and they're all being automatically marked as the correct category, I'd love to be able to select them all and Accept, or at least Accept them all quickly with the enter key. But no such luck. Does anyone else have this trouble? Any tips or workarounds to make this less frustrating?

Answers

  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    edited December 2020
    The SuperUsers and you might not like my answer, but my suggestion would be to turn on Automatic transaction entry mode.  It is different and has the word "automatic" in it and as such gets very little respect from the long time users, but it has some advantages.  And to prove that it is a viable way to do this it is the only way to do it in Quicken Mac and is the default for new users in Quicken Windows.

    I do believe that the not selecting of the next transaction is some kind of bug, but all the rest is because the "Downloaded Transaction tab" isn't the register.  There is a ton of features built into the register, and basically what you (and others) are asking for is for the developers to duplicate all those efforts in the Downloaded Transactions tab.

    But even if it got all of the multiple select features and such I believe the workflow is just wrong.  The problem with it is that you can't see what categories are going to be assigned until you click on a transaction in the Downloaded Transaction tab and it takes you to that transaction in the register.

    Compare that to the workflow of Automatic transaction entry mode.
    All the transaction appear in the register with the status column having the status New or New Match (be sure to expand the status column so you can see the words and not just the icons).

    So right off the bat you can scan all the new transactions and make sure they have the right categories.  And in the case of the Matching that the matched the right transaction, and also for transactions that should have matched, but didn't.

    This alone removes most of the work and gets you down to working on the transactions that really need your attention.

    This process uses "review" instead of "select and accept".
    Basically you are working to clear all of the New/New Match statuses by reviewing them.

    Here is an example of my downloading of transactions into one of my credit card accounts.


    All those categories are correct.  But let's imagine that one of them isn't.  If I go in and change the category the New status will go away, because I have "reviewed it" by the fact that I have changed it.  That is one way to clear the status.


    The next way I can "review" is by clicking on one of the transactions "New" status.


    As you can see I can mark that one transaction reviewed (the New status is cleared) or all of the transactions.  In this case since everything is now correct I might select Mark all as reviewed.  But in fact I use a third method for clearing the statuses when I'm sure all the transactions have the right categories, splits, matching and such.  I reconcile the account, and that will clear all the New statuses from transaction in that reconcile.  Note it is VERY important not to use automatic reconcile with Automatic transaction entry mode.  If you do it will go right into the automatic reconcile right after the download and if all the amounts line up the reconcile will be done and all the New/New Match statuses will be cleared.  Reconcile is working on the amounts, and cares nothing about the categories, and as such shouldn't be done before you make sure the categories are all correct.

    Here is an example of a missing category.


    This one I actually need to change the payee and category.  I used PayPal to send a gift and took the money directly from this account.  And in this case just typing in the name fills in the category too, and then enter and I'm done (and then on to the reconcile).

    And I'm going to reset and setup something that happens all the time to me for transfers.  That the reminder of a credit card payment doesn't exactly match the downloading transaction (if you right click on the image you can display it in another tab to see is better).  This happens because even if I have the exact statement amount in the reminder, returns after the statement change the actual payment.



    So how do I resolve this one?
    First I need to make the amount of the manually/reminder entered transaction the right amount (automatic entry mode only matches to the exact amount, this almost entirely eliminates the long "possible matches" that you might get with using the matching in the Downloaded Transactions tab).


    Next I click on the "Uncleared" status.

    Select Match to a download transaction:

    Hitting Enter is all I have to do here.
    And the result:


    With all of this you will notice that I didn't address how to edit multiple transactions and the other things you talked about.  Why?
    Because you are in the register, you can do anything it allows.  You have a lot of new transactions and they are mixed up with old ones?
    Sort by the the Status column (needed for all those nasty cases where you download duplicate transactions after a reset of an Express Web Connect account).
    Need to change multiple transactions?
    Use multiple select or find and replace, ...
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  • Chris, thank you, this is really helpful. I thought if I did automatic entry, I wouldn't be able to tell which were the new transactions downloaded so that I could check them. I think this will save me tons of time!
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Chris, thank you, this is really helpful. I thought if I did automatic entry, I wouldn't be able to tell which were the new transactions downloaded so that I could check them. I think this will save me tons of time!
    Yes that is a misconception that a lot of people have.  They see "automatic" and think that the user is "taken out of the loop", but in fact if properly followed both the "select & Accept" and the "Review" processes both have the user checking to make sure the entries are correct.
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  • CEANDRA
    CEANDRA Member ✭✭
    This response discusses a separate workflow approach that gets around the issue.

    However, it DOES NOT ADDRESS the fact there is a bug in Quicken, in that when you accept a transaction, the highlight jumps to a random transaction in the download list rather than the next transaction. The last operable version was R26.23, May 2020. After that, this bug appears. Nobody at Quicken will acknowledge the issue. One workaround is to SHOW ACCEPTED transactions, which clutters the list. If you prefer to Hide Accepted, the workaround is to re-install the R26.23, May 2020 version. Continue to pay the subscription fee for updates, but run the old version.

    This has been going on for a YEAR now, and Quicken will not respond here on the forum nor to a trouble ticket submitted through Quicken help menu.

    Chuck
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    @CEANDRA Yes that is true and I suggest that you submit a problem report with Help -> Report a problem.
    I believe that there are also other threads discussing the jumping around in the Downloaded Transactions tab that might be found and commented on.

    But personally I look at it this way, The Downloaded Transactions tab will never be the register with all of the features it has.  So the Downloaded Transactions tab will always lack some of the features.  It took something like 20 years of requesting it to be able to delete multiple transactions in the Downloaded Transactions tab.  And in fact it was right after they added that, that people started reporting the problems with it jumping around.  I don’t have any confidence in the problems in this areas getting fixed in the near future (but I could be wrong).

    And this thread was a question if there is a better way, and in my opinion automatic transaction entry mode is that way.
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  • CEANDRA
    CEANDRA Member ✭✭
    Thanks for getting back.

    I did discuss in the forum almost a year ago, and was answered by Natalie from Quicken, who told me to submit a trouble ticket from within Quicken. I did, and no response or acknowledgement. I again submitted a ticket a few days ago. after trying to allow updates and seeing the same issue. Again, no response or acknowledgement.

    It does not seem to be that hard an issue to resolve!

    I was checking again because it is time to renew my subscription, and I am trying to decide if it is worth paying for maintenance when they do not maintain the product.

    We have used Quicken since the late 80's, and it is hard to change our ways. But, maybe I try the auto-download method. I wish it could be tried on one account rather than throughout Quicken, so we could try it in a lesser used account. It appears it is enabled through preferences for all accounts at once.

    Thanks
    Chuck
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Yeah even thought they say that the "Report a problem" goes directly to the development group the rub is that you never get any acknowledgement from that method.

    On the problem being "not hard to resolve" from what I understand all of the register/Downloaded Transaction tab code is "complicated" and every time they go in there to tweak anything they end up causing more problems.  That is one of the reasons that have multiple select/delete in the Downloaded Transactions tab didn't make it out of beta even though they have tried before a couple of times over the years.

    On the automatic transaction entry mode, there is a way to do this in just a given account.
    You have the global setting, but also if you go into the Account Details -> Online Services tab you will see a clickable link: Automatic entry: XX

    If you click on that you can override the global setting.
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  • CEANDRA
    CEANDRA Member ✭✭
    Chris:

    Thank you so much. I will give it a go in one account and see if we can be retrained!

    Chuck
  • CEANDRA
    CEANDRA Member ✭✭
    Chris:

    Is there a way to set how long a transaction stays "new"?

    I converted one account to auto. There were still a dozen or more transactions in the downloaded list. All of these got auto-entered, but their status was left as blank, so there is no way to track them down.

    Our workflow is perhaps a bit convoluted. I will do a download maybe once every 1-2 weeks, and address "my" data. My wife, though, will only address here data once every two months or so.

    It would be best in this case to leave any "untouched" transaction as "new" until it is reviewed or confirmed. Perhaps it does this with new transactions? Or does it clear the "new" status each time you download more? This maybe is a special case because there were remaining transactions in the downloaded list when I changed methods.

    Thanks
    Chuck
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    I know that over time the blue dot "fades" (dimmer blue color), but I don't I don't know for sure if it ever goes completely blank.  I have never left one that long.  I know that is a complaint in Quicken Mac, which BTW only has this mode for accepting/reviewing transactions.  As in eventually "going blank", but I have never heard that complaint on the  Windows implementation of it.

    This state isn't cleared by a new download.  Now the blue dot on the Account Bar that is cleared the moment you go into that register (there have been requests in both Window and Mac to have it stay until all the transactions are reviewed, but they haven't changed it for either product yet).
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  • CEANDRA
    CEANDRA Member ✭✭
    So maybe it is just a special case of having downloaded transactions in the download window when I change methods. All of those transactions were entered into the register without blue dots at all.

    I restored my data file, and will hold off on trying again until I can get my wife to process her downloaded transactions.

    Chuck
  • Chris_QPW
    Chris_QPW Member ✭✭✭✭
    Well yes that might be the case.  Another thing to warn you about is sync to Mobile/Web.  It is syncing this same information and there have been reports that it has changed the status on a sync, even when it wasn't changed in Mobile/Web.  I don't use Quicken Mobile/Web for anything other than testing, too many problems with it for me.

    Another thing, once you "review" it and it status goes blank you can't "un-review" it.  Strange enough you can do that in Quicken Web and it will reflect back to the data file.  And here is a really strange effect of this.  Say you are using the Downloaded Transactions tab, and you un-review it on Quicken Web and then sync to the data file.  It will actually put your transaction back into the Downloaded Transactions tab (removing it from the register).
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  • CEANDRA
    CEANDRA Member ✭✭
    I don't use mobile or web, so those issues will not come up.

    The downloaded list also does not allow reversing a mistakenly accepted entry, so no different there. I tis interesting that you could reverse it (either with auto or the list) using mobile!

    This will not be an easy transition, its hard enough to get my wife to enter the data using the process she knows.

    Thanks again
    Chuck
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