Is Xero right for your business?
A little bit about Xero
Xero is the most talked about business accounting tool since someone started selling pads with pre-ruled debit and credit columns. While it is still seen by many as the 'new kid on the block', 2017 will see it celebrate 10 years since the much-loved product exploded out of New Zealand in 2007.
In this short period of time, it has amassed a 15% total market share of accounting products in Australia. This might not seem like much, but seeing as less than 20% of businesses are currently using a cloud-based accounting platform, this is significant and there is still more room for growth.
Xero has also been responsible for leading the charge with cloud-based accounting and key innovative features that are now standard in other platforms, such as bank feeds. Some of the other great features include:
- It is always accessible and incredibly secure in the cloud
- You can instantly see your bank and financial position on the Dashboard
- You can easily report, especially across departments and other categories
If you want to see some of the other great features of Xero, check them out here.
What is Xero good at and not so good at?
At a high level, Xero's strengths and weaknesses can be best explained by their strategy. Xero focusses on being a incredibly user-friendly, productive accounting platform for mainstream accounting tasks.
This means that Xero concentrates on improving standard accounting processes and lets other programs focus on their speciality areas. A good example of this is stock management. Xero has just brought in tracked inventory items, but this is only a recent addition and they are unlikely to develop stock management much further. They prefer to let dedicated programs like TradeGecko or Vend handle more complicated inventory and warehousing requirements.
This is a similar situation in bills and invoicing, managing customers or jobs, time tracking and staff management - Xero has a simple offering that will work for the majority of businesses, but if you need something more complicated, you will probably need to find an add-on which will cost extra.
Will Xero work for your business?
Xero is naturally a good fit for most businesses because of its simplicity. It is probably most valuable in smaller organisations where the person responsible for accounts also has other key roles because it will save you time. The hurdle with Xero comes in if you have complex requirements because you will need to purchase one, if not multiple, add-ons to fulfil more complicated requirements, which quickly impacts on value for money.
Regardless of this, any add-on should have easily identifiable time savings or other benefits to help you determine whether it is worthwhile. If the right add-ons are chosen, the opportunities for automation and integration should significantly outweigh the additional costs e.g. would you pay an extra $50 per month if it saved you two hours a week? YES!!!