From XU Magazine, 
Issue 28

How local accounting firm cut time & costs spent on Accounts Payable by 85%

expensemanager brings seamless integration with Xero to enhance functionality and Automate AP

Read how expensemanager together with Xero resolves numerous pain points for local Australian Accounting Firm, Breakthrough Accounting.
This article originated from the Xero blog. The XU Hub is an independent news and media platform - for Xero users, by Xero users. Any content, imagery and associated links below are directly from Xero and not produced by the XU Hub.
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About Breakthrough Accounting

Breakthrough Accounting is a bespoke accounting firm on the Central Coast specialising in Not-for-Profit accounting, business accounting and virtual CFO services. When Breakthrough Accounting suffered multiple pain points within their AP processes, fortunately Zac and the team discovered expensemanager, Australia’s leading spend management platform, which seamlessly integrated to their existing Xero system to completely revolutionise their entire accounts payable (AP) process.

The Pain Points

Unfortunately, Breakthrough Accounting previously suffered multiple ‘Pain Points’ that resulted in excessive time and resource constraints, hindering their next layer of success when it came to internal AP processes.

  • Manual paper processes played a significant role in the pain points at Breakthrough Accounting, where staff would find themselves shuffling through paperwork to complete a simple task such as approving invoices for payments. When dealing with the issue of holding and storing this paperwork, this trickled into other issues including risk & security management and no digital copies of invoices.
  • Human/Administration errors were another significant risk for Breakthrough Accounting. Staff would spend hours completing Administration work. With any human process comes the potential for errors, which would result in additional time spent on tasks to minimise risk of error.
  • Unintegrated software systems were tried and tested to manage Breakthrough Accounting’s expenditure. Not only were the total cost of these systems excessive, they increased the risk of errors and administration tasks.

Resolving the Pain Points

By removing paper processes, Breakthrough Accounting has seen an immediate change in their day-to-day processes for both their staff and clients.

“​​By making our processes paper-free removed the risk of any lost documents plus no more paper shuffling. This allows us to boost our professionalism whilst increasing our productivity and allowing us to actually focus on our core roles” says Zac.

Implementing AP automation allowed Breakthrough Accounting to shift all their AP processes online. With the power of automation and enhanced features such as OCR, the team could automatically scan invoice data and supplier payment requests would be automatically created. Furthermore, features including Automatic Duplicate Invoice Checks and Coding & Matching allowed Breakthrough Accounting to significantly reduce administrative bottlenecks. Approvers receive fully coded invoices and can approve invoices on any device, on the go, with multi-level approval workflows with policies customised directly to our company.

“By automating our accounts payable, we have reduced costs significantly and most importantly, we gained back up to 85% of time spent that we usually used up by undergoing manual, tedious processes such as checking for duplicate invoices. We have now completely transformed the way we manage our time, opening up more time for our clients.”

By implementing a Complete Spend Platform like expensemanager that seamlessly integrates into Xero, Breakthrough Accounting could finally remove the multiple software systems that were used for spend management. From expenses that simplify business spend, right through to purchase orders that control spend and make the entire purchase process online, expensemanager allows Breakthrough Accounting to keep all AP processes simple to manage.

“With its seamless integration to Xero, expensemanager has significantly reduced the time and cost spent on processing and reconciling our expenses & invoices. A key benefit to us was the ability to process different expenses across multiple companies from the one system.” explains Zac.

Integration to Xero

For Breakthrough Accounting, integration between software is crucial for healthy business operation. expensemanager is a certified listing on the Xero App marketplace, delivering enhanced features for Xero clients through its seamless integration, making Accounts Payable even easier.

Primary integration benefits that Breakthrough Accounting experience includes:

  • Links within Xero that allow easy manoeuvring between both systems, allowing managers to easily recall invoices and other important documents.
  • 100% Cloud based software, meaning users, approvers and auditors can access the system anywhere, anytime.
  • Customisation is crucial as all businesses operate differently. expensemanager gives the ability for Breakthrough to set up files to match Xero, from GL Accounts right through to Tax Codes.
  • User functionality enhancements gives Breakthrough’s users the ability to complete important functions including exporting multiple Xero files from the one expensemanager login.
  • Tracking enhancements allowing all expenses to be easily tracked to relevant cost centres.

Zac mentions that “Integration is particularly important for us and our business operations. Integrating our Xero system with expensemanager has opened crucial features and enhancements that we use daily, including tracking enhancements and ability to customise files. It is not just us that love this integration – even our external auditors love the system as they do not have to be onsite to perform Audit checks.”

Additional Advantages

Hard dollars and hours saved with a positive ROI since implementing expensemanager was highly evident for Breakthrough Accounting. Enhanced features such as AI Scanning and coding of invoices allowed Breakthrough to not only save hours per week but open more opportunities with clients.

100% Local with First-Class Support was a significant aspect in the decision-making process for Breakthrough Accounting. The staff wanted to ensure that if they need assistance, from support through to development, it was readily available in local time, plus having any sensitive data stored in Australia was another reassurance that no other competitors were willing to provide.

“A major reason to go with expensemanager was that they are based here in Australia. Keeping client’s data local offers essential peace of mind. The support we have received is at the highest level that we’ve experienced from any software company. Even their development team is local and jumps in on calls when required.” says Zac.

Customisation is crucial as business landscapes are continuously changing. For Breakthrough Accounting, customisation was not only important for their own processes but their clients. With a 100% local team, Breakthrough Accounting rested assure that any customisation request on the expensemanager platform would be comfortably accepted.

Staff & Client Satisfaction is the number 1 priority at expensemanager. With the numerous benefits and advantages that are offered by the system, both the hard and soft benefits are easily evident.

Zac explains that “The beauty of working with a company that is local, is that they understand our business. All of our system requests have been delivered on time and customised to our needs. Amazing features such as AI Scanning and Expense Coding provides the ability for our employees to work across multiple clients at a time, giving us the opportunity to increase business. Overall, the cost savings are many, many times over the cost of expensemanager. We don’t just love it, our clients do to!”.

As we can see, Zac & the team at Breakthrough Accounting have completely transformed their spend management with the help of Xero & expensemanager. Breakthrough Accounting has managed to resolve harsh pain points that were affecting multiple areas of the business, such as tedious manual processes, administration bottlenecks, and storage issues. Not only has this resolved common Pain Points – the integration between the platforms has offered further enhancements and features to the platforms that has made managing the entire Accounts Payable at Breakthrough Accounting simple and secure, just the way it should be.

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