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Frequent Explorer **

Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

I would like to be able to send an invoice where billable expenses are grouped as one line item.  Right now, when I create an invoice and add billable expenses, it creates a line item for each expense.  The customers just want one line item and with us sending the detail as an attachment.  Who wants to see every coffee and taxi listed as a separate line item?  This feature isn't available and I haven't found a satisfactory work-around, especially since journal entries for billable expenses are against the rules.

Does anyone have any ideas?

18 Comments
QuickBooks Team

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Hello there, Kmacbee.

 

Currently, there isn’t a way to group billable expenses in one line item in the invoice. As a workaround, you’ll need to create the bill all at once using one item. Though, if there is more than one item they’ll, then they would always have separate lines on the invoice.

 

For now, you can send request about your preferred way of invoicing. Just click the Gear icon at the top and select Feedback.

 

 

Please visit us again if you have other questions about QuickBooks.

Experienced Member

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

I've provided this feedback to QB - it is a significant problem for us that we cannot group expenses on invoices and we are considering moving vendors for this reason. Multiple customers do not want to see line-level expense detail. For these clients, we have to calculate the Meals and Travel totals manually, enter them manually into invoices, and then correct the invoices after delivery to customers so we don't double-count billable income. This needs to be prioritized as the current model is not sustainable. 

QuickBooks Team

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Hello @phil_chi-matic,

 

All of us here in the Community appreciate you for voicing out your thoughts and concerns. I understand the urgency for this feature to be available in QuickBooks.

 

As mentioned by my colleague above, this option hasn't been added yet. And in the meantime, you may follow the workaround you provided.

 

I'll be sure to get back to this post once this is added to QuickBooks.

 

We appreciate your patience with us. Please let me know if you have other questions or concerns.

Experienced Member

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Thank you for the suggestion, but I don't believe Projects facilitates what I've described - can projects role up expenses by type (Meals, Travel, etc) when delivering an invoice to a customer? The steps provided do not change (as far as I can tell) the invoicing process to show groups of billable expense income/billable expenses as a single line when passing through those transactions to the client receiving an invoice. 

Community Explorer **

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Go to your Lists > Items > Reimb Group.  Uncheck the print items in this group.  You will see each of the items on the invoice when you are creating it, but when you go to print/preview the total will be on one line.  I had to insert a line above to put the description of what the group expenses line below was for (IE: TRAVEL MEALS REIMBURSEMENT) to make clear to the customer.  Hope that helps as I was going crazy trying to figure it out too.  

Frequent Explorer **

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Quickbooks Online does not have Items.  Items are only in Desktop.  And I don't see this in Products/Services.  I hope I am wrong and you can correct me!

QuickBooks Team

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Hello there, @Kmacbee.

 

Let me chime in and walk you through creating item lists in QuickBooks Online.

 

You can add 4 types of items in QuickBooks Online:

  • Inventory Item
  • Non-Inventory Item
  • Service
  • Bundle

To add an item, here's how:

  1. Click the Gear Icon.
  2. Choose Products and Services.
  3. Select New.
  4. Pick what type of item you'd like to add.
  5. Enter the complete item details.
  6. Hit Save

 

 

Also, you can import your own list of product and service items. For step-by-step instruction, you may check these articles:

This will get you on the right track creating item lists on your QuickBooks Online account.  Fill me in if you have other questions about managing your item lists.

Frequent Explorer **

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Thanks, but yes, I know all this.  I'm referring to the preceding instructions.  The exact steps described cannot be performed from Lists in Online.

Moderator

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

I appreciate you getting back in the discussion, @Kmacbee.

 

Allow me to step in and provide clarification about grouping billable expenses in one line item in the invoice. 

 

The workaround given can be done using the desktop version but not in QuickBooks Online. As mentioned above this thread, this option hasn't been added yet. 

 

In the meantime, you can follow phil_chi-matic's workaround to calculate the Meals and Travel totals manually. Then enter them manually into invoices and correct the invoices after delivery to customers so you don't double-count billable income. 

 

Should you have other questions about billable expenses, please don't hesitate to reach out again. I'll be here to help however I can.

Experienced Member

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

I created an invoice and grouped billable expenses manually. I then sent the invoice to the client. However, since I created my own invoice, I still have both time (we are a consulting business) and expenses showing in "unbillable" activity. I already billed for that time and the expenses but now how do I appropriately remove or account for those items to indicate that they have already been billed? I obviously dont want to delete those expenses all together as they are the line items that contain the expense receipt attachments (these were not required to send to our client). Could I get some help on the best way to address these items sitting in unbillable?

QuickBooks Team

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

I got a solution to close your un-billed time charges, SCM513.

 

You can delete the existing invoice of your client and recreate it using the time charges. This will be your workaround since we can't associate them to the invoice.

 

I would suggest to keep a printed copy of the original transaction, or save it as PDF and attach it to the replacement invoice. You can also add a memo stating that it's a replacement because you needed to delete the original one to close the time charges. The Memo field can hold up to 4095 characters and spaces, so you can be as detailed as you want.

 

One more thing. If the sent invoice was an online type (can be opened using a browser and not an attachment), you can proactively send the updated one to your client. This way, they won't wonder why they can't open it when they need to do so in the future.

 

After this, your records will be perfect because you won't have those open time charges anymore. I'm just right here if you have questions.

 

Wishing you great weekdays!

Experienced Member

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

I followed what you mentioned here and think I will have to do that - so thank you! I do have a question though regarding the expenses. When I go to recreate the invoice with the time (hours) and expenses within the system, it shows a list of 40 individual expenses when all I need to show is Meals, Lodging, Ground Transport and Airfare. How do I consolidate those 40 lines of expenses into 4 categories. From reading the other posts I get that QBO as not yet solved for that systematically but how could I do it manually. Even if I take the 6 lines (of the 40) that related to Airfare and add them manually to $1500 (for example), what do I do with the 6 lines themselves? Delete them?

 

thanks again for the help on this!

QuickBooks Team

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Hi there, SCM513.

 

If there are 40 individual line items when creating the billable expense, the invoice will also have the same number of line items. To consolidate this, you can edit your expense transaction and manually add up all transactions under Meals, Lodging, Ground Transport and Airfare. This will only have 4 line items in billable expense which will also be in your invoice. 


Also, I’ll make sure to take note and share this feature over to our developers for future updates. 


You can always use the Community space as the platform where you can post all your concerns about QuickBooks. 
 

Experienced Member

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Could you explain a bit more on how to "initiate it in expense transaction?" I am not clear on how you can manually consolidate into 4 category lines for purposes of the invoice.

Thank you!

QuickBooks Team

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Hi @SCM513,

 

Allow me to join in on this conversation and share my thoughts with your question.

 

What @MikiD was referring to is that you can add all meal expenses then enter it in a single line using the Meal expense account. Do the same for the other 3 expense transactions you mentioned.

 

This way, you'll only see 4 lines when you link this billable expense to an invoice. You can refer to the screenshot below as an example.

 

Billable expense.PNG

Let's go over the steps on how to finish this task.

 

Here's how:

  1. Open your billable expense transaction.
  2. Add all meal expenses and enter it in a single line.
  3. Repeat the same step above for the remaining 3 expense transactions.
  4. Click the Save and close button.

If you've already created an invoice transaction linked to this billable expense, you'll have to edit it as well.


Here's how:

  1. Open the invoice transaction.
  2. Remove the billable expense lines you've added before by clicking the Trash icon on their right side.
  3. At this point the updated billable expenses will appear on the right hand-side of the page, click the Add link on them.
  4. Click the Save and close button.

If ever you need to enter billable time by job, you can view the article provided. It provides you the steps on how to track billable time by job.

 

Feel free to drop a comment below should you have any other questions. We'll get back to you as soon as we can.

Frequent Explorer **

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Thank you.  There are a number of ways to work around.  The issue is that grouping expenses would eliminate having to do manual calculations.  I really want the developers to add this feature.

Frequent Explorer **

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Thanks for trying, but that is not the elegant solution I am looking for. 

The whole reason we want grouping is so the client sees a simpler invoice.  

Closing old invoices and re-issuing does not seem a very professional way to interface with clients, if it can be avoided.

QuickBooks Team

Re: Grouping billable expenses on an invoice

Hi, Kmacbee.

Let me share some insights concerning grouping the billable expenses in QuickBooks Online.

 

I could definitely see how you would want to group the billable expenses on an invoice. However, this feature isn't currently offered in QuickBooks Online, so it has to be done manually.

 

I’ll speak with our engineering team about the grouping billable expense feature and will let you know whenever we have it available for our users.

 

Additionally, I'd encourage you to visit our QuickBooks Blog, so you'll be updated with our latest news and updates including product improvements. Just go to https://quickbooks.intuit.com/blog/.

 

I'm leaving you some articles that you may find helpful in the future:

 

Don't hesitate to drop a reply below if you need more help with billable expenses and items in QuickBooks. I'm here to help.