Unit of measure in QuickBooks helps you in displaying the quantities, price rates, and costs for a particular item. You can assign a unit of measure in QuickBooks by two ways:

  • Single unit of measures
  • Multiple units of measures

Use Single And Multiple Units Of Measure For items In QuickBooks Desktop

Following QuickBooks products and editions that support single and multiple units of measure per item:

  • QuickBooks Accountant
  • QuickBooks Premier Contractor
  • QuickBooks Premier Manufacturing & Wholesale
  • QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions
  • QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions: Contractor
  • QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions: Manufacturing & Wholesale
  • QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions: Nonprofit
  • QuickBooks Enterprise Solutions: Professional Services

A single unit of measure helps you in assigning only a single unit of measure for each item whereas multiple units of measure allow you to purchase items in one unit and then distribute or sell. It means that you have to buy and sell an item by using the same units per measure. The Single unit of measure can be used in the following products:

  • QuickBooks Premier
  • QuickBooks Premier Nonprofit
  • QuickBooks Premier Professional Services

Definition Of Terms

Base Unit

Usually, the base unit is the smallest unit of measure that is used for an item while purchasing, tracking in or out of inventory, and selling. The based units in QuickBooks are generally used to know the number of inventories, generate most inventory reports, performs some calculations related to quantity. The cost, sales price, and quantity you provide while creating an inventory item are all for the base unit only.

Related Unit

The related unit can be described by the number of base units that are included in it. For example, if inch is the base unit then the related unit can be foot which contains 12 inches. Another related unit can be Yard that contains 36 inches.

Related units allow you to display quantities for the same item in multiple measurements in different places. For example, you’ve purchased a cable in spool, you count it by foot in inventory and sell it by the yard. When you create a unit of measure set and keeps foot as a base unit and spool and yard as your related unit then you can enter a number of spools the purchase order, display it in feet on inventory and in invoice, you enter a quantity in yards.

Unit Of Measure Set

You can use the unit of measures only if you have selected Multiple U/M per item as the unit of measure mode. A unit of measure set includes the base unit and any number of related units. You can specify the measure that shows up by default while adding an item in a purchase form, sales form and a shipping pick list. You also get an option to provide a name to this ser like Length by the foot. After you create a unit of measure set and assign an item, you can easily convert to other units of measure under the set only if the item is included to a transaction.

Use Unit Of Measure

Turn On U/M

  • Go to Edit > Preferences > Items & Inventory
  • Navigate to the Company Preferences
  • Click on Enable from the Unit of Measure section.

Note: If the Enable option is not there then it means that the unit of measure is already turned on.

  • Select the appropriate unit of measure mode for your business.
Single U/M Per Item Multiple U/M Per Item
You should select this mode only if you are buying, stocking and selling every item using the same measure unit. For example, you need to choose Single U/M Per Item if you are purchasing, tracking and selling an item by the foot.

Important: If you have multiple items in multiple unit of measure then we recommend you to select Multiple U/M Per Item.

You should choose this mode if you are buying, tracking and selling all the items in multiple unit of measure. For example, you need to choose Multiple U/M Per Item if you’ve purchased an inventory item in gallon and sell it in ounce, or the item that you’ve purchased and item from a vendor 24 to a box but you are selling every item separately.

 

 

  • (Optional) If you don’t want a unit of measure to get defined now and you also want it to get assigned in the current item then you need to mark Begin defining units of measure.

Note: You will only have this checkbox available if you go to the New Item or Edit Item window while selecting the Enable option. If you started in the Preferences window then you are allowed to assign a unit of measure while creating or modifying an item or while adding an item to a transaction.

  • If the Begin defining units of measure is already checked then you just need to finish the wizard and at last click on
  • Click on OK.

Add A Unit Of Measure Set

  • From the main menu, go to Lists > U/M Set List

Note: Unit of measure sets can only be used if the Multiple U/M Per Item mode is set. If the U/M Set list is not there in the List menu then it might be possible the unit of measure is either set to Single U/M Per Item or it is disabled.

  • Click on New from the U/M Set drop-down list.
  • Finish the Unit of Measure wizard and if you require any kind of help then you can select Help.

Important: You can’t delete a Unit of measure once you add one.

Change A Unit Of Measure Definition Set

QuickBooks has two unit of measure mode-

  • Single unit of measures
  • Multiple units of measures

The process of changing a unit of measure basically depends on the mode which is currently selected. In order to see the selected mode, you need to follow the below mentioned step:

  • From the main menu, go to Edit > select Preferences.
  • Click on Items & Inventory
  • Navigate to the Company Preferences
  • Review the Unit of Measure

If you see the Enable option but not the Single U/M Per Item or Multiple U/M Per Item then it means that the measure is currently disabled. Click on Enable to turn the unit of measure on and then select a unit of measure mode.

The things that you should know prior to modifying an item’s unit of measure set:

Sometimes while modifying an item’s of measure set, you should only shift to another set with same base unit. The base unit of measure of a service, non-inventory part or group item can be modified without affecting the any information stored in QuickBooks. However, when you change base unit of an inventory part or inventory assembly, the quantity on hand and cost information for that particular item may get affected and it can become inaccurate.

If you want to prevent yourself from confusion and possible inaccuracies and if you want to move to a unit of measure set that have a different base unit then we advice you to create a new item containing quantity on hand and cost that are accurate for the newly created base unit and then inactive the previous item.

Note: If you change to a unit of measure set with different units, all old units will appear in brackets (such as [ft]) in the line items of all previously saved transactions to show that those units of measure are obsolete.

Change A Unit Of Measure Assignment In Single U/M Per Item Mode

When you’ve selected Single U/M Per Item as the unit of measure mode then you are permitted to assign only a single measure for each item and that unit can be for that particular item anywhere in QuickBooks. For example, If the inventory item is assigned as Rope but you assign it as a Foot then you should purchase, track, and sell by Foot only.

  • Go to List > Item List.
  • Double-tap on the item you want to edit.
  • Click on Edit from the Unit of Measure section.
  • You can do any of the following:
    • Modify the unit of measure name and abbreviation. But If other items are assigned for this unit of measure then those items can also get affected when you change the name or abbreviation of the unit.
    • Inactive the unit of measure to hide it. Doing this will hide it in the list of units and it can be used to assign to an item. However, If you inactive the unit of measure, it can still be used for the current item and any other items which is currently assigned to another items. Disabling it also won’t affect the saved transactions. Just mark the U/M Set is inactive box and then click on
    • Show the unit of measure again and to do so, you need to enable it again. Doing this will display it again on the list of units that can be assigned to other items. Unmark U/M Set is inactive and then click on OK.
    • Click on OK.

Change A Unit Of Measure Assignment In Multiple U/M Per Item Mode

  • From the Lists menu, click on Item List.
  • Double-tap on the item that you need to edit.
  • Click on the U/M Set drop-down arrow from the Unit of Measure section and
  • Select one of the following:
    • Click on an already created unit of measure set.
    • Add a new unit of measure set.
  • Click on OK.

Change The Base Unit Name Or Abbreviation

Important: You are advised to rename only the base unit or provide it a new abbreviation to make sure that there is no spelling error or clarify the current base using. You must not change the base unit to a different unit of measure because in such cases you need to convert the quantities and rates as well. Such modifications asks to redefine all the related units in the set and you would have to adjust the inventory quantities and rates manually in the saved transaction. This saved transaction also includes items that have current base unit. If you want to use a new base unit then you need to create a new unit of measure set along with a different base unit and then assign the newly created set to the required items.

  • Provide a new name or abbreviation for set.
  • Click on OK.

Note: If the time-based unit of measure is being modified for a service item that was used in QuickBooks time tracking function then you need to be aware that if you assign any base unit besides hours can make the rate calculations inaccurate. The time always gets tracked according to the hours in weekly time sheets and times single activities. You can add additional lines if you want to.

Add, Change Or Delete A Related Unit Of Measure

Add a related unit by following the below mentioned steps:

  • From the Related Units table, select an empty line.
  • Provide a name and abbreviation to the related unit.
  • Enter the amount base units that the new related unit contains.
  • Click on OK.

Change a related unit following the below mentioned steps:

  • Click anywhere in Related Units table to change anything in the related unit.
  • Type in a different name, abbreviation, or number of base units included in this related unit.
  • Click on OK.

Delete a related unit following the below mentioned steps:

  • Under the Related Units table, click on the line in related unit that you want to delete.
  • Press Ctrl + Del to delete a related unit.
  • Click on OK.

Note: All the deleted related unit’s abbreviation for all the saved transactions will occurs in brackets.

Change The Default Unit Of Measure For Purchases, Sales Or Shipping Units

The units of measure chosen by for Purchases and Sales are the default values and it will be shown by default whenever you insert the current item to a purchase form or sales form. These defaults units can be changed while filling out the form. The select unit of measure for Shipping will always be displayed on pick lists, irrespective of the unit shown on the purchase order. The person who is printing a pick list doesn’t have the authority to change this unit of measure.

  • Click on the default unit of measure for the purchase forms from the Purchases drop-down list.
  • Click on the default unit of measure for sales forms from the Sales drop-down.
  • (Optional) select a default unit of measure for pick lists from the Shipping drop-down,
  • Click on OK

The selected units of measure for purchases and sales will be displayed by default whenever you add a current item to a purchase form or sales form. These defaults units can be changed while filling the form. The unit of measure that you’ve selected for shipping will be displayed on the pick lists irrespective of the unit which is shown in the purchase order.

Print The Unit Of Measure Set List

  • Go to the Lists > U/M Set List.

Note: Unit of measure sets can be used only if the Multiple U/M Per Item mode as unit of measure. If the U/M Set List option is not there on the Lists menu, then it is possible that the unit of measure is either set to Single U/M Per Item mode or it is Disabled.

  • Click on Print List from the U/M Set drop-down list
  • (Optional) Modify the print settings if required.
  • Click on Print.

Follow The Steps Carefully or Contact Or ProAdvisors

Reach Us For Support

Hopefully, this article was beneficial for you and now you are able to use single and multiple units of measure for items easily. However, in case if you are not able to use this feature of QuickBooks then you need to contact the QuickBooks Technical Support Number +1888-396-0208 to avail the technical support services from the certified ProAdvisors of QuickBooks.

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Use Single And Multiple Units Of Measure For items In QuickBooks Desktop

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