How to Ditch the USB Drive

USB drive

Written by Rachel Blumenshine

September 28, 2020

Do you mail or hand deliver a USB drive to provide a QuickBooks backup to your ProAdvisor or accountant? Did you know there is a way to possibly eliminate both of these steps? Hawkins Ash CPAs gives all of our clients access to a secure, online portal that provides an easy-to-use and secure method to transfer files between you and your accountant, and this includes QuickBooks files. Here’s how it works.

Set Up Your Client Portal

First, if you have not yet set up your client portal, contact your Hawkins Ash ProAdvisor and they will help you with the setup.

In QuickBooks, create a Portable Company File (click File > Create Copy)

This backup type is condensed and is the recommended file type to send your ProAdvisor. In a Portable Company File, a ProAdvisor has no limitations when reviewing the financial data.

Note: You should use a QuickBooks backup (click File, Back Up Company) to back up your company data in the case of data corruption or loss. The Portable copy does not include images, logos, templates, etc. whereas the backup does.

After you have created the file to share with your ProAdvisor, upload the file to your Hawkins Ash CPAs client portal—and you’re done!

Some advantages and limitations to consider:

Advantages to Using the Portal

  • Your ProAdvisor receives your QuickBooks file immediately.
  • Contactless; if you’re looking for more ways to decrease the spreading of germs in this current COVID-19 climate, portal usage is ideal.
  • Postage expense and delivery time is eliminated. There’s no chance of your USB drive getting lost in the mail, either.

Limitations to Using the Portal

  • Access to a reliable internet is required to upload files to your client portal.
  • The maximum individual file size the portal can send is 2GB. This is another reason we emphasize sending the condensed Portable Company File type. Even many large QuickBooks Enterprise company files can be condensed small enough as a Portable Company File to be sent through the portal. If the Portable Company File is larger than 2GB, then providing a QuickBooks backup file would still require a USB drive.

Contact your Hawkins Ash CPAs QuickBooks ProAdvisor to learn more.


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Rachel Blumenshine
I joined Hawkins Ash CPAs in 2018 at the firm’s Medford, WI, location. As an associate, I prepare tax returns and provide accounting and bookkeeping services, assisting with voucher school audits and preparing financial statements, as well as annual information returns for clients.

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