Integrate with QuickBooks Online

QuickBooks Online (QBO) in an online platform geared towards small to medium-sized businesses who are looking for real-time views into the day to day expenses of their business. Features include expense tracking, data entry, mobile compatibility, and accountant access for a fully rounded software experience.

Our two-way integration with QuickBooks Online builds and syncs a detailed journal entry into your QuickBooks Online Account. We can pull your chart of accounts directly from QBO and use your customized accounts to create a journal entry. There are also options for additional levels of granularity within the entry based on earnings types, Gusto departments, and QBO classes.

Click on the headers below to learn more.

Integration setup

  1. Click the Settings tab.
  2. Click the Integrations tab.
  3. Click Add New Integration.
  4. Next to QuickBooks Online, click Connect to QuickBooks.
  5. Enter your QuickBooks Online credentials to get connected.
  6. Click Authorize to allow QuickBooks Online and Gusto to sync.
  7. Map your chart of accounts.
  8. Let us know which payroll transactions will sync to which QBO accounts.
  9. Select if the sync will run automatically or manually.

Total wages, taxes, benefit deductions/contributions reimbursements and contractor payments will now sync to your QuickBooks Online account each time you run payroll.

Sync your payroll

  1. Navigate to the Reports tab.
  2. Navigate to the Payroll History tab.
  3. Click on the payroll you would like to sync.
  4. Click Sync at the top of the payroll detail page.
    • Note: If you have Autosync enabled the data will automatically push over when you process payroll.
    • A timestamp will populate confirming the data was pushed over to QBO.
  5. Sign in to your QBO account.

The Journal Entry will post to your bank register for review and reconciliation. 

If you need to resync a payroll, you can learn more about how to do so here.

Account mappings

When setting up your mappings you will be prompted to add:

  • Bank Account
  • Earnings Types (Regular, Bonus, Commission etc.)
  • Employer Taxes
  • Reimbursements
  • Benefit Expenses
  • Benefit Liabilities
  • Deduction/Garnishment Liabilities
  • Owner's Draw

In order to properly sync over the payroll details through our integration, each of these payroll items will need to be linked to an account that is pulled directly from the Chart of Accounts in QBO.

Once all payroll items are matched with the corresponding accounts, the building blocks are in place for the Journal Entry that Gusto will sync over into your accounting software. 

The more accounts you choose when setting up your integration, the more detail there will be in the line entries on your Journal Entry. More detail in the entry results in more detailed reports in your accounting software (profit and loss report, expense reports, outstanding liability reports etc.).

If you don’t see an account you’d like to use, hop into your QBO chart of accounts and create an account. Refresh your page and it will be available in Gusto.

Department mappings
Department mappings are another way to add additional granularity. With department mappings you can use different accounts for the different payroll items within a department.  This means you can have the earnings of one department go to one account and the earnings of a second department go to a different account.  This will expand the entry we send over into the accounting software.
As an example, I have two departments: Design and Marketing.  Before I enabled department mappings, all regular wages earned went to one "salaries and wages" expense account.  After enabling department mappings, I can use two expense accounts: a "Sales Wages" expense account and a "Marketing Wages" expense account.  When running reports in my accounting software I will have this additional breakdown.
When setting up your mappings, you will simply align a department with a Class. As a result the same accounts in your default department mappings will now be tagged with Classes. The payroll entry will then tie to your dimensional reporting needs in your accounting software. You can even have a combination of different expense accounts with different Classes.
Benefits and deductions
Since Gusto does not take any money for benefits or deductions, we include a mapping for benefit/deduction liabilities. This will create line items within the journal entry and accrue an amount owed for the benefit/deduction. When the benefit/deduction is then paid to the correct party, in QBO you can offset your liability and zero out the amount owed.  



Q: Is there a way to retroactively sync all payrolls once I enable auto-sync?

A: Auto-sync will only work for the payrolls moving forward from the time it is set up. Any payrolls run before auto-sync was enabled will need to be manually synced.

Q: What does the timestamp indicate?

A: The exact time Gusto successfully synced a payroll into the accounting software.

Q: Can I re-sync an entry that has already been reconciled?

A: You will need to un-reconcile an entry before you can re-sync it. This includes un-matching any bank transactions with the Journal Entries. QuickBooks Online considers matching as partial reconciliation.


Q: If I update my mappings, can I re-sync a payroll to update the journal entry?

A: Yes

Q: Do you book the wage expense as gross wages or net wages?

A: Gross wages, meaning the wage expense will include employee pay, employee taxes, and employee deductions. Employer taxes and employer contributions will have their own expense line item.

Q: Do you break out individual taxes?

A: We do not break out individual taxes. By transitioning to a third party payroll provider you will no longer have tax payments coming over to your balance sheet as a liability.

Q: How do I handle checks?

A: We recommend printing checks from your Gusto account or handwriting them. You can then reconcile the journal entry from Gusto when the checks are cashed by your employees. We do incorporate the amount of each check in our Journal entry.


Q: What if I won't be using one of the payroll items listed?

A: The item will still need to be mapped to an account. If the payroll item isn't applicable, nothing will come over related to the account that is selected within your entry. Only payroll items that apply to a processed payroll will populate within the synced entry.

Q: Do you support QBO classes?

A: Yes


Thanks so much for your feedback!

Did this article solve your problem?