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QuickBooks 2013 Revamped Employee Record

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The Employee Record has been revamped in QuickBooks 2013 and that is one of the new changes in design that I really like!  For years we’ve had to navigate through the employee record through both tabs and drop down menus and in my opinion the overhaul was long overdue!

For years the typical instructions for navigating through an employee record in order to change a rate of pay went something like this:

Go to the Employee Center, in the employee list find this employee, double-click or click the Edit Employee button, now grab that drop down menu and choose Payroll and Compensation Info – no, no, no there is a drop down menu just above the tabs that say Personal, Address and Contact, and Additional Info.  It was quite a long, drawn out process!  QuickBooks 2013 has made that easier, by removing the drop down menu and arranging all the employee data into tabs.

In fact, the employee center itself has gotten a complete overhaul, you can right click on either of the images below to view a larger image.  Even at the initial launch, you can see things have changed.  In addition to being able to see all of the paycheck transactions associated with this employee; there are also tabs to hold To Do’s and Notes for each employee.  Nice!

QuickBooks 2012 Employee Center QuickBooks 2013 Employee Center
 Employee Center QuickBooks 2012  Employee Center QuickBooks 2013

Let’s explore a little further shall we.  Let’s edit an employee record.

In QuickBooks 2012 and earlier version we had to navigate the employee record using both tabs and drop down menus; it was very confusing to explain to a customer and/or client on the phone how to get around.

Getting around in the employee record using easily labeled vertical tabs in QuickBooks 2013 is going to be much easier and in my opinion this overhaul is long overdue.

Now that doesn’t mean that their isn’t going to be a learning curve for all of us – especially ProAdvisors, Developers, etc. who work with clients using several different versions – one of the standard questions that we all need to ask and answer clearly is – what version (year) of QuickBooks are you using!

QuickBooks 2012 Employee Record – Personal tab
QuickBooks 2013 Employee Record – Personal tab
Employee Record - QuickBooks 2012 Employee Record in QuickBooks 2013

One of the things that was most noticeable when I set both versions of QuickBooks to take up the exact same amount of space on my monitor; the employee record window in QuickBooks 2013 is much larger and cannot be resized even though it holds the exact same information as the 2012 version- if you notice in QuickBooks 2012 and earlier the window is smaller, which means that I can have another window open underneath (or beside) the actual record – or even another program or document open next to QuickBooks.  Some people will like the bigger window and the light grey/silver text for the field labels.

Let’s look at the Address & Contact Info tab:

2012 Employee Record – Address & Contact tab 2013 Employee Record – Address & Contact tab
Employee  & Contact info in QuickBooks 2012 Employee address & contact info in 2013

In 2013, you can store more information in the Address & Contact tab.  Choose to enter standard information like: Main Phone, Main Email, Work Phone, CC Email, Mobile, Website, Fax, and Other 1.

Many of the fields have a drop down menu where you can choose to include items like Home Phone, Alt. Phone, Alt. Mobile, Alt. Fax, Alt. Email 1, Alt. Email 2, LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter, URL 1, URL 2, URL 3, URL 4, Skype ID, Other 2 and Other 3.

This allows you to enter and display 8 different pieces of contact info on the employee record without having to Edit the record at all.  Unfortunately, you cannot change the field labels for any of the Alt(ernate) or Other fields – so somehow you’ll need to make sure that you are consistent with what these fields will contain.

2012 Employee Record – Additional Info tab 2013 Employee Record – Additional Info tab
QuickBooks 2012 employee record - additional info tab QuickBooks 2013 employee record - additional info tab

Not much new on this tab in QuickBooks 2013 – same fields, larger fonts, and more white space.

 2012 Employee Record – Payroll & Compensation Info – Payroll Info
2013 Employee Info – Payroll Info tab
 QuickBooks 2012 employee record - payroll & compensation info - payroll info  QuickBooks 2013 employee record - payroll info

The Payroll Info tab is the most noticeable improvement (in my opinion) in QuickBooks 2013.   Unlike 2012, where you first had to switch to the Payroll & Compensation Info by selecting it from a drop-down menu – in 2013 – it’s right there in the tabbed left navigation so you have less mouse clicks!

Once you get inside you’ll find that things have been moved around – note the new position of the “Use time data to create paychecks option”.

You can actually “see” more Earnings items (3 in 2012 compared to 9 in 2013) and Additions, Deductions, and Company Contributions (5 in 2012).  So that means less scrolling for you.

2012 Employee Record – Employment Info – Employment  2013 Employee Record – Employment Info
 QuickBooks 2012 employee record - employment info - employment  QuickBooks 2013 employee record - employment info

Again, unlike in 2012 where you first had to switch to the Employment Info tab via a drop-down menu, in 2013 it’s readily available in the left tabbed navigation.  Less mouse clicks when navigating is always a bonus!  Overall not many other changes, just that the information has been rearranged – so it will take us long-time users a few more minutes to update information.

2012 Employee Record – Workers Compensation – Workers Comp 2013 Employee Record – Workers Comp
 QuickBooks 2012 employee record - workers compensation - workers comp  2013 employee record - workers comp

Again, direct access to Workers Comp information without first having to switch via a drop down menu.

Overall this is a nice revision to the employee record because everything is easily accessed via tabbed navigation.

After seeing side-by-side comparisons of the Employee Record – what do you think of the new layout in QuickBooks 2013?

4 Responses to QuickBooks 2013 Revamped Employee Record

  • Diane I apologize for the delay – I’ve been on vacation.

    Make sure that you have applied all the maintenance releases (you should be on R8). To check press the CTRL and the 1 (above the Q) keys at the same time and take a look at the “Product” line of information it should have an R8P with possibly more numbers after it. There was an issue with the initial release of 2013 where notes didn’t display correctly.

    Notes have also been moved in this version – they now live in a tab at the bottom of the window (along with Transactions and To Do notes). To see all of this you need to be sure that you are viewing the employee center using the “Show List and Details” option and NOT the “Show full list only” option.

  • 😕 What happened to the NOTES section that was in 2012? I kept notes on employee raises in that section.

  • I agree, the larger the company the less appealing QuickBooks becomes. QuickBooks Enterprise Solution (allowing for up to 30 users) doesn’t always meet the needs of the really large business.

  • Good Information! For QuickBooks users, But find out more about the limitations of QuickBooks as companies grow, . I just read a white a paper for benefits using Technology and when to consider upgrading to an ERP system as well as selecting and implementing a proper solution. http://bit.ly/MpQdeq

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About Your Host:

Nancy Smyth, Certified QuickBooks ProAdvisor

Nancy Smyth, Sunburst Software Solutions, Inc.
QuickBooks Construction & Payroll Expert


I've been using and supporting QuickBooks products since the early 1990's. I've worked with thousands of contractors, assisting them with QuickBooks setup, Certified Payroll Reporting requirements, AIA Billing and Weighted-Average Overtime.


QuickBooks is a powerful product, but learning how to use it in your construction business can be difficult. I hope you find resources available here to be helpful.

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