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2012 Review of QuickBooks Premier Nonprofit Edition

Intuit Inc. — QuickBooks Premier Nonprofit Edition

From the Nov. 2012 Review of Nonprofit Accounting Systems.

Best Fit: QuickBooks is ideally designed for the smaller nonprofit organization that is looking for a solid accounting nonprofit solution, good reporting capability with limited expense. QuickBooks Premier Nonprofit offers small nonprofits affordable access to the power of QuickBooks along with an industry specific chart of accounts designed for nonprofit organizations.


  • Quick installation and affordability’
  • Extensive list of add on products available
  • Long list of e-features
  • Excellent training and tutorials available for new users
  • Numerous user-defined fields available

Potential Limitations

  • Limited fund accounting capability
  • Users may outgrow product


QuickBooks product installation continues to be problem free, and typically taking only minutes. The user interface offers navigational areas that are divided into specific categories. Users also have the option to choose a less crowded user interface by simply customizing screen display options during setup, then utilizing the drop-down menubar at the top of the screen.

Data entry screens remain consistent throughout QuickBooks, with easy navigation and all the requisite lookup fields available. QuickBooks makes it easy for new users to learn the system by providing a solid selection of product tutorials and system setup wizards.

QuickBooks is a complete financial system with all major accounting functions found in their product, including GL, AP, AR, and PR functionality. The nonprofit premier edition of QuickBooks also includes Nonprofit, Company, Customer, Vendor, Employer, Document Management, Online Banking, and the QuickBooks Report Center.

A long line of add-ons are available that will easily integrate with QuickBooks products including a full Payroll service and Credit Card processing. More scalable than in the past, QuickBooks has expanded its maximum number of users to 30 in the Enterprise edition of the product, allowing more small businesses and organization the ability to grow with the product.

QuickBooks users can choose to utilize the default chart of accounts or opt to use the United Way chart of accounts that is included with the nonprofit version of the product. While true fund accounting options are missing from the QuickBooks nonprofit edition, users have the option of creating separate funds by utilizing classes.

Multiple transaction types can be processed in QuickBooks and features such as the ability to process memorized transactions and process multiple invoices simultaneously cut down on data entry time tremendously. QuickBooks allows users to create a separate budget for each account.

In order to track multiple programs or grants, users will need to set up separate classes with the ability to set up a separate budget for each class. Donor details are managed in the Customer Center with users able to easily track donation and other details. Choose to add additional customer types to track various donor activities as needed.

QuickBooks does not offer a grant management function, but grant details can be entered into QuickBooks as a customer or job, with all relevant transactions tracked as needed. QuickBooks also offers excellent audit trail functionality, with management easily able to view all transactions entered into the system, or can opt to run the comprehensive audit management report.

QuickBooks also offers an excellent selection of e-features including the ability to accept and make payments electronically, email invoices and statements to vendors and donors, and users can choose to access QuickBooks remotely by using the optional QuickBooks hosting service.

QuickBooks contains an excellent selection of user-defined dashboards that track the level of details desired. The Customer Snapshot provides in-depth reporting capability, offering management a quick look at donor activity, pledges made, and expected revenue. QuickBooks offers good security options, with user-level password protection available as is the ability to assign user levels to employees as needed.

QuickBooks customer center allows users to track pledges and donations and users can choose to process corresponding invoices, past due letters or thank you letters. Users can also process large campaigns and annual appeal letters using Word, which easily integrates with QuickBooks. Documents can be attached to transactions, names etc. They are stored in a separate library in the same folder as the company data file so all users of the software will be able to access those documents subject to their user permissions level.


QuickBooks allows users to easily customize all existing system reports and offers a good selection of financial reports including nonprofit specific reports such as Statement of Functional Expenses, Statement of Financial Position, and Statement of Financial Income & Expense.

Both grant and donor reports are available as well. QuickBooks Report Center makes it easy to locate and process a specific report. Users are able to view the report prior to making any changes to see if it’s the correct report and all reports can be viewed on screen, printed, emailed, exported to Excel, or saved as a PDF file.


QuickBooks offers easy integration with Windows applications such as Word, Excel, and Access. Reports can be exported as a .csv file, or Excel, or saved as a PDF file. QuickBooks continues to add to the long list of third party applications that will integrate with QuickBooks financial products which now includes Donor Perfect, an application designed for nonprofits who wish to track and manage a donor database.

The Webmail integration allows users to send customer and donor correspondence using a Hotmail, Gmail, or Yahoo account. And the new ‘Send Journal Entries’ feature can be used by Accountants to email adjusting entries directly into the data file, removing the headache of sharing the same data file.

QuickBooks offers users an excellent help function that can be accessed throughout the product. The QuickBooks online community offers access to common problems and solutions and user guides, training manuals, and instructional tutorials complete the excellent selection of training options.

Users are notified upon system sign-in if downloads are available, with users able to download any updates at any time. All new QuickBooks users receive 30 days of free system support, and various support plans are available to purchase. While some support continues to be handled overseas, escalated cases, and all payroll support is handled only in the U.S.


QuickBooks Premier Nonprofit is currently available for $399.95 for a single user, with varying pricing levels available dependent on the number of users. QuickBooks will work well with smaller nonprofits and more user options give the product more scalability then prior editions.

2012 Overall Rating: 4.5 Stars


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