QuickBooks Products: QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions

QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions is a higher-end small business accounting software package that looks and functions like QuickBooks Pro and Premier.  It is designed for use on a networked system.  It has powerful reporting capabilities, larger list limits, and expanded permission customization features.  Because it is server-based, it allows companies with several sites to collaborate and share important business information more efficiently.


What is nice is that QuickBooks Pro and Premier data can be seamlessly “converted” to Enterprise Solutions.  Employees that are familiar with QuickBooks Pro or Premier will need minimal training in Enterprise Solutions to get up and running quickly.

With a different programming architecture, Enterprise Solutions can support much larger list sizes – it handles up to 1 million names and items combined.  It also means that it can handle up to 30 simultaneous users with customized permissions and roles (with 115 levels of permissions available).

Enterprise Solutions users have the following additional features to Pro and Premier:

  • Up to 30 simultaneous users
  • Increased security options and permissions
  • Larger list limits
  • Automatic price markup, enhanced inventory receiving and attaching of pictures to inventory items
  • With Enterprise Advanced Inventory:
    • Track inventory by location and bin
    • Track inventory by FIFO (first in first out) or average cost
    • Allow barcode scanning
    • Track inventory by lot number and serial number
    • Integrates just the same as Pro/Premier with Payroll and Merchant Services
    • Has industry-specific versions for Retail, Construction, Non-Profit, Professional Services, and Manufacturing & Wholesale

QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions integrates with QuickBooks Point-of-Sale software.

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QuickBooks Products: QuickBooks for Mac

In this posting I will discuss the features of QuickBooks for Mac.


The most important thing to know about QuickBooks for Mac is that you cannot use it for the same data file as QuickBooks for Windows.  In other words, if you have both PCs and Macs on a network, or a PC at work and a Mac at home, they cannot share use of the same data file – the file is not interchangeable between platforms.

Although you cannot share the same file, you can use QuickBooks for PC on a Mac by running QB in a “Parallels” environment (Parallels is a software for Mac that allows you to run your Mac as a PC).  In this set up, PCs and Macs can share use of a Windows QuickBooks file.

The Mac data file can also be sent as a Windows file to your CPA for his/her use, but it cannot be sent back to re-import into the Mac version.  You can convert a QuickBooks for Mac file to a QuickBooks for Windows version if you wish to change platforms permanently.

Most of the basic accounting features are the same between the Windows and Mac versions of QuickBooks.   QuickBooks for Mac allows you to do the following:

  • Multi-user functionality:  allows up to five users at a time (you must purchase licenses for additional users)
  • User profiles and permissions
  • Redesigned report customization
  • Mileage tracking by job and billable status
  • Register sorting
  • Export reports to spreadsheets
  • iChat integration to communicate between co-workers
  • Improved Layout Designer for form customization
  • Additional templates for ready-to-use forms
  • Web access:  Sync Manager allows web applications you choose to exchange information with QuickBooks
  • Progress Invoicing

Just from personal experience, the Mac version has less functionality and preferences than the Windows version.  For instance, in the bank reconciliation screen in the Windows version, you enter the statement ending date and can hide the transactions that are dated after that ending date, you can sort the transactions by date or amount or check #, and you can save the statement ending date when you need to leave the screen and come back later.  None of these options is available in QuickBooks for Mac.

QuickBooks for Mac does not integrate with QuickBooks Point-of-Sale software.

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QuickBooks Product Comparison: Which One is Right for Your Business?

quickbooks proWhen buying QuickBooks it is important to understand your company’s needs and the differences in QuickBooks products.

First, let’s list the five primary QuickBooks financial software products:


  1. QuickBooks Pro (for PC)
  2. QuickBooks Premier (for PC)
  3. QuickBooks for Mac
  4. QuickBooks Online
  5. QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions (for PC)

In this posting I will discuss the features of QuickBooks Pro vs. QuickBooks Premier.

The biggest difference to note between QuickBooks Pro and QuickBooks Premier is that Pro does not have Sales Orders.  So if your business takes an order and then uses that order as a launching point for vendor purchase orders or to track backorders due to customers, then you will need Premier.

QuickBooks Pro allows you to do the following:

  • Allow up to three users simultaneous access to a data file (company file)
  • Track Accounts Payable (enter and pay bills)
  • Track job costing
  • Track inventory (average cost only)
    • Send progress invoices (% of the total estimate)
    • Track time and vehicle mileage
    • Produce 1099 (MISC only) and 1096 forms (on purchased forms)
    • Use multiple price levels on sales forms (base on % of base price ONLY)
    • Export data to MS Excel
    • Write letters in MS Word using QuickBooks data
    • Synchronize list information with MS Outlook contact management software
    • Track multiple currencies
    • Online banking imports from banking institutions and credit card companies

QuickBooks Premier adds these features to the Pro features listed above:

  • Building inventory assemblies
  • Create and track sales orders and backorders
  • Track current availability and not just quantity on hand (see what is on sales orders)
  • Use price levels based on “per item” prices
  • Create sales orders or purchase orders from estimates
  • Create Bill of Materials for inventory assemblies
  • Billing rate levels (with which to bill your clients for your vendors’ and employees’ time)
  • View unbilled Time and Expenses from one window
  • View or print past bank reconciliations (Premier keeps PDFs of all past reconciliations)
  • Export report templates
  • Forecasting, business planning (not just budgeting)
  • Convert units of measure
  • Easily create reversing Journal Entries
  • Use free remote access (unattended) for a year

QuickBooks Premier comes in industry-specific versions (or you can be a “General Business”).  Primarily these industry-specific versions set up a group of reports in one area that are specific to your business, i.e. if you are contractor then under the Reports menu you will have  a “Contractor Reports” option.  But some versions also have additional features that you may need to consider.  I will share these in future postings.

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