Our QuickBooks review is based on real-life use for both a Limited company with VAT and a self-employed small business.
As a qualified bookkeeper I have used and recommended QuickBooks to clients.
Why choose QuickBooks?
There are several reason why a business would choose QuickBooks, these include:
- Easy to setup and use
- Connect several bank accounts
- Track mileage
- Stock control
- Design and email invoices
- Good support
- Add receipts photos direct to software
QuickBooks has several levels of software and depending on the requirements depends on the price. All levels are online accounting packages. The simple start package is great for small self-employed businesses.
The essentials package suits most medium sized businesses and limited companies.
QuickBooks pricing structure is the same as most of the other major packages, the main difference is that they include some of the extras that others charge for.
Ease of use
One of the things I really liked about the software when I first used it was the fact that it doesn’t use accounting terms, for entering items you can just start typing the word and the correct one will appear rather than using account codes.
To add any transaction, there is a ‘+’ sign, this then lists all the different transactions to enter.
QuickBooks Review – Easy Set-Up
QuickBooks has an easy setup interview, even if you do not know much about accounts it is easy to follow the interview answer some simple questions including business details, business type, do you track stock? From this interview, all the accounts are set up and ready for use. You do not need to worry if you make a mistake as you can go back and change it again later.
If you are using another software package and wish to change, there are options to assist. The first is to use Move my Books, they can import all transactions. The second is to export data and import it to the new software.
One of the great things about QuickBooks is their dashboard. It is easy to navigate, has everything you need and shows a snapshot of the business.
The dashboard shows the bank accounts and if any transactions that need reviewing, profit and loss, unpaid invoices and sales.
QuickBooks review – Invoicing
Invoicing I found easy, there are several different templates already in the package and it has the flexibility that they can be amended to suit your business. It can take a bit of time to get the template as you want it, but once it is done it is worth the effort. Invoices can be emailed directly to the customer saving postage time.
It is easy to add new customers within the customer invoicing and add new products and change descriptions. One of the things that I required several times is a discount to be applied to a product; this had to be done as a separate line using a minus figure.
QuickBooks makes it easy to see who owes you money and how long it has been outstanding for. There are reports available and it is possible to send out statements and reminder letters from within the software.
QuickBooks Review – Stock
If you do track stock within your business you will need the Plus edition. Tracking stock is fast and easy and there are lots of different reports available. You can build in stock levels so that you do not run out of stock.
There are easy entries for writing cheques and receiving funds, these can also be done within the customer and supplier sections. Simple bank reconciliations at the month-end and you know all your transactions are posted.
One of the things I found difficult with Sage was adjusting a figure, you had to enter a journal to change anything (I believe this feature is now available). Within QuickBooks it is easy to adjust and change entries if a simple mistake has been made, a warning message appears to confirm that you want to make the change.
One of the things I really like is the amount and types of reports that are available and how easy they are to produce. A date range can be specified and reports can either be shown on the display or printed.
VAT is easy to track and the reports required from HMRC can be printed and sent directly to them. You can keep track of your VAT. It is making tax digital compliant and supports all VAT schemes.
if your business is part of the construction industry, the chances are that you are registered for CIS. Quickbooks has all the features needed to run CIS and file returns direct to HMRC.
The QuickBooks app scores 4* with over 41,000 reviews. It allows you to track mileage, raise invoices, photo receipts, track expenses and view small business finances.
Working with an Accountant or Bookkeeper
You can invite a bookkeeper or an accountant to your business on QuickBooks. It makes it much easier if you have a problem or at year end.
Some bookkeepers now work remotely, never seeing clients. I have support clients over the telphone when they are unsure of how to post or adjust a transaction.
QuickBooks Review – Support
There is a good support team in place, but as with most software, this will need to be purchased after the first 30 days. There are also online forums and local advisors, who can set up the product and show you how it works.
Going forward the government is looking to introduce making tax digital for self-assesment. QuickBooks UK will certainly be on top of this well before the date. They work inline with any HMRC changes.
Would I use QuickBooks again?
To conclude our QuickBooks Review, with the experience I have had with both the product and being an advisor then yes I would.
Using an accounting software package can save a business both time and money. Keeping on top of the businesses finances is essential especailly for a succesful or growing business.
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