QuickBooks Desktop 2019: What's New and Improved

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QuickBooks® Desktop 2019 includes a variety of new and improved features that help our clients get more done, while improving the reliability and experience of using the software. QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions' users will find that this year’s release will help them receive inventory and fulfill their customer’s orders faster and with more accuracy.

New! Customer Invoice History Tracker

Included With: QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2019 and Enterprise 19.0.

Accessible: From a displayed Create Invoices window, click the See History link to the right of the form name (“Invoice” is the default form name when using an Intuit® invoice template). 

Features: Real-time invoice status tracking. Single, consolidated view of invoice status includes tracking: 

  • Invoice created date
  • Invoice due date
  • Invoice email date and customer name (if invoice is emailed from within QuickBooks using one of the supported email configurations in the Send preferences)
  • Invoice viewed date - Internet connection required to see the “viewed” status
  • Amount and date of customer Receive Payment recorded in QuickBooks
  • Amount and date of Make Deposit recorded in QuickBooks

With real-time customer invoice history information available, users can take timely actions to improve communications with clients about their open receivables. Note: This feature does not work if the QuickBooks user is using Microsoft Outlook 2010.

New! Transfer Credits Between Jobs of the Same Customer

Available With: QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2019 and Enterprise 19.0.

Accessible: For a customer that has open (unapplied) credits, from the main ribbon on a displayed Create Invoices window, select Apply Credits.

Features: Efficiently apply customer credits across all jobs of the same selected customer. New column on the Apply Credits window displays the Customer and Job which the credit is currently assigned to. From the Apply Credits window, users can assign that credit to other jobs of the same customer record.

QuickBooks records an in/out transaction through an Other Current Asset type account named “Account for Credit Transfer.” This account is added automatically by QuickBooks upon the first instance when a user assigns a credit from one job to another in the Apply Credits window. By default the automatically created account is listed as “inactive” on the Chart of Accounts to discourage users from selecting it during normal transaction entry.

Cautions noted with this feature include:

  • The transfer of credits from one job to another within the same customer cannot be undone. Any future corrections would need to be done manually using a separate transaction.
  • Users without Chart of Accounts access cannot perform the “first” instance of the transfer of credits between jobs. QuickBooks uses the first instance to trigger the creation of the new Other Current Asset account mentioned previously.
  • The Transfer of Credits and Apply Credits does not work when in an Accountant’s Copy of the client’s data.

New and Improved! User Prompt to Create a Bill Payment When Using the Write Check

Available With: QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2019 and Enterprise 19.0.

Accessible: The new Check for Bills dialog prompt will display when creating a Write Check for a vendor whom has an open (unpaid) vendor bill(s). From the menu bar, select Banking > Write Check and in the Pay to the Order of field, enter a vendor name that currently has an unpaid vendor bill(s).

Features: New and improved prompt helps users avoid using the Write Check transaction type when the proper transaction type should be a vendor Bill Payment. When a user enters a vendor name in the Pay to the Order of field on a Write Check transaction for a vendor that has open vendor bills, QuickBooks displays a new Check for Bills window.

The improvement this year is to prompt users by default to Go to Pay Bills. When selected, the Pay Bills window will launch already filtered for the selected vendor's unpaid bills. Optionally, users can select to continue to “Write your check” (not assigning it to an open vendor bill).

New! Employee Pay Adjustment History

Available With: QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2018 and Enterprise 18.0 Maintenance Release R3 or newer (to determine the maintenance release of you or your client’s current QuickBooks version, open QuickBooks and from a windows keyboard select the F2 key). Note this was a slipstream release in a later maintenance release of QuickBooks 2018.

Accessible: From the menu bar, select Reports > Employees & Payroll > Employee Pay Adjustments History. Available in QuickBooks with an active Basic, Enhanced or Assisted payroll subscription.

Feature: Track changes to employee pay rates (only hourly, salary, bonus and commission items).

Note: Rates shown on the report are based on existing paycheck data. Rates for salary items display the estimated annualized rate.

Improved! Inactive Inventory Items Included in Inventory Report Totals

Included With: QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2019 and Enterprise 19.0.

Accessible: From the menu bar, select Reports > Inventory > Inventory Valuation Summary or Inventory Valuation Detail

Features: When preparing the Inventory Valuation reports, users can select to include inactive inventory items. A company's recommended process would be that all inventory items to made inactive do not have a quantity on hand in QuickBooks. However, often a business will make inventory items inactive despite having a quantity on hand.

In QuickBooks Desktop 2019, users can choose to include inactive inventory items in the Inventory Valuation Summary or Detail report. Including all inventory items in these reports will ensure that accountants and their clients can reconcile the Inventory asset account total on the Balance Sheet to the total Asset Value on the inventory valuation reports.

Improved! Sick and Vacation Pay Tracking

Included With: QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2019 and Enterprise 19.0 with an active Payroll Subscription.

Accessible: To set the new Maximum type defaults for Sick or Vacation time, log in as the Admin user and in Single User Mode. Then from the menu bar, select Edit > Preferences > Payroll & Employees. Select the Company Preferences tab and click the Sick and Vacation button. 

Features: New company preference for setting the Maximum type for Sick and Vacation time. Settings include either Maximum hours at a time, or Maximum hours for the year.

The maximum type company preference determines the total hours an employee can accrue. For example, if the Maximum type of hours for the year is selected as the default, an employee will stop accruing time when they have met the Maximum number of hours specified.

Easy tracking and reporting of employee sick and vacation time (sick and vacation accrual requirements vary state by state; customer is responsible for ensuring compliance with applicable laws and regulations). QuickBooks users are warned when saving a paycheck transaction when sick and/or vacation time exceeds the available time for that payroll compensation item.

Additionally, paystub formatting has been updated to include: Year-To-Date and Current pay period values for Accrued, Used and Available sick and vacation time details.

Improved! Sensitive Payroll Permissions

Included With: QuickBooks Enterprise 19.0.

Accessible: From the menu bar, select Company > Users > Setup Users and Roles (note: only the Admin user for the file can add or modify users).

Features: QuickBooks Enterprise 19.0 provides the Admin for the file with a more definitive view of any permission levels that when assigned to a user, would include access to sensitive payroll transactions.

Admin user warned when assigning a permission that grants payroll transaction access. On the role List dialog, if a role has an asterisk (*) next to the name, that Role permits access to sensitive payroll transactions.

Improved! Easy Upgrade

Available With: QuickBooks Pro (Plus), Premier (Plus) and Enterprise 18.0. This improvement was a slipstream release in a later maintenance releases of multiple years versions of QuickBooks.

Feature: Simple two-click process to install the newest version of QuickBooks Desktop. The entire upgrade processes is automated and the user has the option to retain the older version of QuickBooks (recommended).

When the user opens a newly installed version of QuickBooks Desktop, the links to their data file(s) will already be included in the No Company File Open window. This is an improvement from previous year’s versions of QuickBooks when after installing a new version, the user had to browse to find their QuickBooks files for the first time.

Included With: Accessible for QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2016 and Enterprise 16.0 and newer.

Access: From the menu bar, select File > Utilities > Move QuickBooks to another computer

Feature: This migrator tool downloads the most recent maintenance release of the year’s version of QuickBooks that the user owns. This tool will copy up to three recent QuickBooks date files along with many other items.

To move the QuickBooks data file seamlessly your client will need:

  • Old computer where current data file resides.
  • A thumb drive.
  • New computer with an internet connection.

When the feature is launched on the old computer and the QuickBooks user plugs-in the thumb drive, the tool automatically downloads the latest maintenance release of the QuickBooks version the user owns, copies the files needed to install the program and data files on a new computer. These files include: registration and license details for the QuickBooks program version being used, attachments, templates, etc. A comprehensive list can be reviewed in this knowledge base article.

Improved! Condense Data File Optimization

Included With: QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2019 and Enterprise V 19.0.

Accessible: From the QuickBooks Accountant menu bar, select Accountant > Condense Data. Optionally, from a client’s version of QuickBooks from the menu bar, select File > Utilities > Condense Data.

Features: Reliably reduce a QuickBooks company file size without deleting data. When choosing to condense data, there is the option to keep all transactions and only remove the audit trail. Behind the scenes QuickBooks also cleans up a few performance logs and other technical details, resulting in an estimated 32 percent file size reduction.

Improved! IIF (Intuit Interchange Format) List and Data Imports

Included With: QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2019 and Enterprise 19.0.

Accessible: If exporting from one QuickBooks file to another: from the menu bar, select File > Utilities > Export > Lists to IIF Files and select the Lists you wish to export to an IIF formatted file. From the new QuickBooks file, select File > Utilities > Import > IIF Files and browse to the IIF file created for import. QuickBooks users can also create an IIF formatted worksheet and manually add data for import. You can learn more about IIF export/import functionality by reading this knowledge base article.

Features: Method of importing lists or data into QuickBooks that has been available for many years. Improved IIF importing, validates the data to be imported. Creates a file of records that cannot be imported, permitting the user to fix the errors and import the corrected records separately. IIF import supports both lists and transactions.

Note: Importing any data into QuickBooks requires a certain amount of knowledge about how each of the data components being imported is used by QuickBooks. In the example displayed here, there was a Payment Term assigned to vendor records in the vendor import file that was not included with the import data on the IIF formatted worksheet, resulting in the reported errors.

Improved! Intuit Data Protect

Included With: QuickBooks Pro, Premier, Accountant 2019 and Enterprise 19.0.

Accessible: From the file menu, select Back Up Company > Setup / Activate Online Backup

Features: Seamless and intuitive automated data backup and restore experience. Intuit Data Protect is an online backup service that helps you and your clients protect their data from loss or damage by automatically backing up the QuickBooks data file (Intuit Data Protect uses latest online version of data protection/backup software that optimizes backup speed. Additional fees may apply). Users may also choose to include other critical data or documents in their backup routine.

This year's release improves the user setup experience and provides options for being notified about the success and/or failure of scheduled backups.

Improved! Receive Inventory Process – Purchase Order Worksheet

Included With: Platinum Subscription to QuickBooks Enterprise 18.0 Maintenance Release R5 or newer with Advanced Inventory enabled. This feature was a slipstream release in a later maintenance release of QuickBooks 2018.

Accessible: The Admin user must first enable this feature from the menu bar by selecting, Edit > Preferences > Items & Inventory > Advanced Inventory Settings > Site Operations (Internet connection required). After enabling the Purchase Order Worksheet, it can be accessed from the menu bar, selecting Vendors > Purchase Order Management Worksheet, or the same option from the Inventory menu.

Note: To use this feature with a mobile device, follow the instructions on the Site Operations preference dialog mentioned above. Scanners or mobile devices sold separately. Only available in Advanced Inventory module, which is available in QuickBooks Desktop Enterprise Platinum. Learn more about Advanced Inventory here.

Features and workflow: Improved inventory receiving process reduces data entry errors and encourages efficiency. After enabling the feature and connecting a mobile device the following is the typical receive inventory workflow, requiring an internet connection for both the QuickBooks Enterprise file and the warehouse location(s):

  1. QuickBooks purchase orders are prioritized and assigned to a Warehouse worker (vendor type) and synced with the mobile device(s) across warehouse(s).
  2. The assigned Warehouse worker logs into the mobile app from the warehouse location and scans barcodes, or serial number barcodes, or if not scanning, manually enters the quantity of items received.
  3. Warehouse worker sends the updated received details back to the Purchase Order in the QuickBooks Enterprise file
  4. From the Purchase Order Management Worksheet, the QuickBooks user can automate creating an Item Receipt or Vendor Bill from the updated Purchase Order details.

Note: This worksheet can also be utilized without any type of mobile app/scanner by printing out the worksheet and marking receipts of line item details manually.

New and Improved! Pick, Pack and Ship Process – Sales Order Worksheet

Included With:

  • Pick workflow: Platinum Subscription to QuickBooks Enterprise 18.0 or newer. The Pick workflow was included with the release of QuickBooks Enterprise 18.0 with Advanced Inventory enabled.
  • Pack and Ship workflow: QuickBooks Enterprise 19.0, with Advanced Inventory enabled.

Accessible: The Admin user must first enable this feature from the menu bar by selecting, Edit > Preferences > Items & Inventory > Advanced Inventory Settings > Site Operations (Internet connection required). After enabling the Sales Order Fulfillment Worksheet, you can access this worksheet from the menu bar, selecting Customers > Sales Order Fulfillment Worksheet

Note: For Pack/Ship functionality, users must have the latest QuickBooks Warehouse App (currently version 1.2). From the mobile device, select Settings > Apps and select the QuickBooks Desktop Warehouse app to view the version information.

Features: Improve efficiency and accuracy in the fulfillment of customer’s sales orders in QuickBooks. After enabling the feature and connecting a mobile device the following is a typical pick, pack and ship workflow conveniently managed from the Sales Order Fulfillment Worksheet Dashboard:

Existing Pick workflow: QuickBooks Enterprise 18.0 or newer Sales Order Fulfillment Worksheet requires an internet connection for both the QuickBooks file and at the warehouse:

  1. In QuickBooks inventory, picklists are prioritized and created from sales orders and assigned to a Warehouse worker (vendor type) and synced with the mobile device(s) across warehouse(s).
  2. The assigned Warehouse worker logs into the mobile app from the warehouse location (internet connection required) and scans barcodes, or serial number barcodes, or if not scanning, manually enters the quantity of items picked.
  3. Updated picklist details are sent back to the QuickBooks Enterprise file and update the Sales Order line details.

New! Pack, Ship workflow: QuickBooks Enterprise 19.0 Sales Order Fulfillment Worksheet  requires an Internet connection for both the QuickBooks file and at the warehouse:

  1. From the Sales Order Fulfillment Worksheet Dashboard, the Sale Order(s) are sent for packing and assigned to a Warehouse worker (vendor type).
  2. The assigned Warehouse worker then records the picked products as boxed and optionally notes the weight and dimensions of the package
  3. Products packed are synced with the QuickBooks file and update the line details on the Sales Order.
  4. QuickBooks user prepares the documentation for shipping, optionally using the QuickBooks integration with a FedEx, UPS, or USPS account, and can optionally have the package details added in the Description column on the Sales Order.

Updated! QuickBooks Mac 2019

Included With: QuickBooks for Mac 2019.

Features: It’s back! QuickBooks for Mac has a new update for 2019 (last update was for year 2016). Here are a few of the more prominent features released with this update:

iCloud Document Sharing – Convenient method for sharing QuickBooks for Mac file using iCloud sync. Modify your books on your work Mac computer then continue where you left off on your home Mac computer.

Bank and or Credit Card Reconcile Discrepancy Report – Identifies changes made to reconciled transactions (for newly created transactions, not those prior to this release).

Square Import - Importing sales data from Square via use of .csv file type.

Email Tracking – Track dates emails sent with a tab in the Vendor or Customer Centers.

Report Windows – Improved spacing and readability.

User Passwords – Now required. Personal information is encrypted.

Editor's note: This article will continue to be updated as more updates occur for QuickBooks Desktop 2019.