Is it time to convert to QBO?

Is it time to move to QBO?

Yes!  It is time to convert to QBO (QuickBooks Online).  

In my last article for Law Firm accounting, I explained the scenario for an attorney starting their Law Firm from scratch.  I shared a template for importing the Chart of Accounts for a basic Law Firm.  You can access that post here.  

But what if you are an existing Law Firm using QuickBooks Desktop?  Maybe you decided it's time to bring your company file and processes to the cloud.  Be proactive.  Stay relevant.  You will need to convert your QuickBooks file.  

Here are the basic steps for conversion:

  • 1
    In QuickBooks Desktop, go to file>create copy>portable copy.  Restore this as your working file.  Creating a portable copy puts your desktop file in good order.  There are other items like file size and targets you need to check before converting.   See this Intuit help article for more information.  Additionally, in this article is a free QuickBooks desktop software that you may need to use if your current desktop program is older than 2018.  You will need to upgrade in order to convert the file.
  • 2
    Sign up for QuickBooks Online.  You should choose from QB Essentials or QBO Plus.  If you have more than one partner in the law firm and need to track income and expenses by attorney, choose QBO Plus.  If you want to run budgets, choose plus.  Most law firms can get by using QB Essentials.  Note:  Simple start is far too basic to consider.  There is no accounts payable and limited reporting. See this other post on choosing the right software.
  • 3
    While in QuickBooks desktop, go to company>export company file to QuickBooks Online.  It will have you log into QuickBooks Online subscription and navigate to the new QBO file you set up.  Click "Agree" and let the system do the rest.
  • 4
    You will receive an email when the file is completely converted.  Log into the QBO file.  Compare the records.  Run a trial balance report, all dates, accrual basis.  THESE NUMBERS MUST MATCH.  This is the only way to verify the file converted properly.
  • 5
    Re-reconcile back to where you reconciled in Desktop. Your bank, credit card accounts, Iolta or trust account(s).  Everything.  

After conversion, what about my payroll subscription?

Auto-magically, you will be updated to QuickBooks Online Enhanced payroll.  I highly recommend upgrading to QuickBooks Online Full Service payroll from there.  With full service, it takes one more job or task off of your plate and helps you to stay compliant with the IRS.  With full service, the team will make sure the migration is seamless.  Feel free to reach out to me for help with this step.  I have an amazing group of people that are dedicated to me for payroll help for Full Service in QuickBooks Online.

Convert to QBO:  Two last tips....

Make sure you don't forget to add the details.  Your company and account details. Details found in the gear>account settings page.  Upload your logo.  No need to worry about formatting your invoices as you will have professional looking ones with LeanLaw.  The time savings alone using the LeanLaw app is worth the fee per month.

Connect your bank feeds.  Make sure you remove the "opening balance" entries that will show up in your check register when you connect to your bank.  Be sure to exclude any transactions that may be duplicates from the import.  Things that show up in the feed that are already in your QuickBooks file and reconciled.   See this post for more details on your first time connecting bank feeds.

Links to QuickBooks and LeanLaw....

Sign up for QuickBooks Online and LeanLaw. QuickBooks is the accounting program in the cloud.  LeanLaw is an app for law firms that integrates seamlessly with QuickBooks Online. It makes the attorney's work much easier, automating tasks and making invoicing their clients simple.

The video below will step you through the conversion process....

If you have any questions or would like to see a future video on another topic, please reach out to me on Facebook.  Next week we will set up LeanLaw for your accounting firm.

Lynda Artesani

Lynda Artesani is the president of Artesani Bookkeeping where she uses her expertise and organizational skills to help her clients thrive and become profitable. Lynda is a member of the Intuit Trainer Writer Network. She is an alumni member of the Intuit Advisory Board. Additionally, she is the first Expert Columnist for the QB Community forum. She is also a co-founder in a Facebook group called QB Community Live!