Learn about different Accounts Receivable (A/R) workflows in QuickBooks Desktop.

What is Accounts Receivable?

The record of money owed to your business for goods or services; that is, invoices for which your business hasn't received payment yet. Accounts Receivable is called A/R for short. (Even though the word "accounts" is plural, QuickBooks uses a single account on the chart of accounts to track all outstanding invoices.) Other terms for Accounts receivable are Notes and Collectibles.

What is QuickBooks Accounts Receivable account?

An account that QuickBooks automatically adds to your chart of accounts the first time you write an invoice. QuickBooks uses this account to track the money owed to your business. When you write an invoice or receive a payment from a customer, QuickBooks records the transaction in the register for your Accounts Receivable account.

Your Chart of Accounts lists the type of this account as "Accounts Receivable." If you need to use more than one of this type of account in your business, you can add additional "accounts receivable" accounts to the chart. When you have more than one accounts receivable account, QuickBooks lets you choose the account you want to use when you write an invoice or enter a customer payment.

It is important to record A/R transactions correctly to avoid wrong financial reports that can lead to incorrect tax payments and penalties.

Accounts Receivable workflows

There are five usual A/R workflows available in QuickBooks Desktop. To record your A/R transactions, choose one workflow that suits your business process and follow the steps in creating each transaction from your selected workflow.

Other A/R-related transactions and tasks

Although not part of your usual A/R workflows, you may also find these other Customer-related transactions useful.