Every year QuickBooks comes out with a new version of their software. I know a lot of you are asking yourselves, “Do I really need to upgrade” and the answer is “it depends.”  It depends if you prepare payroll using QuickBooks and also on the age of your QuickBooks version. If you prepare payroll in QuickBooks then you will need to upgrade your software every three years. So that means if you are currently operating in the 2014 version, then you will have to upgrade to 2017 by the end of May 2017. If you do not currently use QuickBooks for your payroll then you only need to upgrade if your software is too old for your accountant to use!  No matter what, we recommend to upgrade every four to five years, because in our office the older versions are removed from computers so there is room for the newer versions.

So what is new in 2017? A lot!! I will take you through the changes one by one and give you a brief overview:

Scheduled Reports are at the top of the list for new items. This feature allows you to set up memorized reports that are automatically sent to your accountant or maybe even to yourself or a manager. Typically these reports are set to send at a time that no one is using QuickBooks. You are able to set the frequency of the repots to daily, weekly, every two weeks, monthly, or quarterly. The program has to be in single user mode to send reports using either a web based email or Outlook.

One of my favorite updates is the Smart Search, The Smart Search feature extends the search to look for a match in the first few characters of any word in a multi-word list name. So you can easily search the first or last name or a partial name of a vendor or customer. This is going to save all of us a lot of time. Another search function that has been updated is the amount search. Now you can search in between numbers.  Searching for vendor or customer types is now an option in QuickBooks 2017. The only catch is that you will have to, if you haven’t already, enter what type of customer or vendor they are for this feature to work correctly.

Another great feature is the visual reminder to record deposits. It is so easy to receive payments from customers and then to forget to actually “deposit” them in QuickBooks. Maybe you collect money all week and only go to the bank once a week. Yet, you are always recording the receipt of the payment. This reminder will help you remember to then go into QuickBooks and deposit all the customer deposits. Remember, your deposit in QuickBooks should always match your deposit to the bank. This makes reconciling the bank account so much easier.

Ok so maybe I have two favorites this time around. I love to open up a check and see the “Cleared” stamp on the check that tells me that this check or debit has been reconciled. Now you will also see the “Cleared” stamp on credit card transactions in QuickBooks 2017 as well.

QuickBooks has also improved a few items. When you view a report that has been filtered you can now see the filters that were applied at the top of the report in QuickBooks. You are able to click on the specific filter and it will open up the filter screen for you to modify or delete the filter. You can also delete the filter from the report screen as well. If you ever run the Audit Trail report you are now going to see “Deleted User” after the name of a user that was deleted from QuickBooks instead of “Unknown user”. This is a great feature to see who entered the transaction. The multiple filtered items section of a modified report has also been improved. You can now search for a specific filter, select all filters, or deselect all filters which makes it easier to choose items to include. Before when the Deposit Summary report was ran the company name was missing, now it is included on the report.  You can now also copy and paste lines in the time sheet.

If you use QuickBooks Enterprise you can now tell another individual in multi-user mode how much time they have to save their work before you switch it to single user mode. In addition, you are also able to force users out of the program. This will work well when someone leaves the program on and then forgets to turn it off before going home.

So if you find you would like to know all the details on the new additions or changes made to QuickBooks 2017 there is a tutorial in QuickBooks 2017 that will walk you through all the changes that were made or you can call Ketel Thorstenson and talk to a QuickBooks ProAdvisor. We would be happy to help.