The Ultimate Productivity and Profitability Hack: Transitioning from QuickBooks Enterprise to QuickBooks Online


Change is the name of the game when it comes to the accounting profession, we all know this is true. However, I think many of us will agree that change is challenging, especially when it affects our tried and true habits and processes. In our firms, this also applies to our tech stacks and especially to our core accounting systems.

These types of changes are necessary if we want our firms to succeed. This is because we need to look honestly at what we are doing now and be willing to make changes that will benefit us and our clients in the long run. This is what I did several years ago when I realized that by continuing to keep my clients on Quickbooks Desktop (QBDT) instead of transitioning them to Quickbooks Online (QBO) I was actually holding us all back.

One of the fundamental benefits of QBO (other than it being the most comprehensive and widely adopted accounting system in the world) is that it offers immense flexibility and functionality with its open-API platform. 

On a practical level, what this means is that QBO allows other companies to create and connect applications that extend their power. You can see hundreds of apps to exponentially expand the services and increase the efficiency of your accounting services, team, and revenue possibilities in the QBO marketplace. Being able to tap into these tools is a game changer for the services you can provide and the level of support and insight your clients receive from you.

After all, who wants to be pigeonholed in a constraining system at the price of their productivity and profitability? Not me! That was the decision point for me when it came to my evolution from QBDT to QBO. In fact, making this transition from QBDT to QBO may be the most impactful efficiency and firm-expanding hack I can offer to you, ever.

If you feel hesitant, or like it’s going to be too much of a heavy lift, I hear you. After all,  QuickBooks is a huge part of how my firm serves clients, QBDT Enterprise edition was the backbone of my accounting practice for decades. Yet, I realized that if I didn’t transition to QBO, I wasn’t going to be able to be successful in the future in terms of being able to keep up with the expectations of my clients and the workflow that is also ever-evolving.

My clients wanted more advisory-level services from me, and by leveraging the QBO automation and apps available, I was able to free up my time and get everyone in the cloud on QBO. My clients have not only been receptive to this change, they have embraced it! 

Let me give you a few examples of some of the key QBO apps and integrations I leverage (none of which are available in QBD) for my firm and my clients, too:


ADP – Leverage ADP’s powerful payroll and sync it seamlessly with QBO.

Bookkeep – This amazing app eliminates the manual revenue reconciliation process by syncing ecommerce and payment app data into QBO.

Corpay One – direct integration with QBO so all of my payments are automatically entered and reconciled.

Financial Cents – my practice management platform with all of our QBO transactions 

IgnitionIgnition integrates with QuickBooks to automatically create and push invoices according to the billing information specified in our proposals. 

Jirav – Another powerful integration that enables all Quickbooks data to be leveraged within Jirav to take your FP&A to the next level.

LiscioThe QBO integration here allows you to bill clients directly through Liscio. Simply create the invoice in Liscio or select an existing invoice in QBO using the new Invoice Task type. 

Swizznet – Managed IT and cloud hosting all designed specifically for QBO so you know every level of your firm and client data is locked down and protected from cybercrimes and internal data theft.


As you can see, just from my shortlist alone, making the move from QBDT to QBO opens the “vault” so to speak of a new frontier of apps and opportunities to enhance our businesses and those of our clients. Here’s where we can actually create exponential gains in productivity, efficiency, and productivity. This all translates into more benefits for our firm and my clients. 

The most important takeaways here are simple: Moving from QBDT to QBO provides greater flexibility and freedom for our firm which translates into maximum workflow efficiency plus more powerful tools for our clients. 

Plus QuickBooks-protected cloud access lets clients collaborate and boost productivity because they can use it anywhere, using any device it’s made to manage any business – and every one of them can make it their own. 

A lot has changed since I started my accounting practice 23 years ago, and so has the business landscape. My clients’ needs are always evolving, just like their businesses. I am sure you can say the same for your firm, this is why it’s so imperative to make sure you evolve your tech and the systems that support your service offering, too. Put your transition to QBO on the calendar now before year end so you maximize this major productivity and profitability hack pronto!

To get information on how to migrate, you can check out this resource.


This is a paid partnership with Intuit.

The inaugural #AppyHour Camp came to a close a few days ago and I have to tell you, the experience was epic! A huge shout out to Liz Scott and Heather Satterley for having the vision to bring so many top-tier accounting profession educators, upcoming rockstars, and dedicated solution providers together.

It was an honor to be the MC for Appy Hour Camp and as The Designated Motivator, it was truly inspiring to see a whole new level of peer-to-peer motivation be ignited. I brought along my Starting Lineup of technology solution providers, too, in the form of these cool new #DesignatedMotivator blackout t-shirts. You can bet that Appy Camp is just the beginning of where you’ll see these! 

As I mentioned prior to my departure for Appy Camp, I knew there would be some amazing takeaways from the talks given and the time spent unplugged for the most part, really connecting in the most human and creative sense with my peers. It was an amazing experience and I came back primed to do even more to support all of you and to help others in this profession do the same.

I know that there are so many #DesignatedMotivators in our midst, each day we have the opportunity to take on this role and lift each other up whether that is on stage, in our firms, or in other organizations we belong to (family systems included!). As we head into busy season I see it as my role to keep being #TheDesignatedMotivator and this includes working with my Starting Lineup of apps and technology solutions to share how they support a better quality of client experience, workflow, and overall firm management capabilities. 

I truly believe that my partners including  ADP®, Bookkeep, Canopy, Fishbowl, Jirav, Liscio, Smartvault, Swizznet, Corpay, RCReports, and Truly Financial are not only technology providers but motivators for us all, too, to keep us accomplishing more with less effort and enabling more balance on all fronts. 

Let’s tackle the next quarter of the year like it is the last of 2022, because it is! And because with all of us in the accounting profession participating in the #MotivationMovement we can keep nurturing the spirit of collaboration  that we started at events such as Appy Camp so they continue through #QBConnect and all of the other places we go in the next few months.

For those of us running public accounting and bookkeeping practices, we are continually called on to be a trusted advisor to our business clients, a credible conduit between the government and the rest of society when it comes to communicating and interpreting the tax code, plus a dedicated “doer” of the work. Oh, and that’s all before breakfast! Some days it seems that way, doesn’t it? 

Here is what I know: this feeling of being overwhelmed and out to sea has become our new normal, and to me, that’s not the way anyone should live because life is too short. I’ve been there and done that, it’s stressful and soul-sucking.I know I am not alone in this view, but for too many other peer professionals, burnout is inevitable. Or is it?

If you are feeling like your options are to 1)keep doing what you are doing and burnout or 2) abandon the ship of an old-school firm I want to introduce youtube a different mindset. Engaging in a community of peers.

Does this seem too simple to work as a strategy for beating burnout? The truth is, we all need to have other people and perspectives to help us cope. Whether it’s professional or personal, or a mixture of both, having others to bounce ideas off and collaborate with can be life-changing. It’s not just a theory, either. A study by the National Center for Biotechnology  Information  shows that the more we connect with others who have similar experiences in a supportive way, the happier, less stressed, and prone to burnout we will be. 

In fact, this week as I am surrounded by other accounting professionals with similar goals and mindsets as mine at Appy Camp, hosted by two of my favorite peers, Heather Satterley and Liz Scott, I am reminded of this fact. I hope you’ll make a mission of finding yourself a supportive peer group this week, too. 

Here are a few accounting communities to consider:

Ecomm As You Are, The Designated Motivator Community, the Woodard Membership Community, and of course, attending events online, connecting on social media and, if you can, going to conferences in person is another great way to meet new supportive peer professionals.

It’s so important for accounting professionals to remember that you are not alone. It may feel that way when you get mired down with work, clients, deadlines, and then the life you have to manage outside of your firm. However, you can make a choice to think differently and see connecting and taking the time to nurture relationships as a critical part of keeping your productivity high and purpose for doing what you do front and center. Both of these benefits of engaging in community will ensure that you beat burnout and achieve the goals you have for yourself and your business.

There are so many people who shine bright in this profession who are ready and willing to help you. This is why I fundamentally believe that the more connected we are as people in this profession the greater the opportunities are for each of us. So don’t wait on the sidelines. Reach out to someone, be human, be humble, ask for help if you need it. And always remember, together we rise. 

I am super excited for Appy Hour Camp coming up September 19 to 21! Who wouldn’t be? It’s going to be a fun adult camping experience hosted by Heather Satterley and Liz Scott, and me, The Designated Motivator, as the M.C.  Let me assure you, however, this isn’t going to be all s’mores and camp fire songs! In fact, what I am most excited for (beyond the fact that we are going to be staying at the same place Dirty Dancing was filmed!) is that it’s going to be a truly educational experience.

Liz and Heather invited many thought leaders and educators in the accounting space to support us as intentional educators and to serve as an incubator for the next round of aspiring educators in the accounting space. I know with the lineup of speakers and contributors this is going to be an awesome camp!

According to Appy Camp headquarters, “the entire educational, inspirational and entertaining retreat will be a co-mingling of established accounting industry educators, up-and-coming educators, and app developers. All camp attendees will be immersed in the sessions and activities together in a shared space to facilitate community and collective innovation.”

In other words, we are going to get some of the most brilliant minds in the profession together and learn from each other about new ways to engage and expand the knowledge base for all of us. From talk to technology, I am planning to come home with some really inspiring action items that I can share with all of you.

I know whenever I get together with peers like entrepreneur wizard Melinda Emerson, Ted Callahan from Intuit, Misty Megia (can’t wait to hear her speak!), Virginia Lacayo, a business coach for thought leaders, Dan Gertudes from GrowthLabs, Ian Vacin from Karbon, and Mariette Martinez, Accounting Strategist the learning opportunities will be immense!

I am so looking forward to packing up my camping gear and heading to Appy Camp in just a couple of weeks. I don’t travel light to camp, either! I will be bringing along my entire Starting Lineup of apps and technology solutions to share with everyone including ADP®, Bookkeep, Canopy, Corpay One, Fishbowl, Jirav, Liscio, Smartvault, Swizznet, and Truly Financial. These are literally the solutions that have allowed me to create a cloud-based firm that is so efficient I can actually take four days to go to Appy Camp and not feel stressed about it, knowing that my team can use the system we have created to manage the workflow and my clients are still completely taken care of.

While I’m away, I’ll be posting on my social channels so please follow me so you can be part of the whole camp experience, too!

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