Chapter 24. Integrating QuickBooks with Other Programs

Most businesses use other programs in addition to QuickBooks to keep things running smoothly. You can use QuickBooks data in other programs to study your company’s financial ratios, calculate employee bonuses based on hours worked and services sold, send special sales letters to customers on their birthdays, and so on. Similarly, other programs may contain data that would be useful to pull into QuickBooks. For example, if you use an estimating program that has all the products and services you sell in its database, there’s no reason to manually enter those in QuickBooks.

QuickBooks doesn’t share its most intimate details with just any program. It reserves its data for a few select programs—or the ones you tell it to play nicely with. For example, you can set up letters in QuickBooks to send to customers, and the program automatically opens Microsoft Word with your customer data merged into form letters and envelopes. If you use Outlook (not Outlook Express) as your contact-management tool, keeping records up-to-date is easy. By synchronizing your QuickBooks company file and your contact database, you enter changes in one place and the programs automatically copy data from one file to the other.

Programs that can read a QuickBooks company file still have to ask permission to grab QuickBooks data. The QuickBooks administrator (or other QuickBooks users that the administrator anoints) can say whether another program can have access ...

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