quickbooks isn’t one-size-fits-all: making it yours

emily moore, senior accountant


QuickBooks was designed to appeal to millions of small businesses – different as they are. To make that possible, the software was also designed to be as customizable as possible, while still following the rules of standard accounting practices.

If you have left QuickBooks as it was when you purchased it, you may have found it wanting in some areas. Or, you might be bothered by features and options you don’t need. Here’s a brief overview of how to solve some of those problems.

Customize the Icon Bar. Set up QuickBooks’ Icon Bar to make it appear where you want it and contain the tools you access most often. Open the View menu to move it from the left to the top (or hide it completely). Click Customize Icon Bar in the same menu to add, edit, delete, or reorder navigational icons.

Modify your Preferences. This one will take a while. Open the Edit menu and select Preferences. Click on the titles in the left vertical list to see what your options are in each area. If you are the software’s administrator, you can work in the Company Preferences tab to, for example, turn on or off features like class tracking, inventory and purchase orders, and time-tracking. Click on My Preferences to see what your individual options are.

Explore the Lists menu. In this menu, you can see the different types of lists that you will be maintaining. They aren’t all mandatory. You will be building some of them as you go (like the Item List, which will grow as you create records for your products and services).  You may discover some features that are unfamiliar to you, like the Price Level List and the Fixed Asset Item List. Let us know if you want to work with some of these but aren’t sure how.

Tailor QuickBooks’ forms to better fit your company. Depending on what version of QuickBooks you are using, you have probably seen icons in the different toolbars and menus that represent actions like Manage Templates, Customize Design, and Customize Data Layout. These all refer to your ability to change the look and content of customer and vendor forms like invoices, sales receipts, and purchase orders. For example, you can remove or rename fields, add logos, as well as select different background, fonts, and colors, etc.

Check your version of QuickBooks. The most current editions have the year 2020 in the title. Are you a few versions back? Upgrading may be the solution to software problems you are encountering. Or, you may be using Pro when you really need Premier – or even Enterprise.

We can help you get the most out of QuickBooks by assisting with a number of tasks, including:

  • Installation and setup.
  • Customization.
  • Everyday workflow.
  • General financial management.

Contact us to set up a consultation, and we’ll work with you on any element of QuickBooks—or accounting in general—that’s giving you trouble.




Emily Moore is a Senior Accountant in the Client Accounting Services department at Lutz. She specializes in providing outsourced accounting services to clients with a focus on QuickBooks, tax and payroll compliance, small business consulting, as well as software implementation and training.

  • Client Accounting Services
  • QuickBooks
  • Certified Public Accountant
  • MAcc, University of Nebraska, Omaha, NE
  • QuickBooks Isn't One-Size-Fits-All: Making It Yours


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