Practice Management QuickBooks

QuickBooks 2012 Accountant Center

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Written by Charlie Russell

QuickBooks has two versions that are specifically aimed at accountants and accounting professionals, QuickBooks Accountant (which is, essentially, the Premier level of product) and QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions Accountant. If you are using these products you will find a new feature in Quickbooks 2012, the Accountant Center. If you work with client files, you will find this to be a helpful improvement. In addition, there is a change with Intuit Statement Writer.

I recently interviewed Jacint Tumacder, Intuit Product Manager for QuickBooks Accountant, and he outlined three major goals that Intuit has for the 2012 release in relation to accountants: Get more value by adding key accounting tools, get more customized insights into the data you need, and get time back by reducing the amount of time it takes to accomplish tasks. The Accountant Center is one of the new features that should help with each of those three goals.

 QuickBooks 2012 Accountant Center

The value of the Accountant Center is that it brings all of the tools and many of the reports that you use to support clients into one common location. Instead of having to poke around in a variety of menus and features, it is all here. This can be a major time saver.

There are four major sections, lets take a look at each.


Accountant Center Tools

This is a collection of the many tools that are available to accountants. Some of these are found in the Client Data Review, some in various menus. Up until now it could be quite a chore finding where a particular tool is accessed. Putting them all in one place is a big time saver. You can customize the list of tools shown here by clicking the link in the upper right, to get this window:

Customize Accountant Center


Accountant Center Reconciliation

You have a summary of bank and credit card reconciliation information, which is very useful. You used to have to open each reconciliation window to get the information displayed here. Clicking on the account opens the account register (which I didn’t find particularly useful here). Clicking on the last reconciled date opens a window that lets you see the reconciliation report.

I like the summary information, but I wish I could add other accounts that I might work with in reconciliations. You aren’t limited to just reconciling bank and credit card accounts!

Memorized Reports

Accountant Center Memorized Reports

Most accounting professionals create a significant number of memorized reports. It is convenient to be able to access them directly from the Accountant Center.

Accountant Updates

Accountant Updates

My friend Jim Ernest ( commented that he didn’t like the “advertising” part of the Accountant Center. In fact, he doesn’t see a lot of value in the Accountant Center at all. However, it is fair to note, he isn’t an accountant or a ProAdvisor.

While it is true that the Accountant Updates section is “advertising”, for people who are ProAdvisors there may be value here. We’ll have to see what shows up. What I had hoped to see was the same kind of information that we get in the Notifications section of the new ProAdvisor web site. So far, that doesn’t seem to be true, which I find to be very disappointing. If all we have is advertising, the value of this pane is greatly diminished. Let’s hope that they update this to show the current notifications.I don’t log into the ProAdvisor web site that often. Make this more useful to me, Intuit!

Changes To Intuit Statement Writer

There is one other change here, although it isn’t strictly a feature of just the Accountant Center. Do you see that link I highlighted in the Memorized Reports section? Intuit Statement Writer is being renamed to be QuickBooks Statement Writer. What’s more, it is now included at no extra charge in the QuickBooks Accountant products. I was pretty excited about this until it was pointed out to me that Intuit also is raising the price of QuickBooks Accountant.

In addition there are some improvements to QuickBooks Statement Writer, which I hope to explain in more detail in a future article. In summary:

  • You can turn off zero balance accounts as a global setting when setting up QSW. You can turn them back on in individual statements if you wish.
  • You can select your custom statement and report group templates when creating a new report with a similar chart of accounts.


All in all, this is a nice improvements for accounting professionals. It should save time, and it may expose you to features that you didn’t know existed. The inclusion of QuickBooks Statement Writer is a welcome change.

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About the author

Charlie Russell

Charlie Russell has been involved with the small business software industry since the mid 70's, and remembers releasing his first commercial accounting software product when you had an 8-bit microcomputer with one 8 inch floppy disk drive. He has a special interest in inventory and manufacturing software for small businesses. Charlie is a Certified Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor with additional certifications for QuickBooks Online and QuickBooks Enterprise, as well as being a Xero Certified Partner. Charlie started blogging about QuickBooks in 2008 (Practical QuickBooks) and has been the managing editor and primary writer for the Sleeter Report since 2011. Charlie can be reached at

Visit his CCRSoftware web site for information about his QuickBooks add-on products. He is also the author of the California Wildflower Hikes blog.


  • Have to agree with Jim {Rustler} – I’m not crazy about more advertising. Like you Charlie, I would rather see Notifications from the ProAdvisor website. Overall, I’m not terribly impressed with the Accountant Center {for one I think it takes an awfully long time to load} and I prefer keyboard shortcuts to mouse movements.

  • Thanks, Nancy. It doesn’t take long to load on my system, so that wasn’t an issue for me.

    When Intuit pitched the new ProAdvisor web site to me it was my impression that the “notifications” there would be showing in this pane in the Accountant Center. I thought that was a very good idea. I was disappointed when I checked that this week and found that the notifications were NOT showing in the Accountant Center. That makes it just “advertising” and wasted space that we cannot get back (the feature can’t be turned off).

  • I like the new center. However, I agree about needing to be able to customize which accounts appear in the Recon section. I have some accounts that have multiple clearing-type bank accounts and it will be a pain to see them all here. I also recon more B/S accounts than the CC and bank. I think the center is a step in the right direction and just needs a little tweaking.

  • Not being an accountant Charlie doesn’t mean I don’t do it or use the tools, once I learned where they were, well I learned it. The center is nice but fluff, I would have much rather have seen the programming time spent in other areas.

    But I have to admit once I turned off the start this screen at start up and added the center to the tool bar, I do use it.

    • Rustler, you are my favorite person to make comments about, so I have to find some way to work you into every article!

      I guess my point is that for someone who doesn’t do all of the kinds of things that an accountant or ProAdvisor does, on perhaps a daily basis, the impact might be less. I’m guessing that you don’t spend a lot of time using the various tools in the Client Data Review (if you ARE spending time there on your own file, something isn’t right!). Having those tools right up front can be a real time saver for someone who uses the CDR and other tools to examine and manage many different client files.

      Besides – that is what you told me in an email earlier this year! However, I’m glad that you are finding a use for it. And, yes, I agree that putting it in the icon bar so it isn’t up front all the time can save you time (again, unless you are someone who tends to “live” in that Center).

  • This is Jacint Tumacder, product manager for QuickBooks Accountant at Intuit. I appreciate the comments about wanting to make sure the content in the Updates section is not advertising but relevant, useful information that helps you work better with QuickBooks Accountant. The purpose of the Updates section of the Accountant Center is to link to relevant articles and information on how to use QuickBooks Accountant more efficiently and in ways that will help you better service your clients. It also will include product alerts and notifications when we have important information to send out to all QuickBooks Accountant customers.

    • Thanks, Jacint. The “advertising” phrase was perhaps a bit heavy handed – I got started on that by Rustler…

      However, the real value to ME (and I’ll admit I might not be the typical user) is if the “notifications” show up there. In the intial runout of this product, the “notifications” that we see on the ProAdvisor web site aren’t showing here. So, I’m hoping that we see that in the future.

      And, as you pointed out to me privately, many of the links that are in that section now are links to the Intuit ProLine Blog – where several of my own ProLine articles have shown up. So perhaps I shouldn’t complain so much…

      I do think that this is a great step towards improving efficiency for Accountants.

  • I am with Joe on this one Charlie, I love that widget. I like the fact that it takes me to articles on the blog that I would not have otherwise taken the time to read. I read an awesome one on Payroll Reports in Excel thanks to the widget. I also like that I can click the link to sign into my ProAdvisor website (to view said notifications) directly from the center instead of having to go out to the site instead. I think this will help me check into the site more often. I do like the suggestion of being able to customize which accounts show in the reconcile widget.

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