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Getting started using GnuCash for a Worker Cooperative

A lot of this will apply for any small business (and won't apply to huge worker cooperatives, although technically our three-member collective is a multinational).

Want to share Gnucash with others using version control? In Edit > Preferences > General, uncheck use file compression. This saves the GnuCash XML file with each line meaning you can learn a little bit from looking at diffs. Note: Do not under any circumstances try to have two people work on one GnuCash account file at the same time and merge in the differences with a version control system; that will lead to disaster sooner rather than later.

Change your checking account view (in the View menu) to Auto-split Ledger. This style will automatically expand the splits in any transaction selected. (From Ashok Ramachandran's GSBABG). Make this permanent (and for all registers) at Edit | Preferences | Register Defaults.

Checking accounts go under Current Assets under the top-level Assets account.


"i swear GnuCash is going to work out but i'm just shy of the last epiphany needed to do it. That is, i could make things work now, but if i keep reading their documentation and the Gnucash Small Business Accounting book, i think i'll be able to be certain about the approach."

On owner's contributions and not using retainer earnings ever

Drawing from individual partner's equity for expenses does not look like what i want to do it all.

Instead it seems the way to do this is to create separate asset accounts and draw on them when paying expenses. This way these asset accounts can act as expense accounts. We could even set up a recurring transaction to put $500 in Asset:So-and-so account every month.

Credit to this thread, Report for shared expenses

gnucash partner shares equity

Create Equity:Owner's Draw account and subaccounts for each partner.

That takes care of setup. Let's move on to Day-to-day usage of Gnucash for a Worker Cooperative


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