Recently I came across Xero accounting cloud based software. I had heard of it through my subscription to AccountingWeb, and decided to investigate it further.
I have been using Sage Once Accounting with a client as well as Sage 50 desk based software; well I was pretty much a Sage activist and thought they were the best thing accountancy wise, after all my local college uses Sage 50 in their teaching modules.
The way in which Xero works is simplistic but beautiful, no long winded journal corrections if something is entered incorrectly or if you duplicate a client its easy to merge the details into one contact. Simple.
I tried out a demo that they have available, and was further surprised at how easy it is to enter data and include pictures or scans of receipts and attach them as data to the transaction entry. In that sense it is very much like quickbooks online which is also great piece of software.
After trying out the demo I signed up as a certified partner and decided to give it real test and input my own business data, I uploaded my contacts via a CSV import and then did the same with my invoices and bank statements.
It was quick and simple, and within 2 hours I had everything uploaded to the Xero program, I could see on the dashboard, how my financials looked and loved the option of being able to allocate purchases to clients. When I created my first invoice in Xero I was pleased to see that it automatically showed that there was a billable expense that could be applied to the invoice, if I wanted.
The best part was the reconciliation of the bank statements, it was quick and easy to match payments and also to create a payment record if there was not a match available, or I could match to multiple bills.
It is my preferred program, and I dread working with Sage 50 and even their new Sage One programs – which I find clunky to use as they are not as streamlined as they could be, which is a shame.
I have now become a Xero Certified Partner, by undergoing training and an examination, which will have to be repeated each year in order to maintain the accreditation.
The benefit of being a certified partner, is that it allows me access to discounts off the package and also I can offer packages that are not available directly, such as a slimmed down and cheaper ledger package which is ideal for small trades who do not need a lot of functionality and reporting.