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Xerocon 2018 – Our Key Takeaways

So we are just about recovered from Xerocon 2018, what an immense couple of days!

We took the whole team to Xerocon, you can read here why I think that’s such a good idea. I’m going to try not to ramble on, as Xero crammed in the announcements, the entertainment and the exhibiting apps, so my aim is to share with you our Key Xerocon Takeaways.

Human at Heart

The main focus of the whole conference was being Human. Technology is amazing, but it won’t replace us, and we must make sure we keep the human focus of our work, our relationships, and not let technology overtake our lives.  Xero itself has always been about it’s people – both Xero employees, businesses and accountants/bookkeepers.

This really resonates with us – we strive to be the best in our team, and how we communicate with you our clients. We can always do more though, and Xerocon has strengthened our resolve to do the best for you, in our services and how we communicate with you.

Making Tax Digital

Xero is completely ready for Making Tax Digital, and that means you are too if you’re our client! The MTD beta is now live, so we’ll be asking you if you’d like to join up.  You don’t have to do anything. Gary Turner Xero UK’s MD also introduced us to Dexter, Xero’s new MTD mascot – “Making Tax Simple”.  We have a whole host of resources and blogs on MTD, which we’re adding to all the time. Click here to find out more.

We were lucky enough to meet Dexter and hear what he had to say:

Open Banking

Xero announced their open banking API which means they can now connect with many finance institutions, including Soldo, Starling Bank, IWOCA and many more. This will give business owners quicker access to their financial data, and to funding options. As partners of Xero, IWOCA, Capitalise and soon to be partners with Starling Bank, this means that we are best placed to help you understand your numbers, identify when you might need finance, and get it to you quicker.

It’s worth noting that during Xerocon both Starling and Soldo announced live integrations with Xero!

It’s all about the Apps

We are really keen on utilising Xero’s apps, but with over 700 it’s not an easy task! Have a look at our blog about our 10 favourite apps, prior to Xerocon.

Now that we’ve returned, we have some new favourite apps, which we will be investigating and introducing to you over the coming months. These include Soldo, Starling Bank, Tradify, Float, Slide and Deputy. Expect more blog posts on each of these to follow!

New Xero Features

Xero also announced a stack of cool new features in Xero. Some of these we’ll use to free up more time to work with you, and some are fab improvements that will save you heaps of time, and make the Xero experience even more beautiful.

For example, Xero are about to roll out the new Navigation bar near the end of November, and have loads of improvements coming to Xero Projects and Expenses, all with Mobile features at the core.

Later this year they’re also upgrading the sales invoice experience, making it easier than ever to invoice your customers and get paid.

professional services specialistMore Reassurance for you

And finally Xero have launched a host of new Xero U courses for accountants and bookkeepers with Specialist Badges, to show our experience in certain industries, and I’m happy to report we have already gained the Xero Professional Services Specialist Badge!

And on that note, I’ll leave you to absorb this tiny part of our whole Xerocon experience. Expect more detailed blogs in the coming months. My 6th Xerocon has been an amazing experience, and the whole Xero team show that they are definitely Human at Heart. It’s a joy to be part of the Xero family!

As always thank you for reading, I’ll leave you with some photos from Xerocon.

Sharon

 

Professional Services Business of the Year

Kinder Pocock are an approachable cloud-savvy firm of accountants based in Herefordshire but supporting businesses on the move.

We specialise in Security, Design and Indie Hospitality businesses.

@KinderPocock

01432 273400

Contact Us to see how we can help

 

 


XeroCon Countdown: Our 10 Favourite Apps for Business

xerocon top 10 appsWith our 6th  Xerocon just a week away, we wanted to share with you our top 10 Favourite Xero Apps, and why we love them so much.

But firstly, what’s all the fuss about Xerocon? It’s a conference for accountants right?

Well yes indeedy it is, but oh so much more than that. I take the whole team, as it’s the best place for finding out new developments in the Xero and App world, but also and equally importantly catching up with our peers in our online accounting world.  To share ideas, catch up, and make the future a reality.

“It’s the world’s most beautiful and innovative conference for cloud accounting leaders”.

 

Our 10 Favourite Apps

We’ve been using Xero since 2012, and because we do visit every Xerocon we can keep up with developments and talk to the App developers.  We couldn’t keep this gold dust from you, so without further ado, here’s our App Top 10:

1. Xero

Of course it’s number one. It’s changed the way we and our clients do business. With over 1 million users worldwide, it’s regularly updated and has the coolest features to help you manage your business online. From the app you can raise invoices on the fly, create expense claims, and check your bank balance.

New features like Xero Projects and Xero Expenses mean that anything is possible for your small business. Find out more here.

  1. 2. Receipt Bank

Receipt Bank is a no brainer for saving you time, and claiming more money and VAT back. Gone are the days of crumpled receipts. Simply snap a photo and chuck the receipt!  It will find it’s way to Xero in the blink of an eye! Read more here.

3. Chaser

This app is revolutionary. It connects to Xero and manages your credit control for you by automatically sending chasing emails (which you can completely customise!) to clients with unpaid invoices. It also makes reviewing your credit control function a breeze, with all chasing emails and all following replies logged in its CRM. I swear those emails go out with magic fairydust! This app will get cash in the bank quicker and save you hours of time! Read more about it here.

4. GoCardless

If you’d rather not have to chase your customers, get GoCardless involved! This app allows you to set up direct debits with customers, so you control when they pay! It looks at Xero for invoice due dates and collects payment. Funds are in your account in 4 days! What’s not to like? More here.

5. Practice Ignition

Now this is a favourite app of ours for sending out proposals and engagement letters, which we can do in about 5 minutes (instead of the usual 4 hours to pull everything together!). It’s designed for accountants but perfect for any business offering a service and needing to onboard their clients. Find out more here.

6. Tripcatcher

For anyone making business trips, have a look at Tripcatcher.  It effortlessly records your business trip via GPS, and you can manually enter trips too. It calculates the VAT you can claim, and keeps an eye on the 10k mileage threshold. Then you push it to Xero.  This means more VAT can be claimed back and more expenses claimed through your business.  and it’s a huge time saver! Read more here.

7. Curve Card

The future of business cards. Link all your cards to your Curve card via the App, you can add business and personal cards. And then you only need to take one card out with you! You choose which card you’re Curve card is paying with via the App. But if you’re not that organised, their Go Back in Time feature is amazing! Just click on the card payment, and choose to move it to another card! Simples! Find out more here and use our referral code OAB8H to get £5.

8. Zapier

Zapier is a clever little app we wouldn’t be without.  It automates processes in the background between your different apps, by creatinge a “Zap” between each app. For instance if a calendar booking is made in Google Calendar you can make a zap to create an invoice in Xero.  Basically if this happens here, do that over there. We use it loads to automate our workflows and save heaps of time. Try out a zap now!

9. iZettle

For any small business wanting to take card payments, iZettle is the perfect choice. The only upfront cost is the card reader (currently £29) and then you’ll have transaction charges of 1.75%. No need for hefty merchant service fees and terminal hire.

For small retail businesses it’s even more perfect as it comes with a free EPOS App. Record all your sales through the day (card and cash) and at 10pm every night it sends all this info to Xero. No bookkeeping required!  Cool hey?

10.  G Suite

G Suite is the backbone or the engine room for any online business. With its suite of apps you can work seamlessly and securely anywhere, anytime. G Suite takes care of your communications, calendar, storage and document creation, and also integrates with many online apps, including Xero. Your whole team can work remotely and still collaborate online with no fuss, and no time wasted. We’d be lost without it!

One to Watch: Soldo

We promised you our Top 10 Favourite Apps, but we couldn’t let you go without sharing the future of employee expenses. Soldo is our one to watch.  It’s a prepaid card, which will make managing employee expenses a breeze! Also very useful if you need employees to be able to make card payments without using your business card. Geo Control is one of their cool features so that you can control where your employees are able to use the card, and when. Watch this space as Soldo is developing all the time!

See you on the other side!

As always, thank you for reading! We’ll see you after Xerocon, with even more exciting developments to report!  Please be aware that KP offices will be closed while we’re at Xerocon (13 to 15 November 2018).

Sharon

 

Professional Services Business of the Year

 

Kinder Pocock are an approachable cloud-savvy firm of accountants based in Herefordshire but supporting businesses on the move.

We specialise in Security, Design and Indie Hospitality businesses.

@KinderPocock

01432 273400

Contact Us to see how we can help

 


Online Apps Drive Award Winning Client Care

We are absolutely thrilled and humbled to have won the Herefordshire Business Award for Professional Services Business of the Year 2018, and we genuinely believe our online apps drive our award winning client care.

This award takes pride of place next to our Accounting Excellence Client Service Firm of the Year 2017, and they both mean so much as happy clients is what it’s all about!  And numbers, we like numbers.  You can find out more about these awards here.

Online Apps Make for Award Winning Client Care

We moved to Xero in 2012, and this opened up a whole world of opportunities around working online. The next app we discovered after Xero was G Suite, and then Practice Ignition, Receipt Bank and GoCardless.

The rest snowballed from there, and we now use over 50 different apps to run our business, and to provide the best possible service to clients.

How does working online help with client care?

There are many ways that working online helps us look after you better, and provide extraordinary service:

Instant access

By using online apps that we can access (securely) any time, any where means that we can look after your needs wherever you are, or wherever we are.

If you’re stuck up a mountain and having trouble sending a Xero invoice out, we can log in,  see the same data and help you out.

If you want a quote for work you’d like us to do, we can produce a proposal via Practice Ignition on our phones, you can view and accept it on your phone.

You want us to complete a reference for a mortgage – we can log into Xero and prepare up to date figures (no wasting time with data backup and restoring!)

Time savings

Having instant access means that we haven’t got to make our way to the office to get anything done, or to your office for that matter. We can start work immediately, even in the floods or snow!

We make sure that the online apps we use are as integrated as much as possible, so that they talk to each other. This means huge time savings, and no double entering of data.

You snap a photo of a receipt in Receipt Bank – in less than 5 minutes it’s in Xero – BOOM!

Customer hasn’t paid your invoice – Chaser sends out automatic chasers when you’re busy  – YES!

We also make the most of automations, whether these are within the online apps we use, or we have built them ourselves. So things happen automagically in the background.

Our mantra:  If you’re doing it manually – automate it!

Giving it back

If we’ve found an amazing app or automation we will share it with you. If it saves us time and makes us smile, it is going to do the same for you!

Where we save time by automating our work, this is more time we can spend talking to you, and working on your business.

Ready to Automate?

Have a look at some of the amazing apps we work with, and get in touch if you’d like to be a client of ours, or if you’re ready to automate!

Thank you for reading!

Sharon

 

 

Professional Services Business of the Year

 

Kinder Pocock are an approachable cloud-savvy firm of accountants based in Herefordshire but supporting businesses on the move.

We specialise in Security, Design and Indie Hospitality businesses.

 

@KinderPocock

01432 273400

Contact Us to see how we can help

 

 

 

 

 


Get Cash in the Bank Quicker

So you’ve done the work, you’ve sent your invoices out (via Xero of course) now how do you get the cash in the bank quicker?

I’m going to show you how you can do that, without spending a great deal of time, and without upsetting your customers or clients.

But first:

I’m going to assume you’ve done all the sensible things like getting your invoices out as soon as you’ve done the work, and followed the advice below:

Send your invoice as soon as you’ve done the work

Make sure you’ve agreed fees/prices and terms before doing the work

Make sure you’re sending your invoice to the right person

Send your invoice online (not in the post)

Add a “Pay Now” button to your invoices (more here)

What next?

So we have 2 great ways to get the cash in the bank quicker

Solution 1: Good old credit control

Credit control constitutes chasing your customers effectively to get them to pay.  Everyone dreads doing it, and who has time for it anyway?

Well, although we would always advocate chasing customers for payment, we don’t suggest you spend any time doing it.

Chaser is an amazing Xero app that does all the chasing automagically for you!  It sends reminders before the invoice is due (genius!) when the invoice is late, medium late and very late!  What’s more we can help you to completely customise the whole process, so that your customers think it’s you doing the chasing.

Chaser has amazing results, but don’t take our word for it!  Here’s Chaser’s blog on our lovely clients Signs and Labels‘ experience of moving to Chaser. When we started looking after Signs and Labels they were using desktop accounting software, and had £27k of old debtors. Things needed to change!

Step in Kinder Pocock, Xero and Chaser and 6 weeks later their £27k was down to £5k!  They’ve been using Chaser now since June 2018, and absolutely love the difference that Chaser has made! The cash is in the bank quicker, and they’ve saved about 4 hours per week on admin.

Please get in touch if you’d like to know more about Chaser, and help in getting set up.

Solution 2: Get paid by Direct Debit

Apps like Chaser are amazingly effective, but what if I told you you could get your invoices paid on their due date, every time? True story, another favourite app of ours is GoCardless. When linked to Xero GoCardless does a number of cool things:

It sends a DD mandate out when it sees you’ve invoiced a new customer

It looks at Xero every day and collects payment based on the invoice due date

It deposits payments into your account within 4 days of collection

I know right?!

A Match Made in Heaven!

Chaser and GoCardless are both awesome solutions but what if you got them to talk to each other?  Imagine your world:

Chaser sends a reminder to a customer

Customer clicks on the invoice

Customer clicks on the GoCardless “Pay Now” button

Customer pays this invoice via GoCardless and sets up a DD for next time

Chaser thanks customer for paying!

Genius! We absolutely love automations like this, and the icing on the cake is being able to share them with you. Our credit control and getting the cash in the bank now takes no time at all, and it will be the same for you too.

Thank you for reading! Please get in touch for more info on Chaser and GoCardless.

 

Sharon

Professional Services Business of the Year

 

Kinder Pocock are an approachable cloud-savvy firm of accountants based in Herefordshire but supporting businesses on the move.

We specialise in Security, Design and Indie Hospitality businesses.

 

@KinderPocock

01432 273400

Contact Us to see how we can help


Receipt Bank Updates for their iOS App

receiptbanklogo_white-orange_-2

We love working with online solutions like Receipt Bank, who are constantly updating their offering.

This month sees a great update that iOS users have been waiting for since it became a feature in Receipt Bank’s Android app.

Multiple Modes now in Receipt Bank’s iOS App

It’s now possible to select from 3 difference upload modes in both iOS and Android!

1. Single Mode:

As before – just take a photo and hit submit – we’ll do the rest.

2. Multimode:

Fab if you have a stack of receipts or invoices to upload.  You can now quickly upload up to 50 single page receipts or invoices.  YES 50!! #notatypo

3.  Combine mode:

Very useful if you have invoices on 2 or more pages, or receipts/invoices with more info on the back page (worst offenders are Sainsburys and B&Q).

Camera-Help-rev03Here’s Receipt Bank’s very handy image on how to turn the flash on/off and add/remove the grid from your screen

 

LOVE working with these guys.

If you’d like some help in using these features, have a look on Receipt Bank’s blog for multimode in iOS and multimode in Android.

 

 

 

**Update 20 July 2017**

Receipt Bank have just announced they’ve raised $50m in funding from Venture Partners.  This is fantastic news and we can’t wait to see the new product developments that come from this!  Read more on Receipt Bank’s blog.

 

If you’d like some assistance from us, or want to find out why on earth you’re not using Receipt Bank, please get in touch!

Thank you for reading 🙂

Sharon

sharon@kinderpocock.co.uk