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Xero announces connected accounting features to bring SMBs and advisors closer

07 Jun 2018

Small business platform Xero has today announced a wave of new innovations at its annual partner conference Xerocon Atlanta 2018 that gives businesses and their advisors a way to grow their business through connected accounting and business tools.

The new products were announced at the largest North American Xerocon to date, attended by almost 800 accountants, bookkeepers and ecosystem partners in Atlanta, Georgia.

New products and features announced at Xerocon Atlanta 2018 include:

  • Automated bill entry, a new feature powered by artificial intelligence, that extracts and automatically populates bill details in Xero, saving hours of time while improving data accuracy and cash flow reporting for small businesses
  • Faster bank reconciliation, a manual and time-consuming process, is becoming more intelligent through automated workflows, making it easier to get a real-time view of cash flow
  • Xero Projects with new time tracker, the simple, real-time financial project management tool is now available globally, providing an even more powerful way to track job costings and billable time so businesses get real-time visibility and drive profitability across projects

Ask and Relationships in Xero HQ automate and streamline client contact management for accountants and bookkeepers so they can replace admin time with higher-value services for clients

Xero vice president of product and partnerships Herman Man says, “Xero has long had the vision to rewire the global small business economy by giving small businesses and their advisors access to a powerful, global platform.

“With the features introduced at Xerocon Atlanta today, we’re delivering connected accounting so accountants and bookkeepers can help their clients ask the big questions, on cash flow, profit and revenue.”

Connected accounting comes to bills, saving small businesses time and helping advisors add value to clients

Bank rules and reconciliation already save businesses time by automatically categorising bills.

Now, Xero will capture and automatically populate key information from PDF bills received from other businesses on the platform — like their accountant or suppliers — eliminating the need for manual entry altogether and helping businesses get paid even faster.

Beta testing has already shown a 25% saving in the time it takes to enter bills in Xero, saving business owners hours of time across the month.

Code-free accounting also increases the accuracy of business data, giving owners and advisors more quality information about their financial position.

Xero announces collaboration with Citi

Xero and Citi are joining forces to open banking.

The collaboration is the latest in a number of relationships Xero has built with financial institutions around the world — including NAB in Australia, Barclays in the UK, DBS in Singapore and ASB in New Zealand — that build a financial web to give businesses greater access and opportunities to grow using their financial data.

Xero makes improvements to bank reconciliation

Available soon (first to select beta customers), Xero will now automatically approve bank reconciliation rules set up by the business or advisor for matching transactions.

With 97% of Xero bank rules already correct the first time, the intelligent automation will mean businesses and advisors can spend significantly less time on reconciliation and retain complete visibility over the process.

Xero Projects brings new features and US availability to create a better global platform for business

Xero Projects, the simple job tracking tool for any small business, has become better with new features that give business owners more control and real-time visibility into projects, and drive profitability with simple time and job cost tracking within Xero.

Xero Projects, now publicly available for the first time to businesses using Xero in the United States, seamlessly connects to the wider Xero platform so businesses can build on top of the existing rich data in the platform, including contacts, invoicing, bills and reporting, to manage their business on a single platform and drive profitability.

New updates to the Xero Projects app for iOS and Android help businesses not miss a minute of billable time again.

Employees can track project work wherever they are with stop and start job timers, and the ability to record the project they are working on, from within the app.

And business owners gain greater control over access permissions for their team, with admin, standard and limited user tiers ensuring they can easily control the level of information each staff member can access or actions they can perform.

Ask and Relationships in Xero HQ helps partners communicate with clients easily

Ask in Xero HQ has expanded to make it even easier for accountants and bookkeepers to focus more time on client work and less time chasing information. Practices that use Ask have seen 83% of all queries on average answered within one week, eliminating back-and-forth emails and the time it takes to get clear, accurate information.

Ask will soon automatically remind clients to respond to information queries, to cut-down on the time advisors need to spend individually chasing information.

Also coming soon to Xero HQ, Relationships will make it easier to help partners maintain client contacts, ensuring accurate data across their practice from within the Xero platform.

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