Account Groups vs Account Categories

Although we’re primarily talking about Account Groups in this series we thought it might be good to touch on Account Categories as well.  You may have seen Account Categories around and wondered what they are and what the difference is between them and Account Groups.  The simple answer is that Account Categories are assigned at implementation based on which Quickstart template is chosen.

Account Categories are basically a tag on a GL Account which puts that account into one of Intacct’s standard, built in Account Groups.  If you want to see what Account Category a GL Account is in simply go to General Ledger > Accounts and locate the account you want to check, then click ‘View’.

Simplify Financial Reporting Using Account Categories - View GL Account

When the Account details load the Account Category will be clearly listed there for you.

Simplify Financial Reporting Using Account Categories - Account Setup

The standard, built in account groups that these categories belong to are used in the pre-configured reports that get setup when you installed your Quickstart template.  Some people may choose to not use the pre-defined categories and that’s ok to do but it does mean more setup.  Without the Quickstart templates installed you will need to make your own account groups manually and build your own financial reports to use your groups.  Alternately you can chose to install the Quickstart templates and Account Categories but later amend the Quickstart Financial reports installed by default to use your custom account groups.  Please note that if you chose to not use the Quickstart Financials you will not have Account Categories.  Also note that Account Categories are set by the system and the users are unable to add, edit or delete them.

It is possible to change the Account Category assigned to your GL Accounts if you decide they need to move.  This is be done by locating the account in question on the GL Accounts list screen and clicking the ‘Edit’ button to the left of the row.

Simplify Financial Reporting Using Account Categories - Edit GL Account

Once you’re into the GL Account setup page you can select a different Category from the dropdown box.  Save the record and voila!  Your GL Account will now show in the newly selected group when displayed on the standard financial reports.

Simplify Financial Reporting Using Account Categories - View Lookup