Moving from QuickBooks Desktop to Business Central

With QuickBooks Desktop having reached end of life in May 2023, is it time to make the move to Business Central? Brendan Geraghty, Business Applications Practice Director, discusses some key points to consider when determining the right ERP solution for your organisation.

The author of this page: Brendan Geraghty
Brendan Geraghty, Practice Director - D365 for Financial Operations Jun 26, 2023

Quickbooks is a financial management and accounting software developed by Intuit that is targeted towards smaller and medium-sized businesses to help users efficiently manage invoices, payments, payroll and finances overall. A popular choice as a first-finance management system for SMBs, Quickbooks is known as a relatively easy-to-use software for many businesses.

As of the 31st of May 2023, Quickbooks Desktop 2020 has been discontinued. This includes all 2020 versions of Quickbooks. This means that users no longer have access to Quickbooks Desktop Payroll, Desktop Payments, Online Banking, Online Backup or live technical support should issues arise. The solution will also no longer be updated with the latest security patches causing it to become more vulnerable to cyber threats.

This discontinuation of the solution has forced users who may have been content with the system to consider other options. While for some, simply moving to Quickbooks Online seems like the obvious next move, it might be time for businesses to consider whether this option is right for the business's long-term business objectives. Businesses can take this as an opportunity to assess whether there may be alternative solutions that might better serve them.

Businesses should look at things like growth objectives, is your business growing? Will you require a scalable solution to support your growth objectives? Is your business expanding globally – do you need a financial management system that will cater to different jurisdictions? Does your organisation currently have financial data stored in multiple systems with no central system to consolidate and report on financial data?

If these are questions that your organisation is currently considering, then it may be time to migrate to a different financial management system that can help future-proof your business. One business solution that can act as a next step for organisations migrating from Quickbooks, is Business Central, recently rated as the best overall ERP system for 2023 by Forbes. Below we explore some of the key differences between Business Central and Quickbooks.

Business Purpose

While both solutions have similar functionality, Quickbooks' primary function is as an accounting software that helps businesses manage and track finances. Business Central is part of the Microsoft Dynamics 365 solution family meaning users have several different modules from customer relationship management to marketing and much more. This solution can cater to a much wider range of business needs.

Usability & Integrations

Quickbooks boasts a very minimalistic yet intuitive user interface however, Business Central benefits from a familiar Microsoft interface that many users find to be very user-friendly. Further, Business Central natively integrates with other Microsoft applications which can easily increase the capability of the solution. Quickbooks comes with an app market that has several third-party applications that can enhance the solution.

Reporting & Invoicing

Both solutions allow users to generate invoices and share them with vendors or clients through multiple channels. Quickbooks provides several pre-built invoice templates that are customisable. In terms of reporting, there are several pre-set reports and custom report creation options for both solutions. However, Business Central has a native integration with Power BI which allows for data visualisation and deeper real-time reporting and analytical capabilities. Both solutions record document trails but Business Central can audit financial postings.

Multi-Currency Functionality

In terms of catering to muti-currency functionality, Quickbooks offers limited capabilities in this space. However, Business Central offers a full range of muti-currency transaction functionality. Business Central also provides multi-lingual functionality support for over 30 languages.


In terms of pricing, both Quickbooks and Business Central offer different subscription-based plans for users to choose from depending on their specific business needs.

Both solutions offer powerful functionality for organisations. Although, if your organisation would like to benefit from increased scalability and functionality, particularly if you are already in the Microsoft ecosystem, then Business Central may be a better choice for your business.

If you would like to learn more about migrating to Business Central, check out our case study with Cafico International, who migrated to Business Central to reduce risk and support future growth.

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