Working with Expense Tracking


Figure 1
Figure 1: The expense entry screen in QuickBooks

What are expenses? How do they work in QuickBooks?
In QuickBooks, expenses incurred for a Customer or Job are recorded as bills that are payable to Vendors. Expenses are associated with a Vendor as well as a Customer:Job, and can be used for billing and reimbursement.

You can enter expenses directly into QuickBooks by going to "Vendors" in the top menubar of your QuickBooks window and selecting "Enter Bills". Expenses appear as line items in the Enter Bill screen that appears (see figure 1). Once an expense is entered and saved, it appears with the bill under the "Transactions" tab in the Vendor Center.

Expenses must be associated with Vendors in QuickBooks, and can also be tied to Employees for tracking reimbursable Employee expenses if you correctly associate the Employee with a Vendor (read more about how to do this below).
Figure 2
Figure 2: Associating a user with a Vendor on the user permissions page to track employee expenses
Who can enter expenses?
In Minute7, any user with the "Manage Users" permission or the "View and Edit All Time" permission can track expenses for any Vendor. Users who cannot manage users or edit all time can only add expenses if their user account has been associated with a specific Associated Vendor for expense tracking in QuickBooks. To associate a Minute7 user with a Vendor for expense tracking, go to the user permissions page for the user in question, and select the correct Vendor from the "Associated Vendor for expense tracking in QuickBooks" drop-down list.
Why would I associate an Employee with an "Associated Vendor for expense tracking in QuickBooks"?
In QuickBooks, there is currently no method of associating reimbursable expenses directly with Employees. However, Vendors can be directly associated with expenses, so one common way to track Employee expenses in QuickBooks is to create a Vendor with the same name as your Employee (often with "-vendor" or a similar note at the end of the name). This allows you to add and track expenses using the "Enter Bills" interface in QuickBooks (read more about entering bills in QuickBooks above).

If you want to allow Employees to enter expenses using Minute7, you must associate the Minute7 user for your Employee with the corresponding Vendor. If you already have a corresponding Vendor set up, just go to the user permissions page for the Minute7 user in question, and select the correct Vendor from the "Associated Vendor for expense tracking in QuickBooks" drop-down list.

If you do not currently have a Vendor set up for your Employee in QuickBooks, but would like to start tracking expenses for the Employee, first set up a Vendor for your Employee with the following steps:
  1. Open your company file in QuickBooks, and go to the Vendor Center by clicking on the "Vendor Center" tab in the Icon Bar at the top of the screen.
  2. Click on the "New Vendor..." icon in the upper left corner of the Vendor Center screen.
  3. In the window that opens up, enter all the relevant information for your Employee, including the name of your Employee as the "Vendor Name". You might want to add "-vendor" or a similar identifier to the end of the name.
  4. Click "OK" to save the new vendor.
  5. Sync your company file with Minute7 using the QuickBooks Web Connector to make sure your Minute7 vendor list is up to date.
Once the corresponding Vendor has been set up for your Employee, just go to the user permissions page for the Minute7 user in question, and select the correct Vendor from the "Associated Vendor for expense tracking in QuickBooks" drop-down list. Your Employee is now ready to start tracking expenses!
Can I group multiple expenses onto a single QuickBooks bill?
Yes! You can create multiple expense entries that are all included in a single Bill in QuickBooks. Each expense entry will appear as a line item on the Bill in QuickBooks, and the entire Bill will be associated with a single Vendor.
Create a Bill in Minute7

To create a new Bill or edit the name of an existing Bill, use the selector at the top of the Expenses page. Enter the name of the Bill you want to create, and click save.
The Bill in Minute7

You will then be able to select the Bill you created when you add an expense entry for the Vendor. The Bill name will appear with each expense entry.
The Bill in QuickBooks
When you sync with QuickBooks, the expense entries that were grouped in Minute7 will appear as line items on a single Bill that has the Bill's name in the memo line.

Note that in order for a Bill and its associated expense entries to sync, all expense entries grouped on the Bill must be ready to sync. For example, if your account does not export expense entries that have been modified in the last eight hours (read more about modification times here), and some of the expense entries on a Bill were modified within the last eight hours, none of the expense entries for that Bill will be exported until the eight hours has passed.

Similarly, if any of the expense entries on the Bill are disapproved, none of the expense entries for that Bill will be exported until all the expenses are approved or removed from the Bill.
If I have Vendors that track time with Minute7, can they also track their expenses?
Yes— just make sure that the Minute7 user for the Vendor is associated with the appropriate Vendor for expense tracking. You can do this by going to the user permissions page for the Minute7 user in question, and selecting the correct Vendor from the "Associated Vendor for expense tracking in QuickBooks" drop-down list. If you also want the Minute7 user to track time for the same Vendor, make sure to also select the same Vendor in the "Employee/Vendor" drop-down list.
What if I don't want to track expenses?
You can turn off expense tracking by going to your account settings page, and setting "Enable expense tracking for Vendors" to "No".
The billing status of my expenses is not always showing up in QuickBooks. Why not?
Although Minute7 allows users to set the billing status of all expenses, QuickBooks only accepts and displays billing information for accounts that are reimbursable. QuickBooks regards any accounts that have the type Expense, Other Expense, or Other Current Asset as reimbursable. If you mark billing status information for expenses associated with other types of accounts, the billing status will still be recorded and displayed in Minute7, but it will not be reflected in QuickBooks.