When migrating your Accountancy practice to the cloud, eliminating your clients offline processes is going to be an essential part of the plan.
Young Companies are seeking to scale in cash tight environments, the ability to access real time financial information is of prime importance, both for internal analysis and decision making, and also to assure external stakeholders, such as banks, that the Company is moving forward in the right direction and the correct pace.
Xero is therefore critical to your firm’s approach in providing these services and should be utilised by ALL of your client Companies. If they are not on Xero you simply can’t deliver the full value add service you strive for.
The added benefit to using Xero, however, is the ability to utilise the Xero Add-On ecosystem and create bespoke, tailored business processes for each individual business. You should take the opinion that, a startup company should seek to implement, from day one, effective operational and financial systems that can scale with the business without significant additional cost or manual input at a later date.
Xero allows you to do this and add significant value to your Clients from the outset of their business, increasing their investment attractiveness and reducing costs in the long term as revenues commence and grow. If you are new to the cloud accounting world, this article will hopefully give you a better understanding of the types of application that exists, and what benefits they can bring.
Nuvem9 one of the leading cloud accounting specialists likes to categorize the Add-On ecosystem into the following categories of solution when discussing with clients and you should do the same:
- System Integration – these add-ons are cloud solutions in their own right but have a Xero interface that allows the transfer of financial data from that solution into Xero. This removes duplicated data entry, reduces the risk of user error, and integrates the Company’s financial system better into the wider operational processes for that business. As an example, Nuvem9 have a client that has integrated its Magento webstore with Xero, thereby enabling all transactions on its online site to be transferred into Xero as draft invoices at the start of each working day. They previously used Sage and had to employ a clerk solely to input the records from Magento onto Sage;
- Data Automation – there are a growing range of tools that are being used to take previously manual intensive financial processes and automate them via specialist Xero add-on tool. For example, Satago and Chaser allows for automated and consistent credit control processes and Receipt Bank removes Purchase Ledger data entry costs via OCR automation. In this day and age, our rule is that, if any financial process in the business is repeated, there will be an Add-on to automate that process;
- Process Enhancement – these tools add value to an existing process with a Xero link. Once set-up they will continue to generate savings for a business time and again. For example, Stripe, Paypal and GoCardless payment links on sales invoices will increase the speed at which an invoice is paid, and using integrated foreign exchange applications such as Transfermate will speed up outgoing payments; and
- Deeper Analysis – whilst the range of reporting in Xero is good and growing with each release, the default nature of the report formats mean it is likely a Client will have a specific need that cannot be met directly in Xero. The availability of tools such as Fathom, Spotlight, Futrli, ProfitSee and Float enable data to be exported from Xero and analysed in much more customised detail in the reporting tool. This is essentially the modern way of taking data from a Sage desktop system and analysing on spreadsheets, but without the time, errors and inflexibility a spreadsheet based report would provide.
Nuvem9 has developed a wide network of applications and this enables them to create a tailored formula of solutions from each of these categories as appropriate for each client. The solutions are primarily designed for the client to gain fast access to information and scalable growth, but also to allow us to keep costs to a minimum. Truly a win-win for all involved.
If you would like more information on how cloud applications can benefit your practice and would like support in client set up and training for your staff then please register your interest here.
A whole new world opens up to your accounting practice when you pass the XERO Certification test.
And the best thing is it’s easy to get xero certified by completing a series of self paced, video based online training. You need to have completed the XERO Essentials course and be a partner already. This may sound like a lot of work, but it isn’t.
Once you have completed XERO essentials you simply apply to be certified.
Click here for XERO Essentials
It’s that simple.
And remember before you start your online course contact us to learn how we can help to build your online presence and set you up with a highly converting digital sales funnel to help find you new cloud accountancy clients.
How to be XERO certified video desciption
Accountants and bookkeepers can now learn all about Xero accounting software, and become certified, online. The training is self-paced and available any time, anywhere, from any device with an internet connection. You just need to head to the training tab in My Xero for Partners and activate online training. You’ll be able to see the progress you’ve made on current courses, other courses available to you and any training you have completed. Watch this video tutorial to learn more about the process!
Xero is beautiful accounting software for small businesses and their advisors. See your cashflow in real-time with online accounting, invoicing, payroll, billing & banking. Just login and see the difference. Sign up for a free trial at https://www.xero.com/signup
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One of the most pressing issues that you as a cloud accountant face is the impending GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) which will directly affect you if you store data on any of your clients or prospects.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) (Regulation (EU) 2016/679) is a Regulation by which the European Commission intends to strengthen and unify data protection for individuals within the European Union (EU). It also addresses export of personal data outside the EU.
When the GDPR comes in to effect which will be very soon, the European Union can fine you up to €20 million or 4% of your annual turnover if you are found to be in breach of the new laws data on EU Citizens to implement appropriate security measures.
A simple fix on data storage to prepare for this is to make sure all your data is stored on a GDPR Data Storage solution such as a Discashur DT
The iStorage diskAshur DT is the world’s first portable hardware encrypted hard drive with PIN code access and utilises military grade XTS-AES 256-bit hardware encryption, which encrypts all data stored on the drive in real time.
Due to a sharp rise in people wanting GDPR Data storage solutions stocks are continually running out so make sure to click here to get yours today
For further reading make sure to follow the EU General Data Protection Regulation 2016 that explains all the legal requirement for storing data that you need to know.
It covers key issues such as;
- GDPR data encryption,
- GDPR Data Storage,
- GDPR data portability,
- GDPR data security,
- EU data storage regulations
- GDPR hard drives,
We are no experts on this so make sure to do your own research and use your own due diligence but if you need advice or seek guidance on preparing for the new regulation then make sure to visit sites like www.coralcompliance.com who can walk you through the process.
If you want to help your clients save time in their day then you should introduce them to Deputy.
Deputy is the ultimate workforce manager, offering your client the best technology in a web based solution.Simplify their rostering, timesheets, tasking and employee communication administrative tasks. With brilliant apps and one click payroll integration Deputy can help make your clients life easier.
With Deputy you can help your clients:
Keep track of when and where their team starts and ends their shifts with it’s mobile apps or kiosk.
- Complete their payroll in one click by automatically calculating their overtime, penalty rates and allowances.
- Create fully costed employee schedules in no time and notify everyone with just one click.
- Easily see who worked when, create, approve and export timesheets to payroll software.
- Easily capture when and where their people work for greater HR compliance, payroll accuracy, and insight into workforce productivity.
- Give their employees an easy way to stay informed, share important messages and contribute to the workplace conversation via their mobile devices.
Click here to visit Deputy
Meet Float – a delightfully simple and award-winning cashflow management software that automates your clients cash forecasting saving them and you hours of time each month.
Founded in 2011 by CEO Colin Hewitt, Float has been at the cutting edge of cashflow forecasting and making Xero, Freeagent and Quickbooks users life simpler and more productive by helping businesses keep on top of their cash flow.
We managed to catch up with the Float team to ask them a few questions…
Tell us a little about yourself
FL: We’re based in Edinburgh with a team of 10 and we’ve been around since 2011. We now integrate with three accounting platforms: Xero, FreeAgent and QuickBooks Online.
Tell us a little about your tech firm and why you started it?
FL: Float is cash flow forecasting software for business owners, finance departments and business advisors. We integrate seamlessly with QuickBooks Online, FreeAgent and Xero to give you an easy-to-understand but powerful tool that provides an accurate, real-time view of your bank balance next week, next month, next year and beyond.
Colin Hewitt started Float after having run a digital agency and experienced the pain of trying to manage a cash flow spreadsheet. Realising that there had to be a better way, Colin started to build Float.
What are the main features of your tech services?
FL: Set budgets for expected cash – in Float, you can create budgets (placeholders) for cash you expect to pay or receive, even if there are no bills or invoices associated with them yet.
Giving you control – Float makes intelligent projections based on the due dates on your bills and invoices. You then have further control to manually update that data to better reflect what’s actually happening.
Always up-to-date – Float’s seamless integration with your accounting software means that your forecast will always be up-to-date.
Easily share your forecasts – Add your accountant, employees or investors as users to simply share your forecasts online. Or just export your forecast as a PDF and send it to them.
No number goes unexplained – With Float you can drill into the detail behind the numbers and make notes, meaning you’re never more than a click away from completely understanding your numbers.
What key benefits do you consider that your tech offers to people thinking about using it?
FL: Benefits for accountants and bookkeepers: We offer a partner programme that comes with a free account for your own practice, 40-80% off the cost of Float for clients, a dashboard to view all client companies and complementary client training.
Cash flow forecasts business owners can understand and use – Simple cash flow forecasting for small business owners, and you don’t have to be an accountant to use it.
Manage your short term cash flow – Float forecasts when cash will move in and out of your account based on data from your accounting software. You can now predict what your bank balance will be at any point in the future. Stop lying awake at night, and wrap yourself in bedsheets, not spreadsheets.
Forecast the longer term – Float helps you answer difficult questions about the future, such as ‘What will happen to my bank balance if sales increase/decline over the next 6 months?’ or ‘Should I buy or lease the new company car?’
Does your tech firm focus on any specific sectors or industries?
FL: Our users come from a wide variety of backgrounds, and tend to be either business owners or business advisors.
“Float is brilliantly simple. It gives a business owner the ability to easily predict cash flows and identify any problem areas. Its simplicity makes it easy to update and really usable as a day to day management tool.”
– Gail Bainbridge, Bainbridge Lewis
“By using Float I am now able to help my clients in a way that I simply wasn’t able to before. Float delivers pertinent cash flow information to my clients efficiently and effectively, using data sourced straight from Xero! It does exactly what I want – it provides an extra layer of insight for my clients in relation to their business operations.”
– Geoff Trabant, Easy Online Bookkeeping
“I am finding Float an excellent app for management of my clients’ goals and expectations. Many of them are going through a growth surge and the Float tool is working as a daily point of focus and for longer term planning.”
– Nick Houlbrooke, Houlbrooke Group
“Float is awesome, I previously used a spreadsheet for my cashflow forecasting which was high maintenance and inaccurate and since using Float I have never looked back. I don’t know how anyone can run their business without it!”
– Denny O’Halloran, Roofline
“Float helps us understand how much cash we have to reinvest into the business and make sure no one goes unpaid. It’s really helped us get a better understanding of where we’re headed.”
– Shane O’Connell, Summer of Dev
“Your accounting software helps you look at your business going backwards, Float lets you look at it into the future. It’s simple, and you don’t need to be an Excel master to run it.”
– Avery Dorland, Windigo Online
If you’re a financial advisor (cloud accountant, bookkeeper or virtual FD), read more about their partner program and available discounts at www.floatapp.com/partners
Check out float here;
27 Intacct Partners Named to Industry's Top Resellers List-the Most of Any Cloud ERP Vendor
Intacct, a leading provider of best-in-class cloud ERP software, is pleased to announce that 27 Intacct value-added resellers (VARs) were recognized on Accounting Today's 2016 VAR 100 list. Once again, Intacct has more partners honored on the Accounting Today VAR 100 list than any other cloud ERP vendor. The annual VAR 100 list ranks the top value-added resellers of accounting and accounting-related software by revenue.
The Intacct Partner Program continues to grow and attract the industry's top organizations. As more and more businesses look to implement cloud-based financial systems, an increasing number of the top resellers have turned to Intacct's partner program to expand their portfolio with cloud ERP software.
Intacct is a leading provider of best-in-class cloud ERP software. Bringing cloud computing to finance and accounting, Intacct's award-winning applications are the preferred financial applications for AICPA business solutions. In use by more than 11,000 organizations from startups to public companies, Intacct is designed to improve company performance and make finance more productive. Hundreds of leading CPA firms and Value Added Resellers also offer Intacct to their clients. The Intacct system includes accounting, cash management, purchasing, vendor management, financial consolidation, revenue recognition,subscription billing, project accounting, fund accounting, inventory management, and financial reporting applications, all delivered over the Internet via cloud computing.
Time tracking and invoice software by Xero.
Trusted by 5000+ service businesses for quotes, time sheets, job management, invoices and more.
Create an invoice in WorkflowMax and simply push that data through to Xero. Enter information into one system and it pops through on the other – automagically.
“It’s a life saver. All you need is those two systems – WorkflowMax and Xero to run an effective agency.”
No more double-handling
A complete solution
Time Tracking made easy
Easy Job Management
WorkflowMax integrates with 32 add-on softwares
Spotlight Reporting is software for Xero users that helps cloud accountant bases advisors manage KPIs, analytics forecasting and performance reporting for their clients.
You can pull in over 100 reports and data-grabs from not only Xero but also QuickBooks Online creating a broad range of accrual, budget and cash analysis.
Spotlight also integrates with WorkflowMax and Google Analytics, plus their Customisable Data Grid allows you to add non-financial and KPI data for a complete view of performance to allow you to become a VCFO power house.
Creating customised reports is easy and you can quickly generate PDF, email and online viewing options to share with your cloud accounting allowing you to work on your business and not in your business.
Make sure to try the free trial for Spotlight Reporting to see how it works for your business.