Should You Use Projects or Sub-Customer Functionality for your business within QBO?


Quickbooks Online (QBO) has added the Projects Feature to QBO.  In some ways, Projects is similar to the Sub-Customers functionality, but in other ways, it is very different.  If your business flow can work within the requirements of Projects, it can be a very powerful tool for tracking the results of the “Projects” of your business.

Can I Use the Projects Feature?

Requirements of using Projects Feature include:

  1. You can have only one hierarchical level for projects. What this means is a customer can have a project or multiple projects but the projects themselves cannot have sub-projects.  This is different than the Sub-Customer set-up.
  2. Projects requires you to bill the project with the customer unlike sub-customers which can have a different billing address than the customer.

If your business model can work within these constraints, you are most likely a candidate for projects.

What are the primary benefits of using Projects?

Below are some of the primary benefits of using the Projects Feature

  1. There is a Project Dashboard in which you can view all projects in one place. The fields including information on the Income, Costs, Profit Margin and time worked on each project.
  2. Drilling into the project itself, gives even more information on the project.
  3. Unlike Sub-Customers, where reports are created manually, there are three defined project reports with Projects.
    1. Project Profitability,
    2. Time cost by employee or vendor, and
    3. Unbilled Time and Expenses
  4. Transaction processing can be much more efficient

If your business is a candidate for the Projects Feature within QBO, it provides much more powerful and efficient reporting than using Sub-Customers.  However, keep in mind the limitations (one Hierarchal level and billing to the Customer address).

Do You Need Help?

If you want to learn more about the Projects Feature within QBO or need any assistance with set-up, training, or Financial Reporting when using QBO, I’d be happy to talk with you.  Please give me a call at (972) 821-1991 or email me at bob@jablonskyandassociates.