Manage your QuickBooks Time Integration

Understand where data resides and how it moves between Karbon, QuickBooks Time and QuickBooks to best setup & maintain your integration.

Erin Jamison avatar
Written by Erin Jamison
Updated over a week ago

When setting up an integration between Karbon and QuickBooks Time, it is important to understand what data resides where and how the data moves from one system to the next. Click on the headlines below to find out how best to manage and maintain your integration.


Data flow between Karbon and QuickBooks Time

Each application is the source of truth for a particular set of data. As such, the sources of truth are:

  • Karbon: Work

  • QuickBooks Time: Time

  • (If you use) QuickBooks: Financials

To ensure the three systems work together, all three systems must have the same exact customer list (e.g. contact name) between the three of them initially (if you don't want duplicates created).

We recommend that you integrate QuickBooks Time to QuickBooks first, and then Karbon to QuickBooks Time second. Once integrated, Karbon can create contacts and work in QuickBooks Time, and QuickBooks Time can create contacts and work in QuickBooks (as customer:jobs in the Customer list).

For Karbon, both time and customer data move directly to QuickBooks Time. If one or either doesn't exist, Karbon will create the entry within QuickBooks Time (for both Organizations and People).

Note: if using Client Groups in Karbon, it is possible for QuickBooks Time to record time against the Client Group or against work items assigned to the Client Group. However, QuickBooks Time is not able to display or report on Contacts within a Client Group.

For QuickBooks Time, it tracks and maintains all time recorded. When Karbon needs to know what time has been tracked, it requests and reads the time data for the contact and/or work and presents it within Karbon. Karbon will actively read the data from QuickBooks Time when navigating to the Time & Budget tab for a contact or work. If a time entry is entered, updated or deleted in QuickBooks Time, it can take a couple of minutes before it appears in Karbon. You can always push the latest updates by clicking Sync from Settings > Connected Apps > QuickBooks Time.

For QuickBooks, it receives time information from QuickBooks Time directly. For time to flow, QuickBooks must be integrated to QuickBooks Time and have a direct match for the customer and/or customer:job. If a match isn't made, QuickBooks Time will create a new customer:job as needed to enable the logging of time in QuickBooks.

What's mapped in QuickBooks Time?

See how everything is mapped to QuickBooks Time by exporting synced items.

If you are unsure of what is mapped for Contacts, Work or Users to QuickBooks Time, or if something isn't flowing between the systems as you expect, navigate to Settings > Connected Apps > QuickBooks Time and click on Export Synced Items. From the export, you can see how entities in Karbon have been mapped to jobcodes in QuickBooks Time.

Setting up custom fields in QuickBooks Time

In order to use QuickBooks Time and Time & Budget in-conjunction, you will need to install custom fields within QuickBooks Time to sync with the Roles and Task Types within Karbon.

To install in QuickBooks Time, go to Set Up > Add-ons OR Feature Add-ons > Manage Add-ons. Under Get More, find Custom Fields and click Install.

Once you've installed you can begin adding time in Karbon that will carry over to QuickBooks Time.

Any additional custom fields added in QuickBooks Time will appear in Karbon's Time Entry modal as additional drop-down menus.

Advanced Tracking Categories

If you wish to setup Advanced Tracking in QuickBooks Time, you will need to first install it. To install it in QuickBooks Time, go to SET UP > Add-ons OR Feature Add-ons > Manage Add-ons. Under Get More, find Advanced Tracking and click Install.

To ensure that your additional tracking categories in QuickBooks Time carry over to Karbon, re-sync your connection after you have added any additional custom fields in QuickBooks Time.

Navigate to Settings > Connected Apps > QuickBooks Time and click 'Save and Sync'.

Once the sync completes, the additional custom fields created will be added in Karbon.

Syncing of Contacts between Karbon and QuickBooks Time

In order to track time on clients, you have to make sure to assign the clients to a contact type that is synced with QuickBooks Time.

For the QuickBooks Time integration to create contacts and assign time, the client in question must be assigned to a contact type that has been selected to sync in the QuickBooks Time Connected Apps settings. In addition, only clients that are Public (not Private or Hidden within a client's privacy settings) are able to have time entries tracked and updated between Karbon and QuickBooks Time.

If you can't see the Time & Budget tab on a contact or work, it will most likely be because the contact hasn't been sent to QuickBooks Time. This is usually caused by the contact type not being one set to link to QuickBooks Time. If you want to change this, you can update your QuickBooks Time integration settings.

Changing the name of a contact or work item

Changing names in QuickBooks Time will not be reflected in Karbon but they will still be linked together. If you update a name in QuickBooks Time, it does not flow back into Karbon. However, they will remain in sync. If you want to keep the names consistent, you should also update the name in Karbon.

Reassigning a work item to another contact

​If you reassign a work item to another contact in Karbon, the QuickBooks Time code will remain linked.

A change of contact will not break the connection between QuickBooks Time and Karbon, but the work item within QuickBooks Time will not be found under the new contact (it will still be displayed as connected to the old contact). Therefore, you will need to move the work to the new client inside QuickBooks Time as well. If you don't do this, QuickBooks Time will continue to report the work item under the old client.

Deleting a code from QuickBooks Time

If you have tracked time against a work item or contact in Karbon but it is not showing in QuickBooks Time, it is likely that the work item or contact is no longer connected and/or the code in QuickBooks Time has been deleted.

If you delete a code in QuickBooks Time, Karbon will not be notified straight away, which may affect time tracking from a work item or contact in Karbon. In this case, we suggest following these steps:

  1. Delete any unwanted codes in QuickBooks Time

  2. 'Save & Sync' the connection between QuickBooks Time and Karbon from Settings > Connected Apps > QuickBooks Time. This will re-sync the connection between the two apps and prompt Karbon to re-check for all QuickBooks Time codes

  3. From then on, if anyone attempts to track time against a work item or contact that is no longer linked to QuickBooks Time, the following message will appear

4. A new code can then be created, which will re-link the item to QuickBooks Time and allow time to be tracked

Unique names for all entities in Karbon

The integration with Karbon and QuickBooks Time requires an exact name match to establish the integration. Once established the name can be renamed in either system and still be linked.

However, while Karbon can handle the same name for a Client Group, Organization, and Person, the integration with QuickBooks Time cannot support that. If you find Karbon asking you to re-generate the code linking the two systems together in the Time & Budget tab for a Client or Work item, it might be an indicator that you have the same name used for two distinctly different entities (e.g. Client Group and Organization).

To resolve, rename one of the entities (e.g. Client Group, Organization or Person) and re-generate the code in the Time & Budget tab linking the contacts between the two systems. If that doesn't resolve it, go to Settings > Connected Apps > QuickBooks Time > Manage and click Save and Sync to force the sync to occur again. If the problem still persists, please contact support via Help and Feedback within Karbon.

Time Tracking

Tracking time against a contact

QuickBooks Time does not allow you to record time against the top level (contacts), however, if you record time in Karbon against a contact, it will flow into QuickBooks Time and be available in your reporting in QuickBooks Time.

Tracking time against a work item

Time recorded on work items does not track up to the contact level. You record time on the contact or work item, and they are separate totals. You can use the reporting in QuickBooks Time to get a total across both contact and work time entered.

Tracking time against a client group

A Client Group is sent to QuickBooks Time as its own code. There is no hierarchy with members, so time recorded against a Client Group will be recorded in QuickBooks Time to that code.

Thus, if you want to track time and report time for the individual members of the Client Group, you need to do that at the individual member level and not within the Client Group. Unfortunately, the time recorded by those members will not be aggregated and displayed at the group level when reviewing within Karbon.

Tracking billable vs. non-billable time

Follow these quick 3 steps to setup billable vs. non-billable time tracking using the QuickBooks Time integration with Karbon:

  1. Setup the QuickBooks Time integration with Karbon. If you don't have a QuickBooks Time account, you can easily get one when setting up the connection

  2. Once setup, enable Advanced Tracking within QuickBooks Time.

  3. Create a field in QuickBooks Time to track billable vs. non-billable time. Once created, it will appear and be available both in QuickBooks Time and in Karbon. As you follow the QuickBooks Time directions, you will choose a field type of List, put the title as 'Billable' and the available options as 'Yes' and 'No'

If you or a colleague can't track time

If a problem arises where only one (or several specific users) in Karbon cannot track time (using the QuickBooks Time integration) while others can, the issue typically is the result of archiving a user within QuickBooks Time.

To resolve, please re-create that user in QuickBooks Time using their prior credentials (name and email) and go to: Settings > Connected Apps > QuickBooks Time. Click Save and Sync.

Note: In order to enter time in Karbon, you need to have a QuickBooks Time user account, which is matched based on email address. To allow your colleague to enter time too, add them to your QuickBooks Time account.

If the problem persists, please contact Support directly from Help & Feedback within Karbon or emailing support at

Comparing actual vs. budgeted time

Using Karbon and QuickBooks Time together, you can track budgeted time and actual time spent for a given work item.

To set your budgets and budgeted time for a given work item, set the totals on the Time & Budget tab for the work. You can also set budgets on work templates as well. To track actual time spent, set up and use the QuickBooks Time integration with Karbon.

Once both are tracked, you can in a particular work item (on the Time & Budget tab) review the actual time spent (tracked in QuickBooks Time) with the budgeted time allotted.

Hide work (jobs) in QuickBooks Time

Are your lists in QuickBooks Time too long to efficiently work through? Are they full of completed work items that you are no longer tracking time against? Consider hiding (unassigning) jobs directly in QuickBooks Time to reduce the clutter.

Follow these 4 easy steps to unassign/assign jobs in QuickBooks Time:

  1. Login to QuickBooks Time

  2. Go to Jobs in the MANAGE section

  3. Click job edit

  4. Assign or unassign:

To assign, click Assign to all employees, or click Edit to select employees.
Then click the back arrow and Save.

To unassign, uncheck Assign to all employees, or click Edit & deselect all the boxes. Then click the back arrow and Save.

The QuickBooks Time team can help you directly assign or unassign in bulk from their end! Please contact their team using your medium of choice and request for them to turn on or off all the preferred customers at once.

Updating your QuickBooks Time Integration settings

If you are an Admin for Quickbooks Time and if you have Admin rights for Karbon, click on 'Settings' from the main menu and choose 'Connected apps'. If you have already connected to QuickBooks Time, you'll then be able to select this to adjust your settings.

You can update whether you want to track time against each contact, or both contacts and work items, as well as the contact types you'd like to be able to track time against.

Once you're done updating, click 'Save & Sync'.

Disconnecting and reconnecting your QuickBooks Time account

You can disconnect and / or reconnect your QuickBooks Time account with no issue.

If you disconnect your QuickBooks Time integration, all the historical time information will remain and the time approval option will be available in Karbon; however, existing time entries can’t be edited or deleted. This is not the case for time entries created after disconnecting.

If you decide to reconnect QuickBooks Time with the same QuickBooks Time account at a later time, there should be no issue. If you need to reconnect to a different QuickBooks Time account, please contact our support team.

Note: if you have been manually entering time in both systems (while disconnected), when you reconnect, the time-entries will be duplicated.

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