What is Xero, and what can it do for me?

Xero Bronze Partner 2017-07-14

I'm excited to announce that Blue Ribbon Accounting is now a Bronze Partner, Certified Advisor and Certified Payroll Advisor with Xero!

What's Xero?

Xero is an online, browser-based accounting system that can streamline your bookkeeping and reduce your bookkeeping and compliance costs. Being browser-based means no downloaded software, and access anywhere - from any computer or through the Xero app, using just your login details.

It has a strong Australian presence with specific Australian training staff, support documents and webinars, as well as easy set-up for Australian taxes and registrations.

How do I know if Xero will be right for my business?

Just about every small business I know is using Xero for its bookkeeping. The brand is designed to be progressive, energetic and approachable, which means their system is designed to be straightforward, accessible and easy to understand and implement - even without any specific training.

There are a huge range of subscriptions available at different price points, so you only need to pay for what you use!


I'm not sure I know enough...

One of the best parts of Xero is that you can set up automatic bank feeds for your business bank accounts - every morning, the previous day's transactions are imported automatically by Xero. This means instead of having to learn how to enter transactions and how accounting works - all you have to do is click a few buttons to allocate the imported transactions to your income or expense accounts!

Most of my clients who are set up in Xero do their own bookkeeping, and I only jump in every quarter to check on things, do some clean-up and prepare their BAS - this significantly reduces their bookkeeping costs.

Business Owners quickly grow to feel confident and knowledgeable in their understanding of the ins and outs of their finances.

Okay, but does it offer everything I need?

The features of Xero will obviously vary based on your pricing plan, but the following is just a short list of some of the capabilities of Xero:

  • Automatic bank feeds - importing your bank transactions
  • Set up bank rules - one click to code regular and repeated transactions
  • Issue sales and purchases invoices and track payments and receipts
  • Create inventory items, and track items you carry as stock
  • Payroll - fully automated including timesheets, tax, super and Payment Summaries
  • Business Activity Statement preparation and integrated GST accounting
  • Multiple currencies
  • File storage (photograph or scan receipts so you never lose them!)
  • A full range of reporting for compliance and business tracking - Profit and Loss, Balance Sheet, Cash Flow, Budget management, and a whole lot more
Xero Certified Advisor 2017-07-14

So how much does Xero cost?

The publicly available Xero subscriptions start at $25 per month, however as a Bronze Partner I have access to some even cheaper plans - one is only $10 per month!

Take a look at the list below - it lists the price, as well as the specifics of each plan:

  1. $10/month - non-GST cashbook (exclusive to Xero Partners - you cannot buy this except through a certified Xero Partner). Offers only bank feeds and some reporting. Perfect for businesses that don't need to issue invoices through Xero, but just want an easy way to track their income and expenses to make tax time a whole lot less painful.
  2. $19/month - GST cashbook (also exclusive to Xero Partners). Just like the product above, only it also tracks GST and provides BAS reporting. A great upgrade for any cashbook clients who find themselves needing to register for GST, but not feeling like they need a full system just yet.
  3. $25/month - starter (this is the start of the 'off the shelf' plans). Good for freelancers and service businesses with a few larger clients - this includes 5 receivable and 5 payable invoices per month, plus up to 20 bank transactions and one payroll employee. This is the cheapest 'full service' Xero product, but the quantity restrictions might bite before you expect them to.
  4. $50/month - standard. This is the most common business plan for small businesses without employees. It provides unlimited invoicing and bank transactions, inventory, full reporting including GST/BAS reporting, and payroll for one employee. A perfect starter for a business that's finding themselves more and more dragged down by manual invoicing and accounting.
  5. $60/month - premium 5. This one is starting to get into the really powerful Xero engine - it provides everything in the Standard plan, as well as multiple currencies, automated superannuation, and payroll for up to five employees.
  6. Beyond this, the increases are all about payroll numbers - for $70/month you can have 10 employees, $80/month allows you to have 20, $90/month allows up to 50 employees and $100/month covers 100 employees.

Okay, I'm interested! What do I do now?

Whether you've never had an accounting file before, or whether you're looking to move from a different software (MYOB etc), contact me to discuss your Xero needs - I'll be sure to pass on any discounts I receive on the above plan prices as well!

When we've figured out what you need, I can give you a quote for the cost of the initial Xero set-up (I strongly recommend having this set up by an accounting professional to ensure that everything is accurate straight away), and then we can discuss getting you trained in the software, or how you want to look after your ongoing bookkeeping.

If you want to know more about my range of bookkeeping services or what my current clients think about Blue Ribbon Accounting, check out my Small Business page for more info.

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