Xero has been around for quite some time (since 2006) and year after year gains more and more of the market share; for many good reasons. Over a million subscribers have chosen Xero over their competitors and it is clearly a solution which suits so many small business users.
Here are just some of the many reasons to select Xero for your small business bookkeeping needs here in Australia.
1. Xero saves time in your bookkeeping
There is no doubt that Xero is a time-saver for small business owners. Remember, time is money and whether it is your own time or that of your bookkeeper – you’ll be ahead with Xero. With the automatic bank feeds and, of course, Xero’s ability to essentially learn, the time it takes to do things lessens and lessens. Naturally, of course, it only works when its setup correctly, you are coding accurately and you complete all tasks properly. Any bookkeeping done poorly will not save you time and invariably will cost you money. Please seriously reconsider the free and cheap accounting programs – they are free or cheap for a very good reason.
2. Xero gets you paid quicker
If you’re a mobile business out and about, Xero can get invoices out to your customers on the spot. Couple this functionality with a mobile Eftpos service and you’re in business to invoice and receipt right there on the spot. One of the biggest pains of being in business is debt collecting and getting paid, so the sooner you can invoice (and take payment) the better your business cash-flow will be. Remember, with multiple logins even your team can do the invoicing for you. Don’t worry, if you don’t want them to have access to confidential data; easy, just password out those aspects that are confidential.
3. Access Xero in the cloud from anywhere
With cloud access, you can be anywhere in the world (which has internet access) to do your bookkeeping. As an experienced bookkeeper, I’ve heard a few people over the years express concern about their data being in the cloud. Xero has invested (and continues to invest) a great deal of money to protect your data. In fact, it is going to be far more secure than your own computer in your home or office. It’s even more secure than some banks that regularly have issues. This is their business and they know that with over a million users, they must give you the very best in online security.
4. Real-time financial reporting at your fingertips
Xero users love having their data at their fingertips. Gone are the days you waited for the bank statement to arrive in the post, then waited for someone to find time to do data entry and then often months after the fact; you’re looking at figures which are incredibly out of date. With daily bank feeds you know the very next day where you sit and can access some very powerful information from your dashboard. You know what’s in the bank, who has paid (or not) and many other financial indicators – ensuring you’re not ‘flying blindly’.
5. No compatibility issues with your computer
Gone are the days of worrying about compatibility of your accounting software to your hardware or operating system. Windows 7 will cease to be supported by Microsoft come this January 2020. For some old accounting software users, that will mean they are in a pickle. For security’s sake, they will have to upgrade their Windows version – which may mean their current software is no longer compatible. With Xero, you never have this issue. It doesn’t matter if you’re a PC user, or Mac lover or accessing from a tablet, laptop or computer – Xero is easily accessible.
6. File confusion is lost forever
One of the constant concerns and pains of desktop version of accounting software files was the confusion around which file was most current. Clients and employees would constantly get confused which file was current. Over decades of bookkeeping, I’ve seen weeks of payroll entered into an old file, or one team member working in one file, and another in a separate file; only to discover data all over the place and massive gaps. Clients have lost data files and rung me in an absolute panic. With Xero, it’s a case of logging into your file – no confusion, no lost data and no duplication.
7. Constant and regular updates
As part of your Xero subscription, you gain access automatically to all the updates and improvements in your accounting software. If new tax scales are released, you have them automatically. If a new function or feature is released, you can access it straight away, without the requirement to pay anything extra or additional. Then tax, employment or super rules change, then Xero will always meet those needs. One perfect example is that Single Touch Payroll (STP) has now been made law for small businesses as well. So from 1.7.19, all businesses (large, small or even micro) need to be using STP. Xero and your trusted bookkeeping professional (like yours truly) can help you get set up.
8. Xero is easy on the wallet
With Xero, you don’t have any large outlays. Particularly for a small business starting off, the last thing you need is a swag of large bills in the beginning. With a range of options, you also only need the package that fills your needs. If you don’t have staff, then you don’t need payroll. If you’re not GST registered, then there is a non–GST option for you. By having monthly subscriptions, you can have regular bite-size costs which are evenly spread out over the year.
9. Help is everywhere
With Xero being so popular it’s not hard to find Xero help, whether that’s an employee, bookkeeper or contract bookkeeper. Most people who have worked in accounts know Xero. However, I should say that data entry is not just about knowing how to push a button. Your bookkeeper needs to have a good understanding of both accounting principles and BAS regulations – which is why sometimes it’s not suitable to have your receptionist or office junior doing your bookkeeping. Coding a transaction correctly is absolutely critical to getting the correct information out of your file, as well as accurate BAS and tax reporting. The ATO initially branded GST system as the “simplified tax system” but there is nothing simple about it. The ATO also doesn’t tolerate “it was an honest mistake” so be sure you have a person doing your bookwork who knows what they are doing. Be sure that your contract bookkeeper is a registered BAS agent, as otherwise, they are technically not legally able to code transactions as that is deemed GST advice. By using a registered BAS agent you know you are covered.
10. Easy collaboration
Whether it’s your bookkeeper accessing your file, or your accountant, with Xero it’s all easy. You can select who has access (and remove that access at any time). You can track who has done work or made changes and, of course, because your bookkeeper or accountant or advisor can access data from anywhere, you don’t need to worry about ‘sending the file’ to them or paying for their time to sit in a car to come to your business. As I said before, time is money, so easy online access means far less wasted time.
11. No lost data
Because Xero data is all automatically backed up for you on a secure site, you don’t have to worry or stress about backups. I know that unless backups are automated they just don’t happen with the regularity they should. Your file is backed up by Xero and is safe.
12. Heaps of great add-ons
With Xero’s popularity, many third party software and app companies have built their applications around Xero import/export options. There are literally hundreds of great add-on solutions covering every aspect of business including operations, human resource management plus, of course, ReceiptBank which works really well with Xero.
As you can see, heaps of great reasons to be on Xero and many good reasons to use a registered BAS agent for your bookkeeping. If you need help with setup, training or assistance on a regular basis, just give me a call on 0438 382 489 – love to help you.