Our QuickBooks review is based on real life use for both a Limited company with VAT and a self employed small business. We set up our own business in 2000 and needed to purchase an accounting package to run all our accounts. In 2006 I ran a bookkeeping business and used QuickBooks Accountant to support my customers.
Why choose QuickBooks?
At the time the choice came down to price and experience with using Sage in a previous job. QuickBooks has several levels of software and depending on the requirements depends on the price.
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.
QuickBooks Review – Easy Set Up
QuickBooks has an easy set up 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.
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 Pro 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. If you run a Flat rate VAT scheme with HMRC then you will need to look at a different product as it is not supported.
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.
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. Another option I would look into is cloud accounting, but some of these do not have some of the features that I need.
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