Set Up QuickBooks to Track Billable Hours

  • QuickBooks provides intuitive tools and solutions for tracking billable hours, timesheets, and more.
  • Whether you're using QuickBooks Online or QuickBooks Pro on desktop, there are several ways to track billable hours.
  • QuickBooks can also monitor paid overtime, track overtime submissions and approvals, and provide accurate workforce insight.
  • This article is for business owners and company accountants who wish to charge customers on a billable hourly basis.

QuickBooks makes it easy to track employee hours across different products, services, and customers to generate accurate bills. You can use these time-tracking functions to accurately compensate employees while monitoring the overall productivity of the organization.

In addition to the built-in time-tracking tool QuickBooks supplies, third-party tracking apps integrate seamlessly with QuickBooks for more sophisticated timesheet, time tracking, and billable functionality.

Editor's Note: Looking for the Right Accounting Software for Your Business? Fill out the questionnaire below to have our vendor partners contact you about your needs.

Here's a look at the different ways to track billable hours with QuickBooks, no matter what version of QuickBooks you use.

TipTip: If you're looking for other accounting software with time-tracking features, a number of QuickBooks alternatives like Zoho Books may work for you. Read our Zoho Books review for more details.

What is Time Tracking in QuickBooks?

Like many of the best accounting software packages, QuickBooks provides an easy way to set up employee timesheets and track hours worked to make sure you're paying your team properly. With this functionality, you always have access to the most accurate details about the efficiency and productivity of your business.

Time tracking gives you reliable information, including employee start times and the description and scope of a project. With QuickBooks, employees can log time spent on a task from anywhere with Internet access. You're able to provide login-only, so they only see the information they need. You can also select clients for billable tasks and add users as needed.

Here are some highlights of QuickBooks' time-tracking features:

  • Employee time tracking, submission and approval
  • Paid time off and overtime monitoring
  • accurate workforce insight
  • Updates on who is working on which work at which location
  • Employee schedules through shifts and categories
  • Streamlined payroll functionality

TipTip: Read our article to understand what overtime pay means for your company, and learn how to calculate overtime accurately and comply with federal and state laws.

How to Track Billable Hours in QuickBooks Pro on Desktop

Here's what you need to know about tracking billable hours using the desktop version of QuickBooks, called QuickBooks Pro. To create a record to track billable time and hours spent, you must first enable this function.

Here's how to set up QuickBooks Pro to track time:

  1. From Edit menu, select Like choose more time and expense,
  2. under company preferencesNext to do you track time?Choose Yes,
  1. Near first day of the work week, use the drop-down arrows to select the appropriate day. Once you find it, check the box next to it Mark all time entries as billableand then click Ok,
  2. In Like window, navigate sales and customers , my preference, enable option Indication of time/cost to add, Now, whenever you generate an invoice with unbilled time for a customer, you will see a window listing all billable services. Alternatively, select ask what to do To be asked about whether you want to include the item.

How to Enter Billable Hours in QuickBooks Pro on Desktop

After you enable time tracking, you will be able to enter billable hours in a number of ways. Use Timesheets, Invoicing and Time Reports to start this process.

logging timesheet

With QuickBooks Timesheets, it's easy to log details like week, time, and customer. Then, view billable hours whenever you want to bill customers. It works like this:

  1. go to employees Menu.
  2. Click enter time choose more User Weekly Timesheet, You will see a screen which looks like a paper timesheet where you can enter the details.
  3. Near NameUse the drop-down menu to select the appropriate employee or employees.
  4. In Week Select the field, Week.
  5. Near CustomerUse the drop-down menu to create a new record in the timesheet.
  6. press Client: Job field and select Service drop down menu.
  7. verify and select payroll item code, Add optional description to notes area if you wish.
  8. In Date In the field, add the number of hours the employee worked for the customer.
  9. put a check next to billable,
  10. The total of each column will be displayed at the end.
  11. Choose save,

Repeat the same process for other employees if necessary. Once you finish, you'll see billable hours whenever you run payroll or bill customers.

significant achievementsFYI: If you have a remote workforce, keeping track of time is even more important. Read our review of QuickBooks Time, a specialized time and attendance system, to see if it's right for your organization.

View invoices and reports

With QuickBooks Pro, you can view time data entered as a report. These accounting reports are helpful to managers and serve as a key data source to support decisions.

It works like this:

  1. From reports menu, select report center,
  2. Choose Jobs, Timings & Mileage from the left panel.
  3. scroll down and click time to view reports, including job Summary, Job Description, Item And Name,
    1. job Summary Tells you how much time the company spent on each task.
    2. Job Description Shows similar details but includes employee and bill status.
    3. Item Shows the time spent on the service.
    4. Name Lists the number of employees and hours they spend on each task.

TipTip: After opening the report, view the details of the record by double-clicking on it Duration column. QuickBooks tells you whether a job or customer has outstanding billable time and lets you select the time and add it to the invoice.

billing for expenses

Alternatively, you can use QuickBooks to create invoices and bills for expenses. Here's how it works:

  1. From customersChoose invoicing for time and expense,
  2. give details data range in the window that opens.
  3. Make sure the template you want to use is visible.
  4. select column for Client: Job,
  5. under review billableVerify the details.
  6. Choose edit optionThen create invoice,
  7. Make sure that Preferred Send Method Correct each customer before creating an invoice.

How to Enter Billable Hours in QuickBooks Online

If you use QuickBooks Online for accounting, it's easy to track time and enter billable hours. Track hours in timesheets or use the built-in time-tracking functionality. Here's how both processes work.

TipTip: Read our QuickBooks Online review to learn more about the robust features of this accounting tool.

Using the Time-Tracking Feature

With the QuickBooks time-tracking feature, it's easy to track customer hours. You must first enable this feature in your QuickBooks account and set your preferences.

Here are the steps to take:

  1. Choose Adjustment (gear icon) from the top right.
  2. under your companyChoose Accounts and Settings,

  1. Click advanced,
  2. Choose Edit (pencil icon) to the right time care,

  1. Check the box to enable the following options: Add Service Field to Timesheet And Make a one-time activity billable for customers,
  2. under first day of the work weekChoose Monday,
  3. Choose save,

You have activated the time-tracking feature of QuickBooks. As soon as you allow the account to track customer hours, it starts tracking time based on your chosen preferences.

use timesheets

QuickBooks also allows you to enter billable customer hours through a timesheet. Here's how to do it.

  1. Choose add (plus sign) at the top right of the QuickBooks homepage.
  2. In employees column, select weekly timesheet,
  3. Select the name of the employee or supplier via the drop-down menu, or add a new employee or supplier.

  1. in the drop-down menu next to NameSelect the week for which you want to record activities.
  2. Make entries in the timesheet. Select the name of the customer from the drop-down list, and then add a description and select the relevant service.
  3. To calculate the total billable amount, enter an hourly rate along with the total number of hours worked for a customer on weekdays.

  1. After entering all the information, select save,


Tracking billable hours for QuickBooks is easy, whether you have QuickBooks Online or on QuickBooks Pro desktop. Comprehensive QuickBooks time-tracking features enable you to track billable hours for your customers and ensure accurate billing.

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