QuickBooks 2012 Document Management
SmartVault first began providing a solution that allowed QuickBooks users to attach documents to entries in QuickBooks and securely store, access, and manage these documents 24×7 online in the cloud in 2009. SmartVault currently supports attachment and online document storage for QuickBooks 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and QuickBooks Online.
Note: SmartVault does not test compatibility with every module offered by Intuit for QuickBooks. However, we don’t foresee compatibility issues with modules in supported versions (see above).
In QuickBooks 2010, Intuit also began offering the ability to attach documents to QuickBooks transactions and store those documents online as an optional feature. However, the Intuit approach to document management changes from year to year, and with the arrival of QuickBooks 2012, Intuit announced that it will not continue to offer the ability to attach and store documents online in QuickBooks 2012. Intuit will also begin sunsetting its online attachment and storage capabilities offered in earlier versions of QuickBooks.
This page provides the following information for users who would like to learn more about SmartVault and the Intuit approach to managing documents attached to QuickBooks entries in QuickBooks 2012:
- Changes to Document Storage in QuickBooks 2012
- Challenges with the QuickBooks 2012 Document Mangement Approach
- SmartVault Compatibility with QuickBooks 2012 and Known Issues
- Migrating Attached Documents from QuickBooks to SmartVault
- Additional Information and Articles Related to QuickBooks 2012 Document Management
Changes to Online Document Storage in QuickBooks 2012
In QuickBooks 2012, there are some significant differences in how QuickBooks provides document storage from previous years.
Local storage of documents is available free in QuickBooks 2012 and later, and anyone who purchases QuickBooks gets this feature as a part of QuickBooks.
Online storage of documents in an Intuit-provided document management system is being phased out. For QuickBooks 2010 and 2011 users, online document storage will likely continue for a set amount of time, but you will eventually have to move away from this.
Challenges with the QuickBooks 2012 Document Management Approach
Free local storage of attached documents is now available in QuickBooks 2012. However, carefully consider the benefits and tradeoffs of storing documents attached to QuickBooks entries locally.
If you think you want to store documents you attach to QuickBooks entries locally, ensure you consider the following issues before you store your documents locally using QuickBooks:
Documents stored locally in the Doc Center provided in QuickBooks 2012 are accessible only when you are logged on to the actual physical computer where QuickBooks is installed. Local storage of your attached documents means that you cannot quickly and easily go online anytime from any computer with simply a web browser or a SmartPhone to quickly view and share documents attached to QuickBooks entries.
Instead, if you are out of the office and need to view or share a document attached to QuickBooks and stored locally in the Doc Center in QuickBooks 2012, you must first ensure that the computer you are using as well as the computer you are trying to connect both have a third-party application that supports remote connections installed on them. Some examples of these types of applications include LogMeIn, or Virtual Private Network (VPN) software from companies like Cisco or CheckPoint.
Documents stored locally in in the Doc Center provided in QuickBooks 2011 were stored “in the clear” in a folder, so anyone could see and access them. If QuickBooks 2012 also uses this approach, do not use this feature to store documents that have sensitive information in them such as social security numbers, drivers license numbers, or credit card numbers.
Documents stored locally are not included in a backup, so you must make sure you make your own backup of the folder.
Viewing Documents When QuickBooks Company Files Are Transferred
If a QuickBooks company file is transferred between users on different computers, such as between an office manager at a business and an accountant, or between bookkeepers, other users will not be able to view the attachments.
SmartVault Compatibility with QuickBooks 2012 and Known Issues
SmartVault has provided online document storage for QuickBooks since 2009, and SmartVault currently provides support for QuickBooks 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012, 2013 and QuickBooks Online.
Intuit released QuickBooks 2012 to its Gold software development partners on September 12th, 2011, and the SmartVault quality engineering team has completed its initial round of compatibility testing for QuickBooks 2012.
During testing, the SmartVault quality engineering team identified a handful of known issues related the display of the SmartVault Toolbar in QuickBooks 2012. These issues are due to some differences between the way QuickBooks 2012 works compared with previous versions of QuickBooks.
Known issues include the following items:
- SmartVault Toolbar displays as inactive or grayed out when you open a To Do item in QuickBooks 2012
- SmartVault Toolbar displays as inactive or grayed out when you select an Item Receipts transaction in QuickBooks 2012
The SmartVault development team is currently reviewing these issues and identifying the best way to address these issues.
If you use the SmartVault Toolbar with QuickBooks and you plan to upgrade to QuickBooks 2012 right away, please contact SmartVault Support before you upgrade. The SmartVault Support team is happy to discuss your workflow with you and help you determine if your workflow will be impacted by any of the known issues.
If you have already upgraded to QuickBooks 2012 and you encounter any issues using SmartVault with QuickBooks 2012 in addition the known issues already listed in this section, please email the Support Team or submit a Support Request. The SmartVault Support team will review your issue and work with you and the SmartVault development team as needed to address your issue.
Migrating Attached Documents from QuickBooks to SmartVault
If you currently store your attached documents online using the Intuit QuickBooks attached document management feature, but you now want to start storing your QuickBooks attached documents in SmartVault because Intuit is phasing out online document storage for QuickBooks, you have the following options:
- If you create a new QuickBooks company file each year (and close out the previous year’s QuickBooks company file as a part of this process), typically the easiest solution is to continue using the existing Intuit QuickBooks document management feature until you close out the QuickBooks company file for the year or upgrade to QuickBooks 2012. Once you close out the year or upgrade to QuickBooks 2012, use SmartVault for QuickBooks attached documents.
- If you do not create a new QuickBooks company file each year, determine when the best time is for you to stop using the online attached document feature QuickBooks provides and start using SmartVault. Also determine if you want to download all of your documents stored in the QuickBooks online service and reattach them to QuickBooks entries using SmartVault, or if you simply want to keep documents related to your older transactions in the QuickBooks online service until it is phased out, and use SmartVault going forward for your new transactions. Unfortunately, QuickBooks does not provide an easy way to export, or create an archive, of all documents attached to QuickBooks and stored in the QuickBooks online service, so you will likely have to manually download each individual file you want to export out of QuickBooks.
Note: SmartVault does provide an easy way for you to export, or create an archive, of all documents stored in SmartVault at any time, on-demand, including documents attached to entries in QuickBooks. For more information, see Creating Document Archives.
Additional Information and Articles Related to QuickBooks 2012 Document Management
Charlie Russell, founder of CCR Software and a Certified Advanced QuickBooks ProAdvisor who participates extensively in the QuickBooks Community user forums, provides some additional information and opinions about QuickBooks 2012 document management in his QuickBooks 2012 Document Management Is Changing Again! blog entry, available on the Sleeter Group blog.
QuickBooksGarage.com also provides some additional information about the changes to QuickBooks attached document functionality throughout the last few years in their blog entry What Are the Changes To QuickBooks Attached Documents For 2012?, available on the QuickBooksGarage.com web site.