Xero automates accounting with daily bank feeds
Accountancy software firm Xero claims to have removed the hassle of managing small business accounts by automatically importing account data from 55 UK banks.
Xero’s software now pulls in bank feeds daily, saving SMBs the trouble of keying in account statements manually or waiting for monthly electronic statements to arrive.
The company claims the new feature will save time by giving small businesses a daily view of their cash flow without any effort.
“It’s an interesting new piece of functionality, which for the first time in the UK will connect bank information directly in with accounting and book-keeping information,” managing director Gary Turner told PC Pro.
“That sounds, in one sense, incredibly boring,” he admitted. “But actually, if you’re a small business owner, manager or accountant, it’s a massive, massive time-saving development.”
“At the moment, to keep on top of cash flow, how much you have in your bank, and who has paid you and who hasn’t, at worst you’re working with a paper bank statement that comes through the post and you have to key that into your accounts package to reconcile it,” he explained.
“At best you’re able to download a CSV file if your online bank supports it, and then you have to import it, which is still pretty tedious.”
“Most small businesses don’t bother doing it, because life’s too short and they have other things to worry about – like servicing their customers – and as a result they get out of sync with their current bank position,” he said.
With the new system, bank feeds are automatically pulled into the Xero software every day from 55 UK banks, giving users the last 24 hours of transactions without any data entry or manual importing.
Companies can set up the system to recognise recurrent transactions, such as bill payments. “All of those statement entries, Xero learns and automates the reconciliation of that,” he said.
The system has been trialled in the UK over the past 18 months with HSBC. It’s now available for all Xero users without any additional cost.