As business trends focus on the lean, the agile, and the nimble, the market for business tools expands. Coupled with huge leaps in technology over the past 5 years and echoes from a recessionary global economy, the result is that many businesses start on a sparse budget. Clunky organizational techniques and personnel (and the budget to use them) are not justifiable anymore.However, this doesn't mean that businesses have shortcomings and risks today that they didn't have before - a variety of software app options have taken the place of business processes that required:
- • Specialized personnel - either onsite or off-site• Reams of paper/file storage and recording• Subject matter expertise or
- middle management
We can largely thank the internet - the great equalizer - for making these three areas much more compact and accessible.
The Background of Xero
One of the big fish among business apps is Xero - with over 500,000 users, and a robust feature set, Xero is a starting point for many small businesses who are looking to fill a bookkeeping and invoicing gap in their business to streamline their processes and ensure that there aren't any missed gaps; in fact, the app is considered so excellent that medium and large-sized businesses frequently use Xero in tandem with their bookkeeper or accountant. Intended for varying balance sheet and business set ups for both small and medium businesses, as well as freelancers and non-profits, Xero presents businesses with a clear overview of their finances from the dashboard onward. The program highlights bank balances, invoices and expenses in a clear manner. Some core features include:
- • Bank reconciliation import:
- Set for daily imports, bank and credit card transactions are imported and reconciled every day. Should a problem arise, there's a manual approval process that confirms the match as corrected
- • No extra licensing:
- Regardless of plan size, every Xero plan has
- unlimited users
- • Updates:
- The ease of updates is due to the app's home in the cloud, making automatic updating very easy
- • Responsiveness to customer feedback:
- New features and updates are added with frequency
- • Support and knowledge base:
- Xero offers unlimited email support through their experienced team, as well as an extensive knowledge base
Other great features that are core to this accounting cloud tool include:
- • Encryption and
- • Access control• Multi-factor authentication• A robust data policy• Data backup based on geographic regions
Xero supports all major operating systems, such as Linux, Mac and Windows, as well as the most popular browsers. Its recent versions support data access on mobile devices.The current iteration of the program is entirely web-based, and is supported in Asia, Australia, Canada, China, Europe, India, Latin America, Middle-East and Africa, United Kingdom, United States - however the only official supported language at this time is English.Xero's subscription-based pricing model does have a free trial option, and plan prices are in the middling range of their competitor segment.
The Financial Hub of Your Business
Xero is the anchor of many businesses' accounting processes and is vigorously focused on that goal. While Xero gives you access to all this great data, cunningly displayed - the budget area is limited and the forecasting options are fairly inflexible and static. From an operations standpoint you've got your blinders on without fully liberating this useful data - you're not able to use it to inform the current state and direction of your business.
Xero Can Be the Hub - Which Add-Ons Are Best?
With Xero as the hub, you'll find it can do a lot - but not everything. However, for the cost, you're ideally positioned to shop for another great integrative feature set with a Xero add-on, now called a 'Xero Connected App' - in the Xero Marketplace.With over 500 apps in its library, Xero has a highly curated collection of peripheral software that can build from its core platform to help you visualize your data, and power your day-to-day decisions.The Xero Marketplace Divides Add Ons into Core Sections:
- • Dealing with Inventory • Managing Payments• Powerhouse Reporting• Connecting to a CRM (Customer Relationship Management)• Time tracking• Invoicing and Jobs• Point of Sale• Payroll and HR (Human Resources)• E-Commerce• Bills & Expenses• Conversions• Debtor Tracking• Documents• Financial Services•
- ...and our key area
Although there are a host of powerful reporting tools, at Dryrun we focus on providing direction and focus to businesses to help them navigate present and future decisions.Dryrun is a connected app that combines your Xero data with powerful and beautiful budgeting tools with the goal to build a cash flow, budget and sales forecast that helps you identify and address issues before they hit, guides your decisions and helps you plot a growth plan and way forward in your business.Learn more about Dryrun and how you can connect with Xero to supercharge your forecasts.