QuickBooks Online – Powerful New Features

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I just finished the new QuickBooks Online training module to re-certify myself as an Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor, and I was amazed by the usefulness of all of the new add-ins the cloud-based QuickBooks platform now offers. It is truly loaded with new features to speed up and simplify the bookkeeping process and lead to better data management that can help you to produce useful and informative reporting. I have also noticed that Intuit is making a real effort to bring the cloud-based products up to par with the Desktop products.

Feature Highlights

I cannot overview every new feature that was added, so I will provide a brief summary of some of the newest and most useful additions to the product. Note that you may need to upgrade your version in order to be able to access some of these features.

  • Projects: QuickBooks now offers a feature for tracking the profitability of projects in a single module which includes reports that stress gross margins, where the biggest cost is time/labor. This new feature integrates with the time-tracking product TSheets, which will bring in employee and contractor time. Note that this feature will probably work best if you are using QuickBooks Payroll and TSheets. It could be very useful for a professional services firm. It is offered in the Plus version.
  • Payroll Restrictions: In the past, any user logged into QuickBooks could see Payroll data. Now, there is a new checkbox in user permissions that will restrict access to transactions in reports and the Workers/Employees tab. Salary information may be confidential.
  • Improved Logic in the Banking Feeds: Intuit has put considerable energy into ramping up the banking feeds. The engine for recognizing and matching and categorizing transactions based on history has been improved, and QuickBooks has a new method of authenticating users to access bank data for a few banks (and is always adding more), so the downloads will run more smoothly and changes in user passwords won’t affect QuickBooks connections to user bank data. I am very impressed by how easy QuickBooks is making transaction entry by linking with various data feeds from banks and credit cards. Every time I use the banking feeds, my process seems to speed up.
  • Price Rules: Price Rules are now available in QuickBooks Online! This feature allows the user to set special pricing for categories of customers and for products. The rules can be based on % discounts or fixed $ amount discounts. Price rules can be specified for certain date ranges if you are running a promotion.
  • Advanced Sales Tax: Intuit spent significant energy beefing up the Sales Tax module. It references schedules and logic that are built into the tool and can be accessed by the user by simply entering information on the locality and type of product/service offering. The user has less to calculate and think about. QuickBooks will take care of that. This is useful for companies that calculate sales tax on their own (i.e., not using a point of service product like Square or engaged in eCommerce through a third party like Amazon/Shopify).
  • PayPal App: QuickBooks has a PayPal app that is now available to simplify the process of getting PayPal transactions into QuickBooks and accounting for the fee splits/Customers. Once this app is installed, it makes the necessary entries.
  • Practice Management Tools: Lastly, but certainly not least, QuickBooks has improved the tools available to the accounting firm user. Accountants can easily schedule their workflow and assign tasks using the online tools provided by QuickBooks using a single dashboard that is attached to a ledger and a team communication tool commonly used in companies and firms (Slack).