On October 24, at QuickBooks Connect, Bill.com announced a partnership with Intuit to bring digital bill payments into QuickBooks Online. The Bill.com integrated feature will give small businesses a central home for managing bill pay online, entirely within QuickBooks® Online. Business will be able to send payments to anyone, from any device, using Bill.com’s trusted payment network. In the future, QuickBooks Online users will also be able to receive, digitize, and store documents online as well as collaborate for approvals.
Judie McCarthy will present the sessions, How to Shop and Select New Accounting Technology, and Getting It Right From The Start: 5 Tips For Developing A Winning Bookkeeping Engagement, at Accountex 2016.
How Is This Different From the Bill.com That’s Available Today?
The new QuickBooks Online bill pay is designed for SMBs that pay their own bills. QuickBooks Online users will be able to access and use the service without leaving the QuickBooks Online user interface. The initial launch will include simple bill pay only and will not include the advanced Bill.com A/P features such as approvals, custom user permissions, or approval policies. Future versions will include a Bill.com inbox inside QuickBooks Online and basic approvals so that all bill information will be organized and stored electronically in one place for easy access.
Pay Bills Page powered by Bill.com (subject to change)
How Does This Differ From What Is Available Through the Bill.com Accountants Program?
The Bill.com Accountant Program provides accounting professionals with a host of additional valuable features for all clients—no matter what accounting software they are using. The program provides firm access to an extensive set of features and benefits which include:
- Integrations with QBO, QBD, Xero, NetSuite, Intacct and more
- Accounts Receivable
- Auto Bill Entry
- Custom user roles for tighter controls and advanced separation of duties
- Automated approval workflows and policies
- Personalized dashboard with an automated To-Do List for each client
- Single sign on for all client accounts
- Firm branding opportunities for the client interface
- Accountant Resource Center
- Self-paced, online training with CPE credit
- Wholesale pricing
- Client billing option (client direct or bill to firm)
- Dedicated Bill.com Account Manager
Bill.com recommends that current program members continue to add clients from within their Accountant Console. Non program members are encouraged to enroll in the Bill.com Accountant Program to take advantage of all the features and benefits available to help grow their practice.
How Will This Affect My QBO Wholesale Billing?
QuickBooks Online subscribers that opt-in for the new online bill pay will be billed directly by Bill.com. They will be required to add a credit card to be used for the bill pay feature separately from the QuickBooks Online subscription. The feature will not be billed to the credit card on file in the QuickBooks Online Accountant billing profile.
Can I Transition Clients Who Are Using QBO Bill Pay to My Bill.com Accountant Console?
The QuickBooks Online bill pay feature will be portable. Upon request, an account can be converted to a fully functioning Bill.com account without any loss of data. During the early phase of this feature, it is likely that these converted accounts will not be able to be added to the accountant console. In these instances, I would recommend that you contact Bill.com support or your account manager for further information.
Note: following publication of this article, a Comment addressing and clarifying the information in the paragraph above was posted by Henrique Ceribelli of Bill.com.
How Does This Affect Me as an Accounting Professional?
I see this as a great opportunity for accountants. This new partnership will increase brand awareness of Bill.com, making it easier to sell (did I say sell?) your services using the full feature app to your existing SMB clients. I also see the QuickBooks Online bill pay as a gateway to the full feature Bill.com application where SMBs will be more likely to engage an accounting professional as their business grows. This is a great reason to review and update both your QuickBooks ProAdvisor and Bill.com Accountant Profile.
QuickBooks Online bill pay will be a terrific option for firm clients that manage their own A/P. Rather than using their online bank bill pay or vendor direct websites, they will be able to make all payments from a single source easily. This method will eliminate the need for duplicate data entry and provide better visibility to manage cash flow. Payments will be immediately visible in QuickBooks Online, which is a far better option than adding them from the bank download after the fact.
When Does This Service Launch?
This new offering is scheduled to launch with a limited release in early January 2017 and will be available to QuickBooks Online SMB subscribers in subsequent phases released in 2017. When this new feature launches it will be presented to QuickBooks Online subscribers in different areas of their payables experience—as when they are entering new bills or recording bill payments.