The benefits of cloud accounting apps
I recently highlighted the unique advantage Xero has over its competitors, particularly as they’re the only providers that have designed a platform which seamlessly integrates with third party applications (apps).
The benefit of this integration is that it give you access to over 300 real-time business software products and apps, many of which were previously only the domain of large companies with huge IT budgets.
These apps mean that you have an easier way to tackle arduous tasks such as inventory, payroll, invoicing and reporting. They can be incorporated into your individual Xero installation design, creating a streamlined accounting system for your business.
The short-list of apps (also known as add-ons)
At first glance the library of cloud accounting apps/add-ons can be overwhelming, so with this in mind I have created a short-list of my favourites. They’re also the ones my clients ask me about the most.
Add-on: Receipt Bank
Benefit: Less data entry
This app eliminates the need to enter supplier invoices into your system. Copies of your invoices are submitted to Receipt Bank by email or iPhone app, which then creates the corresponding transaction in Xero, and attaches a copy of the invoice. All you need to do is approve the expense allocation.
Want more articles like this? Check out the Cloud technology section.
Benefit: Real-time sales and inventory data
This cloud-based platform enables retailers to accept payments and manage inventories in real-time. Simple to set up, it works with a wide range of point-of-sale devices and all internet-enabled devices. It also records daily sale totals automatically in Xero, ready for bank reconciliation.
Benefit: Flexible, real-time forecasting
This simple cash flow forecasting and budgeting tool automatically syncs with Xero, keeping your forecast up to date and business projections consistently accurate. It enables you to forecast different financial scenarios and understand the potential impact of issues like seasonality and capital outlay.
Add-on: Workflow Max
Benefit: Better productivity and profitability measures
This application allows you to track time, manage jobs, create quotes, purchase orders and invoices. Advanced reporting capabilities measure how well you are meeting deadlines, productivity objectives and more importantly, how much money you are making on each job.
Benefit: Integrated quoting and invoicing
This application allows you to create a quote which, once accepted by your customer (with the click of a button), prompts Xero to generate an invoice. It also creates a permanent link back to your quote for future reference.
Whilst the benefits of these and the other add-ons are numerous, ultimately it is their ability to deliver a flexible, efficient and user-friendly accounting system that will give you more time to focus on your business.
What are your favourite cloud accounting apps and add-ons?