Every year I like to revisit this subject – what kind of resources are available for support and training for QuickBooks? Here is my latest list – many of these are free, but some do have a cost involved. Please add your comments about resources that YOU have found that are helpful.
Books and Training
Note that although QuickBooks 2012 is out now, it sometimes takes awhile for the books for the new products to come out. This isn’t a problem for basic information – and few books actually go into the details of the very advanced new features anyways.
- Running QuickBooks 2011 Premier Editions: The Only Definitive Guide to the Premier Editions by Kathy Ivens – an excellent resource if you are new to QuickBooks, or want to know more about the best way to use the program. If you are an accountant this is the one you want to start with. Kathy has great insight as to what is really important, and I’m always learning things from her.
- QuickBooks 2010 Solutions Guide for Business Owners and Accountants by Laura Madeira – an advanced book, it has topics that dig into depth in typical problems you might face. This isn’t your first QuickBooks book. I refer to it often. Although it is the 2010 edition, everything still applies even to QuickBooks 2012.
- QuickBooks 2011 Complete Textbook (and Fundamentals textbook) by The Sleeter Group is designed to be used in college courses, and provide hands-on step-by-step exercises that take you through QuickBooks in detail. Excellent self learning tools, or you can use them in a seminar/webinar format.QuickBooks Essentials Live Lessons (Video Training): For All QuickBooks Users by Laura Madeira – if you prefer video with screen samples, this is a great resource. Laura is recognized as one of the nation’s leading experts in QuickBooks.
- The Sleeter Group’s QuickBooks Consultant’s Reference Guide is an excellent resource for anyone working with QuickBooks. I’ve used it for years – I had to buy extra copies because my clients kept on keeping my copy when they saw it if I referred to it while on a visit.
- The QuickBooks Learning Center has many video tutorials, including information on the new features. Select Help and then Learning Center and you’ll see a list of free tutorials.
- The Sleeter Group QuickBooks Live Webinars cover a wide variety of topics. Most are oriented toward accounting professionals, but there are several that also apply to end users.
Unfortunately it looks like Intuit has dropped their free eBook that they usually include as a PDF file each year? Usually you find that in the Help/Learning Center Tutorials section, but I don’t see it there in QuickBooks 2012.
Well, the easiest one to list here is Practical QuickBooks, of course! However, there are others that are worth watching.
- Ruth Perryman and QB Specialists: Ruth is a very knowledgeable ProAdvisor and she throws out interesting tidbits in her blog.
- Rustler’s QuickBooks Tips: Rustler (Jim Ernest in real life) is an outspoken user of QuickBooks, and a major contributor to the Intuit Community Forum. His blog contains his observations of what works and what doesn’t in QuickBooks, and he has many articles that explain how to use it in many business situations.
- QuickBooks for Contractors blog – If you are a contractor using QuickBooks, or a ProAdvisor working with contractors, you need to subscribe to this blog by Nancy Smyth of Sunburst Software Solutions!
- Scott Gregory: Scott provides insight into many aspects of QuickBooks.
- Long for Success: Michelle Long is a great writer, this blog is aimed at accounting professionals. Very worthwhile.
- Laura Madeira: Laura is the author of one of my favorite books on QuickBooks (as I listed above) and has an excellent blog with many great user tips.
- QuickBooks and Beyond: I am doing most of my writing in QuickBooks and Beyond now, although that has a tendency to be aimed at accounting professionals.
- Intuit Community: This is an Intuit web site and there is a lot here that can help. I particularly like the Forum, where other users as well as QuickBooks experts can answer your questions for free. The trick here is to ask a simple and clear question (and to state what version of QB you are using). Complicated questions are less likely to be answered.
- QuickBooks Downloads: Another Intuit site – did you lose your QuickBooks CD and need to reinstall? This site provides links where you can download a copy of QuickBooks to replace that CD.
- Intuit Academy: Intuit provides a lot of great training material for accountants that you can look into. If you are providing support to users of QuickBooks, look into becoming a ProAdvisor. There is a HUGE amount of training and resources for a very reasonable annual membership fee. Anyone in the business of providing QuickBooks advise or support should enroll in this program.
- QB or not QB: If you have a file that needs shrinking, if you have a file that is corrupted and you can’t fix it, QB or not QB is the place to go. Great service, fast, reliable.
- Radio Free QuickBooks: If you are a ProAdvisor you need to listen to this! This is a wonderful source of information. Hosted by Woody Adams, Dawn Brolin and Stacy Kildal, this is a weekly (Wednesday afternoon/evening) voice broadcast (webcast?) that is a tremendous amount of fun to listen to. Great guests each week, lots of good info. If you can figure out how to get connected to the broadcast the right way (via blogtalkradio) then you also can get involved in a “chat” with the other listeners.
- Linkedin is a great resource (not a “web site”, but I’ll list it here). There are quite a few QuickBooks related discussion groups that can be helpful. There are too many to list here – but if you search on “QuickBooks” or “ProAdvisor” you will find several.
There are a number of tools that I use that I find very useful when working with QuickBooks. Here are a few, there are more than this but I have to build up the list. As I review new products I’ll post articles in my other blog at http://www.sleeter.com/blog/
- QQube: This is the greatest reporting tool for QuickBooks, ever. I can’t say enough good things about it. See my review article on this product.
- Data Transfer Utility by Karl Irvin: The number one tool for moving information between QuickBooks company files. And a lot of other useful tools. Highly recommended.
- Snagit by TechSmith: This isn’t specifically a QuickBooks tool, but I use it often. This is the best screen capture tool there is, helpful in documenting your internal procedures or capturing information to send to support…
- Import/Export Tools by Baystate Consulting: My preferred tools for extracting transactions from QuickBooks, or importing transactions in from a variety of sources.
- IIF Tools by Big Red Consulting: If you need to work with IIF files, or you are looking for the lowest cost data import utility, I highly recommend the tools by Big Red Consulting.
- QODBC Driver: If you want to work with QuickBooks data on a programming level then this is the tool for you. ODBC is a database language, and unless you are a masochist you want to use this instead of the Intuit programming interface (the “SDK”).
In addition to the web sites are articles I have listed in other headings, here are a few people who provide expert assistance with QuickBooks (for a fee). I highly recommend each person listed here. Note that there are many highly qualified ProAdvisors that I work with, my apologies for not listing all. These are the ones that I’ve worked with the most.
- Laura Madeira: Laura is a nationally known expert and author on QuickBooks and job costing in particular.
- Laura Dion: Another Laura? Yes! If you need help with straightening out your QuickBooks bookkeeping issues, Laura Dion is the expert. She often gives me comments on my blog articles, keeping me straight…
- Ruth Perryman: I refer a lot of clients to Ruth, particularly if they are Enterprise users.
- Peter Cullen: A very knowledgeable ProAdvisor and CPA, he provides great service to his clients.
- Mario Nowogrodzki: The hands down expert for technical issues with QuickBooks. Mario is the person I refer people to if they are having issues with their computer system and QuickBooks, or performance issues, or access issues. Not that he is limited to those kinds of tasks. He’s a nationally known expert.
- Sleeter-Certified Consultants: You may want someone who is local to your area. Use this link to find a Sleeter-Certified Consultant in your area.
If you are a QuickBooks consultant or advisor, one of the best ways to improve your knowledge and expertise is to attend one of (or both!) the two major professional Conferences on QuickBooks. They complement each other – you will get a very different sent of presentations and experiences from each of these. BOTH ARE GREAT and highly recommended. The parent companies behind each of these conferences also have membership programs that provide many benefits to anyone who is an accounting professional and works with technology (I’m a member of BOTH myself).
- The Sleeter Group Accounting Solutions Conference: Held in November of each year. Tends to be on the west coast, but not always.
- Scaling New Heights by Joe Woodard: Held in June (or thereabouts) each year. Tends to be on the east coast, but not always.
Do you have any favorite books, blogs, tools or web sites that I don’t list here? Let us know!
Category: General Tips
About the Author (Author Profile)
Charlie Russell is the founder of CCRSoftware. He’s been involved with the small business software industry since the mid 70’s, focusing on inventory and accounting software for small businesses. Charlie is a Certified Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor. Look for Charlie’s articles in the Accountex Report blog, as well as his California Wildflower Hikes blog.