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MYOB Essentials is online-only, browser-based accounting software designed for new and smaller businesses. Because it's browser-based, you can run Essentials on either Windows or Mac. 

MYOB AccountRight is fully-featured accounting software designed for small to medium sized businesses which want the flexibility to work on the desktop or in a browser. It's designed to run on Windows. 

You need an MYOB subscription to use AccountRight or Essentials. If you don't have a subscription and need help deciding which product to choose, see this website.

We know that many people who use MYOB Essentials have previously tried AccountRight. So, we've put together this 'cheat sheet' designed to help you make the transition from AccountRight to MYOB Essentials.  

Differences in the way your data is stored

Easier data access

In MYOB Essentials, your data is stored online by default. This makes your life a lot easier, because you:

  • can access your data on any computer with internet access (see here for compatible browsers)

  • don't have to install software on your desktop (as you do with AccountRight)

  • don't have to install software updates—they're installed automatically, you don't have to do a thing.

Your data is always available, up to date and securely stored online. 

Your business

In AccountRight, your data is managed in a company file; in MYOB Essentials, your data is managed in your business. In AccountRight, your company file is stored in a defined location, called a library and you can work on it from your desktop software or in a browser. In MYOB Essentials, your business is stored online by default—like a web page (but there's a whole lot more going on in the background):

Essentials data is stored online

You can sign in to MYOB Essentials at the following URL:

When you first log in, you get a handy checklist of setup tasks you need to do. You can access the equivalent of the Setup menu and Preferences window in AccountRight by clicking your business. From here you can open the equivalent of the Company Information window (your business > Business settings). There's some mandatory information that you need to enter which will be used in key functions, such as emailing and the financial year:

Say goodbye to command centres—and hello to The Dashboard

If you've previously used AccountRight, you'll notice is that MYOB Essentials doesn't have command centres. Instead, you get The Dashboard:

This is a snapshot of the current state of your business, showing money in and money out, the balances of your bank and credit card accounts and any unallocated transactions. So, with MYOB Essentials, you don't need to run reports to know at a glance how your business is performing.

Accessing records

In AccountRight, you can access all of your customers, suppliers, employees and contacts in the Cards List. In MYOB Essentials, you can create new your customers, suppliers and other contacts, and access existing ones, via the Contacts page:

...and your employees via the Employees page (Payroll menu > Employees):

Workflow differences between MYOB Essentials and AccountRight

MYOB Essentials can do most of the workflows that AccountRight can and also removes the need to do some things you have to do in AccountRight. But there are some differences in how to do them.

Create, send & track invoices
  • tracks invoices by default
  • to be able to track invoices, you need to set up AccountRight to send emails
Email forms
  • send emails from software
  • can only send emails individually
  • send emails from AccountRight (you need to set up AccountRight to send emails) or from Microsoft Outlook
  • can send emails in a batch
Pay employees
  • normal wages and salary are set up by default; to set up other earnings and deductions, you need to create Pay Items
  • a comprehensive list of Payroll Categories to cover standard wages and deductions are set up by default
Work in multiple screens
  • can open multiple browser tabs to work across different screens (note that you will need to refresh your browser for changes in another browser tab to flow through)
  • can open multiple windows (some changes automatically update other open windows, some windows need to be manually refreshed)
Close a financial year
  • when you're happy that your books are in order for another year, just click your business name and choose Business settings, then click Start a financial year. 
  • you need to close the financial year to start a new one
Updating your software
  • compliance and feature updates happen automatically–you don't have to do a thing
  • you have to install compliance and other updates
Features available in AccountRight but not yet available in MYOB Essentials
There's some features in AccountRight that are not available in MYOB Essentials:
  • Inventory tracking
  • Working with multiple currencies
  • Billing for time
  • Sales orders – coming soon
  • Professional, Miscellaneous, and Time Billing layouts.
Try our 3rd party Add-ons. You can extend the capability of your MYOB Essentials with these add-ons.
Reporting differences

If you like to share and compare business reports, you'll really like MYOB Essentials.

Consolidated financial reporting across multiple businesses

If you've got multiple MYOB businesses, you can get a combined view of their financial health by creating consolidated reports with the click of a button. You can then export these consolidated reports to Excel or PDF.

You can consolidate the following reports:

  • Balance Sheet
  • Profit and Loss
  • Cash Movement

You just need to run the report you require, click Consolidate and select the businesses you want to produce a consolidated report for.

See Business reports.

Restrictions removed

Financial year restrictions on reports have been removed. For example, you can now generate Profit and Loss comparative reports from 2012-2020. T

All reports can be produced as PDFs. At this stage, only the main business reports can be exported to Excel formats.

Easy comparison

Want to quickly compare your Profit and Loss against the same period last year? Just run the P&L for that period and select the Last Year option. You can easily see the % and $ variance.

New powerful budgeting module

Easily create any number of budgets. Create a Cash Movement or Profit and Loss budget to help track how your business is performing.

There's a lot features which speed up creating a new budget. You can import figures from another budget in MYOB or import actual figures.

Use the Breakdown feature to quickly enter budget figures and split the totals across a period. See Working with budgets.

Report packs

Use report packs to bundle up all the reports you regularly run into a single document that you can share with others.

You can customise templates, add logos, change formatting for any number of report packs.

 Getting help in MYOB Essentials 

At the top right of any page, click the question mark to open the help panel. 

You'll see info relating to the page you're on, without having to leave your software. Depending on the page, you might also see some frequently asked questions or links to more detailed help topics. 

Unlike AccountRight, you can't access product help by pressing the F1 key in MYOB Essentials. Pressing F1 in Essentials will only get you online help for the browser you are viewing Essentials in, for example, Google Chrome Help.