In this tutorial, you’ll learn how to add standard users, company admins, reports-only users, and time-tracking-only users. You’ll also learn how to invite your accountant to your QuickBooks account so that they have constant access to your data.
We hope you enjoy this free tutorial for QuickBooks Online, our best overall pick for small business accounting software. It’s best if you follow along in your own QuickBooks account. If you don’t already subscribe to QuickBooks, you have the choice of a 30-day free trial or 50% off for three months.
This tutorial is one in our series of Free QuickBooks Tutorials. You can watch the video below or follow the step-by-step illustrated instructions. The video is from a slightly older version of QuickBooks Online. While the process of setting up users in QuickBooks Online is essentially unchanged, the layout of the screens is slightly different. The step-by-step instructions are from the most current version of QuickBooks Online.
Why Setting Up Multiple Users in QuickBooks Online Is Important
Multiple users can use QuickBooks Online at the same time for no additional cost. However, to take advantage of this capability, you need to determine the level of access that you wish to grant each user and then invite the additional users to join your QuickBooks company.
You can also invite your accountant to access your QuickBooks Online account. By doing so, you are providing them real-time access to your most current data. The number of accountants and users you can invite to your QuickBooks Online account vary based on your subscription level.
QuickBooks Online Maximum Users Allowed
Standard & Admin Users
Time Tracking Only Users
Reports Only Users
How to Give Your Accountant Access to Your QuickBooks Online Account
You can invite your accountant to access your QuickBooks Online account in just a few steps.
Tip: Your accountant must have QuickBooks Online Accountant to access your books. If they don’t already have it, send them this link so they can sign up for free.
Step 1: Navigate to Manage Users
Click on the gear icon in the upper right hand corner of the QuickBooks Online screen and then select Manage users under the first column:
Step 2: Send Invite to Your Accountant
In the Manage users screen, click on the Accounting firms tab. Enter your accountant’s email address and click the green Invite button:
Your accountant can share their access with other bookkeepers in their firm, so there is no need to invite two accountants from the same firm.
Step 3: Your Accountant Is Notified and Setup Is Complete
After you send the invite:
- Your accountant will receive an email that contains a link to sign into your QuickBooks Online account.
- Once your accountant signs in, their status on the Manage users page will change from Invited to Active.
- Your accountant will be given administrator privileges to all areas of your QuickBooks Online company.
Tip: Give your accountant a heads-up that you have sent this invitation so that they can check their spam or junk folder if the invitation doesn’t show up. You can resend the invite from the Accounting firms tab of the Manage users screen.
How to Give QuickBooks Online Access to Multiple Users
You can invite additional users to your QuickBooks Online account while limiting the data they have access to by choosing an appropriate user role.
Step 1: Create a New User
Click on the Users tab in the Manage users screen:
If this is the first user you are adding, you’ll automatically be taken to the add a new user screen. If you’ve already added users, you’ll see a list of users and need to click the green Add user button (not shown).
Step 2: Select User Type
There are four types of users to choose from when granting someone access to your QuickBooks Online company:
Company employees that will be participating in the bookkeeping process should be granted either Standard user or Company admin access:
- Standard user: Most QuickBooks users should be set up as Standard users. You will be able to customize their access in the next step.
- Company admin: The QuickBooks Online master administrator is the person that purchased the subscription to QuickBooks. If that is the company owner, then they probably want to give their controller or head bookkeeper Company admin rights so they can manage QuickBooks users and the QuickBooks account.
Reports only and Time tracking only users have very limited access to QuickBooks and do not count toward your company’s maximum number of users. Simple Start subscribers will need to upgrade to allow Reports only or Time tracking only users.
- Reports only: Reports only users can view all QuickBooks reports except for payroll or employee contact information. This user type is great for employees that aren’t involved in inputting data into QuickBooks but are interested in tracking data like cost reports for projects they are managing.
- Time tracking only: Employees and contractors can be set up as Time tracking only users so that they can input their hours worked, service code, and customer or project. Reported Employee hours flow into the payroll system. Employee and contractor hours are available to add to invoices.
The built-in time tracking system in QuickBooks Online is very basic. QuickBooks Time (formerly TSheets) is a much more powerful time-tracking system that can be added to QuickBooks Online. QuickBooks Time has some amazing features like remote clock-in with facial recognition, GPS tracking, and detailed job costing with budget analysis. If your business has employees that work out of the office, I recommend adding QuickBooks Time to your QuickBooks Online subscription.
Step 3: Set User’s Access Rights
If you’re adding a standard user, you’ll need to assign them access rights in this step. If you are adding any other type of user, you can skip to the next step. Select Standard user from the add a new user screen shown above and click the green Next button:
As you select different access levels on the left of the screen, a description of the access rights assigned to each level is given on the right of the screen:
- All: These users have unlimited access to all QuickBooks data. This includes adding, editing and deleting transactions related to all vendors, customers, sales and purchases. If you place a checkmark next to Payroll access, they also have access to employee and payroll information. The only access not included is administrative rights, which you can assign in the next step.
- None: The purpose of creating a user with no access rights is to allow someone to perform some administrative tasks without giving them access to the accounting features. You also have the option (on the following screen) to provide these users with access to input their own time. Tip: If a user needs to input their own timesheet, but doesn’t need any administrator rights, they should be set up as a time-tracking-only user so they don’t count towards your maximum number of users. Return to step 2 and change the user type from standard user to time tracking only.
- Limited: You can provide limited access rights to members of the accounting team that don’t require access to everything. If you select Limited, you must then select access to Customers, Vendors, or both. Limited:Customers is appropriate for an employee that generates invoices and collects payments from customers, such as an A/R clerk. Limited:Vendors is best for an employee that inputs and pays bills, such as an A/P clerk.
After you have selected the level of access rights to provide the new user, click the green Next button to assign administrator rights.
Step 4: Select Administrator Rights
A user needing full administrator rights should be designated as a Company admin user in step 2. However, you can assign the following administrator rights to any standard user:
After deciding which administrator rights the new user should have, click the green Next button to provide the user’s contact information.
Step 5: Provide Contact Information
Provide the new user’s First name, Last name, and Email. Then click the green Save button.
The user will receive an email inviting them to your QuickBooks Online company. Their user ID is their Email address. The new user will generally be prompted to create a password. If they are not prompted to create a password, then there is already an Intuit password associated with that email address.
Tip: Intuit (the owner of QuickBooks) requires users to use the same password across all Intuit programs and websites. For example, if the new user had previously signed up for TurboTax or Mint (other Intuit products), the password for those products must also be used for QuickBooks Online.
Congratulations on setting up your additional users in QuickBooks Online. The next tutorial in our QuickBooks Online Training Course is How to Setup the Chart of Accounts. Customizing the Chart of Accounts for your business is an important step to simplify your bookkeeping and get the most out of QuickBooks.