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Untitled Document According to Intuit research, 45 percent of small business retailers manually enter sales data into their QuickBooks accounting software on a daily basis. With many such data entry issues being relatively small in scope, companies can't justify investing in expensive middleware to integrate systems to solve small problems. The result is an error-prone process with increasing costs to maintain the same records in two or more systems.

This article considers the example of integrating QuickBooks with salesforce.com. But, there is more to improved QuickBooks and Salesforce integration than just saving time and effort; quality data integration makes for better business processes which helps accelerate sales in various lines of business. On the one hand, you have the sales department that uses Salesforce, which is always updated with customers’ credit and invoice information obtained from the back office’s QuickBooks. On the other hand, your accounting department is guaranteed to keep abreast of the current sales by having their QuickBooks synchronized with Salesforce.

This is what caused Intuit to develop a native Web connector for integrating QuickBooks with third-party Web applications such as Salesforce CRM. But even with the Web connector, building a bridge between Salesforce and QuickBooks still remains difficult for the smaller and mid-size enterprise that would typically use these applications to manage their business processes.

Common Challenges

When trying to synchronize applications such as QuickBooks and Salesforce, users typically face five common challenges.

1. Data mapping

One of the most evident problems with integrating QuickBooks and Salesforce is the mismatching between data fields and types. The names and locations of data fields are often different in the two applications. Moreover, there can be mismatching even in the number of the fields. For instance, there is a total of five Address fields in QuickBooks while Salesforce allows only one, Billing Street. That is why even manual mapping does not relieve you of the problem. And custom coding typically proves to be overly resource and time consuming.

Figure 1. Compare address fields in Salesforce CRM and QuickBooks


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